Randall Caselman

Bella Vista Church of Christ

03/24/2019 A.M.

 

WRITTEN IN STONE

“Honor Your Father & Mother”

Exodus20.1-17   Deuteronomy 5.6-21

 

Our Sunday Morning Study is in the Ten Commandments.

Sinai Principles Written In Stone...

This morning... Honor your father and mother.

 

why?... Why don’t we honor our parents?.... Three stories!!

 

We don’t honor our parents because we’ve become ashamed of them.

The Brothers Grimm have a story about a family... Father... Mother... Small son... And a grandfather. The old grandfather was feeble... His hands shook uncontrollably... So much so that at mealtime… He would spill his food… Or allow it to run from the corners of his mouth. This embarrassed the mother until one day when the old man tuned over a bowl of soup... She said... That’s enough!... From now on you’ll set at a table in the corner of the room and not with us.

 

This went on for some time until the old man made… Another mealtime blunder… Another mealtime mess... Accidentally dumping his plate onto the floor... The daughter-in-law was furious... She said… If you’re gonna eat like a pig... We’ll make you a trough and you can be a pig. Sure enough a trough was brought to the table.

 

A few weeks later the little boy was in the yard with some... Planks... Hammer... and Nails. The father asks...What are you building?... I’m building you and mother a pig’s trough to eat out of when you get old like grandpa.

 

Without a word... With tears...They picked up the old man’s stuff... And that night the grandfather ate at the family table.

 

Sometimes we don’t honor parents because we get too BUSY.

Douglas MacArthur II... The Nephew of General MacArthur... Served as Counselor of the State Department under John Foster Dulles.  Like Dulles... He was a hard worker... One day Dulles telephoned the MacArthur home asking for Doug... Mrs. MacArthur mistook him for an aide and irately snapped... MacArthur is where MacArthur always is on... Weekdays... Saturdays... Sundays... and every night... 24/7… In that office.  Within minutes MacArthur got a telephone order from Dulles... Go home at once son...Your home front is crumbling.

 

Sometimes we neglect our parents out of pure selfishness.

We go from Germany’s Brothers Grimm of the Eighteen Hundreds... From Washington D.C. in the 1950s... Now to France in 2004.

 

A heat wave had spread across Europe... Fifteen thousand elderly persons died in France alone.  What shamed the French Nation was that many thousands of those elderly parents who died... Did so while their children and grandchildren were on family vacations.   They had little to no concern for what was happening to their parents and grandparents who were dying from neglect.

 

This incident prompted The French Government to take action... Such neglect is now a matter of National Law. In France one can be imprisoned for neglecting elderly parents.

 

Article 207 of the French Civil Code now says that adult children are legally responsible for their elderly parents... And they will be held accountable for their behavior toward them.

 

Second Timothy 3.1-2 tells us about such selfishness... Becoming lovers of ourselves... Will mark the last days… Paul writes… There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy... Sound like today’s culture?

 

Odd isn’t it that a nation would need a law forcing its citizens to

respect and be held responsible for parents when the Bible contains

numerous admonitions to honor our father and mother?

Let’s examine a few...

 

Exodus 20.12... Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

 

Deuteronomy 5.16... Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that things may go well with you in the land.

 

Deuteronomy 27.16... Cursed is the man who dishonors his father or his mother.

 

Leviticus 19.3... Each of you must respect his mother and father, and you must observe my Sabbaths. I am the Lord your God.

 

Matthew 15.4... From the lips of Jesus... For God said, Honor your father and mother... anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death.

 

Ephesians 6.1-3... Children, obey your parents in the Lord,for this is right. Honor your father and mother--which is the first commandment with a promise...That it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.

 

Colossians 3.20... Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.

 

Hebrews 12.9... We have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live!

 

1Timothy 5.4 & 8... If a widow has children or grandchildren, these should learn first of all to put their religion into practice by caring for their own family and so repaying their parents and grandparents, for this is pleasing to God. If anyone does not provide for his own... Especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

 

Proverbs 6.20-23... Listen to Solomon as He sums up our responsibility to our parents...

My son, keep your father’s commands and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. Bind them upon your heart for ever… Fasten them around your neck. When you walk, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you are awake, they will speak to you. For these commands are a lamp, this teaching is a light, and the corrections of discipline are the way to life.

 

There are several examples of how proper it is to honor our parents...

For instance...

 

• Noah had three sons... Two of them honored their father when he became drunk and shamed himself... But one son... Ham...Dishonored his father and was cursed because of it.

 

• When Jesus got ready to speak of the Kingdom of God... He used a son who dishonored his father by prematurely asking for his inheritance and wasting it in wild living in a far country...But came to his senses… Returned home… And was forgiven.

 

• Jesus honored His own parents... Saying to John at the cross... Take care of Mother.

 

OK... Let’s consider the why and How of our lesson...

Why should we honor our parents?

 

Because they gave us life.

Solomon admonishes... Listen to your father, who gave you life,and do not despise your mother when she is old.

 

We are to honor our parents because they gave us life.... Therefore there is a way in which the child owes his or her parents everything... It’s just built into the fabric of life.

 

It’s just this simple... We wouldn’t be here this morning were it not for them.  We enjoy life because of them... If you are enjoying life... This is reason enough to pay them our respects... Amen?

 

We honor them because the Word of God tells us to...

