Children of the Lord
Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
As children of the Lord, it is crucial that we be obedient to our parents. Not just as children, but also as adults. Our parents gave us birth. They are the bodily reason that we are here and that we are who we have become. By honoring your parents, you are honoring God. Paul tells us here in his epistle that the commandment to honor your mother and father is the first commandment with a promise. In Deuteronomy 5:16, the Word tells us that by honoring our parents, we will have long life on earth. In Mosaic Law, anyone that cursed or struck his parents was to be put to death. This underscores the high regard that God has for us to honor our earthly parents which, in turn, gives glory and honor to Him.
To stress the importance of honoring your parents, in Paul’s letter to the Romans, (Romans 1:30), he speaks of those that God handed over to a depraved mind because of their disobedience. One of the many things they practice and approve of is disobeying one’s parents. Our parents’ role is to care for us, provide for us, and, most importantly, teach us about God’s Word, His commands, and His ways. By failing to honor our parents in all ways and at all times, we are rejecting God’s Word. Not honoring your parents is a form of Godlessness. In 2 Timothy 3:2, Paul speaks of Godlessness in the last days. He writes that one of the signs is people being disobedient to their parents. The Bible teaches us to give our parents the honor and respect that they command and deserve, even when we think they may not be very deserving of it.
In the passage, as soon as Paul finishes the charge of us honoring our parents, he moves straight into the way in which a father should raise his children. Although this speaks directly to fathers, it in no way diminishes the role or responsibility of a mother. God has charged fathers with the training and teaching of His Word and commands. You may have read many of my past posts where I speak about Discipleship. I have even written a book on the subject titled, “Prayer & Discipleship, 2 Things God Wants from You”. Fathers, discipleship starts with our children! We are to “train a child in the way he should go”. The majority of this training comes by being a godly example to your children. Children learn mostly by what they see rather than what they are told. If they see you obeying and keeping God’s commands and precepts, they will learn that this is how they too should behave. On the contrary, if they see you living a life not worthy of the calling of God, they too will learn that it is okay to fall away from the faith. We, as fathers, must rear them in the ways of God in a tender, gentle, and loving manner. Allow me to also add that when they see how you, dad, treat their mother, they are learning the standard for how a wife and mother should be treated. If they see dad dishonoring mom, they too will think that it is acceptable.
We should all aspire to be great children of the Lord. Just as we want our earthly parents to be pleased with and proud of us, we should also seek to please our heavenly Father. He treats us as His children by showing His kind and loving mercies which He extends to us with great patience. He also took divested himself of all deity and was made man that He might relate to man and in doing so, He set the example by becoming a servant. In the earthly realm, we must all strive to follow the example of our Father and Lord Jesus Christ in our roles as children and parents. God bless you!