For Parents

Richard Weaver
Chicago, Illinois

When our homes are blessed with the birth of children, great and grave responsibilities accompany them. Strong language is used in condemnation of those parents who do not provide the food, shelter, and clothing needed by the children. (1 Tim. 5-8) Civil authorities are alert in seeing that children are sent to school for a secular education. Public health service is available for those who cannot afford private medical care for their children. Hospital and medical insurance is now carried by most families. Thus, it may be said that our children's physical needs are met.

But what of their spiritual training? The education of the soul is the most wonderful education of all. These passages teach us parental responsibility in this training: Eph. 6:4 exhorts us to bring up our children "in the nurture and admonition 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." Paul said to Timothy who had been taught by his grandmother and mother in 2 Tim. 3:15 : "And that from a child thou hast known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus." The Jews were told in Deuteronomy 6:6-7: "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."

Are you diligently teaching your children that "the Lord our God is one Lord" and that we should love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and might? Have you taught them of the reality and of the wages of sin (Romans 6:23) and of the terror of the Lord? (2 Cor. 5:11) Have you taught them of the wiles of the devil and of the eternity of hell? Have you told them the sweet story of the love of God and of the gift of his Son in order that we may have our sins forgiven? Have you told them of the home being prepared for God's faithful children"?

Are you teaching them that their soul is their most valuable possession? (Mt. 16:24-26.) No parent should deny his child the treasure of Bible knowledge. Are we fulfilling this obligation to teach them of our God and how we may serve him?

Time is swiftly passing on. Parents whose children now have homes of their own often tell us how quickly their children grow up and go from the parents' domain. Before we realize it, ours will be leaving us just as we a few short years ago left our parents' home. If we have not taught them by word and example of faithfulness and service, then we have failed in our greatest responsibility and opportunity. There is no second chance. This solemn thought should stir us all to begin today to use every precious moment to instruct them. Is it not true that many parents are pitiably sloven and careless toward this obligation, and that the more energetic ones are often concerned with social acceptance in this life? Would it not be better for our children to die in infancy than to face them in judgement responsible in a large measure for their LOST condition?

Parents, the least you can do is to bring them to the Bible classes on Sunday morning and Wednesday night. This is a start in the direction of performing your duty toward them. In addition prepare their lessons with them. Become acquainted with their teacher and ask how your child is progressing. It would embarass some parents if they saw the unprepared and blank look on the faces of their children in the classes when they have no background or understanding of the lesson being taught. Often these, feeling no part of the class, become discipline problems. We should be ashamed if such characterizes our children and begin to see that they know their lessons and are in bed early Saturday night. The home and class study should each help the other.

Christian parents have no greater joy than to, see their children grow up and be faithful, obedient children of God. The beloved apostle wrote in 3 John 3, 4: "For I rejoiced greatly, when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in truth. I have no greater joy than to hear my children walk in truth."

Truth Magazine II:2, p. 20, 22
November 1957