It seems that almost on a daily basis we learn of school shootings, physical threats, gang activity, drug use, teen pregnancy, and suicide. What is the problem? Has our world gone mad? I believe that at the very root of the problem is that the youth of America have little or no respect for authority. How do we solve this problem? Beloved, the solution starts at home! We need parents who will teach and children who are made to listen and obey.
“My son, hear the instruction of thy father, And forsake not the law of thy mother: For they shall be a chaplet of grace unto thy head, And chains about thy neck” (Pro. 1:8-9). Here it is clearly seen that parents have responsibility toward their children, and the children have a responsibility toward their parents.
Notice that both the father and the mother are to be involved in the teaching and training of the children. “Hear, O Israel: Jehovah our God is one Jehovah: and thou shalt love Jehovah thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be upon thy heart; and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thy 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 thy hand, and they shall be for frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the door-posts of thy house, and upon thy gates” (Dt. 6:4-9).
“And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but nurture them in the chastening and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4). Concerning Abraham, the Lord said, “For I have known him, to the end that he may command his children and his household after him, that they may keep the way of Jehovah, to do righteousness and justice; to the end that Jehovah may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him” (Gen. 18:19). Such needs to be true of every father and mother of our day – commanding obedience of the children.
Children are to “hear” and “not forsake” the instruction of their parents. Volume upon volume could be written about children who have messed up their lives because they would not heed to the instruction of their parents. Hearing to the Hebrew meant more than just listening and remembering, for if one does not follow the instructions he has not heard. What about the mess Rehoboam made of his life? Solomon instructed him but he did not heed the wise instruction of his father. It is sad that our youth always want to learn the hard way. If only they would heed the instruction of those wiser than themselves they would save themselves many difficulties. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right” (Eph. 6:1).
Notice the benefits that come to obedient children, “For they shall be a chaplet of grace unto thy head, And chains about thy neck.” This is a way of saying that wisdom looks good on you and will always look good on you. Obedience to parental instruction will be a thing of great beauty and a value to one’s life. Parental teaching is not a heavy burden. It is of great value and should be worn proudly.