Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. (Ephesians 5:25-28)
Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them. Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord. Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged. (Colossians 3:19-21)
A FEW WORDS OF PERSPECTIVE. In our modern world, every town has a mayor; every state has a governor; our nation has a president. Every school has a principal. Every university has a president. Every army has a commanding general. Every church has a pastor. Every airliner has a commanding pilot. Every wing unit has a wing commander. Every ship has a captain. Every tribe has a chief. Every corporation has a legal CEO. Every flock of wild geese has a head goose. On and on it goes.
WHY IS THERE SUCH A STRUGGLE TODAY to pretend the home does not need and does not have a head? Where does the idea come from that every family member has an equal voice and there is no real leader in the family? Our federal tax system does not believe that. Our Social Security system and our Welfare System does not believe that. The IRS does not believe that. These units of government designate someone in the home as the head of the household.
EVERY FAMILY HAS A HEAD: the husband and father. If there is no husband and father, then the wife and mother is the head. The head of the family is the CEO (Chief Executive Officer). Some very sincere people in this country believe in an egalitarian society; a society where everyone is equal, and nobody is boss. That’s Disney World stuff. Friend, everybody cannot sign the checks. The bank will not let just anyone in the family sign for a bank loan.
God was ahead of this game long before the experimenters came along to tinker with the machinery. Strong families make strong churches, strong schools, strong communities, and strong government. Weak families result in chaos, disadvantage, poverty, and sorrow.
The Christian family as outlined in the Bible is an ideal to be achieved by individuals who commit themselves to the idea and carry it out. All Christians do not have a Christian home. But, what a blessing it is to live in a Christian home.
THE FIRST DUTY OF A CHRISTIAN HUSBAND is to love his wife as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for it. Men are to love their wives as their own bodies. That’s a very high standard and is the foundation of the Christian home. Someone in a Bible conference explained that when he had been away from home for several days and returned home, the wife and children were always at the door to greet him. It was his practice to always kiss the wife first, and then the children. He never kissed the children first.
That did not deprive the children of the love due them. It made the children feel secure in that they knew their mother and daddy loved each other supremely. If daddy and mama loved each other, they were secure and loved in that home. This would also prevent the children from playing one parent against the other parent in try to manipulate them for their own selfish purposes. It’s hard for children to break up the home when daddy and mama are bonded as one.
THE TEENAGE GANGSIN CHICAGO AND OTHER LARGE CITIES stem from absentee fathers. That’s not my idea. That’s what some of the top sociologists and psychologists write. Few boys want to grow up and be like their mothers. After the first 7-8 years the boys lean heavily toward male influence. In the absence of fathers, they congregate toward each other and toward the leadership that rises out of their group.
Their group is stronger if there is a threat outside their group. So, they have gangs and gang territories, and gang warfare. Most of it stems from the absence of fathers in the homes of the boys. Community gymnasiums help some, but they cannot take the place of a personal father who loves them and guides them and dusts their britches if necessary.
I read of a problem in Africa that resulted from gathering up all the old elephants and moving them to a secluded area. Suddenly, the young elephants began to go on rampages, destroying villages. One of the old men who had worked with elephants all his life immediately recognized the problem. He called the village elders together and explained that the great need was to bring back the old elephants and they would oversee the young trouble makers. Sure enough, when the old elephants were brought back to the village, when they saw the young elephants misbehaving, they boxed their ears and took charge of the trouble makers. The problem was solved in a few days.
I have listened to my share of problems in the home. It is not all “fun and privilege” to be the head of the household. It is not as much privilege as it is responsibility. We can talk about the mechanics of why homes have problems, but the hard core of what makes a family work or not work is in the verses above. If a man loves his wife, truly loves his wife, a lot of things will work out that otherwise will develop into big problems. It has always been that way and will always be that way.
We have this prophecy concerning John the Baptist and what his mission would be. And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord. (Luke 1:17)
JOHN'S MISSION WAS TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE FATHERS TO THE CHILDREN. The result of that, if it succeeded, was to turn disobedient children toward the wisdom of people who would live and carry out just living. These are the kind of people who would follow the will of God. John the Baptist preached hard and succeeded to a small degree. Mostly though, the results were small, shallow, and short-lived.
The prophet who overshadowed him was Elijah, who called down fire from heaven on Mt. Carmel. Did Elijah succeed? Only to a limited degree. People responded on the surface, but they wouldn’t give up their idols. Elijah was caught up in a flaming chariot into Heaven and Elisha took his place with twice as much power as Elijah had. But Elisha didn’t get far with the deep-seated idolatry that was in the hearts of the people.
THE FATHERS WERE THE PROBLEM! The great need of the nation was to turn the hearts of the fathers toward their children and to train their children to respect God and obey Him.
McGee says it like this: “Let us understand clearly that although John the Baptist went forth in the spirit and power of Elijah, he was not Elijah. John would turn the hearts of the fathers to the children. He was to bridge the generation gap. Our problem today is not so much that there is a gap between the adults and youth but that there is a gap between adults and God. If adults had a proper relationship with God, they would not have the problem with young people that exists.” (McGee)
Fathers are the priests of the home. The fathers are responsible to see that the family eats together, prays together, works together and weeps together. That’s a tall order in many families. But if it is done, it will work. If it is not done, the unity of the family is weakened. There is no substitute for an active Christian father and husband in maintaining a Christian home. When there is no Christian father, then the mother must do the best she can. There are many godly mothers who are doing just that! Ω
Read Through the Bible in a Year
FEBRUARY 9, 2018 – FRIDAY
A.M. Leviticus 7-9 P.M. Matthew 25:31-46
(Bible Gateway will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
A Good Verse to Memorize:
Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. (1Corinthians 10:31)
Song for Today:
Have You Been in the Garden With Jesus? (2:52)( Evangelist Lester Roloff) Brother Roloff preached and sang many times at the Highland Park Baptist Church, in the larger auditorium next to the Phillips Chapel .)
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