Obedient Children

Ephesians 6:1-4 

Introduction: In this passage of scripture we see good instruction for children and parents. Part of the reason why children and parents have problems today is because we don’t believe or obey what the Bible says. Children and parents alike are to walk under God’s authority. 

1.Children are to obey their parents. 

2. Parents are not to provoke their children to wrath but train them up in the Lord. 

  1. Children are to Obey their Parents– Vs 1 “Children obey your parents” A parents is to guide and direct a child, and the child is to obey the parent. To obey means to do what your parents tell you to do. To submit, comply, hearken, heed, follow. 
    • “In the Lord”- When the parent is acting or doing things “in the Lord”, when the parents desire and instruction is “in the Lord”. The Lord has nothing to do with filth, unrighteousness, and abuse of children. Mark 9:42 “And whosever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea”. 
    • “This is right”- This is of the Lord and it pleases the Lord. Colossians 3:20 “Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord”. When a child obeys his parents, he/she is learning to obey the Lord. As the child grows, he/she will understand that ultimately they want to please the Lord by obeying their parents. A child should understand from a young age that this right. If your friends tell you to go contrary to this, don’t listen to them, they are wrong. 
        • Proverbs 6:20 “My son, keep thy father’s commandment, and forsake not the law of thy mother”. 

II. Children are to Honor their Parents- Vs 2 to honor is to respect, esteem and value as precious. Parents have  a lot of wisdom and knowledge that their children could use if they only listened to their parents. Sadly today, children talk back, grumble, ignore parents, disrespect, disregard, don’t listen. Exodus 20:12 “Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long won the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee”. 

  • “That it may be well with thee”- If the child honors his parents, God will be with that child as he goes through life. We are living in a generation that does not respect or esteem their parents and that is not good in the eyes of God. Proverbs 30:11 “There is a generation that curseth their father, and doth not bless their mother.”
      • Example- a family that honored their parents and didn’t honor their parents. 
  • “Thou mayest live long on the earth”- If a child grows up obeying this command of honoring their parents, God promises a long life on this earth for that child. Deuteronomy 5:16 “Honour thy father and thy mother, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee: that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.” Only the Lord knows and keeps track of this. 

III. Fathers Role in helping their children– Vs 4 Fathers also have a role and responsibility when it come to their children obeying them. 

  • Don’t provoke your children to wrath- to provoke them to point of exasperation and resentment. 
    • Over controlling a child will provoke them to wrath. Stern restriction and discipline. The child can never do anything or go anywhere. There is a balance between family life and child’s community life. 
    • Under controlling a child will provoke them to wrath. The child can do anything and go wherever, whenever. Let them watch TV, play video games, run around with friends all day, etc. It’s okay to not be a part of every function and activity.
    • Colossians 3:21 “Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged”. 
    • Living an inconsistent life before the child will provoke them to wrath. Do as I say and not as I do. A parent that is a hypocrite and cusses, drinks, party, etc. Jeremiah 9:14 “But have walked after the imagination of their own heart, and after Baalim, which their fathers taught them”. 
  • Bring them up in the nurture of the Lord- non-verbal communication. This is usually for child under the age of 5 years old that doesn’t understand how to reason. Hugs and spankings- Proverbs 22:15, 23:13-14. 
  • Bring them up in the admonition of the Lord- verbal communication. This is for a child that is older and understands how to reason. The word of God, counsel, exhortation, correction.
    • These two are not based on our own ideas of what a child should do or not do. This is based on what the Word of God says to do, in the nurture and admonish “of the Lord”. Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it”. 

Conclusion: Very simply put, children obey and honor your parents, fathers provoke not your children to wrath, but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.