Friday, December 19, 2014

Not Without Honor

Read: Ephesians 6:1-3

Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.                                                                Exodus 20:12

     Imagine how the soldiers who crucified Christ must have felt when they stood before God at the end of their lives and realized their mistake. The soldier who shoved the crown of thorns on His head must have been mortified to learn that Jesus was the King of Kings. The soldier who drove the spikes through His hands and feet must have been devastated to learn that He was not the criminal he thought He was. The soldiers who lifted the heavy beams that formed the rugged cross and dropped it into its final resting place atop Mt. Calvary were undoubtedly astounded to find out that they had murdered the One who had created the things they handled so mercilessly. The soldier who gave Jesus vinegar to drink in place of water as he hung there dying must have been stunned when he heard that Jesus was the Living water and that he had done his part to ensure His death. Jesus had remarked in Mark 6:4 that a prophet was not without honor except in his own country, and those soldiers had proven that to be true. They had unknowingly crucified the One who deserved every last ounce of their honor and respect. They didn’t realize what they had until He was gone.
     It is easy to criticize those soldiers for their treatment of Christ, but many young men treat their parents the same way. Parents certainly are not Jesus Christ, but they do deserve honor for who they are. Your mother went through the jaws of death, even offering her own life if that was needed, to give you birth. Your parents sacrifice daily by going to work to support you and by giving up the nice things that they could have themselves so they can give you a place to live, food, schooling, and so many more things. Imagine how you will feel when you stand before God one day and realize your mistake in mistreating the parents He gave you. Parents are often not without honor except in their own families, which is really a shame because within their own families is where they deserve honor the most.
     No parent is perfect, and some haven’t earned the honor and respect of their children, but that doesn’t give the children the right to act toward them in a way that is displeasing to God. His command is not to honor them if they are honorable; this command is to honor your parents. Period. Honoring them involves obeying them, respecting them (to their faces and behind their backs), and following their advice. Children who unfailingly honor their parents will be honored by God for following His command to give them the respect they deserve.

Quote of the day: “Respect is what we owe; love, what we give.”           – Philip Bradley

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