He will turn the hearts of the parents to their children, and the hearts of the children to their parents; or else I will come and strike the land with total destruction – Malachi 4:6.
In order to be truly submitted to Christ we have to die to self, so that it is no longer your will ruling and reigning but Christ (the Word) determining your life. This submission can and should be taught us from childhood by parents who are themselves submitted to Christ’s rule by the Spirit.
This notion will inadvertently turn your attention to the parent or parenting, as it were. What is the role of the parent or the father? Psalm 51:5 says, “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin my mother conceived me,” and Proverbs 22:15, “Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; the rod of correction will drive it far from him.” There are innate things (in relation to the flesh) a child is born with that the rod of correction will drive out. I don’t believe this instruction is solely in the confines of spanking, but disciplining, correcting and chastening in love.
A child may be born with gifts but they need to be trained up if they are to succeed in their giftings. Parents will concur that as a child develops they manifest differing characteristics which are not lacking in rebellion and strong will, they are born into it, it is the fallen human nature induced by sin. The solution to it is the fathers. A child left to themself will be destroyed, because they are only a child, they don’t know any better. So the fathers give guidance and counsel, and provide leadership through authority in love. Ephesians 6:4, “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.”
The rod of correction breaks rebellion, strong and self-will in the child. The father teaches the child submission, provides security for their vulnerability and blessed dependence, and teaches them the way of life as a priest in the home. Thus opening the child up to brokenness before the father, a safe place ideally. This prepares the child for leadership and responsibility and best of all their relationship with the Creator God and Christ Jesus their Savior. Of such is the kingdom of heaven!