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God's Pattern for Parents, Part 2

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
May 6, 2021 4:00 am

God's Pattern for Parents, Part 2

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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May 6, 2021 4:00 am

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You may look at your little one and say this is double the property I'm not sure I can cope with it. You can't judging stay on your knees and understand what is salvation how you assist them in achieving those goals. Similarly, how do you keep your child from rebelling against your authority and ignoring the help you're trying to give them keep those questions in mind as John MacArthur looks at what Scripture says to moms and dads and shows you the biggest mistakes you need to avoid this lesson is part of his current study, the fulfilled family in our 52 year history.

No series has been more requested than this one. Now if you have your Bible head to the book of Ephesians and here again is John MacArthur.

Open your Bible to Ephesians chapter 6 Ephesians chapter 6. The key verse really here in the New Testament that gives to us. God's design for parenting is verse four simply says and fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

It's a tremendous statement in that verse. It again with an economy of words covers a vast field books, treatises, volumes have been written on parenting God is reduced to 21 statement do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. This is God's pattern for parenting. How do you do this. How do you bring your child up. What is the real key to this challenging work to give you the key turn your Bible to Proverbs 423 Proverbs 423 and here we we are really going to get to the issue. This insight here tells us what is wrong with all of your children and all of mine. It's the same problem. Proverbs 423 says watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life that what you want to recognize with your child. Is this you have a heart problem you're not dealing with behavioral issues you're dealing with the heart. In fact, let me go beyond that and say behavior is not the crucial issue changing your child's behavior is not the crucial issue.

In fact, a change in behavior without a change in heart is nothing but hypocrisy. It is a sham, because the sin of the rebellion is still there and is only delayed as to its expression. All behavior all conduct is linked to some heart condition some heart attitude and parents listen your task as parents is to set your self to the heart of the child.

First of all to help the child understand that he or she has a very sinful heart and that it is that inner corruption that rises to cause all evil words, thoughts and deeds parenting must target the heart. It cannot target the behavior or it is shallow and superficial parenting at the first of all is redemptive. It goes for the heart and the first thing your child needs to know is he has a wicked sinful heart that is alienated from God and is the fountainhead of every imaginable iniquity, and that something has to happen to change that heart that leads the child to salvation and sanctification when writer says it this way, the world's smallest battlefield is the child's heart and the conquering of it calls for all-out hand to hand combat your child's heart is a battlefield where sin and righteousness are in conflict.

The problem with your child is not a lack of maturity. The problem with your child is not a lack of experience or lack of understanding those will exacerbate the problem but the problem with your child is a wicked heart and listen to this. No one outgrows depravity. Nobody so the goal of parenting is to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. The goal of parenting is not control.

It's not to get them under control is not to produce in them socially commendable behavior is not to make them polite and respectful is not even to cause them to to conduct themselves in a morally acceptable manner is not to make them obedient is not to give you as a parent, something to be proud of.

The goal of parenting is not to get them to perform for your approval. The goal of parenting is salvation and sanctification. The goal of parenting is to see yours your child saved from sin and its eternal wages and then to follow the path of sanctification was any objective less than that is only behavior modification.

The issue is the heart and you have to understand that you have a sinner who is depraved to the very poor who needs salvation and forgiveness and sanctification and you start by making that child aware of a sinful condition and the judgment of God and as I told you before you even make that child aware of an eternal hell. Don't just train your child to be self-controlled and learn to say no when wanting something train your child to understand temptation and resist it because the sins of greed and lust and selfishness and covetousness and indulgence dishonor God and pander a wicked heart punished for the sin but teach that the heart is the problem sinful unsaved un-sanctified children are ruled by the same exact desires that their larger counterparts are your children are ruled by lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes and pride of life, their selfish, self-centered, and they want everything they can see now correct them not to satisfy the offended the irritated, frustrated parent. That's anger.

That's vengeance but to satisfy God, who has been offended, and God is not just been annoyed and remind them that God, who has been offended seeks a reconciliation with them through trust in Jesus Christ. This is the target of all parenting. It's the heart and it is salvation. This means reproof, rebuke correction, the use of the rod lovingly, but nonetheless consistently we talked about that you never use the rod.

Listen now, you never use the rod as punishment for sin. That's not your job. You never use the rod as payment for sin, you use the rod as correction to avoid payment at the hands of God, bring them up bringing them up means targeting the heart. Let me take you to a passage in the Old Testament that will further define this heart centered instruction in Deuteronomy chapter 6 is a very important formula given here for the raising of children. Deuteronomy 6 is really a chapter instructing parents down in verse seven talks about teaching them diligently to your sons.

This is all about family instruction very very important chapter refers to instructing Sun Tzu again several times later in the chapter now as you bring them up, and as you teach them and as you instruct them. What you teach them what started the beginning verse four. The first thing you teach them in this section here oh Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is one. The first thing you teach them is to recognize the true God and that he is sovereign to recognize God the one God, the Lord, it was one that's the first teach them about God.

