Article Display
Email  |  My Account  |  Donate
Often we parents have made our children memorize verses 1-3 of this chapter from Ephesians, which says:
Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.
(Eph. 6:1-3)
We make our children memorize these verses of Scripture, but then we ourselves avoid the first part of the very next verse, verse 4, which says:
And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath...
(Eph. 6:4a)
We bypass these words by jumping to the second part of this verse, which says:
...but bring them up in the nuture and admonition of the Lord.
(Eph. 6:4b)
Faith Is to Be Passed On to Our Children
When I was in a college Bible class on Christian leadership, we were given a test. There were seventeen young men in that class. Our professor said: "Gentlemen, I'm going to give you several pairs of people from the Bible. I want you to pick our which one of the two you consider to be the best leader."

He then gave us six pairs. All we had to do was go through our Bible, do some research and choose whom we considered the best leader of each pair.

The first pair given to us was Moses and Joshua. Basically, Moses was a hothead who kept losing his temper. He smote the rock instead of speaking to it, so he wasn't allowed to go into the Promised Land and finish the job he had started. Everybody knows a good leader finishes what he starts, but Moses wasn't able to do that. (See Num. 20:1-12.)

Joshua was the one who finished the job. He took the Promised Land. He marched around the walls of Jericho until they fell. He got the job done. (See Joshua 1-9.)

So, as great as Moses was, we picked Joshua, seeing him as obviously the better leader of the two.

The second pair given to us was Elijah and Elisha. Elijah had some great miracles and did some great things, but he was constantly griping, murmuring and complaining. He wanted to die, but he wouldn't stand still long enough to let Jezabel kill him. He ran for his life! (See 1 Kings 19.)

Then God said to Elijah, "That's it! I have somebody waiting in the wings to take your place, so you're coming home." (Author's paraphrase.)

God sent down the fiery chariot and Elijah was taken home to be with the Lord. Elisha took his place, asking for a double portion of Elijah's spirit to come on him, and it did. Elisha did twice the miracles that Elijah had done. (See 2 Kings 2.)

So after reading and studying about these two prophets, we picked Elisha. There was no doubt to us that Elisha was a better leader than Elijah.

When we had finished our research and made our choices, we turned in the results to the professor. After reading our report, he said, "Gentlemen, you've done a good job or research. Your choices are very factual - but very wrong."

Looking at one another, we said, "But we can't be wrong. There's no way. We went through every Scripture."

Then he continued: "Listen to me, gentlemen: The most important thing on this planet is the work of God. The work of God was going on here before you came; and, if Jesus tarries, the work of God will continue after you are gone.

"When Moses went home to be with the Lord, the work of God continued because he had trained up somebody underneath him named Joshua to continue that work. Yet when Joshua went home to be with the Lord, no successor was left.

"Elijah, though reluctantly, trained up Elisha, because Elisha dogged his heels. He left a successor to continue the work of God, and it flourished. But when Elisha went home to be with the Lord, there was no successor left.

"The most important thing we can do is to pass on our faith to the next generation: our children."

Then It Goes From Your Children to Theirs

Parenting is a lifelong, lifetime process. It isn't saying to children, "Well, after your first eighteen years, let's test you out and see how you did." There is no test you can give them after their first eighteen years or their first thirty-five years.

As the Bible says in the book of Proverbs 17:6: "Children's children are the crown of old men; and the glory of children are their fathers."

Paraphrased, this verse is saying: "We really won't know what kind of parent we have been until we see our grandchildren. If we put enough of the Word of God into our children's hearts and they pass it on to their kids, then we did our job."

In Genesis, the Lord said of Abraham:
The way I see it, my children will inherit my properties without doing a thing. All I have to do is die; then they will receive all the physical things I have accumulated. But they will never just automatically inherit my knowledge.

It's my responsibility as a parent to set a table before my children, but they have to eat it for themselves. I have to create an atmosphere conducive for them to want and desire it, and then to eat it.

I have to make sure I am not provoking my children to wrath by being unreasonable and unjust and in a bad mood all the time.

Source: God Knows How to Raise Your Kids - Even if You Don't by John McGee.
Excerpt permission granted by Harrison House Publishers

Author Biography

Joe McGee
Web site: Joe McGee Ministries
Joe McGee, author, national conference speaker, father, and former school administrator, is the founder and director of Joe McGee Ministries, Inc. and Faith For Families Ministries.

About Us

The online ministry of cfaith has been helping people discover faith, friends and freedom in the Word since 2000. Cfaith provides a unique and comprehensive collection of faith-building resources for the worldwide faith community.

At cfaith, you can strengthen your faith and deepen your understanding of the Word of God by digging into the vast collection of teaching articles, streaming audio and video messages, and daily devotionals. No other website offers such a unique and extensive collection of spiritual-growth resources aimed at helping you grow in your knowledge of the Word.




Support Us

Why support cfaith?

(All contributions are 100% tax deductible)


For every Internet search you make using
goodsearch, cfaith will receive one penny!

GS Logo 250x38

Contact Us

Business Hours:

Monday—Friday: 9 a.m.—5 p.m. CST
Saturday & Sunday: Closed


(763) 488-7800 or (800) 748-8107

Mailing Address:
9201 75th Avenue North
Brooklyn Park, MN 55428


Login Form

Please ignore the “Secret Key” field; it is not needed to log in to cfaith.

Login Change Article

You need to enable user registration from User Manager/Options in the backend of Joomla before this module will activate.