THE LIVING WORD TRAINSCRIPT
Program Air Date – 3-31-13
LESSON TITLE: “THE CHILD’S PLACE.”
Solomon once proclaimed, “He shall direct your paths.” Is God directing your paths in life?
What a privilege we have this morning to join together in the study of God’s Living Word. We welcome you to our program and we thank God that you have chosen to be with us today. We are excited about this opportunity we have together this morning to glorify our creator. May we each do our part to make this time acceptable in His sight and according to His Will. Now, let’s approach our Father’s throne in prayer.
Well, it’s time to sing our first hymn of the morning. Isn’t it wonderful to know that Jesus will return to this earth someday to receive us all and take us home! Our first song of the day deals with this very truth. So, won’t you join in with the congregation as we sing together, “I’ll Fly Away!”
(SONG # 1)
How many times have we been lost in our lives? I think us men are worse than ladies about this, because we are generally too tough to stop and ask for help when we need it. I often will look for a house or business here in Springfield and wonder if I will ever find it. Thinking, should I go this way or that way? Probably all of us have been in this situation before and it really leaves us feeling a bit confused or even lost.
I think most of us ask these same questions in other parts of our lives too: Should I do or say, this or that? Should I follow him or her? Is this really something I should be involved in? Sometimes the questions deal with trivial matters, but often they can be life altering. Determining which way to go or what to do is a very important lesson which we must all learn in life.
Isn’t life about making these types of decisions everyday? It certainly is. So our goal must be to learn to decide which way or what to do according to what God wants.
The Bible often talks about, the paths or the way of God. It is important to recognize this in our decision making process so we won’t leave God out. In Proverbs 3:6, we read, “in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” God is there for us to show us the way if we will only let Him. In fact, this is why He has given us His Word. The Psalmist David said, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path,” Psalms 119:105. God’s word is the light, which illuminates our pathway. It can show us which way to go and tell us which turns to take.
Also in the book of John we read, “And Jesus said to them, I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me,” chapter 14, verse 6. So, Jesus is the way which we must follow to get to the Father. It is the Word of God that teaches us about that way, Jesus, and how we must follow Him. Thus, our paths are brightened by Jesus and His word, so that we know the direction we should go.
So as we look down each road in life, let’s make decisions that include the help of Jesus. If we remember Him and His Word, it will help us to make decisions that will please our God in heaven. Then, the result will be that God will bless each one of us as we are doing that which is according to His Will.
Today we will be continuing our study from God’s Word, which is entitled, “What Have They Seen In Your House!” Our specific topic today will is, “The Children’s Place.” So continue with us and after our next song together, I will return with this lesson from God’s Word. It’s now time to join in our second hymn of the morning, the name of the song, “Prepare To Meet Thy God.”
(SONG # 2)
By Ray Sullins
Thank you so much for continuing with us this morning as we now go to God’s word and look at another important lesson in relationship to the Christian home. But before we do that I would like to again encourage you to realize another opportunity available to not only be involved in a morning Bible study today but also a worship assembly that is available through the internet. The live services are now being put through the internet at the Kansas Expressway Church of Christ. I would encourage you to go and to visit our website which is called the kansasexpresswaychurchofchrist.com or kechurchofchrist.com and then to click on the live link. Beginning at 9:30 our Bible class is live over the internet and also then at 10:30 our worship assembly all of the worship assembly is live over the internet. Then even in the evening at 5:00 we offer the very same. So this gives you the opportunity not only to participate in the television program but also to be a part of a live worship assembly of the church as so we hope that you will avail yourselves of that opportunity again the website kechurchofchrist.com.
With that in mind then we now want to go to God’s word in relationship to another lesson concerning the Christian home specifically dealing with the children’s responsibility. So far we have looked a lot at the adults and we have seen what God says about the home and marriage, what God says about the father as well as the husband, and also the mother and the wife. We look very specifically at what it is God requires of adults but certainly the idea of a home often does not seem complete without children. So God also instructs the parents in relationship to children but there are also Biblical comments and commandments made even to children. As God loves all of His creation He doesn’t just instruct adults he instructs children and therefore wants them to know what He expects of a faithful child.
