Sermon:  God's Rules

Summary:  God's design for mutual submission in the church extends to the 
home.  This means children are to obey and honor their parents, which will 
bring a blessing to their life.  While obedience is directed more at children, 
honor is something that still applies to adult children as well.

Know:  IF you follow God's plan in the home as a child, it will contribute to a life l
ived will with prosperity

Feel:  A sense of duty to obey parents, even though it may seem unreasonable, 
and a sense of duty to make it a life long duty to honor parents.

Do:  Reflect on today's attitudes toward parents and the reasons for those attitudes, 
and on your personal attitude toward parents.  List personal hindrances to honor 
and obedience, and ways to over come them and increase in honor to parents.

Text:  Eph 6:1-3

Scripture Reading:  Proverbs 1:8-9

1.  What do you think of the word, "rules?"  Negative connotation for some
	a.  Why are you able to sit in your pew?  The "rule" or "law" of gravity
	b.  We live in a universe of rules and laws (Psalm 104:5-9)
		- God's rules are why you are on dry land
		- God's rules are why we have day and night
		- God's rules are why it rains and stops raining
	c.  If defy the laws of nature, results can be disastrous
	d.  But there are more than rules for just nature
2.  God has designed the world with relational and moral rules
	a.  Rules/design for us as a body, for wives and husbands
	b.  Also for children and parents
	c.  If you defy these rules, the results can be disastrous
	d.  Your world will become flooded with disaster
3.  Eph 6:1-4
	a.  Context:  God's plan or design, redeemed to carry out his purpose
	b. It involves recognizing God's "design"
		- Just as there is a design when created the world…	
		- Just as there is a design when created the church…
		- Just as there is a design when created marriage…
		- There is also a design for the family
	c.  It is very straightforward, but very powerful
	d.  How you choose to respond can affect you for the rest of your life

Instructions for Children:

I.  Obey Your Parents in the Lord
	A.  Identify who we are talking about
		1.  Who are the "children"
			a.  Not an infant, there are other Greek words for infant
			b.  This applies to all offspring, child, preteen, teen
		2.  Who are the parents?
			a.  Talking about the one who is raising you
			b.  "step-parent," "foster parent," "grand-parent" "adopted-
     			     parent," etc.
			c.  Scripture has no exceptions for step-parents, grand-
     			     parents, etc. If they are raising you, this applies
			d.  Whatever it is, still your parent, and this still applies
	B.  Obey your parents in the Lord
		1.  "In the Lord" similar to 5:21-22 - "in the fear of Christ"
			a.  Obedient to parents is obedience to the Lord
			b.  Disobedient to parents is disobedience to the Lord
		2.  What does "obey" mean? (It is a stronger word than submit)
			a.  Dictionary:  "To do the bidding of; be obedient to, execute 
     			    as a command, act in accordance with, be guided by
			b.   Syn: Comply, defer, keep, observe, submit, yield
			c.   Ant: Contemn, defy, disobey, refuse, resist, violate
			d.  Not just listen, recognize their authority from God
				- Parents are designated by God to raise children
				- That means guidance, love AND RULES
				- Remember, can't live life without rules
		3.  Col 3:20 - Children obey your parents in all things
			a.  Not some things, when you want, or what reasonable
			b.  Doesn't matter if you think rules are stupid
				- If they are rules for curfew, music, friends, 
				- Music, hairstyle, tattoos, clothes, place you can't go
				- Making you go to school, church, etc.
				- "In all things" is inclusive
			c.  Doesn't matter if you think parents from dark ages
				- Not matter if went to school with Beaver Cleaver
				- Doesn't matter if their style belongs in nostalgia shop
			d.  Parents are God given
	C.  ILL:  This goes against the grain of our culture
		1.  A parent of one of my kids friends told him we were crazy
			a.  Because we don't let our kids run all over town
			b.  Because we didn't let them go to Junior High Dances
			c.  Because church is not an option
		2.  I look back at kids I knew growing up
		3.  The ones who obeyed their parents, the "goody-goody" kids
			a.  All of them are happily married with kids
			b.  Most of them went to college or military
			c.  All of them are content, and well adjusted
			d.  All of them had rules growing up
		4.  What is so crazy out that?
	D.  The application is simple
		1.  Obey your parents, even if it seems trivial or doesn't make 
		2.  Of course, it doesn't mean doing something wrong or illegal
		3.  But in all things obey your parents.

