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Daily Bread Devotions by Chuck Myer  Daily Bread Archive | Sign up for our resources

Two commands from Scripture,

  • “And you fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4 – NKJV)

Here we have two commands, one to stop doing something and the other to do something. The command, “do not provoke your children to wrath” is an imperative in the negative. What does that mean? Quite simply, when the imperative is in the negative it means “to stop doing something” (Zodhiates). Then we have the command, “bring them up,” which is in the imperative, in the present tense. This is a command to do something and to do it continually.
FIRST COMMAND – “Stop provoking your children to wrath”
SECOND COMMAND – “Continually bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord” 
Here are two direct Scripture commands to “fathers” (a word that really encompasses the father and the mother, or, the parents). Commands that say, “Stop doing this and do this!” 
“Okay,” you say, “I’ll stop doing that . . . that provoking my child to wrath.” But, what does that mean? How do I go about this?
One way to stop doing it is most obvious to this writer . . .  Stop including them in the public school system! Stop including them in the secular education system.
Oh, I hate this public school system that so many children are involved in today! And I have good Scriptural reason to hate it,

  • “From Thy precepts I get understanding; therefore I hate every false way.” (Psalm 119:104 – NASB)

The public school system removed prayer, and essentially God, from its premises in the 1960’s. Since that time it has maintained an ongoing endeavor to remove all positive resources that are Bible related, from special creation to Christ. It has labored to teach every child that we have come to be on this planet by evolutionary processes. It has labored to teach all subjects as if God didn’t matter, as if Christ was of no significance. It has labored, and continues to labor, to promote an understanding of life that is void of the Creator, sin, Jesus the Christ, the need for repentance and faith in Christ to be saved from the penalty due that sin. Brethren, if that isn’t a “false way” then I don’t know what is!
And let me note here that higher education, that which we call our college education system, labors even more intensely toward turning young adults from faith in God. Don’t believe what I’m saying? Check out the staggering number of students who leave homes of faith and end up turning away from that faith as they attend so-called institutions of higher education! 
On the positive . . . you say, “Okay, what then should I do?” And that is exactly where the second command of our text comes in. Be continually laboring to “bring” your “children . . . up in the training and admonition of the Lord” (NKJV).  Take the command of the Lord seriously or your children are going to be “provoked  . . . to wrath.”

  • “training” – “tutorage, i.e. education . . . by implication, disciplinary correction” (Strong). Correcting the sinner by the Word.
  • “admonition” – from two words, “mind” and “to put into; a placing.” (Zodhiates). Putting into the mind, placing into the mind the right things.
  • The KJV reads: “. . .bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
  • The NASB reads: “. . . bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” 

If we do not submit to these commands then the “false way” will conflict with what you are teaching them and they will become unsettled. They will be in two environments and they will be striving to try and figure out which one they should appropriate unto themselves. And the biblical fact is, humans tend to go toward that which satisfies the lust of our flesh.
Once again, I note, I “hate” the public school system and what it is doing to our youth! It is a “false way,” intent on corrupting the “understanding” of our youth! And I “hate” the institutes we call colleges that espouse the same “false way,” but on an even more influential plain! 
The question is begged, oh so clearly in this day in which you and I live, “If it is secular schooling you surrender your children to for their education, for their “training” in “understanding,” then . . . what is it you expect?”  
Oh that we would hear the call of holy Scripture . . . Oh that we would have ears to hear and a deep down desire to obey the commands of our Lord! 
Have a good day . . . and take note that the Bible is the authority for we who are the disciples of Christ, and we are to obey its commands.

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