Saturday Sermon: Teach your children about God
"Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
When your son asks you in time to come, 'What is the meaning of the testimonies and the statutes and the rules that the Lord our God has commanded you?'" Deuteronomy 6:4-9, 20.
Deuteronomy 6:4-9 is often quoted when talking about teaching our children about the most important truth they will ever know - to love the Lord their God with all their heart, soul and strength.
But an aspect of this passage that is often overlooked is the reward of teaching our children the commandments, statutes, rules and testimonies of the Lord from the time they can hear our voices.
Verse 20 begins, "When your son (or daughter) asks ." The reward of teaching your children about the one true God from birth they will ask. They are compelled to know more and to want more because it has been such an integral part of their lives from the beginning of life - it becomes like their favorite food.
Every Christian parent should want their children to know more of these things. God is saying here that if we teach them these things from the earliest moments of life that they will seek more understanding and more information as they grow.
And you have to love the answer to the question, as well. The child asks, "Why do we do this," and the answer is simple, because God delivered us, them from Egypt, from sin, from eternal condemnation - and one more reason - because we should honor Him by keeping His word out of gratitude for what God has done for us.
Not a whole lot of explanation is needed if the word of God has been a part of their lives from the beginning of life.
They will accept the simple answers, and as they grow up wanting more supporting evidence for this truth, but each step along the way will not require us to be overexerted or pressed too far as parents trying to figure out "how" to explain this stuff, because if they have always heard God's Word - what God is saying here, is that they will likely not question its validity to do exactly what God says it will do.
They will grow up trusting in God, who has always kept His Word. But they must continue to be taught always. This is our primary calling as parents.
Mike Singenstreu is the pastor of Christ Presbyterian Church, PCA, meeting at Crossroads Center, 1929 Red River St.