Wednesday, October 7
“And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” Ephesians 6:4
“Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies.” Proverbs 31:10
Parents have an awesome responsibility. The father is the head of the family, and the family is the nursery of church, school, and society. If the father is weak, irresponsible, and incompetent, then the family, church, school, and society will suffer the consequences. Fathers should seek to demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit – “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance” (Galatians 5:22, 23).
Mothers, too, have perhaps the most important role in all society. They have great influence in shaping the characters of their children and establishing the mood and temperament of the home. Fathers should do all they can to work with the mothers in the education of their children.
What can fathers and mothers learn from these texts? Ephesians 5:22, 23, 25, 26; 1 Corinthians 11:3; 2 Corinthians 6:14; Romans 13:13, 14; 2 Peter 1:5-7; Philippians 4:8.
Christian parents have a moral obligation to provide a biblical model of Christ and the church by their behavior. The marriage relationship is an analogy of Christ’s relationship to the church. When parents refuse to lead, or if they lead in a tyrannical manner, then they are painting a false picture of Christ for their own children and for the world. God commands all Christian parents to diligently teach their children (see Deuteronomy 6:7). Parents have the responsibility to teach their children to love the Lord with their whole heart. They are to teach the fear of the Lord, a total loving devotion and submission to Him.
In Deuteronomy 6:7, the children of Israel were given specific instructions about educating their children in regard to the great things the Lord had done for His people. However great a story the elders had to tell their children, we, who live after the cross of Christ, have a much better one to tell, don’t we?
Thus, the healing or training we are to give is an ongoing proactive event in which we pour the truth of God into our children and prepare them for their own relationship with Christ.
In the end, though, we all have been given the sacred gift of free will. Ultimately, when they are adults, our children will have to answer for themselves before God.