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Communion Meditations (2017)

Children

Originally scheduled for July 23

One of the things the Old Testament covers is the task of making sure that your children understand what Passover is, what it means and why they should honor it. First and foremost, they are to be told that it is a memorial of the good things God has done for the people of Israel. Anticipating that the children will come up and ask why we keep the Passover, the Jew was given these answers:

·         You were to answer the children immediately, when they asked. It’s a teachable moment and you were to use that moment to carry on the faith.

·         You were to give them the primary answer that this is a sacrifice to the Lord. They were to be reminded of how the Lord killed the Egyptians and save the people of Israel. A child’s favorite question is very often, “why?”

The other rules about Passover — and there were many — such as being required to be circumcised, were taught to the child later, in a formal setting.

But why did they teach the children? There are some things that have to be taught in childhood so that they might have time to grow in the child’s mind and be effective when the child becomes an adult. What were they taught?

·         They were taught to put their confidence in God. They were to trust in the Lord with all their hearts, and this is best started when the child is young.

·         They were not to disconnect themselves from their ancestors, but remember the works of God by which he established the people of Israel.

·         In so doing, they were to learn to keep his commandments.

The same principles apply to teaching our children and grandchildren today.

·         Teach them when they are curious; do not put them off. Answer their questions now.

·         Teach them to trust in God; teach them that they should never forget God’s work on Calvary; and then teach them to keep his commands.

·         Then teach them to pass this knowledge on to their children and grandchildren.

This is not an easy thing to teach; indeed, it’s rather difficult. The best way to teach it is by example. How’s yours?

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