December 12, 2017

The Fifth Commandment

George Stiekes

Honor thy father and thy mother. Exodus 20:12

One of the ways Old Testament children were to honor their parents was with financial support in their old age. Another way was to listen to, obey and respect them (Ephesians 6:1-3). It is in the home that children will learn how to live with others in society. Therefore, the order in which God gave the commandments is most important. Learning to correctly respond to authority will assist children in knowing how to respond toward both, all other earthly authority and towards God.

Keep in mind that the commandments reveal the nature of God. Jesus taught us to pray, Our FATHER which is in heaven… (Matthew 6:9). All who are in Christ have been adopted into God’s family (Romans 8:14-15; Galatians 4:5; Ephesians 1:5). But God, Who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us (Ephesians 2:4), even adopting us as His children. He is our LOVING FATHER and our ultimate authority. He extended that authority to earthly fathers to care for and lead their children to their heavenly Father. The whole concept of fatherhood is derived from God and all authority is derived from Him. Children should grow to recognize the right kind of authority and also how to respond to it with godly submission.

There is a purpose statement added to this commandment: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God given thee. There is some benefit attached to keeping this commandment. It may have been more related to the duration of the nation as opposed to the lifespan of the individual. Rebellion in the home is just one of many deficiencies leading to the destruction of a nation. Children who obey their parents tend to enjoy a prosperous and long life on the earth more than those who do not. Studies have shown that because of the lifestyles of undisciplined children, they do not live as long as those who under discipline have established a stable lifestyle.

Praise God today for godly parents. Pray for those who do not yet know our loving Father in Heaven. Praise Him again for His marvelous plans in making every provision for our welfare while on this earth.

George Stiekes held successful pastorates in churches in Michigan and Washington among other places. He currently resides in North Carolina and blogs at Reverent Reflections. We recommend his ministry and republish his material by permission.

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