Family Life

Raising a Righteous Child

I am becoming more and more convinced that raising a Godly child is more a result of what happens at home than the church programs you may have at your particular local church.  I know once it is said it is obvious but I have been living my life as if it was not true.

My oldest daughter has just turned three and I am learning what it means to live the gospel in my home but I also am learning that Socrates was right when he said wisdom comes from knowing that you know nothing.  I know how to explain the gospel in large theological terms but not necessarily how to teach it to a three year old.  Although I have done my best by explaining that Jesus took all her spanks from God.  I think it made sense to her.  When we do have to discipline her we talk about the heart issues from which her misbehavior stems.  We have told her consistently told her that only Jesus can make her heart a good heart, because it is a bad heart now.
I have even had to ask my daughter to pray for me and forgive me when I have sinned against her, treating my sin the same as I treat hers so she can see that we are all sinners in need of a savior.  I hope it is enough.

I don’t think I want my daughter to be in a children’s church past a certain point because I want her to be part of our family of faith and not off in a corner.  Here is what the Lord tells us in Deut 6:

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

Training our children is supposed to be a 24/7 affair and it isn’t meant to be relegated to those who run the children’s ministry at your local church.  It is the responsibility of parents.  I find it often easier to talk to my daughter about my day because she always asks me if there were any “monsters” in it but our conversation should be focused and centered on the things of God and all too often it isn’t.

7 replies on “Raising a Righteous Child”


Do you mean by “righteous”, “justified/saved”? If so how does the sovereign hand of God play a part in this? For example I beleive I can raise a moral child, who may even understand the Gospel, but that won’t make them a regenerate child, only God can do that right? Even in the verses provided wouldn’t that make them a good Israelite but not a believer in the promise of the Messiah especially given the details in John 7-8. Does gentleman were devout law followers but see the Messiah.

I don’t know that I’ve ever heard anyone suggest that raising a righteous child is a product of a church program – but we Christians as a group do seem to rely on church and church programs to do the job like most people rely on the public schools to teach their children reading/writing/arithmetic – almost as if we think its the church’s job to teach our children morals.

I believe morals aren’t ‘taught’ as much as they are shown – or better put, teaching is meaningless without example. Having a culture of worship and prayer – making God a part of our lives at home – is the only way our children will see what it MEANS to be righteous.

@Lionel Woods – Are you serious or just looking to argue for arguments sake? Nothing in this post suggests that the author is ‘saving’ his children… did you even read it? or just stop at the first talking point you could find and start babbling?


Yes I am serious. Why do you think I am trying to argue? Why am I babbling? Sorry I posted a question. Thanks and Jason, never mind answering my questions, I didn’t comment to start an arguement. Wow! You guys have a good one.

@Lionel I believe it is my responsibility to raise my children in the admonition of the lord. I understand that it only through the grace of God they will be saved but we still preach the gospel because I believe that is the means of grace God has chosen to use. Don’t let Dale scare you away, but understand not everyone understands the process of salvation the same way.

@Dale, I know no one would ever say it with their words but many Christians including myself say with their actions that it is the Churches job to teach the things of God, by not doing so at home. It is primarily the job of the parent supported by the church.


Jason, Yes. First and foremost it is the parents responsibility to “teach” their children how to “have a right relationship” with God. In whatever and however it seems best to the parent.
The church gathering can be a useful tool. For the most part, I was usually the teacher at the church. Since there always seemed to be a need for the help in one or the other of my children’s classes. That usually meant having more than just one of my kids in class with me, because they always wanted to be “in mommies” class.

There also came a time when they didn’t want to go to their gathering during church time and I did not have a problem having them with us during “big people’s church”. (now matter how the leaders felt about it)

JUST A FUNNY THOUGHT: “Jesus takes all our spanks from God.” may beg the question, “Then why do you spank me?” (I was trying to imagine how my kids would have responded.)

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