THE INFLUENCE OF GODLY PARENTS
[Genesis:18:16-19]; [Deuteronomy:6:6-15]; [Joshua:24:14-15]; [2 Timothy:1:1-5].
“Correct thy son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto thy soul” [PRO:29:17]).
The first thing of which a child is conscious in this life is the care and love of Mother and Father. That is the way God intended it to be. God shows His love and care for us through the love He puts into the hearts of parents who love and serve Him. The children of such parents are cradled in love; they arebrought up in the fear of God and disciplined by love. Blessed indeed is the child who is born into a Christian home!
True love does not cater to every whim and fancy of a child. Love is strong and supporting. Love commands obedience, and that is the happy way.
Children take their first steps on the Royal Road to Happiness as they learn to obey their parents. The first verse of our text is addressed to parents: “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it” [Proverbs:22:6]).
Day by day they teach their children the way they should go as revealed in the Bible. Way back in the time when Moses brought the Children of Israel to the borders of the promised land, he said to the people: “Therefore shall ye lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, . . . And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up” [Deuteronomy:11:18];[Deuteronomy:11:19]).
If we are obedient, our life here will be “as the days of heaven upon the earth.” If we do not obey, we feel the lash. This, also, is God’s plan; for “the rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame” [Proverbs:29:15]).
Children acquire the habit of obedience to authority under the influence of their godly parents, and when they are old enough to take a part in church services, they are ready to obey their Sunday School teacher and their minister, as God has said: “Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account” [Hebrews:13:17]).
Later, when they go to public school, the habit of obedience continues. They obey the teacher’s rules in so far as they do not conflict with their service to God. They obey the traffic rules, and the laws of the city and country in which they live, as they have been taught from the Bible: “Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work” [Titus:3:1]).
Above all, they have learned to obey God because they love Him. He is the greatest of all those whom any person is to obey. And it is easy to know what God wants us to do, because He has written his commands in the Bible. In school we learn by reading the textbooks and by hearing what our teachers say. We learn God’s will by reading the Bible and listening to the Teacher whom Jesus sent into the world -- the Holy Ghost who speaks in our hearts and tells us it is right to obey.
a) Who is a parent? A father or mother; one who begets or one who gives birth to or nurtures and raises a child; a relative who plays the role of guardian. [Matthew:1:2]; [2 Timothy:1:1-2]; [Esther:2:7]; [Exodus:2:9].
b) How can one become a godly parent? [Jeremiah:3:13]; [Proverbs:28:13]; [2 Chronicles:7:14]; [Isaiah:55:6];[Isaiah:55:7]; [1 John:1:9].
a) In what time of life should a person be trained in the way he should go? [Proverbs:22:6]; [Isaiah:28:9-10]; [Deuteronomy:6:7].
b) What does a child bring to his parent if he is left to grow up without reprove? [Proverbs:10:1]; [Proverbs:29:15]; [1 Kings:1:5-6], [1 Kings:1:18]; [1 Samuel:2:12], [1 Samuel:2:33-36].
c) Give some examples of godly parents in the Bible? .
Item 3: In what ways can godly parents influence their children? By teaching them:
a) the Word of God. [Deuteronomy:11:18-20]; [Psalms:78:1-6]; [Joel:1:2-3]; [2 Timothy:1:5].
b) how to pray and praying with them. [Deuteronomy:6:7]; [Psalms:55:17]; [Luke:11:1-4]; [Luke:18:1].
c) through examples. [Joshua:24:15]; [Job:1:5]; [1 Timothy:4:12], [1 Timothy:4:16]; [2 Timothy:2:15]; [2 Thessalonians:3:7-9]; [Titus:2:7-8].
d) dignity of labour. [Genesis:2:15]; [Proverbs:10:5]; [Proverbs:12:11]; [Proverbs:13:11]; [Proverbs:22:29]; [Proverbs:31:13-22].
e) obedience to constituted authority. [Hebrews:13:17]; [Romans:13:1-7]; [Titus:3:1].
f) the importance of church attendance. [Psalms:122:1]; [Joel:2:15-16]; [Hebrews:10:25].
Now that we have considered the influence that godly parents have upon their children, let us consider the privilege children have to help their parents. Each Christian parent has a part in the Gospel work. For Mother it may not be a part that is seen by others. Her part may be praying and keeping the home for her family. Father may attend street meetings; he may drive the Sunday School bus; he may testify; he may preach.
But whatever part Mother and Father have, the children can help. They can ‘do all things without murmurings and disputTings’, and that is God’s way [Philippians:2:14];[Philippians:2:15]). At prayer time they can take their turn reading the Bible, and joining in prayer at the family altar.
At one time the Prophet Joel said that even the babies should be brought to church where children and the older people worshiped the Lord. In other places in the Bible God says: “Let all the people say, Amen.” He wants all the people, the young and the old, to express their belief in His Word.
Could it be that your parents want to go to camp meeting, but because you will not do right, they have to stay home? Could it be that God wants to send them out as missionaries, but because you are not saved they cannot go?
May it be said of you that you appreciate the Gospel, that you have a keen sense of the value of your father’s religion, and will stand with him as he says, “As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD” [Joshua:24:15]).
CHALLENGE: Are you ready to take the same stand with your godly parents?