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According to psychologist William Damon, respect for the parent who exercises proper authority leads to respect for legitimate social institutions and to respect for law. In his book The Moral Child, Damon writes, “The child’s respect for parental authority sets the direction for civilized participation in the social order when the child later begins assuming the rights and responsibilities of full citizenship.” Damon calls this respect “the single most important legacy that comes out of the child’s relations with the parent.”


Failing to correct young adults when they break the law or leading them to believe they are the special few who can live above it is malicious parenting. Encouraging them to run from the law is “child abuse.” When families fail at their task of socializing children, a civil society degenerates.


Michael G. Moriarty, The Perfect 10: The Blessings of Following God’s Commandments in a Post Modern World, p. 111-112


Just as parents need to teach their children to submit to the law of the land so that they can be responsible citizens, so too all of us need to learn to submit to the Law of God so that we can be responsible Christians and experience spiritual victory.

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