Summary: This is the tenth in a series of teachings on the book of ephesians. It deals with Paul’s teachings for the parent/child relationship.
The last time we were together we looked at an extreme makeover for our marriages. Tonight we look at one for our families. How many of you know that God is intimately concerned with what happens to us as families? Old and New Testaments are filled with understanding of what our families are to look like and be like. Look at the book of Proverbs alone ¡V over 80 times Solomon talks about parents and children and their relationships. This next passage in Ephesians speaks clearly to an overhaul in our families by setting up our responsibilities to each other.
1) Children¡¦s Responsibility ¡V If you are a child listen up these are your responsibilities ¡V If you are a parent listen up because these are the principles you should be instilling in your children. Honor and Obedience ¡V the thought here is summed up in two word but they carry with them some important concepts:
„Y Obey ¡V this is a simple command without equivocation. Obey your parents. Three principles come to mind here. 1) Obedience is to be in your heart not just your actions. We can obey without real obedience. 2) Obedience is not conditional on agreement (but is conditional on God¡¦s commands ie. God¡¦s law and rule overule an ungodly parents command to sin) 3) Obedience lasts as long as you live under the roof of the parent ¡V the word children here does not specify age it specifies one who is dependent on. (parents have to know when to let go)
„Y Honor ¡V Honor is more than obedience ¡V it is the regard due to those who by Divine appointment are over us. It is respectful consideration. The command to honor has no time limit.
„Y Why do these things ¡V It is right, It is commanded, It has promise for you.
2) Parents Responsibility ¡V
„Y Don¡¦t Provoke (irritate) your children ¡V Notice this is not a command to children but to parents. What it means is not to put undue burdens on them. Not to act in ways that provokes or irritates them. What it reminds us is that our actions are to be the example not the problem in our homes. What do we do that povokes our children? ¡V Not following through on promises. Inconsistency. Perfectionism. Too high standards. Angry outbursts. Saying NO as a habit.
„Y Bring them up in the fear and admonition of the Lord ¡V the truth is society today has begun to believe in a hands off approach to spirituality. We should let our children decide what to believe. How could you? This is the most important thing of their lives. You don¡¦t let them determine their diet, curfew, rules, or language ¡V all of which will only affect them for a few years. The decision about God will affect their eternity. The most important role we have as parents is raising a Godly generation to follow us.