Proverbs 30:11 There is a generation that curses their father, and does not bless their mother (AKJV)
Some men of God encourage their followers to dishonour their parents, through teachings that de-emphasise the honour and reverence due to parents, as well as the responsibilities children have towards their parents. Also, some ministers make some people believe their parents are witches and wizards working against their prosperity, and therefore should be kept at bay, or in some cases not allowed to live! How should believers in Christ treat their parents? What does the Bible teach about responsibility to one’s parents? We shall revert to Scripture to answer these pertinent questions.
Parents play the most important role in the lives of children, next to God only. As partners with God in creation, parents are God’s instruments of creation in bringing forth children into the world, as well as the most trusted agents in nurturing them to maturity. It is the responsibility of parents to bring up their children in the ways of God, and to guide them in the path of righteousness. It is for this reason that God commands children to obey and honour their parents in all things. The Bible teaches absolute submission of children to parents and unquestioned obedience to parental authority.
Colossians 3:20 Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord (NIV).
Deuteronomy 5:16 Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God commanded you, that your days may be long, and that it may go well with you in the land that the LORD your God is giving you (ESV).
To live long on earth and do well in life, we are enjoined to honour our parents. Disobedience to parental authority carries grave consequences in Scripture. To dishonour one’s parents or curse them was a death penalty offence in the Old Testament! To disobey one’s parents or be stubborn and rebellious against them was also punishable by death under the Law.
Leviticus 20:9 For anyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death; he has cursed his father or his mother; his blood is upon him (ESV).
Deuteronomy 21:18 If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother, and, though they discipline him, will not listen to them,
Deuteronomy 21:19 then his father and his mother shall take hold of him and bring him out to the elders of his city at the gate of the place where he lives,
Deuteronomy 21:20 and they shall say to the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious; he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton and a drunkard.
Deuteronomy 21:21 Then all the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones. So you shall purge the evil from your midst, and all Israel shall hear, and fear (ESV).
Yes! That’s how serious it is in the sight of God to dishonour one’s parents! Our parents are literally the god we see. Their role in our creation (as God’s partners and instruments of our creation), and their responsibilities over us as caretakers to care, protect, nurture, train, direct and guide us in life, make them venerable figures to be revered and honoured for life. To resist them is to resist God. To rebel against them is to rebel against God. To disobey them is to disobey God. Parents are God’s delegated authority over children to ensure perpetuation of the species in the ways of God! Parents are the first teachers and pastors a child gets to have, and they remain teachers and guides throughout their lives!
Proverbs 1:8 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction, and forsake not your mother’s teaching,
Proverbs 1:9 for they are a graceful garland for your head and pendants for your neck.
Proverbs 4:1 Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction, and be attentive, that you may gain insight,
Proverbs 4:2 for I give you good precepts; do not forsake my teaching.
Proverbs 4:3 When I was a son with my father, tender, the only one in the sight of my mother,
Proverbs 4:4 he taught me and said to me, Let your heart hold fast my words; keep my commandments, and live.
Proverbs 4:10 Hear, my son, and accept my words, that the years of your life may be many.
Proverbs 4:20 My son, be attentive to my words; incline your ear to my sayings.
Proverbs 4:21 Let them not escape from your sight; keep them within your heart.
Proverbs 4:22 For they are life to those who find them, and healing to all their flesh.
Proverbs 15:5 A fool despises his father’s instruction, but whoever heeds reproof is prudent (ESV).
Submission of children to parental authority is taught everywhere in Scripture. The stability of the family structure is hinged on children deferring to parents and respecting and honouring them. Even Jesus as a child subjected himself to his earthly parents and honoured them. He is our example in all things and we are to follow his footsteps as our role model.
Luke 2:48 And when his parents saw him, they were astonished. And his mother said to him, Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been searching for you in great distress.
Luke 2:49 And he said to them, Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?
Luke 2:50 And they did not understand the saying that he spoke to them.
Luke 2:51 And he went down with them and came to Nazareth and was submissive to them. And his mother treasured up all these things in her heart (NIV).
Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do.
Ephesians 6:2 “Honor your father and mother.” This is the first of the Ten Commandments that ends with a promise.
Ephesians 6:3 And this is the promise: If you honor your father and mother, “you will live a long life, full of blessing.” (NLT).
