I’m on a quest.
And if you are intentionally teaching the Bible in your home, then you are on this quest as well.
We are on a quest against Biblical Illiteracy.
The book of Judges shows us what happens when parents are not on the front lines of spiritual warfare and fighting for Biblical knowledge. In fact, Judges 2:10 tells us that as soon as Joshua and the other leaders died, there arose a generation of people who did not know the Lord.
It only took ONE GENERATION.
The Bible does not give parents a perfect formula straight from God that will allow us to raise a family so that all of our children choose to live for the Lord. However, the scriptures do give us commands and guidelines which help us lead our kids to walk in the ways of faith. And hopefully, our children will decide on their own to follow the Lord.
For an example of these commands and guidelines, if you have your Bible nearby, look up Deuteronomy 6:4-7 and read it carefully.
How to Begin Teaching Bible at Home Successfully
1) “The Lord our God is One.“
We are to teach our kids DOCTRINAL TRUTH. They need to know the basics of a foundation of faith. Going to church, Sunday School, Vacation Bible School, or Christian schools are great supplements, but God’s word says that Truth begins with parents. So we parents need to know the Truth well enough to be able to teach them to our kids. We have to be studying the Bible, not just reading it.
2) “You shall love the Lord your God.“
We are to model PERSONAL DEVOTION to God. When our kids see that God and spiritual growth is important to us, then they will see spiritual things as something to pursue. Do your kids walk in on you during your quiet time? Do you pray with your kids on a regular basis about all kinds of things? Does your family go to church or small group as a whole? Do you sing in church and out of it? Do you love the Lord?
3) “These words…shall be on your heart.“
Our children need BIBLICAL KNOWLEDGE. How much time do you and your children spend on memorizing verses? Can your children recite the books of the Bible? Do they know how the Bible was written and by whom? How many Christian based books do you read? Do you and your children learn about missionaries and others who are pillars of the faith? How much scripture do you have hanging up in your home? I don’t mean pretty writing that is a part of your decor, although that’s fine. Use note cards to write out verses and tape them on your bathroom mirrors, or on doors. Surround yourself with the words of God.
4) “You shall teach them diligently…”
We are to SYSTEMATICALLY TEACH our children about the ways of God. This is more of a formal way of teaching, perhaps through sermons at church and Family Bible Times at home. Although we do not have them every evening, my husband and I have separated off about 15-20 minutes in the evening when we sit down with the kids, read scripture, and discuss it. Sometimes the children ask questions we don’t know the answers to, and that is ok. Parents do not have to know everything, but we do need to learn about God with our kids.
5) “Talk of them…”
Lastly, we need to take advantage of as many TEACHABLE MOMENTS as possible. This is a less formal way of teaching. This is teaching in daily living. You are familiar with these moments. These are the times when you discuss the TV show that is being watched, or how a person reacted to a situation, or how the child disobeyed, or when a child is scared, or praising God when a prayer is answered. Parents must make sure they know the scriptures well enough so the Holy Spirit can help us bring appropriate scriptures to mind when we need them. These are those special moments when we teach God in the little things. And then those little things build that young person into a pillar of strength when (s)he needs God the most.
It would be great if we could be like Mary Poppins and say, “Spit Spot!” and the chaos of life stops and everything is perfect. Ephesians 5:16 tells us to make the most of every opportunity because the days are evil. We need to redeem our time.
Fighting against Biblical illiteracy takes work and determination. We need to be teaching Bible at home successfully! As parents, we must have our full armor on and wield the sword of the Spirit in our homes. How chaotic is your home? Maybe you need to cut out some activities that are time suckers. If you look at your schedule and you have no idea how to fit in a simple 15 minute Family Bible Time, then something needs to go.
Redeem your time.
I refuse to allow the next generation to turn from God on my watch. Are you with me?
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Anne Marie has a graduate degree in education with a focus on developing curriculum and instruction. Her life journey includes over 25 years (so far!) in Children’s Ministry: Sunday School, Puppetry, Vacation Bible School, Children’s Church, and various outreach ministries. She is the author of the book Walk This Way: Ethics and Sanctification Lessons for Kids. She is also the founder of www.futureflyingsaucers.com where she shares creative, engaging resources and object lessons so parents and teachers can share Jesus with confidence! You can find her on Pinterest, Twitter, and in her Facebook group: Bible Lessons for Kids.