Saturday, August 29, 2009

Richard Furman on Teaching Your Children

While working on a chapter on communion I came across a circular letter written by Richard Furman in 1806. Furman was one of the leading Baptist pastors of the time, serving as pastor of First Baptist Charleston, SC, the first president of the Triennial Convention, and first president of the South Carolina Baptist Convention. In this letter he had been asked to address area churches on the issue of communion. As he closed his letter, he moved from his main topic to give a closing exhortation on the parental duty to instruct your children. His words ae still pertinent today.
(Furman writes in the plural here because he writes as the representative of the pastors of the association)

Let us particularly urge attention to the state of your families, a duty which we fear is greatly neglected. The instruction of your children, and especially their religious instruction, is of the utmost importance to them and to yourselves; nor should your servants be forgotten; religious instruction should be given them with care, to bring them to an acquaintance with the holy scriptures, and the things which concern their eternal peace. That you may abound in every good word and work, and be enriched with all the blessings of grace and salvation, is the prayer of

Your affectionate Brethren in the Gospel

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