Parents Are Important!
Tuesday of Pentecost 18
25 September 2018
Martin Luther seems to have read this morning's newspaper before writing his explanation to the fourth commandment in the Large Catechism. Although Luther wrote this 489 years ago, it is as new and fresh as the New York Times, perhaps even newer and fresher! Luther, though long dead, is newer and fresher than the New York Times because he is not burdened by the politically correct lunacies that burden the New York Times. Everything old has become new.
 
The fact is, there are just some things that are penetratingly true, no matter how old they are. We might say it this way: poor parenting results in undisciplined children. Yet today in all our wisdom we remain shocked when decayed and fragmented family life results in broken and unruly children. Parents are the single most significant influence on a child's life. What a huge responsibility that is and one laid on us by God. It is one responsibility we dare not shirk.
 
Yet we seem to be blind to the damage done by damaged home life, where children abandoned to their own devices attempt to navigate their way alone through childhood. Certainly, even with a good home life there are no guarantees, but it is obvious that broken families are much more likely to produce broken children. We have a saying, "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree." Unruly and undisciplined adults nurture unruly and undisciplined children. I saw a young man wearing a lewd T-shirt in public, and when I asked him if his mother would like it if she saw him wearing this shirt, he quipped that she had purchased it for him and given it to him as a gift. Well, you see what I mean. How important parents are to their children's future.

Rev. Dr. Scott R. Murray
Memorial Lutheran Church

   Martin Luther
"I would be very glad-I say it again-if people would open their eyes and ears and take the fourth commandment to heart, lest someday we should again be led astray from God's pure Word (Ps 12:6) to the devil's lying vanities (Ps 31:6). If people would take this to heart, all would be well. For parents would have more joy, love, friendship, and unity in their houses. The children could captivate their parents' hearts. On the other hand, when children are stubborn and will not do what they ought until a rod is laid upon their back (Pro 22:15; 26:3), they anger both God and their parents. In this way, they deprive themselves of this treasure and joy of conscience, and lay up for themselves only misfortune.

"As everyone complains, the course of the world now is such that both young and old completely lack restraint and are beyond control. They have no reverence or sense of honor. They do nothing unless they are driven to it by blows, and they do what wrong and slander they can behind each other's back. Therefore, God also punishes them, so that they sink into all kinds of filth and misery. As a rule, the parents, too, are themselves stupid and ignorant. One fool trains another. As the foolish parents have lived, so live their children after them."

Martin Luther, Large Catechism
1.121-24
James 3:13-18

Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. (ESV)
Prayer
O Lord God, heavenly Father, give wisdom to parents that they might give the gifts of restraint, self-control, and honor to their children. Amen.
 
For police officers, that they would be kept safe
 
For all the members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Sudan, that they would continue to faithfully proclaim the message of salvation in Christ alone
 
For Ryon Degenhardt, who is gravely ill, that the holy angels would attend him and that his family would be strengthened in the holy faith as they serve him
Art: Albrecht DURER, The Adoration of the Trinity (1511)
Memorial Lutheran Church
smurray@mlchouston.org
http://www.mlchouston.org
© Scott Murray 2018
Memorial Lutheran Church, 5800 Westheimer Rd., Houston, TX 77057
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