Last night, after we finished our baked ziti, my husband asked for his big Bible. It was time for family devotions. As he turned deep into I Samuel, my plain-spoken 3-year old asked loudly,
We already had Bible time this morning, Daddy. Why do you want to read it again?
The other three children froze in their chairs, and all eyes turned toward Daddy to see how he would handle this sticky theological issue. Would he be angered at the challenge from the family’s youngest rebel? Would he make him quote verses about honoring his parents and God? Would he (perish the thought) prolong the Bible time by proving from Scripture “why children should read the Bible every morning and evening”?
Without looking up from his search through the Old Testament for the evening’s passage, Daddy calmly, softly, and firmly answered:
Because it’s God’s Word. Listen.
Then he began to read.
Why Read the Bible Frequently
There is no more important truth for us to teach than the authority of God’s Word in our home.
And that from a child thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
– 2 Tim 3:15-17
There are so many reasons to teach our children regularly, primarily, intentionally, the Word of God.
1. We are commanded to do so.
These Words, which I command the this day, shall be in thine heart; and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
– Deut. 6:6-7
These words are part of the Hebrew Shema, so named for the first Hebrew words of the section “Hear, O Israel” in Deuteronomy 6:4. Christ is repeating that this Shema is the greatest command of all when he begins it in Matthew 22:37, Mark 12: 30, and Luke 10: 28.
Ye fathers, bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
– Ephesians 6:4
A careful reading of the entire chapter of Titus 2 shows that Christians of all ages are to be teaching within the home. Old and young men teaching by word and example; old and young women are teaching and living their faith within the family. The chapter concludes with the proof of salvation – the life of holiness, the defense of sound doctrine, and expectant watching for the coming of Our Lord. It is all accompanied by the word “teaching.”
2. We point our child to Christ. – Exodus 13:14-15, Genesis 18:19, Psalm 119:9
From a child thou has known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation.
– II Timothy 3:15
3. We ease the way for our child to obey the commands of Scripture given specifically to him. – Exodus 20:10, Ephesians 6:1-3, Colossians 3:20
Honor thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.
– Exodus 20:12
4. We set the Biblical pattern of daily meditation in our child’s life and inner being. (Psalm 119:9-16).
Oh, how I love Thy Law!
is my meditation all the day.
– Psalm 119:97
5. We teach our child the true definition of success. (II Tim 3:15-17)
This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth, but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.
– Joshua 1:8
6. We establish the absolute authority of God’s Word over the family. (II Tim 3:16, Psalms 119:89, Hebrews 4:12)
Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
– Matthew 4:4
Of all the great literature, classic story books, biographies, histories, and texts we read to our children, let’s be sure we are immersing them in the greatest Book of all – the only one which makes them “wise unto salvation.”