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good examples to them in a sober and godly conversation, and plainness of speech : and not to use the word you, or ye, to a child or a servant, &c., nor suffer your substance to be bestowed on your children, to furnish them with such things as tend to pride, and to lift them up in vanity, or affect them with the vain fashions of the world. 1690. It being under consideration how friends' children might be disposed of, that are trained up in the way of truth, and fit to be put forth apprentices; it is the advice and counsel of friends, that special care be taken to put them apprentices to honest friends, that they may be preserved in the way of truth. 1697. And that friends of all degrees take due care to bring up their children in some useful and necessary employments, that they may not spend their precious time in idleness, which is of evil example and tends
much to their hurt. 1703.
And it is agreed that none be placed out to any not of our society, unless some special circumstance may induce the monthly meeting to think it best; and when any parent or guardian thinks any such special circumstance does attend, he may lay the same before the monthly meeting where he belongs, which is to appoint a committee to examine, consider and report on the case, and the meeting to advise accordingly, as may appear best. And it is agreed that no friend's children be placed out to any not of our society, without first having the approbation or consent of the monthly meeting where they belong; and when any parents or guardians do act contrary thereto, they be dealt with, as those
who refuse the advice and disregard the unity of the body.
And it is recommended to all friends who take apprentices, to seek for and give preference to our own members, and to be moderate in their terms, that the children of the poorer sort in an especial manner may be brought up to such trades and business as may, with the Lord's blessing on their prudence and industry, procure for them such a living as will be to their comfort and the reputation of society.
PLAIN N ESS.
IT is also our concern to exhort all friends, both men and women, to watch against the growing sin of pride, and beware of adorning themselves in a manner disagreeable to the plainness and simplicity of the truth we make profession of O that they would duly consider that severe reproof which the Lord, by the mouth of his prophet, pronounced against the haughty daughters of Zion, Isaiah iii. where he describes even the particularities of their dressings and ornaments, so displeasing to the Lord, and drawing down his judgments upon them If those things in that time were so offensive in the eyes of the Lord, how much more so are they now, in a people professing the plainness and simplicity which the gospel of Christ recommends !
“I will,” saith the apostle Paul, “that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broidered hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but, which becometh women professing godliness, with good works”—1 Tim. ii. 9, 10; where he plainly sheweth that such adornings are contrary to the profession of godliness. The apostle Peter also is very full in his exhortations on this subject: “Whose adorning,” says he, “let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; but let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner, in the old time, the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves”—1 Pet. iii. 3, 4, 5. Plainly intimating, that those who of old were holy, and did trust in God, placed not their delight in such ornaments. O that ye would weigh and consider these things! “Let your moderation be known unto all men,” and “grieve not the Holy Spirit of God; ” but, be ye followers of Him, as dear children; walking “circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” 1739. Let not any such as degenerate, in these respects, excuse their own weakness, under a pretence of the misconduct of some, who have appeared outwardly plain; an objection of very little weight: for, did they rightly consider, they would clearly see, that the very reason why deceivers sometimes put on plain apparel, is because true men have been accustomed to wear it. We also tenderly advise, that friends take heed, especially those who should be exemplary to others under their care, that they exercise plainness of speech, without respect of persons, in all their converse among men; and not balk their testimony by a cowardly compliance, varying their language according to their company; a practice of very ill example to our observing youth, and rendering those who use it contemptible, and looked upon as a kind of hypocrites, even by those with whom they so comply. Such a meanspirited practice seems to be cautioned against by the apostle, when he advises, (1 Tim.) “That the deacons be grave, not double-tongued;” a caution plainly importing, that it is inconsistent with the gravity of the gospel. 1743. Where any do not keep themselves or their children, in moderation and plainness, in gesture, speech, apparel, and the furniture of their houses; or accustom themselves, or suffer their children, to use the corrupt and unscriptural language of ‘you’ to a single person; or to call the days or months by the names given them by the heathen in honor to their idols, contrary to the ancient advices of friends, to which we refer; it is desired and advised, that friends from time to time, as such things appear, be stirred up in the wisdom of truth, to take due and prudent care therein; and if any, by continuing in such practices, reject the advice and labor of their friends, then let such cases be brought forward to the monthly meeting, for further care and dealing, as may appear necessary, for the support of our Christian testimony.