Secondly, verse five teach them to love God and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your might. That's the second essential in bringing them up.

Thirdly, verse six.

Teach them to obey God. And these words which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart and you shall teach them diligently to your sons teach them about God. Teach them to love God with all their heart and soul and might and teach them to obey God.

All his commands, then fourthly, teach them to follow your example. Verse seven you shall teach them diligently to your sons and talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lied down and when you rise up.

In other words, show your children that at all times in your life, all experiences in your life on the tip of your time always is the word of the living God.

Let them see that your life is dominated by divine truths.

Let them see all of life as a classroom every occasion in life an opportunity to teach every experience in life an opportunity to point them to heaven. Everything that happens to them is a path back to Scripture and also it essential in bringing them up verses eight and nine that they be reminded repeatedly about these truths reminded about the true God about loving God and about obeying God and about following your example how do you do it bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead right them on the door posts of your house and on your gates. All of that simply ways to say.

Keep the reminder going all the time.

Constantly constantly at all times habit, as it were, at the front of your mind have it right on your hands, put on the door posts of your house and on the gates so that you are incessantly taking them back to the truth of God. And then one other list. Teach them to be wary of the world around them first hand, and it shall come about when the Lord your God brings you into the land which he swore to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give you great and splendid cities which you didn't build in houses full of all good things. What you didn't fill in human cisterns, which you didn't dig in other words, they're gonna take over a very advanced civilization already in place, vineyards and olive trees. You didn't plant and you shall eat and be satisfied then watch yourself, lest you forget the Lord brought you from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.

Warn your children that when they get out in the world and they begin to see all that's there and they begin to toss touch and taste and explore and sense and experience that they not forget God. Teach them about the true God. Teach them the love them with all their heart, with all their soul, with all their might teach them to obey him. Teach them to follow your example show them that life is a classroom no matter what the scene constantly remind them of those things which are precious to them and do you and teach them to be wary of the world.

With that in mind we go back to Ephesians 6 and will draw this to a conclusion in Ephesians chapter 6 here couple of keywords.

The first one bring them up in the discipline. The Greek verb is Paideia. It means to rear a child involves training instruction.

Learning is used also in Hebrews 12 of verses 5 to 11 of chastening or disciplining it essentially means training.

It encompasses discipline. Here's what it really can be summed up to mean enforced conformity enforced conformity of the heart and the life to God and his truth enforced conformity of the heart and the life to God and his truth. How do you enforce by punishments and rewards bring them up, train raisin with chastening and discipline and training and instruction and learning in enforced conformity of heart and life to God and the principles of his word. Susanna Wesley at 17 children, including John and Charles Schwartz wrote this, the parent who studies to subdue self-will in his child works together with God in the saving of the soul, the parent who indulges self-will does the devil's work makes religion impractical salvation unattainable undoes all that is in him to drown his child soul and body forever. Don't indulge self-will in a child subdue it breaking. Self-will is the key teaching them that they are sinful and that that self-will is a sinful expression that is an offense against God, for which God will punish them eternally. Teach them that they are called to obey the law of God which they are to do but can't do apart from God's grace working in their heart. Show them their sin and show them that they can't do anything about it. Only God can change their heart through their faith in Christ and as they exercise simple faith in Christ when they're young except each step they take God only knows when true conversion takes place. Encourage every step toward him. The word admonition, bring them up in the admonition or instruction is the word new phase. He it has the idea of warning and it takes us back to what we been saying before, we have to warn our children that there are not only obviously physical consequences in the family or their behavior, but there are much more serious consequences from God so important training. The word training or discipline may refer to what is done to the child in terms of discipline, but the word instruction refers to what is said to the child its verbal instruction with a view to judgment. In other words, you must do this because if you do that here are the consequences. It was said of Eli sons in first Samuel, it was said of Eli, sons this tragic statement is sons brought a curse on themselves and Eli did not rebuke them if you read the sad sad story of Eli's family. You have the key right there wasn't because of something you did to them it was because of what he didn't do. You did not warn them the Minnesota crime commission says this. Every baby starts life is a little savage.

He is completely selfish and self-centered. He wants what he wants when he wants it is bottled his mother's attention is playmates toys his uncles watch and I am these once and he seizes with rage and aggressiveness, which would be murderous were he not so helpless.

He's dirty. He has no morals, no knowledge and no develop skill.

This means that all children are born delinquent if permitted to continue in their self-centered world of infancy given free reign to their impulsive actions to satisfy each want. Every child will grow up a criminal, a thief, a killer and rapist." Not bad from the Minnesota crime commission what you're describing is what depravity the task is formidable folks in the truth of the matter is only God can change the heart goal is not to modify their behavior. The goal is for God to change the heart to lead your child to Christ and then when your child acknowledges Christ, to lead that child to sanctification by discipline and instruction spend their time helping your child to understand how sinful he is, spend your time helping him or her to understand that only God can change the heart spend your time disciplining the child to conform to God's law, but more than that to love God with all his or her heart and soul and mind.

