Ephesians Sentence by Sentence: 6:4

Καὶ οἱ πατέρες, μὴ παροργίζετε τὰ τέκνα ὑμῶν ἀλλὰ ἐκτρέφετε αὐτὰ ἐν παιδείᾳ καὶ νουθεσίᾳ κυρίου. And fathers, do not provoke your children but raise them up in the discipline and warning of the Lord.

After having instructed children, Paul now instructs fathers. He exhorts the fathers not to provoke their children to anger. Instead, they are to raise them up or nourish them with the discipline and warning of the Lord. This word, παιδείᾳ, “discipline,” refers to instruction regarding responsible living. The other word, νουθεσίᾳ, “warning,” refers to instruction against improper living. Both types of instruction are “of the Lord.” This genitive, κυρίου, is a genitive of quality or an attributive genitive that attributes a quality to the nouns. We can translate it this way: “. . . but raise them up in Christian discipline and admonition.” Fathers are expected to raise up their children with proper Christian instruction, both what they should do and what they should avoid.

And fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but raise them up in Christian discipline and admonition.

Christians are not only to learn about godly living from Sunday school classes, but they are also to learn about godly living in the home. Parents are responsible for passing on Christian instruction as well as pastors. Parents, how are we doing? Are we responsibly and actively training up our children in the way that they should go? Are we teaching our children not only about the forgiveness that God has provided in Jesus, but also of the right way to live? Are we showing our kids what to do and what not to do? Even closer to home, by our own examples, how are we doing? Are our lives setting the right example of what do to and what not to do? For instance, dads, are you loving your wives sacrificially? You are setting the example for your children by how you treat your wives. Be careful to set a good example, for children’s little eyes absorb, learn, and implement their parents actions. It is not enough to tell our children how to live. We also have to practice what we preach, for our actions take part in instructing our kids.

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