I Am But a Child
Basket of Figs, October, 2007
I am but a little child: I know not how to go out or come in.
“But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.” (Heb 5:14 AV)
We do not expect babies to digest pork chops and we mustn’t leave it to them to make good moral choices.
Liberal theology has had a devastating effect on American Christianity, and one of the most evil ideas is the one that children understand truth better than adults do. Because of this we are expected every few days to listen to the opinions of first graders or ninth graders on the effects of global warming, whether the war in Iraq is right, or whether sodomites should be allowed to marry other sodomites. Then we are expected to simper, “Isn’t that sweet? How wise the child is. I wish everyone could be so innocent and discerning.” Ugh. [See my article on “Become as Children?” at http://basketoffigs.org/misc/CHILDREN.htm].
I, for one, do not care what some ignorant kid thinks about anything, even about himself, UNLESS, his parents have been wise enough to exercise his senses “to discern both good and evil.” I have known young people who have been very mature in their moral choices, but that is not generally the case nowadays.
The Holy Spirit tells us that the “senses” must be “exercised to discern both good and evil.” The word translated “senses” means the understanding, the reason, the faculty of the mind that makes judgments or sees the differences between things. It does not refer to the emotion or the will, but to the faculty of reason that discerns the nature of things.
This faculty must be “exercised” in order to work properly. “Exercise” means to “exercise vigorously.” The ability to understand the difference between right and wrong is an ability that comes from vigorous mental exercise.
We would not send a youth into a football game without vigorous preparation which would involve exercises to increase strength, stamina, and skill, for by so doing we would endanger his health and perhaps his life. But we seem to think that they can face life without vigorous training in morals.
The morals of the young are not “up to them.” It is especially required of Christian parents to “bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” It is criminal to ignore this training.