Sibling Rivalry


Sibling rivalry is an issue that has plagued families throughout history.  Parents have been grieving over it as far back as Adam and Eve.  Most parents think the big question is “How can we get our kids to get along with each other and stop fighting?”  But if we deal with the problem on that level, we’ll never solve it.  Because relationships between siblings are not the root issue.


Early in our marriage, my husband and I received advice on this from a couple that were years ahead of us in both the parenting and Christian experience.  They explained that when siblings fight, the real problem is not among the children.  It is an issue between the children and their parents!


Think about it.  If we parents instruct our children to be kind to one another and the kids start fighting, they are acting in direct defiance to us.  It’s an obedience issue.   When children learn there are consequences for disobedience, the fighting will stop. 


This same principle holds true in the Church today.  Jesus said, “A new commandment I give unto you, that you love one another…” John 13:34.  That’s not at all complicated.  And it is a command.


Christians and churches which fight among each other are acting in defiance of God’s command.  Yet few think of it that way or recognize that there are consequences.  It’s time to understand the enormity of this sin.  And, how simply it can be solved.  First, we need a proper respect for, and healthy fear of, the Lord.  Then, we just need to repent, obey Father God, and let Him deal with our Christian “siblings.”


5 Responses

  1. Great post…..Very wise friends you have!

  2. I have 3 teens and while growing up they didn’t do much fighting. They usually worked out any issues pretty well. I’m noticing a little more passion in their disagreements now. Still, they do follow a pretty good standard as far as respecting each other and showing love and forgiveness.

    It can be tough dealing with fussing and fighting all the time. I have seen many families that have this constantly.
    I also know many adults that are not close to their siblings because of fighting when they were growing up.
    Great post.

  3. Isn’t it sad when families are fragmented? I see it, too, and feel so sorry for them. Second only to Him, God intended family to be our greatest support system. How tragic whem people miss that.

    Now that I think about it, I think I’ll pray for many reconciliations to take place during the holidays this year.

  4. Another way to look at it: Sibling Rivalry can bring them together. My bro and i used to fight like mad. now we’re closer than ever and can laugh about our stupid past fights. ahhh memories.

  5. Thanks for the prod–well said!

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