Christian Parenting Ephesians 6:1-9

September 8, 2018


Sermon: Christian Parenting  Ephesians 6:1-9
The Bible spends very little time on parenting.  Why?  The Bible is primarily concerned with our relationship to God through Christ.  Good parenting starts first with our relationship to God.  We must not provoke our children.  There is a fine line between provoking vs. discipline and instruction.
Ephesians 6:1-9 ESV  
    • Wives attitude toward the husband
        • He does not stop there
    • Husband’s attitude toward the wife (authority, husband)
    • Then the Children’s attitude toward the parent
        • He does not stop there
    • Parent’s attitude toward the child (authority, husband)
———— Next ———
    • Slave’s attitude toward his or her master
        • He does not leave it there
    • Master’s attitude toward the slave (authority, slave owner)
        • Who has the ultimate responsibility?
    • Note, he spends 3 verses on the children and 1 on the parents
        • How many books are written on marriage today?
        • How many books are written on raising children today?
            • Look at the Christian book stores
            • Compare the theology section with the “how to” section
        • How much of the Bible is devoted to raising children?
            • Vast number of pages
            • What percentage of the Bible deals with raising children?
            • What percentage of the Bible deals with marriage?
Proverbs 1:8-9 ESV  
Proverbs 3:1-2 ESV  
Proverbs 4:1-2 ESV  
    • These passages and a few others
    • Why does the amount of content not MATCH the book stores?
    • Why NOT spend more time on this important issue?
        • If your relationship with God is right, the rest will be right
        • The Bible is primarily concerned with your relationship to God
        • Starting with your family and working up is backwards
        • Start with God and work down
        • Paul does not lead off Ephesians with practical help
            • 4 verses on parenting
    • For 5 ½ Chapters Paul deals with our relationship to Christ
    • Paul is not writing to the world, he is writing to you Christians
        • The world cannot understand the things of God, but you can
    • This is why topical sermons have weakened the church
        • Preached through, Romans, 1st and 2nd Peter, Colossians…
            • I don’t remember preaching on parenting
        • By preaching, verse by verse our emphasis will be correct
        • We cannot have good parents until God changes the hearts
    • Paul address the children first as he does the wife
        • He simply says to obey, because this is right, (promise)
    • Who was his initial audience?  Former pagans
        • They were in darkness, they were following the Devil
        • Did you know Roman fathers ruled the house absolutely
            • They decided what babies lived or died
            • They could sell their children into slavery
            • There was no child protective services
            • There were no children’s rights or lawyers
        • Paul didn’t try to change the system
            • Paul does not address the wickedness in the world system
            • Paul is preaching to Christians
                • We can get too caught in what the world is doing
                • The Great Revival – Influenced the world
                • If we preach the Word, if we preach Christ Crucified
                • If we preach how desperate we are…
        • Paul does not tell children to rebel but to submit
            • Paul could have written chapters on evil parents
                • Could have written chapters on parenting in general
            • 3 verses for children and 1 for parents
                • The key is the changed heart
                • This can only come from God
    • Have you ever given this promise much thought?
(2)  “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise),  (3)  “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.”
    • I think the promise is more than a longer life
    1. A longer natural life – yes
    • Like putting coins in the dryer, the more you put in the longer it goes?
        1. But is this always the case
2. Could this be another indicator of a long life?
Exodus 21:15 ESV  “
Exodus 21:17 ESV  
Matthew 15:3-6 ESV  
    • Jesus upholds the Word of God as well as the penalty for not honoring
    • People would make a vow and their money would belong to the temple
        • According to traditions this vow could not be broken
    • Honoring your father and mother never stops
        • If the parent needs money or care, the children are responsible
            • Not the church or the state
            • Can’t pay bills – so call the church???, Call the town
        • Jesus is not telling them to stop tithing
        • He is pointing out their corruption and hypocrisy
3. that you may live long in the land
    • Disrespecting children grow up into disrespecting citizens
        • They forgot God and his goodness
        • Israel was divided into two kingdoms
