Liberia: 'The Bible Says Honor Thy Father and Mother' - Mcgill Justifies Extravagant Burial

Monrovia — Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Nathaniel McGill, came under fire over the weekend when the burial tomb of his late mother shocked the nation. The extravagance of the tomb is the first of its kind in Liberia's recent history, especially in an era where the economy is struggling; but the Minister says it is a fulfillment of the Fifth Commandment: "Honor thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee."

The Late Ma Watta Varmah's tomb is situated in a state-of-the-art building with electricity built in a secluded compound and a fenced plot of land near the Adventist University of West Africa along the Roberts field highway.

Many questioned the source of funding for such a 'luxury for the dead' and raised several debates on social media.

Minister McGill had earlier said the tomb was built for him by a friend.

However, on Sunday, the Minister provided justification for the lavishness of the tomb.

He posted: "The Fifth of the Ten Commandments reads: "Honor your father and your mother."

This commandment is so important that it is one of the only commandments in the entire Bible that gives a reason for observing it: "That your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you."

According to Minister McGill, as the Fifth Commandment, when a society in which children honor their parents is built, that society will long survive. "The corollary is: A society in which children do not honor their parents is doomed to self-destruction," he stated.

Minister McGill: "In our time, this connection between honoring parents and maintaining civilization is not widely recognized. On the contrary, many of the best-educated parents do not believe that their children need to show them honor, since "honoring" implies an authority figure, and that is a status many modern parents reject. In addition, many parents seek to be loved, not honored, by their children. Yet, neither the Ten Commandments nor the Bible elsewhere commands us to love our parents. This is particularly striking given that the Bible commands us to love our neighbor, to love God, and to love the stranger."

He argued that parents are the only ones who Bible has asked Christians to honor.

He added, "There are many ways to honor parents. The general rule is this: They get special treatment. Parents are unique; so, they must be treated in a unique way. You don't talk to them in quite the same way you do anyone else. For example, you might use expletives when speaking to a friend; but you don't with a parent. You don't call them by their first name. And when you leave their home and make your own, you maintain contact with them. Having no contact with parents is the opposite of honoring them."

Minister McGill went ahead to thank God for giving him a "loving mother" and allowing him to honor her the way he did.

AllAfrica publishes around 800 reports a day from more than 110 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.

X