The earliest instance of an ecclesiastical precept on the subject occurs in can.
To the ordinary good citizen of antiquity, whose religion was the consecration of family ties, such a precept was no less scandalous than it is to a Chinaman or Hindu of to-day.
He might not lie nor take an oath, for the precept "Swear not at all" was, like the rest of the gospel, taken seriously.
And this, as Philo recognized, is a division appropriate to the sense of the precepts; for antiquity did not look on piety towards parents as a mere precept of probity, part of one's duty towards one's neighbour.
It is nothing else than the preaching and precept of Christ.