If you want to raise stubborn, unfaithful and rebellious kids, there are a few things you absolutely must do. Keep reading to find out!
I know, I know. You don’t actually want to raise stubborn, rebellious kids, do you? Well I have some good news for you. In this post, we’re going to look at what the Bible says about how to raise rebellious kids, and what we can do to avoid it.
WELCOME TO THE FAMILY BIBLE CONNECTION – EPISODE 001
THE BIG “WHY”
The purpose of The Family Bible Connection is to help you create a Christ-centered culture in your home. But why?
Why is it important to have a family culture that revolves around Jesus?
Why should I read the Bible with my kids?
Why should we spend time in God’s Word together as a family?
What does the Bible say about teaching our children?
How do I make sure that my children do NOT turn out to be stubborn, unfaithful, rebellious kids?
PSALM 78:4-8 (NLT)
The theme verse for the Family Bible Connection is taken from Psalm 78. It says this:
4 We will not hide these truths from our children; we will tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of the Lord, about his power and his mighty wonders.
5 For he issued his laws to Jacob; he gave his instructions to Israel. He commanded our ancestors to teach them to their children,
6 so the next generation might know them—even the children not yet born—and they in turn will teach their own children.
7 So each generation should set its hope anew on God, not forgetting his glorious miracles and obeying his commands.
8 Then they will not be like their ancestors—stubborn, rebellious, and unfaithful, refusing to give their hearts to God.
THE NEXT GENERATION
According to this passage, we have a responsibility to teach the “next generation.” Several times throughout the passage, the Psalmist mentions the “next generation.” Verse 4 says, “We will tell the next generation.”
But what is it that we will tell them? What do we want to pass on to our children? What do we want to make sure they don’t miss?
Verses 4-5 give us four things that we should tell the next generation. Tell them:
- About the glorious deeds of the Lord
- About His power
- About His mighty wonders
- About His laws and instructions
I don’t know about you, but I want my children to know about God’s glorious deeds, his power and his mighty wonders! I want my kids to know and obey God’s laws and instructions for them.
When was the last time you told your kids about something amazing that God has done for you?
Here’s the answer to our question “WHY?” Why do we want to tell the next generation about God’s glorious deeds and power and wonders? Why should we tell them about God’s laws and instructions?
Verse 7 gives us three reasons. So that each generation should:
1. Set its hope anew on God.
As our children learn to place their hope in Jesus, we want them to take ownership of their faith, not just rely on the faith of their parents. We want them to have “new” faith that they can call their own.
2. Not forget His glorious miracles
Don’t forget! When we remember what God has done, we are reminded of God’s faithfulness.
3. Obey His commands
God has established laws and guidelines for us to follow, not because He wants to kill our joy, but because he wants to fill us with more joy than we imagined possible!
ANOTHER “SO THAT…”
Verse 8 gives us another “so that,” another reason we should tell the next generation about God.
So that… they won’t be like their ancestors. (The Psalmist is referring to the ancestors of the Israelites).
And what were their ancestors like? They were:
And they refused to give their hearts to God.
HOW TO RAISE STUBBORN, UNFAITHFUL, AND REBELLIOUS KIDS
I promised to tell you how to raise stubborn, unfaithful and rebellious kids, right? Are you ready? Here are four easy steps for you to follow: Hide the Truth, Don’t Tell, Don’t Teach, and Don’t Hope. Got it? Okay, good.
1. Hide the Truth
If you want to raise rebellious kids, then hide the truth of God’s word from them! Don’t ever take your kids to church with you, don’t talk about ways your kids can honor God, and by all means, do not read the Bible together as a family.
2. Don’t Tell
If you want to raise stubborn, unfaithful, rebellious kids, then don’t tell them about God’s glorious deeds, His power, or His mighty wonders!
3. Don’t Teach
For goodness sake, don’t teach your kids to obey God’s commands. God doesn’t actually want us to obey Him, does He? He doesn’t really know what’s best for us anyway.
4. Don’t Hope
Above all else, make sure your kids do not put their hope in God. They can put their hope in anything else they want… money, toys, popularity, friends, success… just NOT God.
BUT, BUT, BUT…
Did you notice the hint of sarcasm in my voice in that last paragraph? I’m sure you did. Obviously, none of us want our kids to grow up to be stubborn, unfaithful and rebellious.
You might be feeling worried. Am I doing this right? What if I mess up? What if I don’t teach them all the right things? I don’t know the Bible well enough to teach my kids! I’m not the right person for this job!
