Teaching our Children to be Honest

Deuteronomy 6:6-8 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. 

Introduction: Today is lesson two of a series regarding teaching our children, the idea comes from Deuteronomy 6:6-8, and although this passage is speaking to the nation of Israel specifically, there are some things that we can teach our own children diligently, every opportunity we get. God wants us as parents to be teaching our children diligently the things that are in this Bible. Every opportunity we get with our children, sitting, walking, lying, and rising, is a teaching opportunity. One of the things that us parents can improve on, is teaching our children honesty, this teaching will help our children grow up knowing to be honest and staying out of trouble when they are old and making their own decisions. It will teach them to be good moral people in society. 

Honesty- an upright disposition, moral rectitude of heart, integrity, a disposition to conform to justice and correct moral principles, in all social transactions. Proverbs 10:14 and Proverbs 19:20. 

Like any other teaching for our children, regarding honesty, we must: 

I. Set the Standard– what is the expectation regarding honesty. This is the standard given to man by God, in the Bible, regarding lying, stealing, cheating, etc. I Peter 2:12 “Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles:” 

  • It needs to be clearly stated. (When we are at the store, you never put anything in your pockets). Illustration- my father. 
  • What does a parent want the child to do or not to do. Always tell the truth no matter how much it hurts. Never cheat on game because then you will cheat in other areas of life. 
  • Romans 4:15 “Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression.” The standard is set, so when it is broken, it is clear where it was broken and the consequences that follow. 
  • Romans 5:13 “For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.”

I heard a person say one time, we bend, and we stretch, but we don’t break. In other words, we bend and stretch the truth, but we don’t break to being wrong. This is totally and utterly wrong. 

II. Give Direction– they need to know what is expected of them. Directions or restrictions need to be clearly stated and talked about. Consequences for disobedience should be discussed also. 

  • Proverbs 4:1 “hear ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding”. 
  • Proverbs 8:33 “Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not”. 
  • What does mom and dad want me to do. 
  • Must be according to God’s standard, Keep it simple 

A warning for disobedience must be given. Exodus 20:13 Exodus 21:12

III. Give Instruction– make sure it is heard and understood by child 

  • Psalm 101:1-8 David said “ I will walk within my home with a perfect heart” and also “He that work deceit shall not dwell within my house”. If this is the expectation of your house, make it known to all and give instruction. 
  • keep it simple
  • have them repeat it 
  • The instruction is given in a serious environment, Warning if directions are not followed.

IV. Repeat It – this is the key to really teach something. “Repetition is a good teacher”. 

  • Many standards must be taught by demonstration over a period of time 
  • No penalty should be established until the child can rightfully be held accountable 
  • Throw trash, pick up dishes, make bed, clean room, etc, needs to be demonstrated first 
  • The penalty should match the standard
  • Purpose- Proverbs 22:15 “foolishness is bound in the heart of a child”. Follow through. 

Conclusion: Our children are the next leaders in the church, in their homes, in the community, they need to learn to be honest in all places, at all times. These things will help with training however, the best example is the example of the parents honesty.