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Fifth Commandment

“Honor your father and mother.” This is the first commandment with a promise: If you honor your father and mother, “things will go well for you, and you will have a long life on the earth.” Ephesians 6:2‭-‬3 NLT

In Exodus 20, after YWHY gives the commandments concerning Israel's obligation to him–all concerning the honor and respect owed him:

  • You shall have no other God's before me.

  • Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven images.

  • Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.

  • Remember the Sabbath day and keep it Holy.

In the fifth commandment, God asks us to show those same things to our parents. It is the first commandment with a promise–notice the "if." If we care and respect our parents, then our lives will be fuller and better.

The assumption is that the parents are attending to the commandments themselves. By the example of their lives and teachings, their children are raised to have these same values. Children demonstrate their honor by listening to what they are taught and emulating their example.

When we look at the Ten Commandments in their totality, they are directions to God's chosen people to show their allegiance, love, obedience, and respect to him. He was making them a nation set apart, a people who exhibited righteousness throughout the generations. And this learning began at home.

This command is no less critical, perhaps even more so, today. Parents, we must live godly lives, leading by example. In our teaching, let's instruct them to be good moral people and, more importantly, share God's great love in sending Jesus Christ and what it means to them. As children, may we cherish, care and listen to these beloved saints, who have much wisdom to share.

Heavenly Father, thank you for our parents. Whether by birth, adoption, fostering, two-parent, or single-parent–all those who loved us unconditionally and taught us about you. By their example, we learned what it means to live righteously. Please help us as children, regardless of our age, to listen to their wisdom and show them honor and respect. As parents, please help us in teaching our children well. We pray in the name of your Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.


Pastor Tim

P.S. I will be away at Annual Conference, Wednesday, June 7 through Saturday, June 10, and will not write the daily devotion during this time. However, during those days, consider reading and meditating upon the lectionary readings for this week: Genesis 12:1-9, Romans 4:13-25, Matthew 0:9-13, 18-26.

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