third and fourth generation

Exodus 20:5

20:5 third and fourth generation. This apparently severe judgment on innocent children cannot contradict the teaching throughout Scripture (e.g., Ezekiel 18:19-20) that each person is individually responsible before God (e.g., Romans 14:12). Nevertheless, it is true that ungodly parents tend to produce ungodly children and grandchildren. In this way, God’s judgment is exercised upon the descendants “that hate me.”

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