Whenever Christians discuss parenting, everyone knows they will immediately refer to a couple of the most well known verses that directly address parenting. In fact, many Christians have heard them so many times, they automatically tune out when they start hearing them. There are some other verses, however, that while on the surface address other issues, can be extremely helpful for parents. Here are five of my favorites.
- Matthew 5:37 “Say only “yes” if you mean “yes” and “no” if you mean “no”. Anything else is from the evil one.” Yes, this verse is about keeping promises and being trustworthy, but it applies to our children and parenting them as well. Wishy washy parenting doesn’t feel safe to children. Failing to keep our promises to them wounds them in ways that can be hard to heal. Obeying the command in this verse will make your parenting more effective (because it is consistent) and improve the trust your children have in you (and your relationship as a result).
- Philippians 2:3 “In whatever you do, don’t let selfishness or pride be your guide. Be humble and honor others more than yourselves.” It’s so easy to accidentally slip into selfish parenting. We can even get really good at hiding our selfishness behind the guise of great parenting (If I am happy, my children will be happy.). We can also make parenting decisions based more on what we think makes us look good to others than what is actually in the best interest of our children. Great Christian parenting is neither selfish nor prideful.
- Philippians 4:8 “Brothers and sisters, continue to think about what is good and worthy of praise. Think about what is true and honorable and right and beautiful and respected.” Nothing good comes from allowing yourself and your children to be constantly surrounded and engaging with things that are dark, depressing, violent, etc. Make this verse the motto for your home – everyone will benefit.
- Matthew 28:19-20 “So go and make followers of all people in the world. Baptize them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach them to obey everything that I have told to you.” Did you realize Jesus gave all Christians the command to help others become Christians? Notice something interesting though? The part about teaching them to obey all things is after the command to baptize them! Many Christian parents believe their job is done as soon as their children come out of the baptism waters. The reality is that the important teaching about how to live the Christian life continues long after baptism. Your job of coaching your kids on living the Christian life never truly ends (although it changes a bit as they become adults).
- 1 Kings 1:6 ”…Adonijah was a very handsome man. King David never corrected his son Adonijah and he never made him explain his actions. Adonijah became very proud…” There are a number cautionary parenting stories in the Bible, but this is one of the few that draws a very strong line between poor parenting and the negative consequences it creates for the child, the parent and everyone around them.
Paying attention to these verses can automatically improve your parenting. Do you have other favorite verses that help your parenting, but aren’t one of the favorite parenting verses? We would love for you to go to our Facebook page and share them with our community!