Jesus not only submitted to his parents as a child, he also honoured, respected and took care of them as an adult. At the wedding feast in Cana of Galilee for instance, he honoured his mother’s request to miraculously provide wine for the people when they ran out of wine. It wasn’t yet time for Jesus to manifest himself in that manner, but because of the respect he had for his mother, he honoured her by granting her request and performing the first miracle of his ministry.
John 2:1 On the third day there was a wedding at Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there.
John 2:2 Jesus also was invited to the wedding with his disciples.
John 2:3 When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to him, They have no wine.
John 2:4 And Jesus said to her, Woman, what does this have to do with me? My hour has not yet come.
John 2:5 His mother said to the servants, Do whatever he tells you.
John 2:6 Now there were six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons.
John 2:7 Jesus said to the servants, Fill the jars with water. And they filled them up to the brim.
John 2:8 And he said to them, Now draw some out and take it to the master of the feast. So they took it.
John 2:9 When the master of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom
John 2:10 and said to him, Everyone serves the good wine first, and when people have drunk freely, then the poor wine. But you have kept the good wine until now.
John 2:11 This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory. And his disciples believed in him (ESV).
Even while dying on the cross, Jesus still had the presence of mind to make plans for the upkeep and care of his mother. He was so concerned about his mother and her welfare that he ignored his pains and agony, and summoned his last ounce of strength to give instructions to one of his disciples to take Mary under his charge and ensure she was well taken care of! What an example the Lord set for us, on how to take care of our parents!
St. John 19:25 Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene.
St. John 19:26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,”
St. John 19:27 and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home (NIV).
During his ministry, Jesus reserved one of his most stinging rebukes for hypocritical religious leaders who sought to divert people’s attention away from their parents. The Pharisees had contrived to undermine God’s law that required children to honour and take care of their parents. They rather made laws that relieved people of the responsibility to take care of their parents, as long as whatever gifts people would have given to their parents were brought to the church instead! This devilish business of bewitching gullible followers to neglect their parents and focus their love and attention on pastors instead didn’t start today! It’s been around for some time, and it’s one of the hallmarks of wolves masquerading as shepherds in the house of God!
St. Matthew 15:1 Some Pharisees and teachers of religious law now arrived from Jerusalem to interview Jesus.
St. Matthew 15:2 “Why do your disciples disobey our age-old traditions?” they demanded. “They ignore our tradition of ceremonial hand washing before they eat.”
St. Matthew 15:3 Jesus replied, ” And why do you, by your traditions, violate the direct commandments of God?
St. Matthew 15:4 For instance, God says, ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and ‘Anyone who speaks evil of father or mother must be put to death.’
St. Matthew 15:5 But you say, ‘You don’t need to honor your parents by caring for their needs if you give the money to God instead.’
St. Matthew 15:6 And so, by your own tradition, you nullify the direct commandment of God.
St. Matthew 15:7 You hypocrites! Isaiah was prophesying about you when he said,
St. Matthew 15:8 ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far away.
St. Matthew 15:9 Their worship is a farce, for they replace God’s commands with their own man-made teachings.’ ” (NLT).
Christians are to first demonstrate their piety at home, by taking care of their households, including their parents. Charity should begin at home! The practice of religion should start with one’s family. To ignore your parents and other members of your household while taking care of pastors and people outside is not only hypocritical madness, it amounts to denying the faith! Such a person is worse than an infidel! That’s what the Bible says!
1 Timothy 5:3 The church should care for any widow who has no one else to care for her.
1 Timothy 5:4 But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God very much.
1 Timothy 5:8 But those who won’t care for their own relatives, especially those living in the same household, have denied what we believe. Such people are worse than unbelievers (NLT).
One of the duties of a true servant of God is to reconcile families, to seek to bring parents and children together, and not put them asunder. The ministry we have as Christians is a ministry of reconciliation, to reconcile people to God and to one another. To turn the hearts of children to their parents and vice versa, is a ministry of the Holy Spirit. Any minister who schemes to pitch children against their parents is satanic and anti-Christ! Flee from such a pastor!
Malachi 4:5 “See, I will send the prophet Elijah to you before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes.
Malachi 4:6 He will turn the hearts of the parents to their children, and the hearts of the children to their parents; or else I will come and strike the land with total destruction.” (NIV).
2 Corinthians 5:17 What this means is that those who become Christians become new persons. They are not the same anymore, for the old life is gone. A new life has begun!
2 Corinthians 5:18 All this newness of life is from God, who brought us back to himself through what Christ did. And God has given us the task of reconciling people to him.