One father looking at the parenting process. In retrospect, at some practical things to add to that if I were starting my family again. He said this, 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 to my children more even to the littlest one I would be more honest about my weaknesses and not pretend perfection. I would trade differently for my family.

Rather than focusing on them. I'd focus on me.

I would do more things with my children I would do more encouraging. I would bestow more praise I would pay more attention to little things I would speak about God more intimately out of every ordinary thing of every ordinary day. I would point them to God. And that's really it. I don't think all the all the little nuances of behavior on the issue. I don't think the weather child standstill runs around in a circle is the issue. I don't think whether your child suchlike little Lord Fauntleroy with an un-wrinkled garment on the stool or jumps across the back of the couch. I don't think that's necessarily the issue.

What is the issue is the heart and whether that little life can be taught to love God and understand that only God can change his or her heart. That's the path of parenting. That's the path it has to take and it's hard work and its battlefield, and it takes not only great instruction and discipline, but utterly consistent example we tell you about a little sickly child, as I close, sick with rheumatic fever and distorted illness so that child was in bed much of its early years of life carried a residual heart defect caused certain restriction in activity the child was prone to accident and mishap went through assorted surgeries and accidents from reckless activity child was mischievous did such terrible things as letting all the neighbors that birds out of the cages so they all flew away. One morning taking a dozen eggs out of the refrigerator putting in the hall taking a hammer and smashing the mall just to see what a hammer to do an egg running away several times usually only as far as the lady's house who made those good pies directing traffic in the middle of the street setting fire to the kitchen telling the teacher to pray for his father because his father had chopped off his foot simply because he wanted the best Sharon tell biting people so that his father had to make a sign around his neck that said don't play with me. I bite now. I am intimately acquainted with that little boy it was me and so it went even to one occasion where my father had to come and get me out of jail. Why was I like that was because my parents didn't love me no what was it because somehow they date spanked me and I was wounded in my psyche.

No, it was because I was really just like all the rest depraved to the very core and if left to myself. Who knows what criminal activities I might've engaged but persistent prayer, persistent instruction from loving parents led me to Jesus Christ and to salvation in the path of sanctification and stand before you hear as a preacher you may look at your little one and say this is double depravity. I'm not sure I can cope with it. You can't, God can stay on your knees and understand what it is you're doing. It's hard work for salvation and sanctification. The rest flows out of your listening to Grace to you with the verse by verse Bible teaching of John MacArthur as he continues his current series titled the fulfilled family, along with teaching each day on the radio. John also serves as pastor of Grace Community Church and Chancellor of the Masters University and seminary John about these biblical principles for parenting that were looking at a question that people sometimes have is this. To what extent do those principles apply to a home that is led by unbelievers.

How effective will these principles be when the dad or the mom or maybe even both of them are not Christians. It's pretty hard to apply a biblical principle and a non-Christian environment that you can discipline your children, you have some children that are very well disciplined. But what is missing in the nonbelieving home is the transcendent motivation of honoring God and you could actually argue that even the best parenting apart from God is still sinful because it falls short of the goal of everything and that is to give God glory apart from Christ. There is no way to please God.

So you may succeed in raising hard-working kid you may succeed in raising a law-abiding kid, but the but the primary duty of a parent.

The noblest and highest calling of a parent would be to pass on gospel truth and salvation to children, and when that's not done. All you're doing is creating a person who will sin less openly or less publicly than somebody else might. But still, a perishing soul without any hope for eternity. So what is the point of teaching parents how to parent.

If there's no redemptive message in all of that. You're just rearranging the circumstances of their life without thoughts for eternity. I just believe that we as believers in Christ are the only ones who can really truly raise up a generation of righteous people because that's only possible when they have been redeemed right and it's obvious from the biblical language raise them in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

So another mention of the book. What the Bible says about parenting, you can order a copy today from Grace to you. Yes, and this is the book we point parents to what the Bible says about parenting shows you how to present the gospel to your children, how to identify un-biblical parenting philosophies and how to strengthen your marriage as you raise your kids to get a copy. Contact us today to order, call 855 Grace or you can order online@tty.org.

The title the book again. What the Bible says about parenting, no matter where you are in the parenting process or if you're simply looking to encourage parents, you know, this book will help pick up a copy for yourself for a few for small group call us at 855 Grace or visit our website TTY.org and if you're a parent who has kids starting to think about life after high school, keep in mind what I mentioned earlier in the broadcast that John MacArthur serves as Chancellor of the Masters University in Southern California. It's a four-year liberal arts university with a commitment to the authority of Scripture. For more information about the school's unwavering commitment to God's word or academic degrees or athletic programs find a link to the school's website@tty.org website one more time. TTY.org now for John MacArthur and the entire Grace to you staff, I'm Phil Johnson be here tomorrow when John shows you the key to maintaining family unity as he wraps up his practical and popular series called the fulfilled family 30 more minutes of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on Grace to you


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