We have learned two weeks ago that the title “father belongs to the person who raised the child not necessary the one who helped create one. Last week we learned that some cases biological fathers go away either before the birth or sometimes during the growing up era. We also learned last week that not only should we forgive absentee / or bad fathers, but we showed you how. Today we are going to offer “A Salute to Your Father”Let’s start off with our basic verse:
Exodus 20:12 Proverbs 22:6
So, let’s look at why we need to and how to honor our fathers:
Exodus 20:12 We are all aware of the commandment in the bible that tells us to honor our parents. So straight forward? Not really!
We don’t get to choose whether we want to honor our father based on our feelings. We need to honor our father because the above verse is not only a bible commandment but it’s also one of the Ten Commandments.
The fifth commandment from the bible also displayed in: Deuteronomy 5:16
Now that you understand that God expects you to honor your father because it’s His commandment. We also are honoring God when we honor our father because it’s his way. Proverbs 3:5
We have all at one time or another tried to figure out what nationality we are. My wife for example, she is Indian, Polish, German & Irish which is an interesting combination for this Canadian Irish man, but we survive.
We have attempted to trace our roots to see what celebrities might be in our ancestry. I am sure somewhere I have a great – great – great – great grandfather who was a war hero of some kind. My wife’s boss has a niece that is a celebrity country singer and my wife lived several doors down from the great Yogi Berra.
Scientist have tried to prove and, in some cases, still trying to prove that the earth was created by means other than what the book of Genesis tells us. Let them continue to prove this as they say we were evolved. Well Moses tells us in Genesis that God created Man who was the first father. Genesis 1:26 – Genesis 1:28
So, no matter the family history, God created your father in the image of Him. That makes your father as priceless as you to God. So, when you fail to honor your father, you must remember God’s love for your father as well as for you. God displayed his love for you but also for your father when he died on the cross to pay the ultimate price for our sins. Those sins that he paid the ultimate price for were not just yours but your father’s also. Isaiah 43:7 Ephesians 3:9-10
Have you ever heard of the saying, “You were just a twinkle in my eye” referring to thoughts of you prior to being brought into this world? Better yet you ever give any thought to what would be if you were not born to your present parents?
We are not going to rehash the topic of the title of father belongs to the person who raised you if not the same person. We covered this in detail last week.
There is one fact that you can not take away from your father whether he is the man that stays and raises you or just help create you. You must honor your father because through him God gave you your life. Proverbs 23:22
Just for that fact, you should salute your father. However, statistics tend to creep in here somewhere. The latest being twenty million children grow up in a fatherless home. Whether he left before the birth or somewhere between conception and growing up, you can take pride that the cause was not you and you can honor him that he created you because God wanted you created.
Ok so your father left and that is not a good thing. I get it. You are feeling lost, depressed, angry, upset, rightfully so. I get it. So why not focus on ways to honor him because God made you through him instead of being disappointed all the time. Concentrate on what you can control. Psalms 139:14
Here a thought to ponder for a moment, if God did not give us the gift of life of Jesus through his father, who would be going to heaven? When you respect God’s gift of life to you through your father, then you are honoring God.
Who do you think of when you hear the term role model? For most of us we probably have had a few different ones’ different times in our lives. But how many of us remember our father as a role model?
How about God as your role model?
We all know that God is the perfect father. Matthew 5:48
God created us through our father with the hopes that the father will love, nurture you and raise you up in a biblical manner. The ultimate goal that the Lord had for your father was to love you to the same extent that God loves all his children. Ephesians 5:1
Most fathers consider their children valuable. I personally can’t name a father who wouldn’t race to assist their child that is in trouble. This says the child is very valuable.
God also considers us valuable.
Matthew 6:26 God hopes that fathers will set their children on the right track and they will follow that through the rest of their lives. Proverbs 22:6
However, we must take a look at those fathers that were not active in your life. These would be the fathers we discussed in part two but may also be the ones that passed away prior to you being born.
If any of the above should ever present itself in your life, you must remember that God will step in and become your father. What a better role model? Psalm 68:5
You must know and believe that the Lord will always keep an watch over you, will suffer for you, and will protect you no matter what. Psalm 146:9 Psalm 10:18
No matter what role your father plays or played in your life, whether he was completely involved, partially involved, or absentee, take the time to honor the role of fatherhood that God created.
Life is Good
Three questions for you here. Ever look at your life and say “Life is good” or I have it made or what makes life good?
As a child growing up life is good if you have a loving family, with Christian beliefs, you are fed, and have clothes on your back. Education and friends add to a child’s life is good. As you get older you get more responsibilities, but you also receive more privileges.
A young adult might consider an apartment, college or a job, a car, as having life good. Along with friends and a girlfriend and life is great. But wait a minute, where did the Christian beliefs go?
An adult will definite have a career, a home, family, friends, a car or two, and possible a few hours to themselves. Leading the family biblically is the icing here.
The expression of happiness from a father is generally when the child is grown up and the new journey for the child starts but still walking in the biblical path that you taught.
As an adult who chooses to honor their father will receive lifelong benefits. Ephesians 6:2
One of the gifts you will receive for honoring your family is the promises of your life more meaningful or rewarding. This valuable reward will not only assist you but will also be valuable to your family.
