A Good Read: “The Faithful Parent” by Martha Peace & Stuart Scott

faithfulparent


Martha Peace is a Bible teacher and counselor to women, through Faith Biblical Counseling Center in Sharpsburg, GA. Stuart Scott is an associate professor of Biblical Counseling at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. Dr. Scott and Mrs. Peace collectively have fifty years of experience in biblical counseling and teaching. They have each raised two children, and have a combined 14 grandchildren. In the book, The Faithful Parent, Dr. Scott and Mrs. Peace blend their biblical training with their practical experience as parents to produce a very compelling and useful guide for all parents who desire to raise their children in a God-honoring manner.

The book is divided into three parts. In Part One, the authors discuss the biblical basis for Christian parenting. The assertion is that the parent’s role is to be faithful to the two primary responsibilities that God has entrusted to them:  1) to bring their children up in the discipline of the Lord, and 2) to bring their children up in the instruction of the Lord. The goal for Christian parents is to reliably and faithfully obey the Lord in this call. The foundation for this faithful charge as parents is their own daily maturity in Christ, as they themselves strive to become more like Christ each day. The authors remind parents that they are to teach their children diligently what God is like, what man is like, what sin is, and what God has done to take away sin. Our children, on the other hand, are called to obey their parents and honor their parents in the Lord. Children are to always obey, unless they are being asked to sin. In this section, Stuart Scott also addresses the most important aspect of our children’s lives – salvation and sanctification.

In Part Two, the authors explore the different stages of childhood, from infancy to teenager, and give practical wisdom and principles for discipline and instruction. They consistently remind parents of common sense tips and biblical principles for each stage of growth. They also address the nature and temperaments of each developmental age and how to effectively discipline and instruct children as they advance through childhood. The authors also address the many ways in which parents can provoke their children to anger and disobedience. At the end of each chapter, the book provides review questions to help parents think about and apply the principles learned.

In Part Three, Scott and Peace address the persistent and steadfast parenting that arises during times of trial, sinfulness, and suffering. In this section, the authors explore briefly the special cases of parenting. Some of the topics they cover are single parenting, divorced parents, blended families, an absentee parent, homes with one Christian parent and one unbelieving parent, grandparent problems, and children with special needs. This is not an in depth study, but rather a quick overview of special situations, with practical advice for parents in these situations.

This final section of the book also covers the child that rejects the gospel and turns away from faith in Christ. It provides biblical principles to remember while persevering through hardship, poor choices, sinful situations, etc. The authors even supply a 30 day devotional to reorient the parent’s heart and mind throughout their trial and suffering.

The book ends with four appendices that serve to assist parents with presenting the Gospel to their children, dealing with sin in their own lives, raising a godly man, and taking their own thoughts captive. This book is a thoughtful and practical resource for parents to gain a biblical understanding of their God ordained responsibility, and it provides applicable strategies to implement in the lives of their children. It is a great reference for parents who are striving to bring their children up in the discipline and the instruction of the Lord.

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