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Review – What the Bible teaches about Christian parenting

March 2008 | by Rhona Black

What the Bible teaches about Christian parenting

Roger Ellsworth
Evangelical Press; 112 pages; £7.95;
ISBN: 978-0-85234-648-8

This is a great little book. I read it over the course of two days and found it very thought-provoking. Roger Ellsworth is careful to begin each chapter with a passage or two of Scripture, guiding the readers’ thinking and underpinning the points he wishes to draw out. This approach reinforces the aim of the book, which is to show us how to think and act more biblically as parents.

Some may find this book a little light – after all, it seeks to cover many important aspects of Christian parenting in a short volume. But, in my opinion, that is one of the book’s strengths. For anyone taking a first bite at the subject, this is a pretty good place to start.

Ellsworth grapples adequately with the issues of salvation, godliness, prayer, discipline, and much more. The author quotes from such worthies as Ted Tripp, J. C. Ryle, Martyn Lloyd-Jones and John Benton, and also supports the topics covered with personal anecdotes.

The closing chapter is entitled ‘Godly parenting in ungodly times’ and considers the story of Hannah, Elkanah and Samuel. Our attention is drawn particularly to the time when Hannah and Elkanah leave the young Samuel in Eli’s care at the temple, where he will undoubtedly be exposed to the terrible conduct of Eli’s two sons.

Encouragingly, parents are directed to ‘look at the two certainties Hannah held on to: the sufficiency of God, and his ultimate victory over evil’. Explaining these two certainties in more detail, the author emphasises God’s sovereignty and trustworthiness – thereby reminding parents of the need to know these truths and to rest in them, however demanding our family situations may be.

Rhona Black
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