Here's my understanding. Eli, the priest had two sons(H & P). Eli concentrated so much on his work, thereby ignoring his sons, who turned into such bad little things, they were destroyed in O.T. King David did the same with his sons, but God just let them continue living so we could read about all the perverseness that results from the father neglecting his sons. Anyway, the whole point is, the fathers thought they were so special that the sons would just magically inherit the goodness and they needn't do a thing. And there's the double-trouble. Children must be taught. Samson is another example. His parents figured since he had special abilities from God, they could just sit back and watch the wind blow. And look at what happened in Samson's life. The sins of the father were multiplied in the sons, because the sons were not taught to do right...
Good points. Sometimes we forget the Bible is an instruction manual as well as historical records and a consumer's guide to the warranty. 8~)
I think you make an excellent point about Eli. However, even godly parents can have bad kids. Samuel's children did not "walk" in his ways (1 Sam 8:5).
The scriptures are interesting in that there are numerous stories about godly women helping their children but it's next to impossible to find an example of a godly father/son relationship. I'm reminded of this every father's day. ;O)