Problem Parents

Below are notes to a sermon preached Sunday morning Aug. 27, 2000, at Gospel Light Baptist Church, Albany, Georgia. 


By Michael D. O’Neal                  Pastor, Gospel Light Baptist Church                  Albany, Georgia

Scripture Reading: 2 Chronicles 22:1-5

Text: 2 Chronicles 22:3

2 Chronicles 22:3 He also walked in the ways of the house of Ahab: for his mother was his counsellor to do wickedly.

Introduction: Well, we have done it, America!

We have just about successfully raised a generation of children in America who know almost nothing about God, about decency, about respect for human life, about purity, about marriage, and about character.

Why is that we have so many problem kids? The answer is: We have so many problem KIDS because we have so many problem PARENTS.

The Bible is clear:

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

Children do NOT have to go the way of the world, the flesh, and the devil. They CAN be trained in the way they should go, and when they are old, they will NOT depart from it! That is the dogmatic declaration of the precious, pure, powerful, promises of God!

Understand this: Other than the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, there has never been a perfect child. All children sin. Imperfect children are the result of imperfect parents. No parent has ever practiced Prov. 22:6 perfectly. I am not trying to discourage parents from trying to do their best, but the truth is that no parent has PERFECTLY trained his child in the way he should go.

DO want us to examine the responsibility that parents have in raising their children. I DO want us to realize that, while children are also accountable to God, parents should be held responsible for the rearing of their offspring.

Let’s look at some of the problems we parents have, which cause us to be off the mark in providing proper training for our children.


Genesis 5:3 And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth:

By the time, Adam begat a child in HIS own likeness, after HIS image, he had already been wounded by sin. He had LOST his innocence. He had fallen and possessed a sinful nature, which he passed on to Seth.

A. Some parents have been wounded by desertion

  • They were deserted by mom, dad, or both when they were young.
  • Sometimes they react to this by not ever wanting to discipline their own children.
  • Sometimes they react to this by being overly bitter and angry toward their own children.

B. Some parents have been wounded by defilement

  • All parents have been defiled by having a sinful nature from birth.
  • Some parents were defiled further as children and young adults.

C. Some parents have been wounded by divorce

  • Their parents did not set a good example for them in being one until death.


1 Samuel 3:12-13 In that day I will perform against Eli all things which I have spoken concerning his house: when I begin, I will also make an end. 13 For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not.

Weakness is generally caused by a lack of effort. If you don’t work a particular group of muscles in your body, they will atrophy and be of little use. Many parents are WEAK, because they have been too LAZY about rearing children. It’s WORK to train kids. The nine months of child birth are a BREEZE compared to the 18-21 years of training them into adults!

A. Some parents are weak in checking up on their children

B. Some parents are weak in controlling their children

C. Some parents are weak in correcting their children

D. Some parents are weak in chastising their children

E. Some parents are weak in coaching their children

  • Provide counsel!
  • Provide instruction!
  • Teach them how to do RIGHT .. BEFORE they do wrong!
  • Encourage them!


Proverbs 14:12 There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.

A. They are sometimes wrong about priorities

  • They think it is more important to provide clothes for their kids for school than to provide CHARACTER.
  • They think it is more important for their child to make MONEY than it is for them to serve GOD.

B. They are sometimes wrong about punishment

    • They think their children will turn out all right without spankings.
    • Proverbs 13:24 He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.
  • Proverbs 29:15 The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame.

C. They are sometimes wrong about principles

  • They have not learned to put God first in their OWN lives, so they don’t teach their children to do it, either!

Example of deceitful parents:

A large family, with seven children, moved to a new city. They were having a difficult time finding an apartment to live in. Many apartments were large enough, but the landlords objected to the large family. After several days of searching, the father asked the mother to take the four younger children to visit the cemetery, while he took the older three to find an apartment.

After they had looked most of the morning they found a place that was just right. Then the landlord asked the usual question: “How many children do you have?” The father answered with a deep sigh, “Seven…but four are with their dear mother in the cemetery.”

He got the apartment. 🙂


2 Kings 24:8-9 Jehoiachin was eighteen years old when he began to reign, and he reigned in Jerusalem three months. And his mother’s name was Nehushta, the daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem. 9 And he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his father had done.

A. Sometimes they are distracted by the world, the flesh, and the devil from their task of training their children

B. Sometimes they are disloyal to each other

  • Fornication
  • Fighting – husband not loving the wife as Christ loved the church; wife not submitting herself to her husband as unto the Lord

C. Sometimes they are disobedient to God

We need a revival of PARENTS if we are to see children turn out right!

PRAY for the parents of this church! Pray for their children!

If you are a parent, take heed to the word of God!

If you are a parent, choose THIS day to serve God in the matter of bringing up your children! SHOW them how to live, in addition to TELLING them how to live! Remember that God did not give you children to ignore as much as possible until they get old enough to get out of your hair; He gave them to you to RAISE for HIM!!!

That Little Fellow’s Dad

I may never be as clever as my neighbor down the street,
I may never be as wealthy as some other men I meet.
I may never have the glory that some other men have had,
But I’ve just got to be successful as that little fellow’s dad.

There are certain dreams I cherish, that I’d like to see come true,
There are things that I’d accomplish before my working time is through.
But the task my heart is set on is to guide a little lad,
And to make myself successful as that little fellow’s dad.

O, I may never come to glory and I may never gather gold,
And men may count me as a failure when my business life is told.
But if he who follows after shall be godly, then I’ll be glad,
Because I’ll know I’ve been successful as that little fellow’s dad.

It’s the one job that I dream of, it’s the task I think of most,
For if I fail that little fellow, I have nothing else to boast.
For the wealth and fame I’d gather, all my fortune would be sad,
If I fail to be successful as that little fellow’s dad.

author unknown


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