So You Say You Are a Christian (Gospel Light Minute X #361)

This is the “chief of sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, with the Gospel Light Minute X Podcast #361 titled, “So You Say You Are a Christian.” I’m here to remind you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me.

How long have you been a Christian?

You may say, “I try to keep the Ten Commandments and do the best I can.” Some people say, “I became a Christian when I got baptized.” Others say, “I was born into a Christian family.”

How does someone become a Christian?

If someone could become a Christian by being born into a Christian family, by keeping the Ten Commandments, or by being baptized, we need to ask ourselves a very important question: Why did Jesus have to come to earth and die on the cross? My friend, the Bible has the answer! Continue reading “So You Say You Are a Christian (Gospel Light Minute X #361)”

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 22 — Ephesians 6:4 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #46)

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:4:

4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

—–

John Harbaugh said, “When you are given the awesome responsibility of being a father, that is the most important responsibility you can have. God wants us to have a loving relationship with our children and to help them grow…just like God’s relationship with us.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “Christianity today is so subnormal that if any Christian began to act like a normal New Testament Christian, he would be considered abnormal.”

—-

Before we get into the meat of the message, please take note of these verses regarding fatherhood and children:

Matthew 19:13-14: “Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them. But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”

Deuteronomy 4:9-10: “Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them to thy sons, and thy sons’ sons… the Lord said unto me, Gather me the people together, and I will make them hear my words, that they may learn to fear me all the days that they shall live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children.”

Psalm 78:1-4: “Give ear, O my people, to my law: incline your ears to the words of my mouth. Which we have heard and known, and our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the Lord, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done.”

1 Timothy 5:8: “But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.”

Job 1:5: “And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually.”

—–

Today, we are going to wrap up looking at four principles regarding God’s command to Christian fathers from Warren Wiersbe’s Bible Exposition Commentary. This command is especially relevant in a time when fatherlessness is described as an “epidemic.” Many men who have committed to staying with their families simply do not know how to be a good, godly father because they never saw that in their own young life. Thankfully, we can look to God’s Word for guidance. I am sharing the last of four powerful points that Warren Wiersbe brings out of this passage so clearly that it’s not worth the time to try to improve upon it.

First, we saw that a father must not provoke his children to wrath.
Second, we saw that a father must nurture his children.
Third, we saw that a father must discipline his children.

Fourth, we see that a father must instruct and encourage his children. “This is the meaning of the word ‘admonition.’ The father and mother not only use actions to raise the child, but also words. In the Book of Proverbs, for example, we have an inspired record of a father sharing wise counsel with his son. Our children do not always appreciate our counsel, but that does not eliminate the obligation we have to instruct and encourage them. Of course, our instruction must always be tied to the Word of God.

“When the Supreme Court handed down its ruling against required prayer in the public schools, the famous editorial cartoonist Herblock published a cartoon in the Washington Post showing an angry father waving a newspaper at his family and shouting, ‘What do they expect us to do—listen to the kids pray at home?’ The answer is: Yes! Home is the place where the children ought to learn about the Lord and the Christian life. It is time that Christian parents stop ‘passing the buck’ to Sunday School teachers and Christian day-school teachers, and start nurturing their own children.”

Let’s pray.

Now, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior, please keep in mind that the Bible says, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” Just pray and ask Him to come into your heart and He will. I will be sharing more on the matter of salvation in the next segment of our service which starts in about 5 minutes.

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 21 — Ephesians 6:4 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #45)

family-reading-praying-together

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:4:

4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

—–

Charles Spurgeon said, “Train up a child in the way he should go — but be sure you go that way yourself.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “Almost every Bible conference majors on today’s Church being like the Ephesian Church. We are told that, despite our sin and carnality, we are seated with Christ. Alas, what a lie! We are Ephesians all right; but, as the Ephesian Church in the Revelation, we have ‘left our first love!’ We appease sin— and do not oppose it. To such a cold, carnal, critical, care-cowed Church, this lax, loose, lustful, licentious age will never capitulate. Let us stop looking for scapegoats. The fault in declining morality is not radio or television. The whole blame for the present international degeneration and corruption lies at the door of the Church!”

—-

Please take note of these verses regarding fatherhood and children:

Proverbs 23:13-14: “Withhold not correction from the child: for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.”

Proverbs 29:15: “The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame.”

Proverbs 29:17: “Correct thy son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto thy soul.”

Deuteronomy 6:6-7: “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.”

