There are two mentions of relationships between parents and children in the Ten Commandments. Both involve spiritual transfer from the parents to the children; one is bad and one is good.
“… visiting the sins of the parents upon the children” Exodus 20:5).
“Honor your father and your mother that your days might be long” (Exodus 20:12).
The negative spiritual transfer from parents to children is called a “curse.” The positive spiritual transfer is a “blessing”. If we find ourselves in a curse situation, we need to repent of our sins, forgive our parents, and break the negative transfer.
A key to successful transition from childhood to adulthood is to perceive which influences from our parents were positive and which were negative. We then reject the negative, thus breaking the curse. But how can we receive the blessing?
In one word: honor. To honor is to receive blessing. We could summarize: respect authority – receive blessing. As respect flows upward blessings flow downward. The “flow” is both up and down, and can be either good or bad.
The apostle Paul (Saul) expanded on this principle in the book of Ephesians. The blessings are not just “long life,” but every other blessing as well. And the authority is not just parental but in every other sphere as well.
“Honor your father and your mother” is the first commandment with a promise” (Ephesians 6:2).
Paul explains that the flow of authority is divided into four primary spheres of life: family (Ephesians 5:21-6:4), employment (6:5-6:9), government (Romans 13:1-7), and congregation (I Timothy 3:1-13; 5:17; Hebrews 13:17).
May God grant us the grace and wisdom to discern when we should remove ourselves from abusive authority so as not to be hurt; when we should reject negative influences so as to break curses; and when we should respect authority so as to receive blessing!
All blessings from honoring authority on earth are imperfect and partial. However we can also receive blessings directly from heaven by honoring God through praise and worship.
“Blessing and glory and wisdom, thanksgiving, and honor and power and might be to our God forever” (Revelation 7:12)!
As we give Him honor upward, He pours out blessings downward upon us, gloriously, powerfully, and eternally.