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Fatherhood and the Faith of the Next Generation

by | Jun 18, 2021 | Genuine Hope | 0 comments

Ephesians 6:4

Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

Ephesians 6:4

I don’t really remember the TV series “Father Knows Best” other than seeing a few reruns when I was a kid, I understand the general premise of the show. Then, television shows presented the family in a positive light in general. I do remember watching the Andy Griffith show and some others for example, but think for a moment of how are fathers presented in today’s entertainment media?

The idea of fatherhood isn’t all that favorable in some circles, but the Bible has plenty to say about fatherhood including the fatherly character of God. We have a responsibility to the next generation and Paul addresses four concerns. in the single verse above.

  • Dads are not to build up hostility and anger in their kids. Don’t frustrate their growth through discouragement, unrealistic expectations, favoritism… I imagine this list can grow longer.
  • Dads, it is our responsibility to pass on our faith and raise our children to know God. It is more than what we say, because when it comes to how we live our lives, “more is caught than taught.”
  • Dads, we are to bring up our children pointing them toward intentional discipline. Are we being as intentional in teaching our kids about God as we do with education or sports or hard work?
  • Dads, we are to instruct our kids in the Lord. Notice that Paul doesn’t place the burden of spiritual instruction on mothers but on fathers. How many of us have relied on Mom to do the heavy lifting here?

Instead of living with regret, please read this quote from an anonymous father who expressed how he might do things differently, if he could –

“My family’s all grown and the kids are all gone. But if I had to do it all over again, this is what I would do. I would love my wife more in front of my children. I would laugh with my children more—at our mistakes and our joys. I would listen more, even to the littlest child. I would be more honest about my own weaknesses, never pretending perfection. I would pray differently for my family; instead of focusing on them, I’d focus on me. I would do more things together with my children. I would encourage them more and bestow more praise. I would pay more attention to little things, like deeds and words of thoughtfulness. And then, finally, if I had to do it all over again, I would share God more intimately with my family; every ordinary thing that happened in every ordinary day I would use to direct them to God.”

Anonymous from John MacArthur’s Grace to You

No matter if your kids are still home or not, you’re still a parent and there is still Godly parenting to be done. Let’s get to it.

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