by Ryan Haddox
We in the Lord’s church are losing 75% of our children who fall away from the Lord and become lost when they leave home. This is a tragedy! The main reason we are losing our children to the world is a lack of teaching of God’s word at home by the parents. Parents are commanded to teach their children the word of God. “And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). Can we as parents be pleasing to God if we fail to teach our children the word of God? The lack of Bible knowledge will cause our children to go off into atheism, agnosticism, denominationalism, and unfaithfulness, which will cause them to be eternally lost.
One 40-minute Bible study class each week at church or two if they attend Wednesday evening Bible study does not give our children enough spiritual food to fight off the world’s influence they receive at school, TV, etc. Our children spend 30 hours per week in public school preparing for life in this world, but less than 2 hours per week in trying to prepare for eternity. Which is the most important? We become upset if our children make bad grades on their report cards, but it doesn’t seem to bother us if they fail to study their Bible class lessons. We closely watch their scholastic and athletic progress, but what about their spiritual progress? We have become passive about allowing our children to grow up without a soul saving knowledge of the Bible. We need to know that the greatest thing we can do for our children is to instill in them a lasting faith in God and the Bible so they can be eternally saved. There is nothing greater we can do for our children.
We should help our children with their school subjects at home, but studying the Bible with them is of much greater importance than their school subjects. Why do children fall away and become lost when they leave home? God’s word says, “My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6). If our children are lacking in a knowledge of God’s word they will most likely be eternally lost in hell. If they are lost, we as parents will have to give an account to God for our failure to teach them (Romans 14:12).
Bible study with our children will increase their faith in God, because “faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17). God’s inspired word says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6).
We have a good example in the Bible of a young person who was instilled with a genuine saving faith by his mother and grandmother. Paul says to Timothy, “When I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also” (2 Timothy 1:5). Here we see that Timothy had become a faithful Christian because his grandmother Lois and his mother Eunice had instilled in him a genuine faith in God. It did not happen by accident. If it wasn’t for their teaching Timothy would probably not have become a faithful Christian.
To save our children we must be much more serious to help them prepare for eternity. We must set aside a certain time each day for Bible study with them. This teaching must begin at birth and continue as long as we have influence on them. We must teach our children to have proper spiritual values and this can only be done by teaching them God’s word. God has commanded us, “And these words which I command today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up” (Deuteronomy 6:6-7).
Our teaching is a 24/7 task. We must demonstrate by our lives that God and His word are the most important things in our lives. Our children are watching and being taught by our example. Actions speak louder than words. We must not expect our children to “do as I say, not as I do”.
It is not if our children are going to be taught. It is who will teach them and what they are going to be taught? If we don’t teach them, someone else will. Let’s take parenting seriously and bring our children “up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4) so we and they can be together in heaven.
Grace and Peace,