Psalm 145:4 (ESV)
One generation shall commend your works to another,
and shall declare your mighty acts.
An Alberta cabinet minster recently got into trouble for saying, among other things: “when you are raising children, you don’t go off to work and leave them for someone else to raise. This is not a statement against daycare. It’s a statement about their belief in the importance of raising children properly ”. All other arguments aside there is great truth in this little statement all by itself. It is especially true in the matter of teaching our children the Scriptures and the Gospel.
The first way in which God calls us to keep the knowledge of God alive on the earth is from parent to child. God is a great God and the parent that will not tell his child such a thing is not parenting according to the reason he/she was given children. God has ordained that the normal way for the truth to be passed on is from parent to child. God’s plan for passing on the Abrahamic blessings to the whole world was through parental instruction in the ways of the Lord (Genesis 18:19). Psalm 78 is plain that the way in which the truth will become known is through the transmission of it from parent to child. Parents are to bask in the wonders of a great God so that their children will also be struck with wonder at who and what God is. Parents are to recognize the works of God all around them so that they can show them to their children.
The abrogation of this God given parental duty and privilege is a shame upon people who claim to know God, especially those whose work is the teaching and preaching of the Word of God. Far too many Christians act as if they believe that it is the church’s responsibility to teach the Scriptures to their children. It is not. The church is to help parents do their job better, by making disciples.
We live in a culture that increasingly believes that for important work to get done right it must be done by a knowledgeable expert. And expertise is measured by education, intelligence and skill.
Becoming a parent is signing up for the most important job that there is. It does not demand education, although an ability to read and put cogent thoughts together is definitely an asset. The requirements to pass on the knowledge of God to children are – to know God oneself through faith in Jesus Christ, to have a passion for God, to love children enough to want them to have the knowledge of God too, to pray for the ability to do this all important job properly and perseverance. It is a God given task that cannot be handed over to others. Parents have no choice. They are to commend the works of God to their children.