As a mother desperate to instruct her children according to the Word of God, I am particularly challenged by these following scriptures:
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. My son, hear the instruction of your father, And do not forsake the law of your mother; For they will be a graceful ornament on your head, and chains about your neck” Proverbs 1: 7-9
This Scripture means that the Lord expects us, parents, to teach our children according to His Word and by doing so, instill the fear of the Lord into them. Many times while I tried to educate my children according to my own understanding, it seemed to have worked for a while but it turned out to be an illusion. And afterwards I realised how much I have miserably failed since what comes from our flesh cannot give spiritual fruits. Without biblical wisdom we are unable to fulfil the responsibility and duty that the Lord gave to us, that is instructing our children according to His Word and bring them to Him.
Biblical wisdom to educate our children how to fear and know God
From a human point of view, wisdom is the ability to use our “so-called” common sense to act in particular situation. It is also the aptitude to judge what is true and right and the sagacity to devise a plan or course of action. You are also qualified as “wise” when you show great skills or shrewdness. However, the Bible tells us that wisdom – σοφία, (sophia) in Greek, חׇכְמָה (khok-maw’) in Hebrew – is produced within us when we fear the Lord. It calls us to discern with prudence what is right according to the Word and to obey the Lord’s commandments and instructions.
Our Father in Heaven is taking me by His hand on His way, so I am doing the same with my children to bring them to Christ “Follow me as I follow Christ”. The wise woman builds her house but the foolish one destroys it (Proverbs 14:1). What is building a house: raising a family according to God’s principles so as to serve Him. Therefore, educating and implanting the fear of the Lord into our children is not possible without biblical wisdom. Wisdom that God empowers us with, parents, will instruct our children to “grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (3 Peter 3: 18).
Scriptures of Proverbs tell that the teaching of wisdom gives visible fruits, spiritual good fruits “graceful ornament” and “ornament of grace”. These descriptions – found several times in Proverbs – remind me of the precious stones that adorn the wall of the New Jerusalem in the book of Revelation (Revelation 21:19). Thus wisdom according to our God makes us spiritually beautiful and makes us find favour in the sight of our Lord Jesus Christ. Wisdom according to the Lord thus leads to eternal life as we read in verses 34-36 in Proverbs 8:
“Blessed is the man who listens to me, Watching daily at my gates, Waiting at the posts of my doors. For whoever finds me finds life, And obtains favor from the Lord; But he who sins against me wrongs his own soul; All those who hate me love death.”
The same idea is expressed in Proverbs 4: 20-22.
Biblical wisdom to lead our children to salvation
Thus only wisdom that instigates the fear of the Lord has got a priceless and eternal value that lead to salvation into the New Jerusalem in Heaven! Neither gold, silver nor pearls have any value for our Lord but wisdom. The numerous occurrences of this statement throughout the chapters of the book of Proverbs (Proverbs. 3: 13-15; 8: 8-10, 19; 16:16; 23:23) is the proof that this is an eternal truth: Wisdom is God Himself! Building our households with our own strength accounts for nothing and worse, it is doomed to fail as “unless the Lord builds the house, They labor in vain who build it” (Psalm 127: 1a) Raising our children to know and fear the Lord mean that we allow God Himself to build our homes.
This is a message to encourage parents, and mothers in particular, who are exhausting themselves so as to give a good education to their children. This can cause a lot of anxiety and frustration and can even lead us astray since it would be with on our own strength. This “good education” will not last as it will be sown into the flesh. Nothing we can do, say, nor accomplish ourselves shall “convert” our children to Christ and make them worthy of the Kingdom of heaven. Otherwise it would mean that our own efforts, “good works”, would make us worthy of the Kingdom and there would thus be no use for the Holy Spirit. Our mission as parents is like that of John the Baptist: prepare the way for the Holy Spirit so as to make our children ready when He shall come and visit them.
“Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22: 6
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3: 5-7
In conclusion let us search for wisdom as a treasure (Proverbs 2:4) and look at Jesus Founder and Perfecter of our faith to guide us in giving a good education in our God’ sight, a spiritual one, that shall teach our children to fear and know the Lord (Proverbs 9:10). Let us seek God – Wisdom – and obey His commands so that our children shall have a good ground prepared for the Holy Spirit. The fear of the Lord shall instruct them to obey and honour their parents and become spiritually wise.
This wisdom shall lead them into eternal life, to Lord Jesus Christ!
“Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the Rock (emphasis mine, Jesus Christ our ROCK !)” Matthew 7: 24- 25