“You have taught me since my childhood O Lord, and I am still telling of your miracle deeds. Now that I’m older do not forsake me until I tell the next generation about your mighty acts and demonstrate your power. “ Psalm 71:18
This is a sort of mission statement that I was given by the Lord, as a parent, and now have as a spiritual mother; to tell the next generation about who God is and teach about His powerful ways, so that all may walk in His paths. Isaiah 2:3
It is about bearing testimony of the mighty things God has done for me, those around me, and throughout history to the next generation. It is also a commitment to demonstrate God’s power in ministry through prayer and in the Holy Spirit.
This is the way that Jesus ministered-he went about teaching and doing the will of the Father through miraculous power.
“I write to give you further details about the life of the Lord and all the things He DID and TAUGHT.” Acts 1:1
Jesus taught and demonstrated the power of God, always to bring people into an encounter with Him so they would know Him experientially. As His disciples we are called to do the same.
In the passage from Psalm David is pledging to tell of God and demonstrate His miraculous power to the next generation. We have the privilege to continue to do this to our children and our children’s children.
David would have learned from his parents and predecessors, going back to Moses, to teach the ways of the Lord to the next generation. He grew up reading the Torah which includes the book of Deuteronomy.
”Be careful and watch yourself closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live. TEACH THEM TO YOUR CHILDREN AND TO THEIR CHILDREN AFTER THEM. Assemble the people before me to hear my words so that they may learn to revere me as long as they live and may teach them to their children” Deuteronomy 4:9-10
David’s heritage was rich, and His Jewish culture was built upon passing on the testimony of God’s powerful deliverance and mighty words by telling them to the next generation.
The method for doing this was to speak of them and write them down for their children. They were to be devoted to doing this constantly.
“These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk (or drive) along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Write them on the door frames of your house.” Deuteronomy 6:6-9
They were to talk about the Lord, His ways and commands constantly, thus passing on the spiritual heritage and legacy to the next generation. This is now our responsibility to do!
We see this demonstrated throughout Scriptures, such as Moses passing on his ministry and leadership to Joshua. We see it in Paul raising up his spiritual son Timothy who had been taught by his grandmother Lois and mother Eunice to take on his ministry after him. ( II Timothy 1:5)
Jesus also lived and worked closely with his 12 and closer-knit group of 3 apostles, throughout his earthly ministry. Then after His resurrection, He told them that they would not only do all the miraculous works that He had done but that they would even greater works through the power of the Holy Spirit. John 14:12
It is our privilege to continue to do the greater works and demonstrate and teach them to our children and grandchildren. There is no greater priority in our parenting than this, whether we homeschool or not.
We are a part of the mission which Jesus commissioned us to do-DISCIPLE NATIONS, and we can start at home!
“One generation commends your work to another, they tell of your mighty acts. They speak of your glorious majesty and power of your awesome works. I will proclaim your great deeds, they celebrate your goodness. Everything you made will praise you, fulfilling your purpose. All your godly children will be found bowing before you. They will demonstrate for all to see your miracles of might and reveal the glorious splendor of your kingdom, which is everlasting and your dominion endures to all generations.”
Psalm 145: 4-7,11,12
In the upcoming weeks I will be sharing some of the specific ways we can teach our children about God’s ways so that they too can walk in His paths all their lives. As I have shared on past posts, using the Word is the most powerful tool! Specifically, the book of Proverbs is a great place to start teaching them wisdom.