Review of Teach Them Diligently by Leslie Nunnery


Genre: Christian Parenting/Discipleship

Loosely Recommended.

Written in concise, encouraging chapters for the busy parent, Leslie Nunnery uses the illustration of Moses’ exhortation to Israel in Deuteronomy 6:1-8 to encourage parents in discipling their children in the ways of God. This passage expresses the transference of faith within everyday events, as parents continuously model and speak about the glory of God within the household, through symbols, actions, holiday observance, and intentional discipleship.

This resource begins slowly–first only hinting at the significance of the passage–then eventually bringing out some practical ways of discipleship (e.g. being vulnerable with your children, making space for two-way conversation, sharing your own stories of God’s goodness, and so forth). Many parents will be motivated and refreshed by the call to raise up their children, and¬†encouraged by the practical examples.

However, Nunnery barely touches the surface of this significant passage, which is at the heart of both Judaism and the New Testament. Moses is reminding Israel of God’s heart and law, as was received on Mt. Sinai (celebrated as Shavuot–the receiving of Torah). The beginning of Acts opens to a parallel passage as the followers of Jesus gather in Jerusalem for Shavuot (known to Christians as Pentecost), to receive the Holy Spirit. It is the marriage of the Word and Spirit together that allows us to be fully activated in faith, in personal relationship with God, in the ability to love fully, to bear each other’s burdens, to forgive, and to walk worthy of our callings in Christ. I think this resource would be even stronger if parents were encouraged in the Scriptural foundation of the Holy Spirit, which is a needed aspect of drawing together as a family (in fact, unity within the Body was one of the primary signs of the nascent church!). If we want to fully disciple our children, both teaching the Word and living in the Spirit are vital, and there are so many stories and practical applications on both sides of this picture that could be expounded upon!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Master Books.