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kids reading the bible

Parenting is tough, no matter what stage you’re in. Whether it’s the long nights of trying to get babies to sleep or those spent waiting up anxiously for teenagers to come home, it’s a challenge that stretches each of us. Thankfully, we are not in it alone. God gives us both promises and instruction for raising our little ones. Here are 45 verses about parenting to help you through the tough times. 

The day my husband and I brought our newborn daughter home from the hospital, I had a meltdown. In light of the fierce love I felt for our new baby girl, my stack of parenting books suddenly seemed woefully inadequate. Our new baby deserved something more solid and sure.

After shedding a bucket of tears and then listening to the wisdom of a dear friend, I chose Bible verses about parenting as my new roadmap.

Whether you’re navigating life with a toddler, learning to deal graciously with middle schoolers, or helping your teens transition into adulthood, the Bible offers an unlimited supply of Scriptures on raising a child. In fact, Bible verses about raising children offer wisdom and encouragement for every stage of parenting.

Using the Bible as a guide is the single most effective parenting decision I’ve ever made. That’s why I’ve gathered some of my favorite Bible verses and arranged them in an easy-to-use format. In a nutshell, I want you to benefit from what I’ve learned about parenting in the Bible.

 

BIBLE VERSES ABOUT PARENTING RESPONSIBILITIES

TRUST GOD

No two parenting journeys are alike. It’s tempting to look at other moms and compare our family to theirs, but that’s never a good idea. Individual personalities, family dynamics, and unique circumstances require us to resist the pressures of motherhood and forge our own paths. We do that by fixing our eyes on the Lord.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6).

 

BUILD A SOLID FOUNDATION 

The Bible provides a strong foundation for a Christian home. How we act, what we do, and the decisions we make should all flow from a heart guided by the Scriptures.

When it comes to living out the Scriptures, no amount of ‘faking it’ will pass the smell test. If we say one thing and do another, invariably our kids will sniff out our hypocrisy and reject the faith we’re pretending to believe. That’s why the Bible calls us to not only hear the Scriptures, but obey them.

Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock… And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand” (Matthew 7:24,26).

 

ARRANGE YOUR PRIORITIES

Countless activities, pursuits, and people vie for a mom’s time and energy. If we’re not careful, good things will rob us of God’s best things. That’s why it’s important to keep our priorities in line.

“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Matthew 6:33).

 

TEACH SUBMISSION

The Bible is clear that parents should teach their children to be submissive; to respect and obey them.

“He must manage his own family well, having children who respect and obey him” (1 Timothy 3:4, NLT).

Bible verses about obeying parents are plentiful. Perhaps that’s because learning to submit to parents sets the stage for children to comprehend a divine order. Children are commanded to honor their parents, and their parents, in turn, are responsible to God.

“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you” (Exodus 20:12).

“Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right” (Ephesians 6:1).

Hear, my son, your father’s instruction, and forsake not your mother’s teaching” (Proverbs 1:8).

“‘Honor your father and mother’ (this is the first commandment with a promise), ‘that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land’” (Ephesians 6:2-3).

“Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord” (Colossians 3:20).

“Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old” (Proverbs 23:22).

 

BE AN EXAMPLE

When speaking about hypocritical parents, someone said, “Your children can’t hear what you’re saying because your actions are speaking too loudly.” We can’t just tell our kids how to behave. Instead, we have to lead by example.

Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned…” (Titus 2:7-8a).

“I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well” (2 Timothy 1:5).

 

SHARE GOD’S FAITHFULNESS

When God miraculously and powerfully formed the nation of Israel, He told them to make sure to tell the next generations all He’d done for them. In the same way, we’re to share His faithfulness with our children. But it’s important to note we can’t share what we haven’t personally experienced.

“Only take care, and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things that your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. Make them known to your children and your children’s children” (Deuteronomy 4:9).

“Tell your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children to another generation” (Joel 1:3).

 

DO THE HARD WORK OF DISCIPLINE

Although it’s natural for children to sometimes resist rules, they flourish under loving discipline. Many Scriptures on parenting make this clear.

To discipline means “to direct, supervise, correct, restrain, and train.” It’s a job that takes hard work and consistency, but the rewards are immeasurable.

“Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him” (Proverbs 13:24).

“For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it” (Hebrews 12:11).

“Discipline your son, and he will give you rest; he will give delight to your heart” (Proverbs 29:17).

“The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left to himself brings shame to his mother” (Proverbs 29:15).

“Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline drives it far from him” (Proverbs 22:15).

“Discipline your children while there is hope. Otherwise you will ruin their lives” (Proverbs 19:18, NLT).

“Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4).

“Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6).

 

USE THE BIBLE FOR INSTRUCTION

When the Bible informs our decisions, God Himself becomes the final Authority for our children’s lives. With His precepts guiding our lives, ultimately our kids answer to Him rather than to us.

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16).

“And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates” (Deuteronomy 6:6-9).

 

BIBLE VERSES ABOUT PARENTING

BE COMPASSIONATE

A lot of people find it fairly easy to be loving and compassionate―until they get home. It shouldn’t be that way. The people in our homes―children included―are worthy of our love and respect.

“Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart” (Proverbs 3:3).

“Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins” (1 Peter 4:8).

“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (1 Corinthians 13:4-7).

“Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice” (Ephesians 4:31).

“Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged” (Colossians 3:21).

 

WATCH HOW YOU TALK

The Bible points out that our words potentially bring either life or death―in other words, they can have immeasurable impact. That’s why it’s important to weigh our words carefully.

Speak the truth, but always in love: “Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ” (Ephesians 4:15).

Don’t underestimate the power of good timing: “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver” (Proverbs 25:11).

Don’t tell your kids what they want to hear as often as you tell them what they need to hear: “Whoever rebukes a man will afterward find more favor than he who flatters with his tongue” (Proverbs 28:23).

Measure what you say. Make sure your words are helpful and not harmful: “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear” (Ephesians 4:29).

 

FORGIVE EASILY 

Our children will naturally frustrate, disappoint, and sometimes anger us. When they do, we can choose to forgive. Forgiveness doesn’t mean we don’t discipline. It means we’re less likely to do it out of anger, bitterness, or harshness.

“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32).

 

ADMIT WHEN YOU’RE WRONG

One of the hardest things to do as a parent is admit we’re wrong. Nonetheless, saying we’re sorry is a powerful tool for reconciliation.

“So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift” (Matthew 5:23-24).

“Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24)!

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

 

SCRIPTURE FOR HURTING PARENTS

DON’T STRESS

Every parent will agree that raising children can be stressful. But the Bible reminds us to, “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you” (1 Peter 5:7, NLT).

“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Matthew 6:34).

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).

 

DON’T LOSE HOPE

Our trials don’t take God by surprise. He’s aware of everything we face as a mom, and He has everything we need to endure. In fact, He ensures ultimate victory. So, we can trust Him in every circumstance.

“For nothing will be impossible with God” (Luke 1:37).

“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).

“Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved” (Psalm 55:22).

 

TOMORROW IS A NEW DAY

No matter how hard we try, sometimes we simply blow it. But we don’t have to despair, because God’s mercy is unlimited. In fact, there’s a fresh supply for us every single day.

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:22-23).

 

THE BLESSING OF USING BIBLE VERSES ABOUT PARENTING 

There’s nothing more terrifying or thrilling than parenting. Whether you’re a new or seasoned mom, you’ve no doubt experienced both the uncertainties and joys of parenting, often intermingled on a daily basis. With Bible verses about parenting as a roadmap, we can be confident that God will guide us through the ups and downs of each new day.

Most importantly, using the Bible as our guide will make our parenting more fruitful. I pray that one day you’ll be able to say, “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth” (3 John 1:4).

 

What Bible verses have encouraged you in your parenting journey? We would love to hear them!

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2 comments
  1. Such sage advice! As our world spins and changes, God’s word provides an anchor. That’s never more needed than in the turbulent years of parenting. Thank you for sharing your insight and experience, and pointing us all back to Him.

  2. The truth spoken through each of these scriptures is so foundational. Thank you for providing sturdy scriptural stepping stones through the unpredictable waters of motherhood. An encouraging read that I’ll keep coming back to!

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