"Honor your father and mother" (which is the first commandment with a promise),
I. THEIR DUTY IS SUMMED UP IN THE ONE WORD "OBEDIENCE." But it includes four important elements.
1. Love. This is an instinctive feeling, but it is not the less a commanded duty, for it is the spring of all hearty obedience. It makes obedience easy. Yet we are not to love our parents more than the Lord; we are rather to love them in the Lord.
2. Honor. This is only another form of obedience: "Honor thy father and thy mother." Children are never to set light by their parents (Deuteronomy 27:17); "A son honoureth his father" (Malachi 1:6); "Thou shalt rise up before the hoary head, and honor the face of the old man" (Leviticus 19:32). God has, indeed, given his own honor to parents. We may not always be called to obey them, but we are always to honor them. "Hearken unto thy father that begat thee, and despise not thy mother when she is old" (Proverbs 23:22). This honor is allied to reverence: "We have had fathers of our flesh who corrected us, and we gave them reverence" (Hebrews 12:9).
3. Gratitude. It is our duty to requite our parents (1 Timothy 5:4), and our Lord implies that we are to do them good (Matthew 15:4). We ought to remember their love, their care, their concern for us. Joseph provided for his father Jacob in old age, and the women said to Naomi of Boaz, "He shall be unto thee a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thine old age."
4. Subjection. "Children, obey your parents in all things;" that is, in all things falling within the sphere of a parent's authority. If parents command their children to steal, or lie, or commit idolatry, they are not to be obeyed. They are to be obeyed "in the Lord." There are several reasons to make obedience natural.
(1) Parents know more than their children; therefore "a wise son heareth his father's instruction" (Proverbs 13:1). The child must take much of his knowledge for granted on the mere authority of his father.
(2) The habit of obedience is good as a discipline. It is even good for the health of a child, as a desultory and dawdling obedience breaks its temper and injures its health.
(3) Children are not able to guide themselves; for "folly is bound up in the heart of a child" (Proverbs 22:15).
(4) Society is benefited by the due subordination of family life.
II. THE REASON OF OBEDIENCE ASSIGNED IN THIS PASSAGE IS SIMPLY "FOR THIS IS RIGHT." It is right
(1) according to the light of nature;
(2) according to the Law of God. "It is well-pleasing unto the Lord (Colossians 3:20). It is embodied in the Decalogue, and holds the first place among the duties of the second table, and "is the first commandment with promise" - the promise of a long life. This implies
(1) that the fifth commandment is still binding on the Christians of this dispensation;
(2) that long life is to be desired;
(3) that disobedience to parents tends to shorten life. There may be undutiful children who live to old age, and dutiful children who die young, but the promise abides in its general purpose. It is like the saying, "The hand of the diligent maketh rich," yet diligent persons have felt the bitterness of poverty. Children are therefore justified in having regard firstly to the command of God, and then to the recompense of the reward. - T.C.
And for me, that utterance may be given unto me. -R. W. Dale, LL. D.)
LinksEphesians 6:2 NIV
Ephesians 6:2 NLT
Ephesians 6:2 ESV
Ephesians 6:2 NASB
Ephesians 6:2 KJV
Ephesians 6:2 Bible Apps
Ephesians 6:2 Parallel
Ephesians 6:2 Biblia Paralela
Ephesians 6:2 Chinese Bible
Ephesians 6:2 French Bible
Ephesians 6:2 German Bible
Ephesians 6:2 Commentaries