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Colossians 3:20-21 meaning...

This is part of the Apostle Paul's instructions to the Colossian believers regarding their conduct in various relationships, particularly within the family. 

  • Children's obedience: 
Paul addresses the children directly, urging them to obey their parents in all things. This command is grounded in the principle of honoring and respecting one's parents, which is a fundamental aspect of godly living. Children are called to submit to their parents' authority and follow their guidance, assuming this is godly, healthy and safe. By doing so, they please the Lord, demonstrating their reverence for Him.
  • Fathers' role: 
Paul also addresses the fathers, highlighting their responsibility in the parent-child relationship. He specifically warns fathers against provoking their children. Provoking children refers to actions or attitudes that cause them to become discouraged, frustrated, or resentful. Fathers are called to exercise their authority and discipline with wisdom and love, considering the well-being of their children. They should avoid excessive harshness, unfair treatment, or unreasonable expectations that could lead to discouragement.

The broader context of Colossians 3 emphasizes the transformative power of Christ in the lives of believers and the practical implications of this transformation in various relationships. Paul encourages believers to set their minds on things above, to put to death the sinful nature, and to put on the new self in Christ.

In relation to the family, Paul addresses husbands and wives, children and parents, and slaves and masters, outlining the appropriate attitudes and behaviors that reflect the new life in Christ. The overarching theme is to live in a manner worthy of the Lord, exhibiting Christ-like virtues in all relationships.

The specific instructions for children and fathers in Colossians 3:20-21 highlight the importance of mutual respect, love, and understanding within the family unit. Children are called to honor their parents by obeying them, recognizing their authority as God-given. This obedience is not selective but encompasses all aspects of life.

On the other hand, fathers are urged to exercise their parental authority in a considerate and loving manner, avoiding behaviors that would discourage or embitter their children. Instead of provoking them, fathers are called to nurture and guide their children in a way that fosters their emotional and spiritual well-being.

These verses emphasize the reciprocal nature of the parent-child relationship. Children are called to obey and honor their parents, while fathers are called to exercise their authority responsibly and with sensitivity. When both parties fulfill their respective roles, a healthy and harmonious family dynamic is fostered.

Overall, Colossians 3:20-21 teaches us the importance of obedience and respect within the parent-child relationship. It reminds children of their responsibility to obey their parents, recognizing their authority as ordained by God. At the same time, it encourages fathers to exercise their authority in a loving and nurturing manner, fostering an atmosphere of encouragement and support within the family. By following these instructions, we honor the Lord and reflect His character in our family relationships.

Colossians 3:20-21. Children, obey your parents in all things, for this pleases the Lord. Fathers, don’t provoke your children, so that they won’t be discouraged.


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