Are Children Responsible for Their Actions
Recently I've been reading the Old Testament history books, and came across a verse that made me stop reading and just sit and stare. As the truth of it hit me, it took my breath away.
II Chronicles 36:9-10 speaks of the boy king Jehoiachin, who began his reign at age eight and reigned only three months and ten days. Then verse 9 says this: "...and he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord." This eight-year-old boy's record shows him committing sins as a king. The fact that his actions are recorded shows that he was aware of them and is responsible for them.
His punishment came quickly. Verse 10 explains how Nebuchadnezzar had him removed from the throne and brought to Babylon. His brother was made king in his place. What a sad end to what could have been a long and righteous reign, if only Jehoiachin had done what was right in the sight of the Lord.
This leads me to ponder about my own children, ages 2 and 4. When will they reach the 'age of accountability'? When are they responsible for their actions? As a Christian parent, I must be vigilant to explain and offer salvation to my own children whenever possible. The earlier they come to a saving knowledge of Jesus, the better chance they have to make good decisions and avoid the fate of Jehoiachin.