The relationship between children and parents presents a great responsibility to each. When parents bring a child into the world, they become responsible to feed, clothe and train that child up “in the way he should go.” It is the child’s duty to respect and honor his parents and to obey their admonitions as long as they do not conflict with the word of God. As in all things, one must obey God rather than men. When parents fail to teach their children and children refuse to honor and obey their parents, they sin against God, themselves and one another.
Many slaves and masters became Christians. This changed their relationship from master/slave to that of brothers in Christ. Paul recognized this new relationship and admonished the slaves to be obedient to their masters and to give an honest effort from the heart.
The masters were to realize that God as their Master required them to respect the humanity of their slaves and to treat them with respect and compassion. There is no respect with God. The faithful slave will receive the same reward in heaven as the faithful master. This same principle applies to the workplace today. Employees must give an honest day’s work for a day’s pay. Loafing on the job is stealing. Employers or supervisors must treat those working under them with human respect and dignity. God is watching all.