Book: Proverbs 30
“Some people curse their father and do not thank their mother. They are pure in their own eyes, but they are filthy and unwashed.”
I had the privilege of growing up in a home where both my mother and father desired to raise their children in the ways of God. I didn’t face abuse or difficulties that would turn my heart away from them. They weren’t perfect but it many ways it was easy to honour them. I recognize that has not been the experience of everyone. Your parents may have done things that hurt you, were not appropriate or you disagree with. In those cases, it may be very hard to come around to showing honour to them.
When God gave His people the Ten Commandments through Moses (Exodus 20), He included this, “Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the Lord your God is giving you.” This command is number five in the list. It is not a suggestion to His people. It is not a recommendation to His people. It is not even a conditional command based on how well parents did their job. It is however the first command with a promise attached to it.
Jesus in the New Testament confirms the importance of showing honor to parents. In Mathew 15, Jesus challenges the Pharisees and teachers over their focus on traditions that violate this. He says in verses 5-6, “But you say it is all right for people to say to their parents, ‘Sorry, I can’t help you. For I have vowed to give to God what I would have given to you.’ In this way, you say they don’t need to honor their parents. And so you cancel the word of God for the sake of your own tradition.” Excusing away the need to practically honor one’s parents is not acceptable to God. It does not matter what reason we might have to not honour our parents, it is wrong.
The Apostle Paul also speaks on this subject in his letter to “God’s holy people in Ephesus” in Ephesians 6. Once again he quotes the fifth command and confirms the importance of honouring parents.
Take a few moments and ask the Lord if you are honouring your parents the way He wants you to. For some, one or more of your parents may have already passed away and yet we still should honor them in the way we speak about them. For others, you may need to take an action step to show honour to one or both of your parents. This may not be an easy step to take, and you will need to ask God to help you, but it is the right and God honouring thing to do.