Bible Study The Book Of Ephesians
Verse By Verse
Lesson 39 Chapter Six Verse 4
Vs.4 “And, ye fathers, provoke not your children
to wrath: But bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.”
…The Negative Side -
Mothers Help Needed...
“Fathers, provoke not your children to wrath…” in
these words the negative aspect of the father’s responsibility toward
his children is stated. The father as the head of the household is
responsible for the proper training of his children, of course it is to
be understood, while the wife is subordinate to the husband, she is yet
his helpmeet, and never more helpful and needful than in training their
blessed offspring’s. The influence of a godly mother in the home in the
molding of children is a great help to the father.
…Discipline For The
Parental authority is for the child’s good, and
not for the parents own selfish gratification. Our Heavenly Father
wields His rod of correction, but never without infinite wisdom and
goodness, and never without the well being of His children in view.
Paul, speaking of earthly parents, says,
“For they verily for a few days (childhood) chastened us after their own
pleasure: but he (God) for our profit, that We might be partakers of His
Holiness” (Heb. 12:10).
The words, “after their own pleasure” or as seemed good to them, points
up the contrast between the disciplinary dealings of our earthly parents
and those of our Heavenly Father. In their infirmity, sometimes the rod
was used upon us in a fit of anger, rather than from a loving desire to
reform our manners. Meaning that it was sometimes done arbitrarily, or
under the influence of passion. Human parents are susceptible to a
varied temperament, and out of a temperament controlled by passion
inflict undue discipline on their children. In such cases it is done for
the gratification of the parent’s pleasure, rather than for the child’s
God being our example in all things, parents should fashion their
child’s discipline programs after our Heavenly Father’s. God never
chastens His children from the love of superiority or power, but always
for the good of His children. God rebukes His children for their
iniquity, He is not a Slothful parent, He has the eternal welfare of His
children in view, and His discipline is guided by infinite counsel and
love for His children. Thus it is, parents should discipline their
children, to neglect this part of child training is to manifest
unconcern for the child’s temporal and eternal welfare. The parent
should when disciplining his child be in control of his temperament, he
should never whip a child out of a fit of anger.
Prov. 22:15 “foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; But the rod
of correction shall drive it far from him.”
A rod wielded in passion is not a rod of correction, such a rod will
tend to deaden the child’s affection toward his parents and cause his
interest in the things his parents are concerned with to diminish, which
should be eternal things.
…Abused Authority Brings
Prov. 22:8 “...The rod of his anger shall fail.”
In the frame of reference these words apply to parental training of
children, i.e. Prov. 22:6 &15.
If the rod of parental authority .be wielded in anger, instead Of
prudence, then the authority is abused, and abused authority can never
produce good results, neither can it last very long. Always bear in mind
parental authority is for the child’s welfare, and is not given to the
parent as a means of venting their resentments. Let us keep God’s honor
in view in the disciplining of our children, and our power and influence
over our children will not fail.
…Positive Side Of
Parent’s Responsibility - Restraints...
“...But bring them up in the nurture and
admonition of the Lord.” This is the positive side of the parent’s
responsibility in bringing up children. The word translated “bring up”
conveys the idea of character development. The word for “nurture” was
used by the Ancient Greeks of the general education of a child, of the
whole course of training whereby a child is brought unto adulthood.
The word “nurture” includes every restraint necessary for the child’s
proper education, and the use of the rod is necessary to the effective
implementation of the restraints.
…The Debt Parents Owe
The word “admonition” speaks of the debt which
parents owe their Children as relates to the training for life’s
troublesome road. It speaks of correction by verbal warning, and
includes corporeal discipline when it is necessary to effect proper
Again we want to point out that, “the nurture and admonition” is
suffixed by the words “of the Lord.” This means that our training of our
children is to be done according to the pattern given us by God’s
training of His children. Yea, even more, while it is training and
correction administered by the parents, its actual source is the Lord,
the truth is, the Lord nurtures the child through the parents.
To Set Up Training Program...
As with all things in family government, the
responsibility for setting up a God honoring training program for the
children rests with the husband and father. In formulating the program,
the wife and mother’s place in the home must be considered, for she will
have more time and opportunity for the implementation of the program
than the father. This is why Paul says to the Children, “obey your
parents (plural) in the Lord: for this is right. Honor thy father and
mother...” (Eph. 6:1 - 2)
For the child to disobey the mother is to disobey the father, and for
the child to disobey either father or mother is to disobey God, from
whom the program was received. Bearing in mind that the “nurture and
admonition” is of the Lord.
A word of warning to the children of godly parents, “whoso curseth his
father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness” (Prov.
20:20) - (Lev. 20:9).
Let us note a few scriptures which relate to the fathers and mothers
responsibility in the rearing of children.
First, the father’s responsibility.
Ps. 78:5 “for he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law
in Israel, which he commanded our fathers, that they should make them
known to their children.” (Precept).
Prov. 20:7 “The just man walketh in his integrity: his Children are
blessed after him.” (Example).
Psa. 113:9 “He rnaketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a
joyful mother of children. Praise ye the Lord.”
“…woman to keep house. “That is according to the rule of her husband. If
the disciplinary program is neglected, and the child is left to himself,
or to direct his own ways he will “bring his mother to shame.” If the
training program implemented according to the word of God her children
will, “…arise up, and call her blessed, her husband also, and he
praiseth her” (Prov. 31:28).
For the mother lives on in her children.
Titus 2:4 - 5 “…To love their husbands, to love their children, to be
discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands,
that the word of God be not blasphemed.”
The average training program of children by
parents in the United States is about sixteen years, less the time they
spend in public school, which is nine months a year for twelve years, Or
108 months, 22 days per month, at an average of six hours per day, which
means they will spend about a year and a half totally free of your
presence, subtract the sleeping hours, which is about one third of the
time they are subject to the parents, and that only leaves the father
and mother about nine years to mould and train their children for their
stay on earth, and to Face God in the hereafter. An awesome thought to
say the least.
...Readily See The
Wisdom Of God In The Fifth Commandment...
In view of the facts stated above, do we not
readily see the wisdom of God in the fifth commandment, which reads,
“honour Thy father and thy mother” (Ex. 20:12). A child who is blessed
with God honoring parents has a distinct advantage over children born in
a home where Christ is not known. A child who obeys and reveres his
parents will learn to “honour all men,” and God Above all.
…Home And Church Teach
Children To Look Up…
All schools and training programs for children
apart from the Home and the Lord’s church teach children to look
straight out, That is, toward one another, and the earth. It is in the
home, and church that children are taught to look up unto God. So,
parents, let us “redeem the time, because the days are evil” (Eph.
The picture regarding the generation of children
coming up in this country is foreboding, for an anarchist spirit now
prevails in the present generation. The iniquities of the fathers are
being visited upon the children of godless parents.