In Psalm 78 we read:
1 Give ear, O my people, to my teaching;
incline your ears to the words of my mouth!
2 I will open my mouth in a parable;
I will utter dark sayings from of old,
3 things that we have heard and known,
that our fathers have told us.
4 We will not hide them from their children,
but tell to the coming generation
the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might,
and the wonders that he has done.
5 He established a testimony in Jacob
and appointed a law in Israel,
which he commanded our fathers
to teach to their children,
6 that the next generation might know them,
the children yet unborn,
and arise and tell them to their children,
7 so that they should set their hope in God
and not forget the works of God,
but keep his commandments;
8 and that they should not be like their fathers,
a stubborn and rebellious generation,
a generation whose heart was not steadfast,
whose spirit was not faithful to God. [Psalms 78:1-8 ESV]
The first eight verses of Psalm 78 highlight the importance of passing God’s Word and the memory of His grace on from generation to generation. While the principal place for this work is within the family structure, as made clear elsewhere in the Old Testament, modern Children’s Ministry also plays a part in the process. A close exposition of this Psalm reveals the importance of such an exercise:
1. Children’s Ministry is of the Utmost Importance
The Psalmist calls attention to what he is about to say with the words, “Give ear, O my people, to my teaching; incline your ears to the words of my mouth!” Charles Spurgeon explains the import of this introductory phrase,
“When God gives his truth a tongue, and sends forth his messengers trained to declare his word with power, it is the least we can do to give them our ears and the earnest obedience of our hearts. Shall God speak, and his children refuse to hear? His teaching has the force of law, let us yield both ear and heart to it.”
In many churches today, Children’s Ministry is an afterthought. Volunteers are hard to come by, and funds are not directed to Children’s Ministry. In many churches, not all by any means, the importance of passing biblical truth to children in overlooked in favor of a mere babysitting service.
It’s time for another installment of my take on the chapters from the book What Matters Now in Children’s Ministry. Today, we tackle the chapter from Dan Scott. Dan chose the word “Effectiveness” for what matters now in children’s ministry.
He starts with a quote from Peter Drucker:
“Knowledge work is not defined by its quantity… knowledge work is defined by its results.”Read More
Brief Synopsis: What is the Biblical model for children’s ministry. This article addresses many of the questions that I have had recently.Read More
Brief Synopsis: Check out this list of seven things you should be telling your own kids, and those in your ministry, as much as possible.Read More
Brief Synopsis: Even though I am officially and unequivocally tone deaf, I feel like music is an integral part of how we worship God, and therefore important to children’s ministry as well. As I wrote in this article:
Singing to God and worshipping him in song is prescribed by the Bible. There is no age limit on this commandment, and part of our job as children’s ministers is to make sure that we are equipping kids to progress in their spiritual journey in all areas – including worshipping through song.
I share additional thoughts on the topic in this article.Read More
Here is another article I published over on Ministry-to-Children.com. The article titled How Do You Build Momentum in Your Children’s Ministry? was published on July 9, 2010.
Brief Synopsis: Sometimes we can’t accomplish our goal with one attempt. Building on an article from Gina McClain, I examine the importance of momentum in your children’s ministry.Read More