2 Corinthians 5:19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. This is the wonderful message he has given us to tell others.
2 Corinthians 5:20 We are Christ’s ambassadors, and God is using us to speak to you. We urge you, as though Christ himself were here pleading with you, “Be reconciled to God!” (NLT).
Some pastors and prophets teach their followers to see their parents as witches and wizards who are working to subvert their destinies. Now, even if the people that gave birth to you are witches or wizards, the fact that such wizards or witches did not abort you, did not kill you as a vulnerable child, suffered to provide for you, trained you and saw you through school to the stage you are presently, should make you honour and respect them! They may have used their witchcraft for evil towards others, but certainly not towards you! How can you now repay their good towards you with evil in their weak and vulnerable old age? Even if your parents are witches and wizards who did you evil, the Bible forbids you to repay their evil with evil. As a Christian, you’re to forgive those who hurt you and bless those that curse you and wish you evil. You’re to overcome evil with good!
Matthew 5:44 But I say to you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which spitefully use you, and persecute you;
Matthew 5:45 That you may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust (AKJV).
Romans 12:17 Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.
Romans 12:18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.
Romans 12:19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.
Romans 12:20 To the contrary, if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.
Romans 12:21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good (ESV).
If you have parents who are genuine witches and wizards, don’t reject them. Don’t cast them out. Pray for their salvation and deliverance. Stand in the gap for them. Show them love. Don’t you ever dishonour them! They are still your parents, no matter their level of enslavement by Satan. Jesus has the power to deliver them from the spirit of witchcraft and set them free from the bondage of Satan. Don’t give up on them and don’t abandon them! Your parents are your flesh and blood and the instruments of your creation!
Finally, let me remind us that parental blessings and curses are real and effective! God has empowered parents with the authority to bless and curse their children, and God takes care to ensure such blessings and curses take effect! Heaven honours the prayers and cries of parents, as well as their benedictions and curses towards rebellious children! Examples of parental curses for dishonouring parents abound in Scripture. Let’s take heed and beware! Honour and treat your parents well so that they will bless you, and not curse you!
Genesis 9:20 After the Flood, Noah became a farmer and planted a vineyard.
Genesis 9:21 One day he became drunk on some wine he had made and lay naked in his tent.
Genesis 9:22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw that his father was naked and went outside and told his brothers.
Genesis 9:23 Shem and Japheth took a robe, held it over their shoulders, walked backward into the tent, and covered their father’s naked body. As they did this, they looked the other way so they wouldn’t see him naked.
Genesis 9:24 When Noah woke up from his drunken stupor, he learned what Ham, his youngest son, had done.
Genesis 9:25 Then he cursed the descendants of Canaan, the son of Ham: “A curse on the Canaanites! May they be the lowest of servants to the descendants of Shem and Japheth.”
Genesis 9:26 Then Noah said, “May Shem be blessed by the Lord my God; and may Canaan be his servant.
Genesis 9:27 May God enlarge the territory of Japheth, and may he share the prosperity of Shem; and let Canaan be his servant.” (NLT).
Genesis 49:1 Then Jacob called together all his sons and said, “Gather around me, and I will tell you what is going to happen to you in the days to come.
Genesis 49:2 “Come and listen, O sons of Jacob; listen to Israel, your father.
Genesis 49:3 “Reuben, you are my oldest son, the child of my vigorous youth. You are first on the list in rank and honor.
Genesis 49:4 But you are as unruly as the waves of the sea, and you will be first no longer. For you slept with one of my wives; you dishonored me in my own bed (NLT).
In conclusion, God has commanded that children obey and honour their parents, for that is well pleasing to him. It is a commandment that has the promise of long life and prosperity attached to it. To be disobedient to parents or rebel against them is a grievous sin in the sight of God. Dishonouring one’s parents attracts curses and punishment from God. Jesus showed us an excellent example by being submissive to his earthly parents as a child, and by honouring and taking care of them as an adult. Christians should demonstrate piety at home by taking care of their households, including their parents. Anyone who fails to take care of their parents is worse than an infidel. To give what is meant for one’s parents to the church or to a pastor is violating God’s command. A true servant of God aims to reconcile children with their parents. Any pastor or prophet who sows seeds of discord between parents and their children with the aim of turning children against their parents is evil and satanic. Let’s be careful to take good care of our parents so that we will be blessed by God. Let’s avoid dishonouring our parents to avoid curses, for parents have the powers to bless as well curse their children.