24 “Obey these instructions as a lasting ordinance for you and your descendants. 25 When you enter the land that the Lord will give you as he promised, observe this ceremony. 26 And when your children ask you, ‘What does this ceremony mean to you?’ 27 then tell them, ‘It is the Passover sacrifice to the Lord, who passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt and spared our homes when he struck down the Egyptians.’” Then the people bowed down and worshiped. 28 The Israelites did just what the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron.
Exodus 12:24-28 (New International Version)
Celebration of God
After the tenth and final plague, the king of Egypt finally obeyed the command of the Lord and agreed to let Israel go free. Following this, the Lord instructed Moses to teach the children of Israel a brand new holiday that they are to follow for the rest of their lives, the Passover Festival. The purpose of this holiday was two-fold. First, it was to establish Israel as a new nation, the Passover was exclusively a Jewish holiday; never again will Israel follow the pagan festivals of the Egyptians. Secondly, it was designed to remind the people, and the generations that were to come after them, the salvation that they had received at the hands of the Almighty.
Importance of Education
As a teacher, I believe that education is vital for the success of the next generation. However, I have been noticing a disturbing trend in schools today. Despite the exhaustive efforts of educators, many students are still not getting the principles that are being taught to them. The reason for this inability to retain what they learn, I suspect, is that they are not being properly supported in their schooling at home.
“Not My Problem”
I have heard stories of teachers informing parents of the struggles their children are having at school. The answer that most parents give to the teachers is alarming: It’s not my problem, you’re the teacher, you deal with it. The process of successfully educating children, I believe, is a two part method. The first is the teacher teaching and modeling the subjects that the child is to master. The second is the family coming around the child offering support and guidance as they proceed in their studies. Without these two components working together, the odds of a child’s success is slim.
Beginning at Home
Education doesn’t begin at school. A child begins their education at home learning the basic fundamentals to succeeding in life, from learning how to walk, talk, and even going to the bathroom. Even when the child leaves the home to go to school doesn’t end the role of the family in a child’s learning. As the child learns new things at school, the family needs to express an interest in what they are learning, and a desire to help them when they are struggling. Knowing that their family is supporting them in their studies, a child is able to push forward in their learning and succeed.
Knowing God at Home
Just as knowledge of the world begins at home, knowledge of the Lord also begins with the family unit. Before there was a need for a Jewish holiday, Jewish children learned about the greatness of God through the stories that were passed down from generation to generation by word of mouth within the family. Even though Israel now had a holiday to celebrate the works of God, it didn’t excuse the family from not continuing to teach the importance of fearing the Lord.
After all, a national holiday may not always produce worship to God. Consider the holidays of Christmas and Easter for example. Throughout the years, they have been devalued as nothing more than days of increased marketing promotion. Only when families teach their children why they celebrate Christmas and Easter can the holidays be viewed for what they really are, celebrations of the miracles of God.
Teaching at Home
Furthermore, it’s not just the job of the church to teach children about the love of God. Parents also need to teach and model the commands which the Almighty has revealed to us in His Holy Bible. For some parents, this seems like a daunting task because they feel inadequate to teach the Bible to their kids.
A Mighty Support Team
Fortunately, parents aren’t alone in this endeavor. They have the church who will come around them and guide them in their teaching. Furthermore, the Lord Himself will be with them to instruct them and comfort them when the education of their children becomes hard.
If we want the next generation of believers to have a clear knowledge of God, we must come around their families and encourage them. Education is a two part process. It is unsuccessful if one part is not pulling its weight.