The Apostle Paul gives us a very important truth about God’s activity in our lives.
Philippians 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
God is not pleased to have us go through life, acting like a bunch of spoiled brats. God wants His children to reverence His authority and to reflect His character. The writer of Hebrews tells us this-
Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Many of us have witnessed children acting unruly and even worse, disrespecting their parent’s authority. I can’t tell you the number of times I have had a parent look for my reaction during a time their child was acting up. It’s as though the parent knows that they need to do something because the pastor is present, yet their verbal correction is like pouring water on a duck’s back. Though the parent tries to control the child, he or she simply ignores them. One of the truths I have tried to teach many young parents is that if you want control in public, you have to gain it in private. The home is the first place where the child must learn to respect their parent’s authority.
God desires our reverence for His authority. What do the commandments teach us?
- Thou shalt have no other gods before Him.
- Thou shalt not worship any false image or idol.
- Thou shalt not take His name in vain.
- Remember His Sabbath and keep it holy.
Through these commandments God was trying to teach His people how to behave like His children. The writer of Hebrews tells us –
Hebrews 12:9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?
The concept of respecting authority is the exact opposite of much today’s modern thinking. Many parents want to be their child’s “best friend”, yet George Barna writes in his book, (Revolutionary Parenting )– “You are not to be your child’s best friend, only his or her best parent.” There is certainly nothing wrong with being your child’s friend, yet we must never let the role of friend supersede the role of parent. Our children will have lots of friends in life, but they will have only one set of parents.