The Commandment: Honor your father & mother
The Motivation: That your days may be long upon the earth/that it may go well with you.
To a child, parents are God’s representative on Earth. In the beginning man and woman (Adam & Eve) were equal just as Jesus and the Father were equal (John 1:1-3 the Word was equal with God). After Adam and Eve’s sin in the Garden of Eden, the woman was placed in subjection to her husband. It was also at this time that it was decided that Jesus would put himself under the subjection of the Father, so that he may die for Mans sin. God chastens every child that is his (Job 5:17/Hebrews 12:5-9). Just as parents are instructed to use the rod if you love your children (Proverbs 13:24/23:13-14).
Honor is defined as: Respect; esteem; concern for; affection; love; consideration; appreciation; nurture; forgiveness.
Further it means to help them, bring them joy, and improve their lives. Obedience is not at the center of honor. My mother wanted me to own my own retail business, if I choose to make my living blogging instead, I can without dishonoring her.
Treat parents seriously; prevent abuse when they can no longer fend for themselves. There is no clause that if the parents aren’t worthy of honor, that you no longer have to. Take it from a man, whose father stepped out at age 5, came back at age 11, (long enough for my brother to be born) and left again at age 13. During the years my father was present, my memories recollect him as little more than a baby –sitter. There was very little instruction, or wise counsel for the young black male. Even today, he again lives with my mother (they re-married) his father-figure influence on my teenage brother is questionable.
Through it all (most) I still honor him. I traveled from the west side of the city to the South side to visit although he never came to my home, and was usually respectful (we all fall short of the glory of God).
Some will argue that there are children who have been emotionally, physically, and even sexually abused by their mothers and fathers. While this is unfortunate it does not change the commandment of God. There are those who are abused by their neighbor’s or other people in the world. We are commanded to love in every situation. Honor or love does not mean that you have to remain in a bad situation. Not being disrespectful to someone who was disrespectful to you is returning good for evil. And we all know what the reward for that is:
"Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good" (Romans 12:19-21).
Vengeance is the Lord’s. Keep his commandments and he will be your help. King David, the sweet psalmist wrote:
“Hear, O LORD, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me. When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek. Hide not thy face far from me; put not thy servant away in anger: thou hast been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation. When my father and my mother forsake me, then the LORD will take me up” (Psalm 27:7-10).
LET IT BE KNOWN: To honor your parents does not necessarily mean that you have to give a speech about how wonderful they are and present them the ‘parent of the year’ award; or that you have to recite sweet memories during their eulogy. By no means should we be disrespectful of anyone, let alone our parents regardless of what they have done to us.
Ye have heard that it hath been said; Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust (Matthew 5:43-45).
"Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, And hath raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us… That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear” (Luke 1:67-74)
May the Lord bless those who read and study His word… In Jesus name