The earliest instance of an ecclesiastical precept on the subject occurs in can.
It is nothing else than the preaching and precept of Christ.
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.