Throughout the bible, God teaches us that we must honor our father and mother.
Ephesians 6:2 “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— 3 “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
In the Ten Commandments, the first commandment is “You shall have no other gods before me.” However, in Ephesians, the bible teaches that “Honor your father and mother” is the first commandment. Then what is the relationship between the two commandments?
The first commandments, “You shall have no other gods before me” means that God is the only one who gave salvation to the people and thus God’s people must worship only God, not the idols, which has no power to give salvation. And “Honor your father and mother” is the fifth commandment in the Ten Commandments.
Then why does Paul says that “Honor your Father and Mother,”—which is the fifth commandment—is the first commandment that we have to keep? When God commanded that we should not have no other gods before us, it means that we must worship only God. In the Old Testament, God revealed himself as God Jehovah and people called him as Lord. And the Israelites worshiped God as Jehovah.
However, when Jesus came 2000 years ago, he taught that God is our Father since we receive flesh and blood from God. We now can called God as Father since we are considered as children of God. And in the Book of Galatians, God teaches us that we have our Mother, that is, God the Mother in heaven.
Galatians 4:26 But the Jerusalem that is above is free, and she is our mother.
And Paul continues to teach that we can become the children of promise, or God’s people who receive the promise of eternal life from God. Therefore, when God taught his people that they must honor their father and mother, actually God was teaching them that they must honor the spiritual Father and Mother, God Elohim. And in that way, they come to fulfill the first commandment, “You shall have no other gods before me.”
Through the respect for the physical father and mother, God wanted to teach us the worship of God Elohim, our spiritual Father and Mother. By keeping this commandment, we can worship only God who gives us eternal life.
Hebrews 12:9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live!
Through our love for the physical parents, God ultimately wants to teach us about our love for our spiritual Parents, God the Father and God the Mother. Let us honor our parents with all hearts, minds and soul. And then we can fulfill the first commandment, “You shall have no other gods before me.”
And God sternly commanded that those who do not honor their father and mother must be put to death. Through this we can know that how important it is to keep the fifth commandment. It was given only for the physical parents. It was teaching of God for the children of God to teach them that they must honor the Spiritual Parents for the salvation. Those who do not honor God the Father and God Mother cannot receive salvation.