        • They were taken captive by Assyria and Babylon
    • The break in their relationship to God is directly related to wellness
2 Timothy 3:1-5 ESV  
    • How are our children to relate to disobedient children?
        • What are we to do?
        • Should we hang out with such people?
            • No, Avoid such people
            • We don’t remove ourselves from the world (lonely life)
    • Now, what about parents???
        • In this letter we get 1 verse, 1 sentence.
        • Not books and books, just 1 verse
(4)  Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
    • Fathers – can and does pertain to the mother as well
        • The word is translated parents elsewhere
    • The father is the “head of the house” and is responsible
        • Addressing the father is addressing the whole house
    • The negative, do not provoke your children to anger
        • What can this mean?
        • It can hit a lot of practical things you can do to provoke
    • Not letting a child develop, not recognizing their growth
        • There comes a time when your child will to make decisions
    • Unrealistic “consistency” in rules
        • No understanding of the circumstances
        • Discipline without love and thought
        • How about Rahab and the spies in Jericho
    • No “consistency” of the rules
        • Always changing or no rules at all
        • How can a child obey if there is nothing to obey?
    • Forcing everything you believe on them
        • We cannot force Christianity on our children
        • We can, bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord
        • What do you mean???
        • Look how God tells you to do it?
Deuteronomy 6:7-9 ESV  
    • This is natural, filling your life with God’s word
    • This is not overbearing, force feeding, or making them listen
        • If they live in your house, they will hear the Word of God
        • The will see Christ in your life
            • It goes on to say…
Deuteronomy 6:20-21 ESV  
    • Your children will see your life, they will also have outside influences
        • One day they will ask you, and then you tell them
            • You can’t force Christianity on anyone
                • Sure you can take them to church
                • Sure you can read the Word to them
                • You can instruct them
                • But you can’t make them believe it
                • Only God can make them believe
                • Do you NOT know the doctrine of regeneration?
        • This is what’s wrong today
            • We pressure confessions of faith
            • We pressure baptisms
                • We preach for decisions for Christ verses conversions
                • We pride ourselves on how many kids walk the isle
            • You can get a kid to do almost anything
                • But what happens when they grow up?
        • You can’t force a child to be born again
            • We must put our faith and trust in God
    • Provoking vs. instruction and discipline, is a fine line
        • Provoking drives a child away
Provoking is placing “unreasonable demands and strictures that might drive his children to anger, despair, and resentment”  John McArthur
Discipline – education, training up, nurture of children, disciplinary correction: – chastening, chastisement, instruction, nurture.
Instruction – calling attention to, mild rebuke or warning: – admonition.
    • In the WORLD and history discipline or punishment was:
        • Overbearing, extremely strict, no goal in mind, not out of love
    • Recently discipline has gone by the wayside
        • The child runs the home
        • The child decides what is good and right for themselves
    • Two extremes
        • Both produce more harm than good
            • Over discipline causes rebellion
            • Lack of discipline causes a lack of respect
    • We don’t get our instruction on how to raise a child from the world
        • We follow God’s plan and design
        • Look at what the New Testament says about discipline
Hebrews 12:5-11 ESV  
    • Discipline seems painful at the time
        • Have you ever heard, “This is going to hurt me, more than you.”
    • Notice, it takes time to yield fruit
        • It’s okay if your children are not always happy with you
            • You children are NOT your friends
            • The key is discipline without provoking them
        • Remember the Bible is short on parenting instructions
        • Revival changes everything
            • Better parenting, women treated properly, end of slavery, better morals, can all be traced back to changed hearts
            • What does the Bible call us to do, PRIMARILY?
                • Feed the poor?  Build houses? Provide concerts?
        • It is the parents job to educate their children
            • Look at electronics, radio, TV, internet
            • Prior to this our children were more shielded
                • Are there more negative influences than positive
When your son asks you in time to come

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