I must confess that despite being a parent of two beautiful children, I have not read many parenting books. This is primarily because I don’t like them – they annoy me. I’ve read the Bible, though, and that seemed sufficient to me.
However, reading topical books can often give us helpful insights and food for thought. A few months before the birth of my first-born son, I started skimming through some parenting books. All I saw was page after page of expert ‘opinion’ and supposed ‘wisdom’ that ignored God as the author and director of life, endowed children with saintly innocence, and gave no thought to the reality of death and what may come after it. Hardly any of these books spoke about true parenting: how to bring up our children in ‘the training and instruction of the Lord’ (Eph. 6:4).
This is where J.C. Ryle’s booklet Duties of Parents stands almost alone in this oversaturated market.