Day 213 – How Do You Take this Proverb?

Here’s a proverb that has always encouraged me:

Train up a child in the way he should go;
even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6 ESV

I can hear Steve Green singing that song in my head now. My children listened to his Scripture song CD when they were little (here it is in YouTube). We only had a few Christian kids’ music CDs, but these were great.

I have many friends who were raised in Christian homes, then wandered from the Lord. But eventually, they came back. Stronger than ever. Maybe in part because they were “trained up.”

I’m not saying that everyone who strays from a Christian upbringing will return to Jesus. In fact, I don’t think that’s what this Proverb says. But it’s good to know that in many cases, the Word did not return void.

This is a tough one. Because I also have friends brought up in Christian homes who strayed. They haven’t returned to Jesus or to the way He says to live. Either one.

I think the Geneva Study Bible’s take helps here:

The Hebrew expression includes the idea of inauguration, or starting a child’s life along a particular way. That way is the way of wisdom. Tree wisdom maintains itself because it has the humility to continue learning in the way.

Any comments on the  matter??


Today’s Readings: Esther 1:1-2:23,  Psalm 89:38-45, Proverbs 22:5-6, Romans 2:1-29. See About for what I’m up to with these daily posts. Your daily blogger, Holiday Longing (Reproduce with permission only).


3 thoughts on “Day 213 – How Do You Take this Proverb?

  1. I agree with both of you. On reflection, one of the adults who seems to have turned away came from a family who did the “right” thing but from a legalistic, perhaps abusive, position. Marcy’s emphasis on modeling and the Study Bible’s point about wisdom go together. We need to walk in an obedient way, but obedience that comes out of grace, not law, and an obedience of wisdom.

    I wonder if many adults who feel the pull back to God that Chaotic talks about may come from backgrounds that were more healthy – and perhaps those are the ones who find their way back. My husband and I came from nonChristian backgrounds. It will be interesting to see how our daughters do with their Christian upbringing!

  2. I agree with you about this. After becoming adults, everyone has a choice about whether or not to follow Jesus. There’s certainly no guarantee about what someone will ultimately decide.

    But if they were raised by someone who taught them from a very young age, it seems to be a more deeply embedded conviction, and a general sense that to follow Christ is to “return home” to what they know is right in their heart.

    In their moments of honesty, you’ll hear many people who are running from God who have a sense that there’s something real and true to what they were taught as children, even if they are trying to be hardcore atheists or to lead openly sinful or rebellious lives.

    Obviously people raised in non-Christian or even anti-Christian homes can and do come to faith in Christ. But I think there’s something very powerful about having been taught from a young age.

  3. To me it speaks mostly to what we model for our kids… the habits, patterns of thinking and behavior, that they absorb from us intentionally or not. Since they absorb these things, we should be intentional, reflecting often on what we are modeling.

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