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Written by Pastor Jim Lee for “The Domain for Truth” @ https://veritasdomain.wordpress.com
Original post @ https://veritasdomain.wordpress.com/2019/12/06/parenting-the-priority-of-desiring-our-kids-salvation/
Parenting: The Priority of Desiring our Kids’ Salvation
December 6, 2019 by SLIMJIM
Establish the need: What is your greatest priority for your kids? What do you desire the most for your kids? Is it for them to have a good job, take care of you when you are older, contribute to society or be independent? These are not wrong in of themselves, but what should your greatest priority for your kids should be?
Purpose: Today we will see seven reasons why we should set the priority of desiring our children’s’ salvation in how we parent our children.
- Hell is a real place for sinners (Matthew 10:28, Matthew 13:50)
- We should already desire all people to come to Christ (1 Timothy 2:4, Romans 9:3, Romans 11:14)
- All parents should desire what’s best for their kids (Matthew 7:11; Proverbs 13:22)
- Jesus does not want us to hinder children coming to Him (Matthew 19:14)
- Stumbling little kids is a serious penalty (Matthew 18:6)
- It is so important believers are called to continue to be married to unbelievers for the sake of children’s salvation (1 Corinthians 7:12-14)
- God wants kids to even silence the mockers (Psalm 8:2, Matthew 21:15-16)
Reason 1: Hell is a real place for sinners (Matthew 10:28, Matthew 13:50)
- Hell is worse than death: “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew 10:28)
- Jesus here is speaking and he’s talking about things we should fear.
- Notice the distinction between “kill the body” and “kill the soul.”
- Humans can “kill the body.”
- The second line Jesus mentioned about something worse than physical death (“kill the body”): one’s “soul and body in hell.”
- This goes against some people who think the Bible does not teach about the existence of hell, or that hell is the same thing as death. It is not.
- Let that sink in: Hell is worse than death.
- What hell is like: “and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 13:50)
- Here the description of hell is described.
- It is described as “the furnace of fire”
- What is like for those who are suffering? For them “will be weeping and gnashing of teeth”
- When was the last time you thought about the reality of hell?
- Have you lived your Christian life forgetting about the reality of hell?
- Has the doctrine of hell shape you in any way in the way you parent your kids? Every doctrine should have application, even the doctrine about hell.
- Do we want our kids to go there? I hope not! Let us be resolve to parent in such a way to let our kids know the hope of the Gospel!
- Have you ever talked to your kids about the reality of hell?
Reason 2: We should already desire all people to come to Christ (1 Timothy 2:4, Romans 9:3, Romans 11:14)
- Know God’s desire: “who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Timothy 2:4)
- Here Paul writes that God in some sense “desires all men to be saved.”
- Salvation of course requires that one needs “to come to the knowledge of the truth” which is the Gospel as revealed in God’s Word.
- If God desire people to be saved, should we desire others to be saved as well?
- Christians should also desire the salvation of others: “For I could wish that I myself were accursed, separated from Christ for the sake of my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh,” (Romans 9:3)
- This here is Paul speaking.
- Paul here is talking about ethnic Jews when he said “my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh.”
- He wishes them to be saved so much that Paul said he wishes he take their punishment: “For I could wish that I myself were accursed, separated from Christ for the sake of my brethren”
- Here we see Paul’s noble desire to see other people be saved.
- If we see it as noble that others be saved by Christ, we should also have the desire to see our own children be saved!
- Christians should also desire the salvation of others: “if somehow I might move to jealousy my fellow countrymen and save some of them.” (Romans 11:14)
- Paul describes here what are his wish in light of his ministry to the Gentiles.
- Here he describes how he wishes for his Jewish people to be saved as well.
- Again if we see desire others to be saved, should we not also have the desire to see our own children be saved?
- When was the last time you thought about the salvation of other people who are not Christians?
- When was the last time you shared the Gospel with someone?
- When was the last time you thought about your own kids’ salvation?
- When was the last time you shared the Gospel to your children?
Reason 3: All parents should desire what’s best for their kids (Matthew 7:10-11, Proverbs 13:22)
- Even evil people can want what is best for their kids: “Or what man is there among you who, when his son asks for a loaf, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, he will not give him a snake, will he? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!” (Matthew 7:10-11)
- Jesus in the context is teaching about asking and seeking God in prayer.
- Jesus uses a human analogy to make a point about God hearing our prayer.
- The human analogy is that human fathers will do good for their kids with the example of a loaf of bread (v.10) and fish (v.11) given to a child when asked.
- The last part Jesus drives the point home: If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!” (Matthew 7:11b)
- Yet if even evil people can want what is good for their kids, how much more so should Christians want their kids to have what is truly the best thing in the world: salvation in heaven and a relationship with God through faith in Christ dying for our sins!
