Faith Filled Parenting

In my daily prayers I regularly give thanks for my parents who brought me up to have faith in Jesus. My prayers also go up to the Lord for my children as they rear their children in the faith. I desire that my grandchildren, too, might pass along true gospel faith to their descendants after them.

This sentiment is expressed by the prophet Isaiah. “‘As for me, this is my covenant with them,’ says the Lord. ‘My spirit, who is on you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will not depart from your mouth, or from the mouths of your children, or from the mouths of their descendants from this time on and forever,’ says the Lord” (Isaiah 59:21).

The recent birth of my thirteenth grandchild, a beautiful baby girl, has reminded me again of the important role of parents in the training of children. I am praying that my son and daughter-in-law will bring up this precious child to know and love Jesus as savior.

God ‘s word makes it clear that parents are responsible for the guidance and instruction of their children in the ways and will of the Lord. It is certain that in our world there are all kinds of negative influences and godless ideas that are impressed upon children every day. Church youth pastors and Sunday School teachers can support parents in their role, but there is no substitute for Mom and Dad in the spiritual teaching of children.

Hebrews 11:23 is an illustration of this principle. “By faith Moses’ parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw that he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict.”

This verse is a brief tribute to two people whose courage and faith insured Moses’ survival and shaped his early life. Amram, his father, and Jochabed, his mother, were from the tribe of Levi, but along with the rest of their fellow-Israelites, were slave laborers in Egypt. To inhibit the rapid growth of the Israelite population the Egyptian king had issued an order that male babies born to the Hebrews were to be killed. I notice two things about Moses’ parents.


There is an ancient Jewish tradition, reported by the historian Josephus, that Moses’ father received a vision that his son was a child of destiny. Amram believed that God had special plans for Moses and was going to use him as a great leader in Israel. The story as reported in Exodus highlights the role of Moses’ mother.

Even though they were under orders to have the baby killed, “they were not afraid of the king’s edict.” They had faith in the God of Israel, not in the gods of the Egyptians.


The book of Exodus describes how they disobeyed the king’s decree, at great risk to themselves. They hid the child for three months then placed him in the Nile River in a little floating vessel made of papyrus reeds. Apparently the location was strategically chosen because it was the place where the Pharaoh’s daughter came to bathe.

When she found the baby she had pity on the child and wanted to keep him. Moses’ sister Miriam approached the princess and offered to “go and get one of the Hebrew women to nurse the baby for you” (Exodus 2:7). When the princess agreed, Miriam brought Jochabed to her as nursemaid for the baby.

In the faithful providence of God, Moses’ own motherĀ  got to be the earliest spiritual influence in his life. We cannot know for sure the full extent of that influence, but surely she implanted in the child as best she could, a knowledge of the God of Abraham and his identity as a member of the Hebrew nation.

I have read that fifty per cent of a child’s basic attitudes are formed during the first three years of life. If that is true it emphasizes the importance of the parents in the early spiritual training of their children. No one can take the place of Mom and Dad in setting the right example and teaching the truths about God.

“What we have heard and known, what our fathers have told us, we will not hide them from their children; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord . . . which he commanded our forefathers to teach their children, so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children. Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands” (Psalm 78:4-7).

Pastor Randy Faulkner