Psalm 119:9: “Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.”

—–

Today, we are going to continue looking at four principles regarding God’s command to Christian fathers from Warren Wiersbe’s Bible Exposition Commentary. These commands are especially relevant in a time when fatherlessness is described as an “epidemic.” Many men who have committed to staying with their families simply do not know how to be a good, godly father because they never saw that in their own young life. Thankfully, we can look to God’s Word for guidance. I am sharing the third of four powerful points that Warren Wiersbe brings out of this passage so clearly that it’s not worth the time to try to improve upon it. He states:

A father must discipline his children. “The word ‘nurture’ carries with it the idea of learning through discipline. It is translated ‘chastening’ in Hebrews 12. Some modern psychologists oppose the old-fashioned idea of discipline, and many educators follow their philosophy. ‘Let the children express themselves!’ they tell us. ‘If you discipline them, you may warp their characters.’ Yet discipline is a basic principle of life and an evidence of love. ‘Whom the Lord loveth, He chasteneth.’ Proverbs 13:24 says, ‘He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.’

“We must be sure, however, that we discipline our children in the right manner. To begin with, we must discipline in love and not in anger, lest we injure either the body or the spirit of the child, or possibly both. If we are not disciplined, we surely cannot discipline others, and ‘flying off the handle’ never made either a better child or a better parent.

“Also, our discipline must be fair and consistent. ‘My father would use a cannon to kill a mosquito!’ a teenager once told me. ‘I either get away with murder, or get blamed for everything!’ Consistent, loving discipline gives assurance to the child. He may not agree with us, but at least he knows that we care enough to build some protective walls around him until he can take care of himself.

“‘I never knew how far I could go,’ a wayward girl told me, ‘because my parents never cared enough to discipline me. I figured that if it wasn’t important to them, why should it be important to me?'”

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 20 — Ephesians 6:4 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #44)

family-reading-praying-together

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:4:

4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

—–

Billy Graham said, “A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed, and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “Unctionized by the Spirit’s might, John cried, ‘‘Repent!’’ And they did! Repentance is not a few hot tears at the penitent form. It is not emotion or remorse or reformation. Repentance is a change of mind about God, about sin, and about hell!”

—-

Please take notice of these verses on parents and children from the Bible.

Proverbs 1:8-9: “My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother: For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck.”

Proverbs 22:6: “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

Proverbs 13:24: “He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.”

Proverbs 19:18: “Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying.”

Proverbs 22:15: “Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.”

—–

Today, we are going to continue looking at four principles regarding God’s command to Christian fathers from Warren Wiersbe’s Bible Exposition Commentary. These commands are especially relevant in a time when fatherlessness is described as an “epidemic.” Many men who have committed to staying with their families simply do not know how to be a good, godly father because they never saw that in their own young life. Thankfully, we can look to God’s Word for guidance. I am sharing the second of four powerful points that Warren Wiersbe brings out of this passage so clearly that it’s not worth the time to try to improve upon it. He states:

A father must nurture his children. “The text reads, ‘But nurture them in the discipline and admonition of the Lord.’ The verb translated ‘bring them up’ is the same word that is translated ‘nourisheth’ in Ephesians 5:29. The Christian husband is to nourish his wife and his children by sharing love and encouragement in the Lord. It is not enough to nurture the children physically by providing food, shelter, and clothing. He must also nurture them emotionally and spiritually.

“The development of the Boy Jesus is our example: ‘And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.’ Here is balanced growth: intellectual, physical, spiritual, and social. Nowhere in the Bible is the training of children assigned to agencies outside the home, no matter how they might assist. God looks to the parents for the kind of training that the children need.”

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 19 — Ephesians 6:4 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #43)

family-reading-praying-together

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:4:

4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

—–

Most fathers are not successful in raising their children because they are not willing to love them enough to deal with the nitty gritty of parenting. It takes a man to stick and stay to raise his children into adulthood.

Leonard Ravenhill said, “When the hammer of logic and the fire of human zeal fail to open the stony heart, unction will succeed.”

—-

Today, we are going to begin looking at four principles regarding God’s command to Christian fathers from Warren Wiersbe’s Bible Exposition Commentary. These commands are especially relevant in a time when fatherlessness is described as an “epidemic.” Many men who have committed to staying with their families simply do not know how to be a good, godly father because they never saw that in their own young life. Thankfully, we can look to God’s Word for guidance. I am sharing the first of four powerful points that Warren Wiersbe brings out of this passage so clearly that it’s not worth the time to try to improve upon it. He states:

“If left to themselves, children will be rebels, so it is necessary for the parents to train their children. Years ago, the then Duke of Windsor said, ‘Everything in the American home is controlled by switches—except the children!’ The Bible records the sad results of parents neglecting their children, either by being bad examples to them or failing to discipline them properly.

