A classic book on the importance of an often-neglected duty, Thoughts on Family Worship by James W. Alexander focuses on the many benefits of daily worship as it strengthens minds and cultivates personal piety among both parents and children. The author further shows how family worship influences our churches and society, perpetuating sound doctrine and leaving a legacy for posterity. Alexander gives practical directions for conducting family worship, discussing in detail such things as the place of Scripture reading, prayer, and praise. He is aware, however, of the difficulties of maintaining family worship and answers several common objections to it. If you struggle to hold times of worship with your family, or even if you simply desire some encouragement in the practice, this book is sure to provide the words of counsel you need.
“In the hurry of our great cities, it is painful to observe the preference given to mammon over God. Look at the living tide which rolls every morning down such a thoroughfare as Broadway! A stranger might be forgiven if he supposed that the life of each breathless banker, merchant, or clerk depended on his reaching the commercial latitudes within a certain minute. But how many of these have prayed with their families? Some, I rejoice to believe; but the mass have no time for anything but the world. Unless men will lose their own souls, and jeopardize the souls of their children, they must take time for God. And the more busy, exhausting, and absorbing any man’s days are, the more he needs the deliberate abstraction of a quiet devotional hour, such as that of family worship.” — James W. Alexander
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James W. Alexander (1804–1859) was the oldest son of Archibald Alexander, served as a professor at Princeton Theological Seminary, and became one of the most famous Presbyterian preachers of his generation.