Saturday, November 25, 2017

A&C Series - Teach your Children to Honor Me

Teach your children to honor me
A&C Pg 11

D&C 68: 25

"And again, inasmuch as parents have children in Zion, or in any of her stakes which are organized, that teach them not to understand the doctrine of repentance, faith in Christ the Son of the living God, and of baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of the hands, when eight years old, the sin be upon the heads of the parents."

It's pretty clear it's the parents responsibility to teach their children the Gospel.  Not the state, not the grandparents, not the neighbors, not a Church, not primary teachers or youth group leaders.  While those people may play meaningful and or important roles, it's ultimately the parents responsibility to teach their children the Gospel, specifically Repentance, Faith in Christ, Baptism and Holy Ghost.

When the A&C says to "Teach your children to honor me" I first read it with emphasis on the word "honor".   As opposed to something like dishonor.  I thought, how and what would bring honor to the Lord?  How does one honor him?  How does obeying him play into honoring Him?  How does a parent teach their children to do this?  I'm currently trying to figure this out and do this with my own children.  I think more important than words, or data, is my example.  And I have work to do.     

During a fellowship meeting a week or two ago one of the youth spoke up and read that sentience about teaching children to honor the Lord but put emphasis on the last word, "me".  Which immediately brought into my mind all the contrasting and sometimes competing things or people that children could be taught to honor.  Which are not God.  I was so thankful for how she read the sentience.  It caused my mind to open up.  

Children could be taught to honor:  (directly or indirectly)
A Church or a Religion (a trademark)
A Leader
An Entertainer
A Politician
Cultural beliefs
Cultural doctrine 
"Follow the Prophet"
A Bishop
etc etc etc.

In order to honor Christ, all of us, including our children will need to be able to distinguish inspired moments, and inspired words that originate from God, relayed by mortals, from all other moments of life and things said by well meaning people.  

The best explanation and description I've ever read on this topic is below.  It's about distinguishing who you follow.   Brackets inside the quote are mine.  The example given of President Hinckley was relevant at the time the book was written but any person could be substituted in its place.  

"The Gospel requires us to proceed carefully, to be sure. We are required to find the voice of the Spirit for ourselves. Every Saint must become, in their own right, a prophet or prophetess. Not to lead others, but themselves (Numbers 11:29). For each must choose for him or herself to find and follow the Master’s voice in his or her life. The only sure rock upon which salvation remains to be found is that same rock of revelation which Christ assured Peter was secure to trust. If you follow [Insert leader] President Hinckley solely because he is the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, you are following a man. But if you follow President Hinckley because you hear the Master’s voice in his counsel and teaching, then you are following the Lord, and not a man. There is a great difference between the two. One honors the Lord and leads to exaltation. The other misses the mark and makes such followers Telestial (D&C 76: 98-101). This distinction is pivotal to salvation itself. It is not merely rhetorical, but of such substance if you fail to understand it you fail in the test of mortality itself. This is what we signed up for in coming to mortality. We accepted this challenge and expected it. Now it confronts us. So the test is afoot and must be taken with caution and humility."

The Second Comforter Pg 232 

Should Zion come, it wouldn't last more than 1 generation if the children are not taught to honor the Lord.   I personally pray for God's help in fulfilling this parental obligation.  Because I need it.  

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