I am sure you have all heard the saying what you do reflects on others. What you do on a job site reflects on the company or what you do in public reflects on you, maybe those with you, or even you family. Today what we say or post on social media reflects on us.
Well the way we honor our father also reflects on us. If you dishonor or not honor your father, it’s likely that is how you will honor the Father in heaven. It is assumed that you have rebellious or an unforgiving heart.
Likewise, if you honor your earthly father, then you will honor your Father in heaven. The first words of the prayer Mathew 6:9-13: “Pray then like this, Our Father in heaven…”,
Now this doesn’t mean that you can’t list or accept your father’s fault. However, we learned in part two of this series how to forgive our fathers for these stated faults. Now we are only remembering them so that we may show forgiveness and not to judge because judging is considered a sin. Luke 6:37
So, we are not to judge, and we are to forgive and forget. However, we need to consider some possibilities as we ponder forgiving our father’s faults and honoring him:
Have you ever considered that maybe your father did the best that he could and that was not up to your expectation? It is possible that because your father like all of us was born as a sinner and because of anything like insecurity, immature, fears, or selfishness, he was a poor father.
Was your father young when you were born? Did your father have a father? It is strongly possible that your father didn’t have the tools to do the job because he was never given the tools or trained. Dr. Lemon, a well-known psychologist, says that men learn from their mothers by how the father treats them.
There are documentaries and television show out there about trying to reconnect fathers with children that have been without a father. Most of the time, fathers that have left not only are they unhappy, they do honestly realize what they are missing.
On the other hand, sometimes the same fathers come to realize how much hurt they have caused the children by not being there for them. This usually puts regrets and sorrow in the picture bringing a conclusion of staying away. Fathers that have been away and come to realize all of this have also come to realize there may be rejection if they attempt to re-unite with the fatherless child. Other fathers come to the realization that they just don’t deserve to be a part of the fatherless child’s life.
If you were a child of mistreatment from your father and nothing was done about it, and he doesn’t take responsibility then you might have a hard time forgiving and that would be understandable. However, no matter the situation, forgiveness is the right thing to do because in the end God will make all things right. Revelations 21:5
For all that you have been through, look for the day when all will be right. This is better than when mom wipes away the tears or kisses the boo-boo. Revelations 21:4
As a child you are always taught that you do not correct an adult. Well God says do not correct your father for any faults he may have committed. This will be handled by God who does not accept your father’s faults but remember he has the authority over your father not you.
We face a lot of authority in our lives. Parents, teachers, employers, and pastors are just a few of those in authority that we deal with throughout our journey. A lot of times we forget the ultimate authority, God. Romans 13:1
The scriptures inform us that we must honor our fathers because God established the authorities and that gives him the right to determine where and when the honor is due which does include your fathers. Malachi 1:6
Understand this, God is the ultimate authority. God distributes the authority to fathers. No matter how you father handled his authority, you must choose to respect God who gave him the authority and if God is your father then you need to honor him. Reality wonders why you wouldn’t honor God as your father in heaven anyways.
We know that when you are abandoned or mistreated by a father that it’s not easy to keep it inside. You want to share it with others and expose him for what he is. This is not honoring him and truly God has not given you the authority to do this.
Let us look at the story of Noah becoming drunk: Genesis 9:22-24 The sons honored the father even though what he did was wrong, and he awakes to find out and learned what Ham had done and he cursed him.
In today’s social climate, talking about a father’s questionable behavior or circumstance may not seem like such a terrible thing to do but consider Scripture’s warning: Deuteronomy 27:16
You don’t have to say good things about him that aren’t true or pretend like he’s perfect (or even nice). But remember that the words you speak about your father matter to God.
No matter what you do we must please God. So, God wants us to honor our fathers because it pleases God. Leviticus 19:3
The first thing to remember about pleasing God is to obey His word. 1 John 3:22
To take this a step further, scriptures tells us that to put our faith into practice by caring for our family. 1 Timothy 5:4
You are setting a great example for others when you are honoring your father. This is pleasing to the Lord.
God pays attention to a father’s prayers concerning his offspring. We all know the scripture story of how Isaac prayed on behalf of his wife who was childless. The Lord answered the prayer and his wife Rebekah became pregnant. Genesis 25:21
The Lord not only answered the prayer, but Isaac became the father of twins.
If you have a father that has been an intricate part of your life, then smile, hold your head up high and thank God for a wonderful father. However, we do have others where their fathers were not a part of their life or may have mistreated them in one way or another. For those, we understand the heart ache you have gone through and each one of us will pray for you to help lift you up in spirits.
Those having trouble honoring their fathers, it’s time to take it to the Lord. He will guide you through any circumstances. 1 Peter 4:19
We also learn from the bible that we can’t choice who we love or honor. Selecting only the ones that benefit you would be considered a sin. Luke 6: 32-33
We know from experience that we can talk about this and it feels real easy to do that but when it comes to actually doing anything it is not that easy. Please take some comfort knowing that our Heavenly Father will always be there to comfort you and guide you. Romans 8:15 And that he will always be there for you. Hebrews 13:5
What choices you make determines your legacy. What legacy will you leave for your child?
Fathers We Salute You! Let us pray.
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Because God put your father in a place of authority in your life, He hears and responds to his prayers for you