Well, you know the Bible often uses the terminology of God, God the Father and then the children, or the children of God, the Child of God. So it is not a strange idea for it is the very concept that we really see that is so beautiful and enduring to each of us but God is our Father and we are His children. So the same is true with a home as we understand how the home should function. A loving set of parents with a child who is given love and then in turn loves his parents. So what is it that we find when people show love? Well what we found with the husband and wives is that when a husband loves his wife as is mentioned in chapter 5 of Ephesians three times, it then challenges the wife to love her husband by submitting to him and respecting him and doing those things that God has said. I in turn would say the same is true about the Christian home in relationship to children. Children cannot learn what they should be before God except the parents teach them and the way we first teach is an example. So in other words the parents must show the love of God, the commitment that they have to God, and their willingness to be the parent that God commands. Therefore the child will respond positively to what that parent is doing according to the will of God for God’s will has a positive effect on all those who truly love Him.
Now that being the case we specifically look then at Ephesians 6 as he begins very bluntly to say, “Children,” He is addressing Children, young people, “…obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right,” In other words we find clearly as the statement is made even again in Ephesians 5 that husbands do this or wives do this as to the Lord, or in the Lord, or by the authority of the Lord. Children are to obey their parents for this is the will of God, this is what He requires, this is what He says is right according to His commandments. What is obedience? Obedience is that same that we learn from God and His children. When we hear what it is that God wants of us through His will the word what should we do? We obey. In fact the Bible says that obedience is even greater to God than sacrifice. The Bible says that you and I if we really love God we are going to keep His commandments. What would that mean? It means we are going to obey God’s commandments. So it is not strange that children should be taught from a very young age what obedience is to their parents. Let me assure you that if children are not taught to obey and respect their parents they will never respect others in society and they certainly will never respect God almighty. Is it any wonder then why so many young people today even young people who come from what we might say homes that look like they follow Christ yet those children do not follow Christ but they reject Him ultimately, they reject God. Why? They have never been taught to obey as God commands for this is right. So I might ask you as parents are you teaching your children the lesson of obedience, the lesson of submission, and the fact that when you love someone you hear them and you do what they say especially those who are in authority over you? As God has authority over His church and as parents have authority over children, children are to obey their parents this is the will of God.
The next thing that he mentions there in verse 2 of Ephesians 6 is that Children are also to honor not just the father but the mother. You see here the need of honor. Isn’t it also significant that not only are the children of God to obey God but we are to honor God. What is this idea of honor? It not only means a willingness to be able to again respect God but to reverence God, to obey God. To me really it encompasses not only obedience but all these facets of why. We not only know God and hear His will but then why we do it, why do we submit to God, we honor Him. Think about honor in the sense of this world. Think about those whom you honor or how even sometimes we will honor with maybe a plaque or with a gift or acknowledgment those who have achieved certain things. Well, children are to honor their parents. Why, parents love their children, provide for their children, protect their children, guide their children, teach their children, and train their children. Children have every reason, every incentive to honor their parents. By the way this is not something that Jesus reveals to the Holy Spirit in this letter of Paul only but we can actually go back to the Old Testament there where we find the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20 or in Deuteronomy 5 and guess what is found amongst the Ten Commandments. We find there in Deuteronomy 5:16, “Honor your father and mother,” guess why? “…as the Lord your God has commanded.” There it is again obey and honor in the Lord as God commands by His authority according to His will as He commands. You see children don’t have a choice but then again I would say how sad. How sad because when parents don’t teach their children to obey them and to honor them guess what also happens? Not only do they learn to disrespect and disobey teachers at school or those who are elder or older than them throughout society but they again learn to disrespect, and dishonor, and disobey God. Is it any wonder why our society has no honor and is not willing predominantly to give true honor to God by obeying Him, and reverencing Him, and respecting Him, and lifting Him up because they have not been taught by their parents not only in word but in deed. You know when parents don’t honor and obey those in authority how will the children ever learn such. When the parents do not honor and obey the simple commandments of God to love God, to love others, to treat people right, to faithfully attend worship services, the simple things that anyone with common sense knows. They see parents don’t honor, and parents don’t obey, and parents don’t respect how will a child ever learn such? The fact is they will not. They will not learn it for they do not see it in their parents and they have not been taught it from the things that their parents say with their lips. Now again this is God’s commandment to obey and to honor your parents as children.
