Summary: The relationships of Child-Father and Employee-Employers is set forth by Paul to assist the believer in enjoying a good life and testimony
There was an interesting story some time ago in an issue of Focus on the Family magazine about a man who bought one of those cars that had replaced warning lights with spoken instructions in a female voice. In a soft voice, his "little woman"—as he called her—would say, "Your door isn’t closed properly." "Your key is still in the ignition." "Your seat-belt isn’t fastened properly." On one occasion he recalled how the voice of his "little woman" said, "Your fuel level is getting low." The driver thanked her and figuring he had sufficient fuel to take him a further 50 miles, ignored the voice and kept driving. A few minutes later, his "little woman" repeated, "Your fuel level is low." The further he drove the more often his "little woman" repeated her warning.
Getting frustrated, he stopped his car, searched under the dashboard, and found the appropriate wires. One quick jerk and his "little woman" was silenced. Imagine the "grin"; that is "cha-grin" on his face when, a few minutes later his car spluttered and jerked to a standstill—out of fuel. One could almost imagine the grin on his "little woman’s" face too! We all have a little voice within. It’s called the voice of conscience. It can get very annoying at times, and sometimes we "pull its wires." Too late we discover we have run out of fuel.
* Why is it that we have such an aversion to following instructions? Men are well-known for reading the instructions when all else fails.
* With our resistance to reading and following instructions in our physical lives is it any wonder that we do the same in our spiritual walk?
* We have been studying Paul’s letter to Ephesus. (Text Call). Last week he gave us a word on how to have a Happy Home and a Cooking Church. He pointed out the responsibilities of the husband, the wife, and the church. Now he takes it to the next level. Let’s read.
* The last phrase of this passage should be a wake up call for the believer today. God shows no favoritism, no partiality, and no class system in the family.
* Around this great truth we can glean the principle concerning “constructive, healthy, Christian” relation-ships in today’s world. His remarks move from the Husband-wife to the next level, where he speaks of two relationships all of us have been in, are in, or will have.
1) Consider the Child-Father Relationship –
> Instructions to the Child – With respect to this relationship the child is given 2 words; obey & honor.
* Do you remember the 80’s video of Bill Cosby and his remarks about obey? It was incredibly funny.
Instructions for Relationships – Pg 2
* Yet the truth is this, it if incredibly serious. We are told to “obey” for this is right. There is that word again, “right”. Who made it right? Why is it right?
* God did. He designed up this way for instruction in life. He designed us this way for protection. This is given for all those “children” under your roof. I say under your roof because the word “roof” is sym-bolizes your authority. Were the children and teenagers in this service, my word to them would simply be “obey, God says, this is your task.”
* Let me give one word about what is called the “Boomerang Generation.” When kids leave home and wind up back home as an adult, it is not unreasonable for them to live by the rules of the house. The attitude, “I’m an adult, so I can do what I want” is not reasonable, logical, nor Biblical.
* To honor your parents gives the picture of placing value on them. It calls children to revere, respect, and hold them in high opinion.
> Instructions to the Father – The dads are also given 2 words. One of those is a “don’t” and one is a “do”.
* I wish someone would have said this to me 30 years ago: DON’T PROVOKE- PROVIDE
* Don’t provoke your child to wrath. For a long time I interpreted this to mean “don’t get angry at your children.” Now, while this is true, the real meaning is don’t keep on scolding, nagging, and badgering your kids until they get angry. Candidly, in our homes we know exactly how to push each other’s buttons.
* Do provide loving discipline. The training and instruction carry the idea of applying discipline in direct proportion to the offense. It involves being corrective and not punitive.
2) Consider the Employee-Employer Relationship –
> Instructions to the Employee (slave) – Though it says “slaves” --- the modern day application is employees. May I say that many a believer has lost his ability to share Christ because he is a horrible employee.