God has gone to great lengths in His Word to assure the proper rearing of children. The first thing to be noted is that God views children as a great blessing to their parents. In Psa. 127:3-5, we read, "Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is His reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are the children of his youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate."
The second thing to mention is that children are to be loved. In Paul's letter to Titus, we find that the older women were to teach the young women "to be sober, to love their husbands to love their children" (Titus 2:4).
Children are to be provided for. 1 Tim. 5:8 informs us, "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."
Children are to corrected when necessary. Solomon wrote in Prov. 22:15, "Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him." Prov. 13:24 tells us, "He that spareth the rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes."
In each step of their development, children are to be instructed in the ways of the Lord. Deut. 11:18-20 says, "Therefore shall ye layup these words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes. And teach them to 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. And thou shalt write them upon the door posts of thine house, and upon thy gates." In the New Testament the apostle Paul made the very same point when he instructed the Ephesians, "And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath; but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord" (Eph. 6:4).
Instructing our children in the ways of the Lord involves many things. They must be taught about God, prayerfully brought to believe in Him. They must be taught of the wonderful things of His creation and the way that He blesses us every day of our lives. Children must be taught to worship God and live the moral life that He has decreed to be right and proper. Children must be taught to be good citizens and to be in subjection to the government under which they live, and they must be taught to work.
By Greg Litmer in That Ye May Grow Thereby
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