Train up a child

At IBCZ we set a high priority on teaching the children and this Sunday we are having our official Sunday School reopening and Annual Church BBQ. Classes begin on Sunday and there will be graded classes for different age groups, including teenagers.

Although we believe Sunday School is of vital importance and encourage the whole family to attend, the ultimate responsibility for the spiritual well being of the children rests with the parents. God expects parents to take this important matter seriously, with the added responsibility on fathers to be spiritual leaders in the home. I urge fathers not to abdicate their important role by just sending the children to Sunday School.

Proverbs 22:6 which says, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it,” is a wonderful promise by God for parents to claim. But the emphasis is on “train up a child”. We are to “bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). This involves teaching the Word of God, setting an example by our lives and giving loving discipline so that they will become godly.

The children mimic what children see in their parents’ lives. When I saw my children doing certain things I wondered where they had learnt them, but I soon realised that those habits or actions were home grown, I had demonstrated them. Children are like sponges; they absorb what they see around them. 

The poem, “Children learn what they live” by Dorothy Law Nolte is a challenge to us.


If a child lives with criticism,
he learns to condemn.

If a child lives with hostility
he learns to fight.

If a child lives with ridicule
he learns to be shy.

If a child lives with shame
he learns to feel guilty.

If a child lives with tolerance
he learns to be patient.

If a child lives with encouragement
he learns confidence.

If a child lives with praise
he learns to appreciate.

If a child lives with fairness
he learns justice.

If a child lives with security
he learns to have faith.

If a child learns to live with safety
he learns to prevent accidents.

If a child lives with approval
he learns to like himself.

If a child lives with acceptance and friendship
he learns to find love in the world.

Instruction, advice, and commands will profit little, unless they are backed up by the consistent example of our own lives. Our children will never believe that we are serious if we want them to obey us, as long as our actions contradict our instruction. 

Fathers and mothers, you may have your children dedicated, have them enrolled in the Sunday School, send them to the best of schools, and give them Bibles. You may fill them with head knowledge, but if all this time there is no regular training at home, I fear that their lives may be on rocky ground. Home is the place where habits are formed; and home is the place where the foundations of character are laid. Home gives the basis to our values. Be sure that there is careful and consistent training at home. 

Bruce Davie, Pastor/Elder IBCZ

This Sunday:

10 am Church Prayer Meeting, transport from Kilchberg Station at 09:50

10:30 Worship Service and Sunday School launch, including a youth program. Transport from Kilchberg Station at 10:10 (Thalwil Taxi)

Church Annual BBQ and fellowship following the Worship Service.

Post a comment

Print your tickets