Guess what. You absolutely ARE the right person for this job of parenting your sweet little ones, or God would NOT have given you the job in the first place! While our hope and prayer is that our children will learn to know the Bible, grow in their love for God and others, and go into the world as passionate followers of Jesus, ultimately, it is God who must do the work in the minds and hearts of our children.
We are simply tools in his hands. With the grace and power of God, our job is to be faithful to what He has called us to do. Our responsibility is to be faithful in teaching the Truth of God’s Word to our children, but it is God’s job to change their hearts.
HEARTS TO GOD
The last part of Psalm 78 says that the Israelites refused to give their hearts to God. What a sad, sad verse! I want more than anything for my children to give their whole hearts to God. But what does that look like? I believe there are several phases that take place when our children give their hearts to God.
Phase 1: Salvation
First, we must understand that God is holy and perfect. Our sin separates us from having a perfect friendship with God. Because of our sin, we deserve to spend eternity separated from God.
But because God loved us with an everlasting, unbreakable love, He sent his Son Jesus to die on the cross and take the punishment that we were supposed to get. Jesus was punished instead of us. God brought Jesus back to life so that we too can have life with God that lasts forever.
When we confess our sin to God and put our hope in him, God takes away our sin and gives us new life.
Phase 2: Transformation
The second phase of giving our hearts to God involves transformation. We don’t want our kids to just say a prayer and then never give God a second thought for the rest of their lives.
We want our children to KNOW the Bible, to GROW in their love for God and others, and to GO into the world as passionate followers of Jesus.
But don’t worry. God will be faithful to complete the work of transformation in our children.
Philippians 1:6 (NLT) says this:
“And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”
I’d like to challenge and encourage you today to take some time with your kids and talk to them about some of the glorious things God has done, both in the Bible, and specifically for your family. Ask your kids if they know of ways that God showed his power throughout the Old Testament. Ask them if they remember any of the mighty wonders Jesus performed in the New Testament.
As you remember and reflect on God’s glorious deeds, power and mighty wonders, remind your children about God’s faithfulness. He never changes and he can and will demonstrate his power in whatever may be happening in their lives today.
THE FAMILY BIBLE CONNECTION PODCAST
You want your kids to KNOW the Bible and GROW in their love for God & others. You want to prepare your kids to GO into the world as passionate followers of Jesus.
Through interviews, instruction and inspiration, The Family Bible Connection will help you connect with your kids and create a Christ-centered culture in your home.
Ultimately, I want to help you connect with your kids so that you can help them connect with Jesus.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Each week, I will have a new podcast episode and blog post that will point towards our end goal:
Connecting your kids with Jesus and creating a Christ-centered culture in your home.
Each episode / post will look a little bit different. Sometimes I will have a guest on the show to talk with us about practical ways to create Christ-centered connections with your kids. A few of the guests I have lined up include children’s book authors, Bible teachers, pastors, and parents just like you!
In some episodes I’ll be talking about a particular topic that relates to creating a Christ-centered culture in your home. Some of the upcoming topics will include:
- How to engage your kids in family devotions
- How to memorize scripture with your kids
- How to teach your kids about contentment
In addition to instruction and interviews, once a month we will review a children’s storybook bible, a family devotional book, or a faith-based picture book. I just happen to have quite a few on my shelf!
MISSION OF MOTHERHOOD
I’d like to end with a quote from Sally Clarkson’s book, Mission of Motherhood:
“When we face the Lord at the end of our lives, God will ask us: ‘What did you do with those precious eternal beings that I entrusted into your hands? Did you sacrifice your own life to give them My life? Did you pass on My purposes? Did you do the work in your children that will result in praise to My name throughout all of eternity?’ Let us hope that we may all answer yes, and that we may hear, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant!”
“God you have entrusted me with these precious children. I want to be faithful in raising them to Know your Word, to Grow to love you and the people around them, and to Go into the world as passionate followers of Jesus. Please give me wisdom and strength to fulfill the mission that you have given me. Help me to find creative ways to teach my kids about your glorious works, your power, and your mighty wonders. I ask that my kids would put their hope in you and give their hearts to you. Amen.”
Do you need some fresh inspiration to help your kids engage with family Bible times? My free ebook, “How to Engage Your Kids in Family Devotions” is a practical resource to help you get started. Click the image or the link to download this free resource.