Our Distinctives

5. Biblical Parenting
 
 
Distinctive 5 – We encourage parents to be actively involved in raising their children
 
 

The apostle Paul makes it clear in Ephesians 6:1-4 how families are to operate. He writes,
 
1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), 3 “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” 4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
 
 
The reason parents are to take charge of guiding and directing their children is because they, like their mothers and fathers, are sinful creatures (Rom 3:10-12). They may appear adorable and cute on the outside, but they are still filled with sinful desires. They are born into rebellion against God and the parents, and must not only curb destructive sinful expressions, but they must also point them to their need for a savior.
 
In Ephesians 6, Paul emphasizes the father’s role in raising children to “obey” their parents (v. 1). This continues the biblical instruction to Israel to constantly direct children in the path of obedience to God no matter where they are or what they do (Deut 6:6-7). The question every father and mother must ask is this: Who obeys who? Does the child obey the parent or does the parent obey the child? GBF upholds the authority and leadership of the parent in the home.
 
Furthermore, we encourage parents to raise children to “honor” their parents (Eph 6:2). Obedience focuses on the will and action. Honor addresses the heart and attitude. We are to glorify God even though He is invisible to our eyes (1 Tim 1:17). Children honor and glorify God by honoring their parents. If a child does not honor their parents whom they have seen, how can they honor God whom they have not seen? Therefore, fathers and mothers must discipline their children in both their actions and attitudes. A child’s lack of obedience and honor in their family inevitably leads to their rebellion and disrespect for authority figures outside their family.
 
Fathers and mothers are not to withhold the rod of discipline from their children (Prov 19:18; 22:15; 23:13-14; 26:3; 29:15, 17; 2 Sam 7:14). In Galatians 3:23-24, Paul tells us that the Law functioned as a “guardian” guiding us towards Christ. In essence, this is what parents are to do. They are to lay down the law of proper attitudes and actions that please God and hold their children to it. They direct their children to Christ for forgiveness for their own sin that God will judge. They instruct their sons and daughters from the Bible with teaching, reproof, correction,
and training in righteousness for the purpose of equipping them for every good work pleasing to God (2 Tim 3:16-17).