“Submitting to one another in the fear of the Lord” (Ephesians 5:20) is fleshed out into specifics for children and parents in Ephesians 6:1-4). Here, it is written, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. ‘Honor your father and mother,’ which is the first commandment with promise: ‘that it may be well with you, and you may live long on the earth.’ And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.”
Children submit themselves to God’s will by obeying their parents and honoring them. Two powerful, immutable reasons are given: It is the right thing to do (v. 1), and it matters to God (vv. 2-3).
Parents submit themselves to God’s will by focusing their parenting efforts on each child’s spiritual education. They are not to frustrate a child through continuous inconsistency, unfairness, or hypocrisy. Rather, they are to be focused on a child’s spiritual development (v. 4).
Look carefully around your house today. Take an inventory of every possession you have. Then note this sober truth: there is not ONE single item on that list of material possessions which will not be burned into oblivion when Jesus returns (2 Peter 3:10-11). The only thing you have which will endure beyond this life is your children.
Here is the reason why godly parents are focused first and foremost on their children’s spiritual education.