My wife and I came to a decision to start having nightly bible study, with our five children. This was shortly after the two of us were baptized together, in January of 2010. For days, we discussed how awesome it was going to be to actually get our children together, sit down and talk about stories in the bible. We thought blessings were going to come immediately, once I began leading our family into the Lord’s word. Here’s what really happened.
The first bible study focused on the first book of the Old Testament. What better place to begin, than at the very beginning, right? We got as far as Genesis 2:19, which reads,
“And out of the ground, the LORD God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.”
Now, I don’t recall the exact details (which means it was probably my fault), but I remember my wife and I got into a…how shall we say…extremely spirited debate, right there in front of the kids, on whether or not there were actually two separate trees, or one tree of life a.k.a. the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. That debate totally derailed the whole purpose of the bible study, by morphing into a competition of “You’re Wrong and I’m Right”.
Mark 3:25 says,
“And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand.”
When Mom and Dad stand divided on any subject, it has to be hard for the kids to trust in the stability of the leadership. How can children feel a sense of security in their parents, if their parents can’t stand together? Parents have to unite to build that family trust kids need to feel protected.
That first bible study attempt set us back for almost a month. It took that long for me to attempt another bible study because my wife and I couldn’t put down our individual prideful egos for the benefit of the family. In the end, we learned to listen to, and learn from one another. We also learned to consult our pastor on questions neither of us had answers to. But, we never again broke into…spirited debate…in front of the kids, concerning scripture. If we want to teach them to respect, honor and love the word, we have to be united in our presentation of it.
Satan hates the united front. That’s why it’s important to maintain it in the family. If he can get the parents to fight over the interpretation and understanding of scripture, he’s got a leg up on control of your family. “The family that prays together, stays together,” is how the old saying goes. I believe it’s true.