If you might notice then another aspect of the commandment, in fact this is not only an aspect reiterated here through the Holy Spirit in Ephesians 6:2-3 but also again is found in the Ten Commandments. When the child lives with honor and obedience before the parents thus glorifying God as commanded guess what happens? It says this is the first commandment with a direct promise, and what is the direct promise? The same promise that was available in the days of Moses is the same promise available in the days of the Law of Christ and that promise is verse 3, “That is may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.” What is the response by God of those who are faithful as children to their parents, obedient, and honoring their parents? That they might be blessed by God and that one of the great blessings from God is that they have the ability as you may note here to be those who have long lives. Well, you say what about a child that dies early? He still is blessed by God, is he not also then given a more wondrous life in the very arms of Jesus or God Himself there in Heaven? Certainly he is. So what it means is that you will be blessed and blessed beyond measure but despite that we know that children still at times do not honor and obey.
A final verse we look at is found there in verse 4 of Ephesians 6 as he continues to challenge the children he then turns the discussion around. Children must obey and honor but fathers, verse 4, should not provoke their children to wrath. Now I mention this verse because what he goes on to say is that not only we should not provoke our children, which means that we should not discipline or do something to the extent that we lead them to wrath or that we are so harsh that we never show them the love that God has. God is a God of discipline, judgment and wrath at times but He is also a God of love, care, justice, even kindness, and gentleness. So that is the idea. So parents should not always be harsh and leading a child to wrath but rather a parent must do what? Bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord, they must be admonished and encouraged by the parents. You find a child who has not encouragement and not admonition from his parents and you are going to find a sad child a child who has not developed properly because they have had no love and encouragement like we even have the love of God. Imagine if God never encouraged us or gave us any reason to live or to know that we are getting something right. Well, you see we need to do the same for our children but then notice that other part that we read first, not only are we to admonish them but to train them. What is needed to train them and to bring them up in the training of the Lord, the things of God? We need to open our mouths.
You know what I find it significant as we go back again right after the giving of the Ten Commandments again in Exodus 20 and also in Deuteronomy 5 and when you actually move over into verse 6, guess what Israel is told to do? They are told for instance verse 7 to teach the commandments of God diligently to their children so that they might walk in them. How can a child walk in the ways of God if they are not taught the ways of God and if they do not see the ways of God exemplified in their parents? Again, the answer is they cannot as children find the right path without the proper guidance. So look at the responsibility of parents but and look at the responsibility of a truly loved, nurtured, cared for, and protected child by his or her parents. One who has shown such love as the love of God to his children that when that parent asks something of them they are not only willing but ready to obey, happy to obey. They have seen the example also in their parents, and they have seen the love of God in their parents, and the willingness of their parents to submit to other authority including God. But then also how beautiful it is when we see children also honor their parents. Honor their parents because what have they seen in their parents that their parents honor respect and reverence God, that their parents honor and respect even those of this world.
So when we find a Christian home with a Christian father and a Christian mother functioning as they should, honoring, and obeying their God, and being respectful in society, honoring those over them even of the world. Then you find children that are being trained and encouraged in the things of God who grow up in a healthy environment not only physically but spiritually. So what do we find that child growing up into an adult and taking on not only the role of being willing to obey and honor in the society but to obey and to honor God. But perhaps the most beautiful part of all is that that child becomes and adult, gets married, makes their own home, has their own children, and they follow the very same process once again in teaching their own children to know God, to obey God, and to honor God. So I challenge us today to let our children know, and I challenge you as children to do those things that God commands, and to know that you will be blessed eternally.
(SONG # 3 - “Purer In Heart O God!”)
Let me thank you again for choosing to be with us today for the Living Word program. I hope and trust, that together we have all benefited from this service to our Lord. Let me also invite you to join us every Lord’s Day morning at 7:30 as we give this time to our Creator.
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May young people realize the importance of God’s command to honor and obey their parents. For such is the will of God and those who obey His Will shall live long and blessed lives!