Summary: Children are very important to God and form an integral part of our family system. Children are indeed our heritage and we must indeed nurture them
Sermon title: Children our heritage: nurture them
Date: Sunday May 28, 2006
Jordan Road New Testament Church of God
Children are indeed our heritage and we must indeed nurture them. Children are very important to God and form an integral part of our family system. So much so that the Holy Scriptures tells us that happy is the man whose quiver is full with them.
Though this may be so, our children are at a disadvantage in many areas of our society. They face a number of challenges each day and it is sad that so many of our precious gems are ill-treated by the very persons thought to be care givers for them.
The Jamaican landscape is no different from the rest of the world. Every year hundreds of children are mowed down either by knife, gun or car and other atrocities that may face them. It would seem that there is an all out attack on the future of not only our families but our nation.
If indeed they are our heritage (inheritance/legacy) then our sure job is to nurture (to take care of) them.
1. God’s Point of view (Ps. 127; Mk 10:14)
When we read the scripture we recognize that children are important to God. So much so that much of the new testament writer’s have made a number of statements regarding children
to the point of making comparisons between attitudes of children and adults and ascribing to us (those who believe in Christ) childlike status.
.Sons are an inheritance from the Lord. Children are a reward from him.
Children are not just the mere product of virility and fertility. They are a gift from God and not a possession from God and should be treated as such.
In the Old Testament period inheritance from the Lord was first of all land/property which provided a sure place in life. But without children the inheritance would be lost (Num. 27:8-11). So to have a child meant that you got a gift from God but this gift also meant the continuation of the family and the maintenance of their substance.
This is why if you never bore a child in OT times it caused so much frustration on an individual and by extension the family. Children must be seen as more than just a liability but an asset to a home. We must see them as an opportunity to shape the future.
.The man who bares son in his youth is like a warrior with arrows in his hand.
Such man possesses power. Blessed is the man who has his quiver full not with arrows but with children. The verse tells us why this is so. It says you will not be put to shame when you contend with your enemies at the gate.
A man who has many sons possesses a small army. When his enemies come up against him he has persons to defend him against his accusers. If God holds children in high regard how much more should we.
In mark 10:14 Jesus’ disciples were turning back persons who brought their children to be blessed by him. The bible says Jesus was indignant (angry, offended). He commanded then to let the children come and do not hinder them. Friends from God’s point of view children are of great importance.
2. Children: A Bundle of Promise and Possibilities (Eph 6:1; Col 3:20)
The word of God like it has shown the value of children also gives instructions for children. This passage is one of the main text looked at when looking at instructions to children.
In Ephesians 6:1 children are commanded to do two things. These are two very important things. It may be felt that to obey and honor is the same thing but there is a difference between the two.
Firstly to obey comes from the Greek word upakouo which means to obey, be subject to, to respond to, to accept and to adhere to. This means that every child living under his or her parents’ roof must be subject to, respond to, accept and adhere to the rules that his or her parents have set as a guideline.
However obedience to parents does not mean disobedience to God and all parents must be mindful of this. You do a great injustice and you displease and dishonor God when you ask your children to do things outside of God’s will or go against God’s commandments. Children are to obey their parents.
Secondly, the word honor comes from the Greek word timae which means to honor, respect, recognition, price or value. This means that children are to value, respect, give recognition to and honor their parents. This is not a one moment thing but it is for a lifetime. Whereas obedience to, changes somewhat after children move out of their parents home, respect and honor is always due.