Many folks who have read J.C. Ryle over the years have thoroughly enjoyed his writings, especially his well known works like Holiness and Expository Thoughts on the Gospels. However, many folks may forget that John Charles Ryle was not only a prolific writer and vigorous preacher in England during the 1800′s, he was also a parent…to five children.
J.C. Ryle suffered much heartache in his 84 years, most heartbreaking was the fact that he was widowed three times during his life. Here is a brief snapshot of Ryle’s marriage and family life as described by William P. Farley:
“Ryle suffered through the poor health of his first two wives. At age 29, he married Matilda Plumptre. After a few years, she died leaving him a baby daughter to care for. Then, death took his mother, older brother, and younger sister. He felt like Job undergoing God’s trials.
“At age 33, he married longtime friend, Jessie Walker, and once again, joy and happiness filled his rural cottage. After 6 months of marriage, Jessie developed a lingering sickness from which she never recovered. Ryle nursed her for 10 years while managing their growing family (Jessie gave birth to four children). In addition to this stress, he managed his pastoral responsibilities.
“During these years, Ryle began receiving speaking engagements. Because of his love for Jessie he often traveled 30 miles in an open carriage in the dead of winter rather than spend a night away from her. In Ryle’s 43rd year, Jessie died. For a second time he was widowed, with five children for which to care.
“At age 45, he was transferred to the parish at Stradbroke. There he met Henrietta Clowes and married a third time. Unlike his previous wives, Henrietta enjoyed good health. This marriage proved long and fruitful.” [Henrietta died in 1889, Ryle died 11 years later in 1900]
In the midst of this intense grief and pain, Ryle was still a father, parenting his children to love God and His Word. It is in this context that I want to introduce you to Ryle’s short 34 page classic booklet entitled The Duties of Parents.
Here are five quotes that are well worth chewing on as parents. I trust we can apply these quotes to our everyday lives as we do our best to raise our kids to love God and His Word.
Enjoy Ryle’s classic book via yoursmartphone, tablet or PDF for free.
Below are the five tips for raising Godly children:
#1: Training Your Child to Love God Depends on You
#2: Training Your Child Means Watching Over Their Soul
#3: Training Your Child To Know The Bible
#4: Training Your Child to Have a Habit of Prayer
#5: Training Your Child to Love the Church and the Lord’s Supper