Raising Children: Parents' Role vs Church's Role

One of the biggest complaints I hear from ladies in our churches today is that their husbands won’t “step up and lead” the family when it comes to spiritual issues. What I hear from the men is that they know they should be leading their homes spiritually, they just don’t know exactly what that means or what it looks like.

So, we find ourselves in this crazy cycle that started somewhere in the mid 20th century when men slowly began to abdicate their responsibilities of leading, teaching, and instructing their children in the ways of God to the church. The church, in turn, instead of rebuking the men and teaching them how to lead their homes began to enable them and accomodate them. Because of decades of this, we now have complete generations of men and women who grew up in the church and were never taught what it looks like for the dad to lead and instruct the home.

Now that the effects of this have come full circle we are finally beginning to realize that our current approach to ministering to children and students isn’t working. We get caught in this cycle of saying, as the church, “We know God has commanded the parents to do this job, but they won’t do it so we will.” Do you see how that’s a cycle? The church has been telling dads for years “We’ll take care of this for you. Just drop them off at children’s church. Just drop them off at youth group. Just let them come to college and career.” Now we see that’s not working, because 70%-80% of church-going young people will leave the church by the end of their freshman year of college, and what do we say to that? What’s our answer? Well, they’re not doing it so we’ll do it for them.

They haven’t been taught! They don’t get it. Our older men in the church aren’t calling our young men on the carpet and telling them to grow up in the faith, take their God-given responsibility, and be a man. And younger men, truth be known, most of the time we do know God has called us to lead our homes and we are either too lazy to do it because it’s hard, or too proud to ask for help, afraid someone might think we don’t know it all or have it all together.

This has to stop. We are robbing our wives and children of the blessings God wants to bring to them through us. Men, we set the spiritual temperature in our homes. It is our job to cultivate our marriage. A good marriage doesn’t just happen. It takes work. It is our job, not the church’s to teach our children about our faith, who God is, what the Bible says, how much He loves us, etc. We cannot give our children salvation, but we can give them a solid biblical foundation that most of us didn’t have growing up.

The following audio clip is by Voddie Baucham. It is a 10 minute snippet from his message “The Centrality of the Home” You can find the full message HERE.


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