The following are my notes from my address at the Gospel-Powered Parenting Conference. You can also find the audio here (link).
Ephesians 5:15–6:4 (ESV) — 15 Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, 19 addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, 20 giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, 21 submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ. 22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands. 25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, 26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. 28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, 30 because we are members of his body. 31 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” 32 This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. 33 However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband. 1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), 3 “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” 4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
5:15-17 “Precept and Proverb Driven Life” (Truth and Goodness)
15 Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
- “carefully”, “how you walk” = we must be sober in how we live our life. The Christian life is often described as a walk. In the context of parenting, the way we walk affects where our kids go. They are following us, trusting us to lead them.
- We hike once in awhile and we are mindful of the kids staying on the path. we must be careful not to stray to the side or you might fall off, or walk into poison ivy. You must stay alert; not a good time to be looking backwards while you are walking.
- Psalm 119:1–3 (ESV) — 1 Blessed are those whose way is blameless, who walk in the law of the Lord! 2 Blessed are those who keep his testimonies, who seek him with their whole heart, 3 who also do no wrong, but walk in his ways!
- Psalm 119:9–10 (ESV) — 9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word. 10 With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments!
- Psalm 119:19–20 (ESV) — 19 I am a sojourner on the earth; hide not your commandments from me! 20 My soul is consumed with longing for your rules at all times.
- Psalm 119:32 (ESV) — 32 I will run in the way of your commandments when you enlarge my heart!
- Psalm 119:35 (ESV) — 35 Lead me in the path of your commandments, for I delight in it.
- Psalm 119:44–45 (ESV) — 44 I will keep your law continually, forever and ever, 45 and I shall walk in a wide place, for I have sought your precepts.
- Psalm 119:54 (ESV) — 54 Your statutes have been my songs in the house of my sojourning.
- Psalm 119:59 (ESV) — 59 When I think on my ways, I turn my feet to your testimonies;
- Psalm 119:67 (ESV) — 67 Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep your word.
- Psalm 119:85 (ESV) — 85 The insolent have dug pitfalls for me; they do not live according to your law.
- Psalm 119:95 (ESV) — 95 The wicked lie in wait to destroy me, but I consider your testimonies.
- Psalm 119:101–102 (ESV) — 101 I hold back my feet from every evil way, in order to keep your word. 102 I do not turn aside from your rules, for you have taught me.
- Psalm 119:105 (ESV) — 105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
- Psalm 119:110 (ESV) — 110 The wicked have laid a snare for me, but I do not stray from your precepts.
- Psalm 119:117–118 (ESV) — 117 Hold me up, that I may be safe and have regard for your statutes continually! 118 You spurn all who go astray from your statutes, for their cunning is in vain.
- Psalm 119:133 (ESV) — 133 Keep steady my steps according to your promise, and let no iniquity get dominion over me.
- Psalm 119:176 (ESV) — 176 I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek your servant, for I do not forget your commandments.
- Last verse of Psalm is not triumphant, but confessional and a plea. We need grace and mercy on this journey of walking in the Lord, but walk we must. The stakes are high. Pastor Farley points out in his book how important modeling is. Do as I say not as I do doesn’t jive with kids for a reason. They will grow up jaded and bitter. They will honestly resent you when they grow older. They will have little to no respect for a hypocritical parent. They can care less how good you look on Sunday, when they see right through you at home. Your kids are watching you. You might be convinced that they aren’t watching you, but they are. Parents are still the most significant role models for kids.
- not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
- We walk according to the Lord’s precepts not just because it is true, though that alone is enough motivation, but because is “good”.
- We see the goodness of God in this text as Paul employs “wisdom” literature in brief. The contrast between wise and unwise, foolish and understanding, beckon us to God’s wisdom as being good. We need a Proverbs driven life, seeking obedience to God’s precepts, but also an abiding affirmation of the hearty goodness in God’s ways.
- We are also told to make “the best use of the time, because the days are evil”. There’s an urgency to acquire wisdom, to walk in the will of the Lord and reject our foolishness and the evil time. We must seek wisdom in Christ or perish. This is summed up quite well in the first chapter of Proverbs: (more…)