Honoring Our Fathers
TEXT: Ephesians 6:1-4; Proverbs 1:8
- supplemental scriptures
The students will be able to explain that God expects us to honor and obey our parents.
- memory verse
Children, obey your parents in all things. — Colossians 3:20
- bible lesson outline
Introduction: To open your class session, bring a photograph of yourself with your father, or if possible ask your father to come to your class for a short visit with your students. As you introduce your father or show the picture, explain to your class that this man has played a very important part in your life. Tell some of the things he did for you or taught you during your childhood. Then explain that since today is Father's Day, you are going to look together into the Bible to find out what it has to say about children and their fathers.
- Children are commanded to honor and obey their parents. They will be blessed if they do so.
- Discuss the meaning of the word honor.
- Discuss the meaning of the word obey.
- Fathers are not to provoke their children to wrath, but should teach them the Word of God.
Climax: God promises long life and blessings to the obedient child.
Conclusion: It will be very advantageous for children to conform to the Word of God and be obedient to their parents.
Response: The students will be able to explain what it means to honor and obey, and will be able to tell why it is important to do so.
- background information
The family is the divinely ordained institution upon which all society rests. The Fifth Commandment (Exodus 20:12) "Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee," is the first Commandment with a promise. The promise is not only for long life to the individual who obeys it but also, by inference, a promise to the Jewish nation of a long existence in the Promised Land if only they would honor their parents.
When society forgets to honor their parents, especially those who stood for godly principles, they are inviting God's divine judgment (Romans 1:30; 2 Timothy 3:2).
The word honor implies "high regard, care for, respect for, and obedience." Since we are born into this world with a sinful nature, the natural tendency is to rebel. God expects parents to teach obedience and submission in the home. The child who will honor his father and mother and be subject to his parents will have a much easier time submitting to the authority of church, school, military, or any form of government restriction.
- in-class activities
- Have a collection of pictures or silhouettes of famous men such as George Washington and others of that era. Explain how our country honors them for what they did to establish our country. They are the "fathers" of our country. Stress how we need to show our father that same honor and respect.
- Have pictures of fathers doing things for the family, children, job. Tell how they work for us, and we need to show them respect and help them in any way that we can.
- For each child, draw a series of HAPPY FACES on a sheet of paper. Under each face have a line on which the children may write or draw the different things their father does to make them glad or to have fun.
- Bring your father to class with you and introduce him to your class. Or you might like to show a picture of yourself with your father. Children like to know about the personal life of their teachers. Think up incidents from your past which have to do with you and your father.
- Name some important things that God expects fathers to teach their children when they are young.
- Where do fathers and mothers get their instructions on what is right and what is wrong?
- God is our heavenly Father; how can we best honor Him?
- What would the world be like if children didn't have parents to guide them? Would you know when to go to bed or would you stay up all night? Would you eat vegetables or would you live mostly on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? Would you go to school or head for the neighborhood park each morning?
- List some ways we can show our fathers that we are thankful for them.
- What does the Bible promise us if we obey our parents?
- Is it always easy to obey? Why or why not?
- Tell what happened one time when you obeyed your parents.
- Tell what happened one time when you didn't obey your parents.
- pre-school suggestions
- ON FATHER'S DAY
I have a daddy, big and strong,
(Throw back shoulders and pat chest.)
Who works for us the whole day long.
(Imitate father's work.)
He always knows a game that's fun;
(Imitate any game played with Dad.)
He reads to us when day is done.
(Use hands to make open book.)
I'd like to bow my head and pray:
(Bow head and fold hands.)
God bless my daddy every day.
- Pre-plan a number of things you can ask your students to do for you in class; for example, pass out stickers, pick up dropped item, sit in a certain place. Compliment each child on the way he obeyed you and draw it to the attention of the class. Be sure that you have one activity planned for each child.
- Prepare a space on one of your bulletin boards or walls. Let each child draw a picture of his/her daddy, and write on it whose daddy it is; for example, "Tommy's daddy" or "Susie's daddy." Post all of their drawings on your board under the caption, WE LOVE OUR DADDIES. (Note to teachers: Be sure that each of the children in your class does have a daddy with whom they are in contact.)
- ON FATHER'S DAY
- review ideas
Bring in three generations of a family to give their testimonies. Ask them to stress the points that bring out the importance of honoring and obeying their parents, and following a good parental example.
With the help of your entire group, compose an acrostic using the letters in the word "father."
Invite four fathers with markedly different appearances to assist you in your review. Point out that fathers come in all shapes and sizes. As you introduce each father say, "Some fathers are tall and thin," or "Some fathers have dark brown hair." Have each father carry a large letter turned so the audience cannot see it. When all four fathers are standing in front of the group, tell the students that whatever their father looks like there is one thing God wants us to do in our relationship with them. When the fathers turn over the letters, they should spell the word OBEY.