Some parents insist on bringing their small children into the service during the preaching of the Word. They make it a principle to do so: to train their children, they say. Is this a good—i.e., A biblical—idea?
Think about this verse:
All the people gathered together . . . all who could listen [to the reading and exposition of the law] with understanding. (Nehemiah 8: 1, 2; see also vv. 3; 10: 28) . . .
Others who could not understand because of age or infirmity were not present. This verse refutes the argument of such parents.
Not only do children who can’t understand wriggle, make noises, drop things, etc., distracting those around them who want to hear, but they are being trained by this mistaken idea NOT TO LISTEN. They are being trained to sleep on mom’s shoulder, eat, draw pictures on the bulletin, etc. rather than listening. No wonder they have a hard time later on doing so!