Home Can Be Beautiful - Teach the Commandments in Love
In other words, the truly beautiful home is a love-filled home where God is honored and His commandments are observed. But God’s second piece of advice was almost as important as the first. It can be summed up in these five words: teach the commandments in love.
Immediately following Moses’ exhortation, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,” this additional command, so often overlooked, was given: “These words…shall be upon your heart; and you shall teach them diligently to your children” (Deuteronomy 6:7, R.S.V.). Which words? Obviously the Ten Words, or Ten Commandments, recorded in the previous chapter. See Deuteronomy 5:1-21.
The Ten Commandments are actually called “these words” in Verse 22. They are God’s words of instruction, guidance, and counsel to His people in all ages, from the beginning to the end of time.
“These words” are to be “taught diligently” in every home, so that the rising generation may not be ignorant of God’s law. From the moment they can discern between right and wrong, children are to be led to understand that the God of heaven requires their adherence to these righteous principles of life. And in the teaching, explaining, simplifying, and illustrating of them, both parents and children will be greatly blessed.
Being principles of love, they are to be taught in love. Not with a fist, but with a tender heart. Not with a stick in the hand, but with a sob in the soul. To cause children to think of God as a tyrant who says nothing but “Don’t,” and “Thou shalt not,” is to libel His good name. He is not a taskmaster, but a lover. Indeed, He is love. Therefore, He cannot do anything unloving or unlovely. Therefore too, His commandments must be, as He says Himself, “for our good always” - for the good of parents, for the good of children, for everybody’s good.
Rightly understood they are positive, not negative; kind, not harsh; beneficial, not vindictive. Therefore they should be presented to boys and girls as a blessing, not a curse. Otherwise, how will they grow up to think of God as a God of love?
Our Patient Merciful God
The Bible and the Gospel speak of God's great mercy for us ...
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“Enter his gates with
thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him
and praise his name.