- Parents should want to give their kids the greatest “inheritance:” “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, And the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous. (Proverbs 13:22)
- First line teaches that a good parent would want to leave behind inheritance.
- Yet the greatest inheritance you want to leave behind is the Gospel: The good news that trusting in Jesus Christ can save them for eternity and having the pleasures of God forever in heaven!
- Have you parent in a way that is for the best for your kids for life on earth?
- If you are parenting your kids for their good on this life and not the next you are not keeping eternity in perspective. You need to start parenting with your kids’ eternity in mind!
- If we don’t practice Gospel centered and Gospel driven parenting you might not understand what’s really the best thing for your kids are. You need to re-discover the preciousness of the Gospel first. Vow to study books on the Gospel and the book of Romans and Ephesians today!
Reason 4: Jesus does not want us to hinder children coming to Him: “But Jesus said, “Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”” (Matthew 19:14)
- In the context the disciples were rebuking kids who were going to Jesus (13).
- Jesus instead rebuked His disciples: “But Jesus said, “Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me” (14a)
- Then Jesus taught a spiritual principle: “for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these” (14b)
- If Jesus said the kingdom of heaven belong to kids, we should also have the same attitude with our kids!
- Are you hindering or helping your kids to come to Jesus?
- We can hinder them to come to Jesus in many ways:
- Being caught up with one’s own selfishness
- General Parental Neglect
- Neglect of duty of sharing the Gospel to them.
- Not going to church.
- Not practicing Gospel based discipline.
Reason 5: Stumbling little kids is a serious penalty: “but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.” (Matthew 18:6)
- In the context Jesus has been talking about children in Matthew 18:1-6.
- Jesus brought up a scenario of someone causing “one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble (6a)
- How serious is the penalty? “it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea” (6b)
- Drowning is not a pleasant way to die.
- Yet Jesus said that is better than the penalty deserved!
- Are you stumbling your little ones or are you helping them to come to salvation through faith in Jesus?
- Do you know what are your sins and temptations that can cause your children to stumble? Is that something you are convicted about and desire to confess to God, repent, and fight that sin?
- The greatest sin is unbelief; it’s a sin that will turn down the grace of God offered through Jesus Christ. Is your belief, words and action promoting them not to believe in the grace of Jesus Christ? If so you seriously need to repent and turn to Jesus Christ today and if appropriate confess to your children as well.
Reason 6: It is so important believers are called to continue to be married to unbelievers for the sake of children’s salvation: ““But to the rest I say, not the Lord, that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he must not divorce her. 13 And a woman who has an unbelieving husband, and he consents to live with her, she must not send her husband away. 14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified through her believing husband; for otherwise your children are unclean, but now they are holy.”” (1 Corinthians 7:12-14)
- In 12-13 Paul encourages husbands and wives married to nonbelievers not to divorce their already-married unbelieving spouse.
- One of the reason for that is given in verse 14a: “For the unbelieving husband is sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified through her believing husband”
- You might ask: sanctified? A believer is one who is declared sanctified just as the church in Corinth are also called “sanctified” in 1 Corinthians 1:2 even though they still need to work on it practically.
- Thus staying in the marriage is for the purpose that the unbeliever comes to Christ!
- This is true for the kids as well, to stay in the marriage for the sake of the kids salvation with the believers’ words and life: “for otherwise your children are unclean, but now they are holy” (A)
- Seeing how important salvation of family members including those of children, we should see the importance of having it a priority to see our kids come to know Christ!
- For those in difficult marriages, are you willing to stay in your marriage to be a light to your spouse and kids?
- Do you see how important it is the salvation of your kids?
Reason 7: God wants kids to even silence the mockers (Psalm 8:2, Matthew 21:15-16)
- The Word says God wants the mouth of kids to silence God’s enemies: “From the mouth of infants and nursing babes You have established strength Because of Your adversaries, To make the enemy and the revengeful cease.” (Psalm 8:2)
- We see this in action during Jesus’ life: “But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that He had done, and the children who were shouting in the temple, “Hosanna to the Son of David,” they became indignant 16 and said to Him, “Do You hear what these children are saying?” And Jesus *said to them, “Yes; have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies You have prepared praise for Yourself’?” (Matthew 21:15-16)
- These kids were taught somewhere that Jesus is the Son of David and the Messiah!
- Yet will we also teach our own kids that Jesus is the Messiah?
- Will we teach our kids about Jesus the Messiah?
- Will we teach them very young about Jesus as the Son of David and Messiah?
- This last passage reminds us about the present reality of spiritual warfare; are we aware of the war we are in and are we preparing them for the real world of spiritual warfare by letting them know Jesus as Savior?