II.  Honor your Father and Mother
	A.  Sounds like the same as obey, but it is not quite the same
	B.  What does it mean to "honor" someone
		1.  Definition
			a.  Def:  To respect, treat with courtesy, worship, dignify, pay
			b. Root idea is "value" - To treat as valuable
		2.  It goes beyond bare obedience
		3.  It means not doing these things
			a.  Speaking in a disrespectful tone to your parents
			b.  Swearing at them, or saying they are stupid
			c.  Rolling your eyes at them when they speak to you
		4.  It means doing these things.
			a.  Speaking honorably and respectfully to your parents
			b.  Valuing their insight and advice
			c.  Holding them in high regard
	C.  Once again this goes against the grain of our culture
		1.  Many place more value on freedom & rights than on honor
			a.  It is all about what "my" rights are
			b.  It is as if parents are nothing more than source of money, 
     			    food, clothing and shelter
			c.  See a disdain for parents in a lot of youth culture today
			d.  Without honor, freedom is short lived
		2.  This goes against God's cosmic design, his "rules"
		3.  Jesus said there are two ways
			a.  Broad Way - Leads to destruction, the majority
			b.  Narrow Way - Leads to life, the minority
		4.  Don't be a Lemming on the  broad way 
	D.  This applies whether you are a child or an adult
		1.  You don't stop honoring parents when you are an adult
		2.  (1 Tim 5:3-4) - Honor widows
			a.  Addresses children of aged widows to care for them
			b.  This is part of honoring "valuing" them
		3.  Whatever age you are, there is an application for you here.

III.  Because it is Right
	A.  It is not just because it is a nice thing to do
	B.  How do you know that it is right?
		1.  Because it is God's command
			a.  That makes not honoring and obeying wrong
			b.  When God gives a command, that settles it
		2.  Because it is God's design
			- When you live in harmony with God's design, blessing
	C.  Doing right seems backwards and old fashioned to the world
	D.  Doing wrong only brings hardship and condemnation from God
IV.  That it may go well with you
	A.  Horoscopes, psychics, etc. used to be popular
		1.  People wanted to know what to do and what would happen
		2.  We know we are not supposed to do that
		3.  But don't you sometimes want to know what will happen?
	B.  This passage says what will happen
		1.  This is not the world of a kook, quack, psychic, etc.
		2.  This is from the word of God
	C.  ILL:  Our culture ridicules the obedient child, romanticizes the rebel
		1.  Most of the "cool" rebels I knew growing up are now anything 
     		     but cool (not all, but most)
			a.  One has been in and out of jail, and take odd jobs
			b.  Another got married, and now divorced because he 
     			     refused to take responsibility as a husband
			c.  One died in a truck accident at age 22, racing
			d.  Every single one of them disobedient to their parents
		2.  But the goody-two-shoes, nerds, geeks, who honored parents
			a.  Most of them are just the opposite
			b.  Nice families, nice homes, good life
	D.  God's command comes with a promise
		1.  May not make a lot of sense
		2.  As an adult, some things still don't make sense
		3.  But trusting in God means doing it his way

1.  Obeying your parents is part of God's design
	a.  If you try to defy the law of gravity, you will get injured
	b.  If you try to defy God's law of the family, the same
2.  God has a purpose, and right now it is for you to be a his child
	a.  Involves obedience and honor to parents
	b.  This is part of your obedience and honor to God
3.  If you do God's will, it will go well with you
	a.  What is God's will?  For you to be redeemed (Invitation)
	b.  If you have done that, be a good child 


Small Group Questions:  God's Rules

Summary:  God's design for mutual submission in the church extends to the home.  
This means children are to obey and honor their parents, which will bring a blessing 
to their life.  While obedience is directed more at children, honor is something that 
still applies to adult children as well.

- What is the most memorable experience you had with your parents?
- Which famous parents do you think are the ideal ones?  Which are most unlike the 
ideal?  Ward and June Cleaver, Mike and Jan Brady, Archie and Edith Bunker, George 
and Jane Jetson, Ray and Deborah Barone, other?

Explore (Eph 6:1-3)

1.  This seems like such a straightforward command.  Why even spend time on such 
an obvious one?

2.  How is this the first commandment with a promise?  What promise comes with this 

3.  How would today's culture pose a challenge to observing this passage?

4.  Read 1 Timothy 5:3-4.  How does this fit in with the message of Eph 6:1-3.  What 
does it mean to honor your parents after you become an adult?


5.  What challenges do you face in honoring your parents and why?

6.  What are some ways you can over come these challenges

7.  Identify some specific way to honor your parents