We’re commanded to.

 

Deuteronomy 27.16... Cursed is the man who dishonors his father or his mother.

 

Listen... Honoring our father and mother is not based upon whether our mom and dad deserve it or have earned our respect.

 

We honor them because God commanded... We honor our parents because we choose to obey God...Regardless of our thinking or feelings.

 

Yes... I know that some of you feel that your mom or dad DOES not deserve honor and respect... But they do because God says they do.

 

Listen... In spite of their behavior... In spite of how they treated you... God is saying... Find a way to honor them.

 

So... Rather than focusing on the ways they may have disappointed us... Maybe even mistreated us... Try to concentrate on how God gave you life through them.

 

It’s interesting to note here that author Timothy Keller makes the statement that we learn obedience in the home.... Keller says... It is respect for parents that’s the basis for every other kind of respect and every other kind of authority.

 

Augustine said... If we fail to honor our parents... Is there anyone we will spare??... Those who would dishonor parents will dishonor… Government… Church… Jesus… and God.

 

Indeed... Disobedience to God...To Teachers... Supervisors... To Civil Authority... Has its beginning in the home. Those who will not submit to authority do so because they learned it at home.

 

We are to honor our parents because it pleases God.

Listen to Leviticus 19.3 again... Each of you must respect his mother and father, Because by doing so you are pleasing God... I am the Lord your God.

 

First Timothy 5.4 tells us by caring for our parents and grandparents... We are putting our faith into practice... And that pleases God... But ignoring them makes us worse than an infidel… A non-believer.

 

Now let’s notice the How...

How do we honor our father and mother??...

 

First...By valuing their advice.

By accepting their discipline and instruction.

 

Proverbs begins with these words in 1.8 & 9... Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. They will be a crown of grace in your head and a gems to adorn your neck.

 

Ephesians 6.1tells us that we are to obey our parent’s instructions because it is right to do so... It’s an eternal principle...

 

A universal principle reflected in the laws and expectations of almost every culture in almost every nation.

 

Scripture tells us why...

• So that we may live long in the land God is giving us...

• So that our days on the earth may be long...

• So that all may go well with us.

 

I think all of us went through a time when we thought our parents’ ideas and instructions were old fashioned...Out of date... And we rebelled.

 

I found it amazing how smart my mother and father became in the time between when I left home for BasicTraining and when I was discharged from Active Duty.

 

I hope we can all say this morning that we value the instructions and advice of our parents... Especially those who brought us up in the... Nurture and admonition... Training and instructions... Of the Lord.

 

We honor them… By communicating with them.

I am always saddened when I hear people say... I haven’t seen my children in months... Or years.

 

This afternoon... We’ll see parents at Concordia and Highlands whose children haven’t visited them in a year or more... Something is wrong here... Desperately wrong!

 

Listen… If we only honor mom and dad once a year in May & June... Mother’s Day Father’s Day… Something is seriously wrong with our relationship… And with our religion.

 

Not only is there disrespect for parents... There is disobedience to this Biblical principle.

• Our religion demands that we acknowledge them...

Respect them...

• Honor them...

• Communicate with them... Let them know we love them.

 

We honor by… MeeTING their needs...

How we treat our parents in their declining years is a demonstration of our faith.

 

First Timothy 5.8 says... If anyone does not provide for his relatives... Especially for his immediate family... He has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

 

When our parents and grandparents become too old and feeble to care for themselves... It’s not the responsibility of the government or the church to care for them... It is our responsibility...We are not to neglect them!!

 

Paul says... If there are no children...Grandchildren... Nephews and Nieces... Then...let the church care for those who are indeed in need.

 

Listen to First Timothy 5.4 again... If a widow has children or grandchildren... These should learn first of all to put their religion into practice by caring for their own family and so repaying their parents and grandparents... For this is pleasing to God.

 

We usually use this Scripture to qualify those the church should be…. Could be…Scripturally supporting…. Perhaps we should be using it to say that we need to be supporting our parents and family.

 

I want to say something here about nursing homes... There are times that nursing facilities are needed... And we need to be thankful for them...

 

There are times that we are just not able to care for family members.. But... But... Why are we placing them there?... Because we must... Or… because we don’t want to be bothered with them.

 

If it’s out of our own selfishness... If it’s for our own convenience... We may be violating this eternal principle.

 

Now... You can disagree with me... But each of us must examine our conscience before God... And live by our personal conviction.

 

You see church... There is a spiritual law at work in our universe which says... We will reap what we sow... We will be treated as we treat others.

 

With this in mind... May we bemore diligent in... Honoring our fathers & mothers... AMEN?

 

Then finally... We are to forgive them.

Listen... If our parents were not the parents they should have been... Reconcile... Reconcile!… If reconciliation is not possible... Forgive. Forgive!

Pray that the bitterness be removed.

 

So… The question becomes... What is our relationship with our Heavenly Father... Our Heavenly Family? Consider this... You can become a child of God by… Faith... A change in Lifestyle... Confession of Jesus... And the New Birth of Baptism... Raised to live a new life.

 

Perhaps some of us need to change our thoughts and behavior toward our parents...

• Whether they are alive or have gone on to their reward...

• Whether weconsider them good or bad parents...

God asks us to Honor Them... Let’s just determine to do it…

As we stand and sing together.