This sermon is part four of the series, “Five Words for a Godly Home.”

Each of these words come from a study of Ephesians 5 and 6, a text which instructs us on the relationships within the Christian home.
HUSBANDS are instructed to LOVE their wives.
WIVES are instructed to RESPECT their husbands.
Today, we will study the word HONOR which forms the central command for children.

EACH WORD is universal and applies to all members of the home
But the words also emphasize a key responsibility for every member of the home

Each word is the SOURCE of how we fulfill our related function in the family.
HUSBANDS lead from heart of LOVE
WIVES submit from a heart of RESPECT
CHILDREN obey from a heart of HONOR

Children Obey your Parents Because you Submit to God and Desire His blessings in your life. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.”” (Ephesians 6:1–3, ESV)

To Obey means to LISTEN.
The Greek word is hupakouo. It’s root is the word akouo, which means “to LISTEN.”
We are familiar with this word. Our English word acoustic is related to sound and hearing. What this tells us is that obedience to parents is related to listening.

The second instruction given to children is to HONOR.
To Honor means to VALUE
It is from the Greek word timao, which according to the lexicon means, “set a price on, estimate, value” (BAGD).

Timao is used in Matthew 27:9. The Pharisees set the price for Jesus betrayal at 30 pieces of silver.

Children, the Lord is tell you to VALUE your parents! They are to be treasured, no matter how much you might dislike their guidelines and rules.

Perhaps one way that we can understand what it means to value our parents is to consider the things that DE-VALUE them. Insulting them, talking negatively – even behind their back, course jesting, ridicule, or having a PITY PARTY to your friends about your parents, are all things that devalue your parents.

A. “In the Lord”
This has the impact of meaning “In the Lord’s sight”
We find a companion verse that emphasizes obedience to parents as something that pleases the Lord.  “Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.” (Colossians 3:20, ESV)
This principle is similar to one given to servants: “Bondservants, obey your earthly masters with fear and trembling, with a sincere heart, as you would Christ, not by the way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but as bondservants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart,” (Ephesians 6:5–6, ESV)

This command is NOT just when you have parents who are believers.
Christ is FIRST, so we do not obey when it violates God’s commands

B. “First commandment with a promise.”
Honor your Father and your Mother” is Command #5
First four deal with our relationship with GOD
– No other gods before me
– Not bow down to graven images
– Not take the name of the Lord in Vain
– Honor the Sabbath
Commands 5-10 deal with our relationship with OTHERS
– Honor your father and your mother
– Do not murder
– Do not commit adultery
– Do not steal
– Do not bear false witness
– Do not covet

John Chrysostom – Bishop of Constanstinople (around 400 AD):  “The other commands are prohibitions to do evil. Honor is an invitation to do good and God rewards this positive action.”

The PROMISE is for a long life. John Piper explains this phrase very well. “The point is not that every child who is obedient will live a long life. The point is that God delights in obedience and gives special blessings to families and churches and peoples where that kind of humility and respect and obedience prevail. “Fathers, Bring them up in the Discipline and instruction of the Lord”

II. Is this command ONLY for the childhood years?
NO – we honor our parents continually
1. We are part of GOD’S CREATION – our parents are the connection
2. We show our honor to God as creator
3. FATHERHOOD/ MOTHERHOOD are vital themes.
4. Earthly parents provide a basis for understanding God’s love for us

The idea of “Family” does not end when the new generation marries or leaves home.   A new family is formed when a son or daughter marries (“one flesh,” Genesis 2:24; Matt 19:6).  BUT relationships and responsibilities to your own parents continue

JESUS gave us an example clarifying that honoring of parents is something that we continue to do, even after we have established a home of our own.  He said in Mark 7:8-13, “You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.” And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition! For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ But you say, ‘If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is Corban” ’ (that is, given to God)— then you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or mother, thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.”” (Mark 7:8–13, ESV)
The SETTING of this teaching is the Pharisees accusing Jesus’ disciples of breaking tradition because they did not ceremonially wash their hands before eating.  JESUS DEMONSTRATES that the Pharisees established traditions that allowed them to violate the clear teaching of God’s Word.  Jesus’ EXAMPLE was the way that the Pharisees allowed children to avoid the financial responsibility of caring for their aging parents by claiming that their money was dedicated to God. The Temple officers would then access the wealth of the children lower, reducing the amount of money that children were required to provide for their parents in their old age. Jesus equates this disregard of responsibility on the part of adult children as a direct violation of the command to honor your father and your mother.

Honoring father and mother does not end when you turn 18, leave home, or get married. It continues throughout your entire life!

A. Honor the new authority structure that is formed when your son/daughter marry.

B. Wait until you are asked before giving advice

C. Entrust them to the Lord.

D. Honor their parenting decisions.
a. Grandchildren must understand that the authority they are to obey is their parents
b. When you discipline or correct grandchildren, explain that God wants them to honor their mother and father.

A. Listen to your parents – it will improve your life!
B. VALUE your parents – don’t talk negatively or build up negative emotions.
C. Seek the wisdom of your parents.
“My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.” (Proverbs 2:1–5)

Many years ago, Al Capone virtually owned Chicago. He wasn’t famous for anything heroic. He was notorious for filling Chicago with everything evil. How did he keep himself out of jail? That is where his lawyer came into play. Big Al’s lawyer was nicknamed “Easy Eddie.” He was excellent at keeping his boss out of jail and Al Capone paid him well. Eddie lived the high life and cared little for what happened around him. He only soft spot was his son. He gave his son everything. He tried to teach him right from wrong.
He wanted his son to better than him. Yet, with all his wealth and influence there was two things he could not pass on to his son: a good name and a good example. One day, Easy Eddie reached a difficult decision. He wanted to rectify wrongs. He decided he would tell the truth about Al “Scareface” Capone, clean up his tarnished name and offer his son a semblance of integrity. To testify against the Mob would cost him a great price, but he testified.
Within a year Easy Eddie’s life ended in a blaze of gunfire. In his eyes he gave his son the greatest gift he had to offer and it cost him his life.
World War II produced many heroes. One such was Commander Butch O’Hare. He was a fighter pilot assigned to the aircraft carrier Lexington in the South Pacific. One day his entire squadron was sent out on a mission. After being airborne, Butch saw that his fuel gauge was low and knew someone had forgotten to top it off. He would not have enough fuel to complete the mission, and was commanded to return, but on his way back he saw a squadron of Japanese headed for the Americans.
The fighters were gone and the fleet was all but defenseless. He couldn’t get help in time. He had to divert the enemy from the American fleet. He dove into the formation of Japanese planes. Wing-mounted 50 calibers blazed as he charged in. he fired until he was empty and the began clipping wings with his own plane. The Japanese took off in a different direction and Butch O’Hare limped back to his carrier. Upon arrival he reported in and film from the gun camera showed the story. He had destroyed five enemy aircraft. This took place on Feb. 20, 1942 and for that action Butch became the first Naval Ace of WW II, and was awarded a congressional medal of honor. A year latter at age 29, Butch was killed in action. His home town would not allow his memory to fade, and today, O’Hare Airport in Chicago is named in his tribute.
And by the way, Butch O’Hare was the son of Easy Eddie. I just thought you ought to know the influence of a father.
Told by Jeffery Dillenger