Order in the Home: How to Keep Your Family On Track

Order in the Home: How to Keep Your Family On Track

Pastor Don Carpenter / General

2018 Doers of the Word / Obedience; Leadership; Family: Fathers / Colossians 3:20–21; Ephesians 6:1–2


When I was a boy, I received an electric train set for Christmas.  It came with tracks, an engine, coal car, box cars, and a caboose.  All of this was powered by a transformer that had a gradual switch that would increase the speed of the train.  Dad helped me assemble the tracks and nail them to a particle board so I had a solid place to run my new toy.  I found that if I backed the engine up carefully, I could hook other cars and if I went forward I would take the whole train together.  One thing I liked to do is run the train faster and faster.  Once and a while, I would bump the board and cause one of the sets of wheels on one of the cars to jump the tracks.  The car would still be on, but not all the wheels would be lined up correctly.  The train would labor and spark as it tried to pull the cockeyed car along the track.  The Train soon would heat up and quit working for a while.  You see, if all the wheels were not aligned properly, the entire train was hindered.

As we continue to explore what the Bible teaches about being doers of the word, specifically how to live with the truth that we have been made alive in Jesus, we are studying our personal relationships.  We have discovered that to have the mind of Christ is to have an others -centered Christlike love for each other.  Last week we saw that The wife and the husband have a symbiotic relationship depending upon mutual surrender.  She surrenders to submit to him, and he surrenders to selflessly surrender to love her unconditionally, protecting, guiding and providing for her as Christ does the church.

A concept that is often difficult to embrace within the study of interpersonal relationships is the concept of personal boundaries.  We use phrases like “he made me to feel…”

“She is doing ___________________ so I am not able to do _________”

Our behavior toward others becomes dependent upon their behavior toward us.  This is not the Bible way.  Our behavior toward others is a direct response of obedience to God’s commandments, not a reflexive quid pro quo like the world does.

Last week we saw that wives are to submit even when husbands are boneheads.  It is that submission that God will use to expose that boneheadery and motivate the husband to repent and go in a different direction.  We also saw that husbands are to love and to not grow bitter with unforgiveness when the wife does not submit… or when she reacts with passive aggressive tactics.  We saw that since the husband is to love the wife like Christ loved the church, that authority he has over her is not to be used for personal gratification, but for the growth, prosperity, and protection of his wife.

Colossians 3:20–21 

Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord. Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.


Today we move onto another two way relationship, the relationship of children to parents and fathers to children.  We will see that each party has a specific function.  One can only accomplish their role, but cannot make compliance to that God given role conditional upon perceived compliance from the other.  In other words, a child is always to obey even if they think that father is provoking them and the father is to avoid provoking the child.  Each to mow their own lawn and control their own boundaries.  If parents and children simply obey the commands of scripture then the family train will remain on track.

Children Must Remain on Track

  • Obey

Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary (Eleventh Edition) Obey

1:      to follow the commands or guidance of
2:      to conform to or comply with

Proverbs 30:17 

The eye that mocketh at his father,

And despiseth to obey his mother,

The ravens of the valley shall pick it out,

And the young eagles shall eat it.

  • Honor

Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words Honor

  1. time (????, 5092), primarily “a valuing,” hence, objectively, (a) “a price paid or received,”

Exodus 20:12 

Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

Deuteronomy 5:16 

Honour thy father and thy mother, as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

So then the responsibility of the child still residing unter the authority, provision, and protection of the home is to unconditionally obey and honor.  This obedience should be

  • From the heart – not mere external compliance limited to what can be seen and enforced.
  • With a view of learning from the parents
  • Sweet submission to keep the wheels on track
  • Complete
  • Follow the spirit of the command not just the letter.
  • Realize that in doing so you honor God even if you think the parent may not be fair.
  • Let God deal with any perceived injustice. That is not your lawn to mow.

Fathers Must Remain on Track

Colossians 3:21 

Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.

  • Do not Provoke

A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 3rd ed. ???????

??????? 1 aor. ???????; aor. pass. ptc. ?????????? 2 Macc 14:27; fut. pass. 3 sg. ????????????? Da 11:10, 25 (s. ????; Hom. et al.; Epict., Ench. 20; LXX; TestSol 4:6; 8:5 PC; TestDan 4:4) to cause someone to react in a way that suggests acceptance of a challenge, arouse, provoke mostly in bad sense irritate, embitter,

  • Do not Discourage

A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 3rd ed. ??????

?????? 1 aor. 3 sg. ???????? LXX (since Aeschyl., Thu. 5, 91, 1; PAmh 37, 7; 10 [II B.C.]; PGiss 79 III, 11; LXX, Philo; Jos., Bell. 6, 94, Ant. 9, 87; Just., D. 107, 3) to become disheartened to the extent of losing motivation, be discouraged, lose heart, become dispirited

The Greek word literally means to take away their heat… or passion… to at best encourage apathy and at worst stir up resentment and bitterness.

  • Be a good steward of your authority over your family
  • Teach.

Deuteronomy 6:6–7 

And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

  • Train with consequence both negative and positive.

Proverbs 22:6 

Train up a child in the way he should go:

And when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Hebrews 12:7

If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?

Galatians 6:7–8

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.




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