Whether you believe our days are end times is irrelevant. We live a world falling apart, each country, not just our own. If you cannot see this, look toward your Bible and read Romans, chapter 1 and 2nd Timothy chapter 3, for starters.
This is not a political article. It’s about family in these times. Yours and mine.
Babies are gifts from God. Each one born into this world of every nation, creed, religion—they all belong to God. Appointed as stewards, God called us to raise our children by the Word of God (Proverbs 22:6).
Many couples fear raising children in these troubled times. In Matthew, 24:14 Jesus says the end will not come until believers preach the Gospel to every nation. That implies that He recognized the end was far off and perhaps still is today.
As Christians, God calls us to be ‘holy,’ that is, separate, not committing adultery, lying, speaking with vulgar language, stealing, etc. Our behaviour and words should reflect our belief in God. If someone accuses you of being a Christian, would you live up to those charges? Would your children recognize you as a Christian? Paraphrased… Same with our kids.
Jesus knew we’d see trouble. He knew 2000+ years ago that we wouldn’t escape the troubles that Satan presented, but encouraged us He has overcome the world (John 16:33). He never said, “Don’t get married or raise a family.” Did He?
What are we to do? Teach your kids and grandkids the Word of God and how to pray.
And We Teach Them, How? End Times Society Poses Some Challenges.
No, no, no. Forget Sunday school. That’s once a week. This is your daily career- not parsing or politicizing the Word of God. Take your children before they start their homework. Remind them that our public schools are not teachers of scripture. Read scripture every single day- a chapter of the Bible- to them. Do not fail in this. Do not promise wealth, health and the good life. When Jesus said He would give life, and life in abundance, He did not mean cool stuff. Oh, my!
Dad needs to be the spiritual leader. Mom, you, too, are head over your children. Read scripture and start early. When you find you are pregnant, speak the Word to your enlarging belly (not Dad’s!). A Mom and Dad should pray and read. I can’t stress this enough. The Word of God is eternal and inerrant. At birth, throughout a child’s growth, make God, His Word, and relationship with Him the most important thing in their lives. Let them know not only His Word, but ‘Walk the talk.’. He is our ultimate, loving Father and example.
Early on, they may not God’s foreshadowing of the Old Testament. They will get the escape from Egypt. A perfect starting place to share why Jesus died for our sins.
When your children question your faith and the inerrancy of the Bible (as kids do), don’t berate them. Instead ask your pastor how best to discuss their questions (Ephesians 6:4). Say, “I don’t the answer (if you honestly don’t). Let me ask the pastor.”
That’s honest, and kids appreciate honesty. More or less.
Above all, show love- unconditional love. The kind that God has lavished on us. Do not shame them or point out their guilt. God will help if you shame your kids, as many will grow up to shame their children.
Don’t let your kids believe (as I did) that God was sitting on His throne judging my every decision. Kids need to understand this agape love (Godly love) and phileo love (love for family). Imagine your kids and grandkids, how they can share this love, not judge.
Not judging does not mean universal acceptance. But it means that God wants everyone to come to the knowledge of salvation (1 Timothy 2:4). And only through Him does our salvation rests.
Do not give into the idea that your kids need computers, super toys, and the latest clothes. They are also not ‘the special child, better than anyone!’ They need discipline, respect, and equality. Same with chores. It is not a sin for your kids to help with laundry!
When kids understand books such as Leviticus, or Deuteronomy without reading through and understanding the culture, remind them of the ‘social justice’ for the widows, poor, orphans, and those foreigners who align themselves with the nation of Israel within the book. Remind them of how people were to act with truth, respect women, free servants, cancel financial debt, and treat the land with respect.
And yes, remind them God called them to be unlike the Gentiles who sinned by sexual immorality, infanticide, drank blood and punished them when they didn’t listen. I don’t know about you, but I am thankful stoning is no longer a punishment. When Paul rebuked those who sinned (read Galatians and Corinthians if you don’t believe me) and if they didn’t turn away, the pastor was to put them out of the church until those that sinned, repented.
As it says in Romans, we are no longer under the law. But too, says we should put aside immorality, things that could cause a non-believer to say we are worse than the evilest person ever born (Ephesians 5: 3-7).
Children will continue to question. Keep reading to them and praying with them. If they refuse, your job as a steward is not complete. They still can watch your behaviour. Only God can remind them of what they have learned. Your house rules exist, too. No matter their age, they need to respect them when in your home.
Don’t let fear dictate having a family. Let your faith shine through them. Difficult times are here. 1 John: 4:18 says, ‘There is no fear in love. But perfect love casts out fear.’ We need not tremble or fall into the trap of worldly lies.
So, I tell you, walk away from fear. Kids are great, and it gets better when you have grandkids (you can give them back to Mom and Dad after the visit…).
Trust in God. He’s got you.