1 Samuel 3:13 For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not.
Wow, this verse. What a vehement reproach for the parent who is lax in raising their children.
Eli, priest of Israel, would hear these harsh words from the God, eventually rendering void his priesthood, and further, of his progeny.
1 Samuel 2:12 says Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the Lord.
Eli heard of their great transgressions: stealing portions of the peace offerings from offerers, eating raw meat, demanding the fat portions which belonged only to the Lord (Leviticus 3:16), and sleeping with the women assembled at the door of the tabernacle (Exodus 38:8).
He says to them, ‘Why do ye such things? for I hear of your evil dealings by all this people. Nay, my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: ye make the Lord‘s people to transgress.’
1 Samuel 2:25 tells us ‘Notwithstanding they hearkened (shama:obeyed) not unto the voice of their father, because the Lord would slay (determined/willed to kill) them.’
No doubt Eli felt the sting so appropriately conveyed by Charles Spurgeon, ‘If we never have headaches through rebuking our children, we shall have plenty of heartaches when they grow up.’
Eventually we read Israel went in to battle against the Philistines, bringing about the death of 30,000 of Israel’s men, including Eli’s two sons, and the loss of the ark of the covenant. When Eli heard the news that the ark of the covenant had been stolen, he fell backwards, breaking his neck and dying.
Eli’s failure at raising his sons in righteousness and rebuke cost Israel greatly.
What a necessary reminder for those elect of God raising children, particularly in this late and dark hour. Too much compromise, too much winking at sin; so little reproof, rebuke, so little agape, so little Scripture.
Another Spurgeon quote, ‘How can we hope to see the kingdom of our Lord advance when His own disciples do not teach His gospel to their own sons and daughters?’
And what is the Gospel? It is the resurrection. Feminine gender: anastasis. Means to come to life after dying. Feminine gender tells us this is not speaking of Christ’s resurrection, rather His wife, the Church. We are to die to SELF daily, as Paul tells us, I die daily. (1 Cor 15:31)
Scripture tells us foolishness is bound in the heart of a child. A child is full of self. Without the rod and reproof, the self just gets bigger, stronger, and more stubborn.
Mark 3:27 No man can enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man; and then he will spoil his house.
This strong man is self.
Through oft rebuke, reproof, Scripture we walk in God’s commandments concerning our children and are thus given this promise:
Prov 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he *will not* depart from it.
Train is the word ‘chanak’ and it means to narrow.
Matthew 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow isthe way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
We are to teach our children to be in the narrow way.
Narrow is the word ‘thlibo’ and it means tribulation.
The Way is Christ. The Way is through tribulation (not health, wealth, and happiness contrary to the ear-tickling false doctrine taught in churches around the globe).
We are to teach our child these truths- fire, trials, tribulations, death to self…these are God’s Way to eternal life and few there be that find it.
Hebrews 12:6-8 ‘For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.’
Be not weary in well doing, for in due season we shall reap if we faint not.
The Lord’s will be done.