As someone who once lived in Britain but who now lives in the United States, I have always enjoyed reading about how the British view America and Americans. Churchill reportedly said of America, “Their toilet roll is too thin and their newspapers too thick.” On another occasion having watched a game of American Football, Churchill was asked what he thought, and in answer replied, “It is not unlike our game of rugby but why so many committee meetings?” Further, when the Duke of Windsor was asked about his American wife’s homeland, he famously replied, “The thing that impresses me most about America is the way parents obey their children.”
Those are funny, and yet what is not so funny is the fact that the last quote rings terribly true. Home life in America has become inverted with child-centered homes rather than parent-centered homes. Look across the contemporary landscape and you will see that parents in America are little more than indentured servants to their children attending to their every wish and whim. While the Bible tells children to honor and obey their parents, our culture is urging the parent to honor and obey the child. Modern psychology and the prophets of sociology have preached a new democracy in the home where children are to be treated as peers and equal partners in the affairs of the family. As a result, parents no longer demand the honor and respect of their children, no longer impose their will on the child, and no longer exercise authority or apply discipline within the home. Parents today are increasingly pleading the fifth when it comes to the fifth commandment (Ex. 20:12)! Sadly, the greatest violators of the fifth commandment in America today may well be dishonorable parents who no longer require that their children honor them in their God given role!
Regardless of what the world says, the Word says that the home is not a democracy! Parents and children are not peers or equal partners! Just as a husband is over his wife in the Lord (Eph. 5:22-24), so the parent has been placed over the child by God to bring that child up in the fear and admonition of the Lord (Eph. 6:1-4). It is high time in America for parents to shun worldly wisdom and grow a biblical backbone with regards to their parental rights and responsibilities. Let’s bring our homes back under the Lordship of Jesus Christ and the authority of His word. Let’s obey God in seeking obedience from our children!
The Bible teaches us to teach our children God’s truth and to press the claims of Christ on them (Deut. 6:1-9; Eph. 6:1-4). The Bible teaches us not to see our children as morally neutral but as willful sinners in need of correction and Christ (Psalm 51:5; 58:3). The Bible teaches that we must discipline our children physically if we are to rescue them from their own folly (Prov. 13:24; 23:13-14). The Bible teaches us to warn our children about the ways of the world and the moral minefields they must navigate (Prov. 2:10ff; 6:20ff).
Bottom-line: God has placed the reins of the home in your hands so stop obeying your children and out of obedience to God, get them to obey you!