Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Biblical keys to the all-important, God-given relationships between parents and children.


ACT III: The Supreme Mystery In Action



Just before the Easter season, our study on the revealing of “the Mystery of the Church” as presented in Ephesians, turned to the practical issue of our relationships. We reaffirmed that:

Relationships are EVERYTHING!

Of all our relationships by far the most important is first, our relationship with Jesus, second is our relationship with our family, and third others with whom we must regularly interact (e.g. fellow church members, colleagues,and neighbors).

Last time we talked about establishing and maintaining a God-honoring, healthy and fabulously wonderful relationship between husband and wife. This morning, we will see that the same principle of love and submission under Jesus applies in ALL of our relationships if we are to honor Christ in them! First, between husband and wife. Then, between children and parents.



Intro: Don’t be shocked, but it’s true that so far in my young life I have been both a child and a parent. I spent my childhood wishing I could be a parent, since (I thought) they have it so much easier, all that endless money and, of course, I would never make all the mistakes I saw parents (especially my own) make then. Now, I’m a parent. I still sleep like a baby – zzzzz, waaaaaaaa, zzzzz, waaaaaa – unconscious from fatigue, startled awake by worry and distress, repeat. Now, I’m tempted to dream about what it would be like to just be a child again. Then, I remember how it really felt at times when I was a child and I’m not so sure anymore.

I’ve come to the conclusion that BOTH being a child AND being a parent can but does not always have to be a very challenging, difficult and confusing life. Nevertheless, children have no choice and parents – well, as Bruce Lansky stated, “Parenthood is a lot easier to get into than out of”!

So, what do we all do? How do we make lemonade out of the lemons in our relational lives? Whether children, parents, or both the wisest and best thing we can do and learn and follow the wisdom of God!!! We ALL need help! As Lord Rochester once said, “Before I got married I had six theories about bringing up children. Now I have six children and no theories.”


Before we go any further, let’s get one thing straight. In the Greek in which this text was written there were two distinguishing words for children. One was used to refer specifically to young children. The other was used to refer to ALL children (0-99) who live under their parent’s roof. Guess which word Paul is using in this passage? They say that these days there are two types of parents with adult children – those who don’t know what an “empty nest” is, and those who changed their locks!

1.Obey (v. 1)

- Say what? That’s the last thing I want to do! Why I should I obey?

- “because this is right” It is a natural law (every society) and most importantly a divine law!

- But How? I mean, you don’t know MY parents?

- “in the Lord” That is, be sure to obey your parents in all things which are consistent with

Christ and His Word! IF, on the other hand, your parent demands something which is

contrary to the Lord and His Word you are not bound to obey. To obey your parents is to

obey Jesus. To disobey your parents, except if they ask of you something offensive to the

Lord, is to disobey Jesus.

2.Honor (v. 2)

- Still, our relationship to our parents is to be about far more than simple or obligatory

obedience. We are to obey them so that we may honor them, and we honor them by how we


- As R. Kent Hughes writes: “The call to honor our parents goes beyond mere outward

obedience. To honor our parents means to love them, to regard them highly, to show them

respect and consideration. While we may outgrow the call to obey our parents, we never

outgrow the obligation to honor them.”

3.Reap (v. 3)

- Of the ten commandments, all of the others promise what will follow if they are NOT kept.

But, with this one, we are given a wonderful promise of what will happen if we DO keep it!

- Why is honoring our parents promised as a key to a long life?

- By honoring our parents in the Lord, we will regularly be warned from harm’s way,

discouraged from developing or maintaining bad habits or friends, and much more likely to

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