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Re: religious? rayww

Posted by Dena on October 3, 2005, at 16:13:03

In reply to Re: religious?, posted by rayww on October 3, 2005, at 14:59:39

Well thank you for the kind words, Rayww!

As a sinner, saved by grace, who continually falls (& falls, & falls), I'm astounced by God's mercy and love... and how He keeps meeting me where I am, sitting there in the pig stye of my own making, and scoops me up (provided I'm willing to get up... He'll let me sit there, too).

I love the verse from Proverbs that you quoted: "Train up a child when he is young and when he is old he will not depart from it".

Most of us have taken that verse at face-value, and believed it meant, "Teach your child to obey, to know right from wrong, and when they're older, they'll stay on the moral path."

However, that's a hollow promise, when you consider the number of children who (after being taught morality), choose instead to rebel, and break their parents' hearts, who're left wondering "what did we do wrong?!?"

We have to go back to the original Hebrew language, and understand the context of what the writer of Proverbs (attributed to King Solomon) meant.

The word for "train" is referred to the clearing out of the mouth of a newly born baby, and meant, "Create an environment for life."

The words for "in the way they should go" means "in keeping with his individual gift or bent", or, in other words, consistent in the way in which God created THAT child to be.

So, to put the original phrases together means something far different than "make them be obedient" so that they'll always stay that way.

It means: Create an environment of life for that child, in keeping with how God created them to be, and when they're older, they'll be able to be true to who He designed them to be.

It's not a promise that they'll stay on "the straight and narrow", but an admonishment to parents to rely on God to show them who that person is meant to be, and to help them as best as we can to enable them to fulfill their God-given potential...

And, yes, of course I agree that those of us who know God should help a child to develop a relationship with Him, from a very early age, so that they too can have a real and vital relationship with Him that will outlast their childhoods -- a relationship that they can OWN, rather than relying on their parents' faith (because God has children, but no grandchildren...!).

My two cents' worth.

Shalom, Dena




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