“David pampered Absalom and set him a bad example, and the results were tragic. After Absalom ended up being killed in battle at the culmination of his rebellion against his father, the Bible says in 2 Samuel 18:33, ‘And the king was much moved, and went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept: and as he went, thus he said, O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!’

“Eli failed to discipline his sons and they brought disgrace to his name and defeat to the nation of Israel. First Samuel 2 describes them: ‘Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the Lord…Wherefore the sin of the young men was very great before the Lord… Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And he said unto them, Why do ye such things? for I hear of your evil dealings by all this people… [And] they hearkened not unto the voice of their father, because the Lord would slay them.’

“In his latter years, even Isaac pampered Esau, while his wife showed favoritism to Jacob; and the result was a divided home. Jacob was showing favoritism to Joseph when God providentially rescued the lad and made a man out of him in Egypt.

“Paul tells us that the father has several responsibilities toward his children.

First, “He must not provoke them. In Paul’s day, the father had supreme authority over the family. When a baby was born into a Roman family, for example, it was brought out and laid before the father. If he picked it up, it meant he was accepting it into the home. But if he did not pick it up, it meant the child was rejected. It could be sold, given away, or even killed by exposure. No doubt a father’s love would overcome such monstrous acts, but these practices were legal in that day. Paul told the parents, ‘Don’t use your authority to abuse the child, but to encourage and build the child.’ To the Colossians he wrote, ‘Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.’ So, the opposite of ‘provoke’ is ‘encourage.’

“I was addressing a group of Christian students on the subject of prayer, and was pointing out that our Father in heaven is always available when we call. To illustrate it, I told them that the receptionist at our church office has a list of names prepared by me, and these people could get to me at any time, no matter what I was doing. Even if I was in a staff meeting, or in a counseling session, if any of these people phoned, she was to call me immediately. At the top of this list was my family. Even if the matter seems to me inconsequential, I want my family to know that I am available. After the service, one of the students said to me, ‘Would you adopt me? I can never get through to my father, and I need his encouragement so much!’

“Fathers provoke their children and discourage them by saying one thing and doing another—by always blaming and never praising, by being inconsistent and unfair in discipline, and by showing favoritism in the home, by making promises and not keeping them, and by making light of problems that, to the children, are very important. Christian parents need the fullness of the Spirit so they can be sensitive to the needs and problems of their children.”

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 18 — Ephesians 6:1-3 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #42)

JJMessage

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:1-3:

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.

2 Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;

3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

—–

Charles Spurgeon said, “You may speak but a word to a child, and in that child there may be slumbering a noble heart which shall stir the Christian Church in years to come.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “The ugly fact is that altar fires are either out or burning very low. The prayer meeting is dead or dying. By our attitude to prayer we tell God that what was begun in the Spirit, we can finish in the flesh. What church ever asks its candidating ministers what time they spend in prayer? Yet ministers who do not spend two hours a day in prayer are not worth a dime a dozen, degrees or no degrees.”

—-

Today, we are going to look at the remaining two principles regarding the command for children to obey and honor their parents, specifically as it applies to Christian children, from Warren Wiersbe’s Bible Exposition Commentary. I am sharing these homilies regarding these verses on how children ought to obey in the home not just to the children themselves, but probably more so to the parents who have forsaken their responsibilities and duties of raising their children up to obey in the first place. I am sharing with you today the last two of four powerful points that Warren Wiersbe brings out of this passage so clearly that it’s not worth the time to try to improve upon it. He states:

1. Christian children are commanded to obey. “Here Paul cites the fifth commandment and applies it to the New Testament believer. This does not mean that the Christian is ‘under the Law,’ for Christ has set us free from both the curse and the bondage of the Law. But the righteousness of the Law is still a revelation of the holiness of God, and the Holy Spirit enables us to practice that righteousness in our daily lives. All of the Ten Commandments are repeated in the New Testament epistles for the Christian to observe except, ‘Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy.’ It is just as wrong for a New Testament Christian to dishonor his parents as it was for an Old Testament Jew. To ‘honor’ our parents means much more than simply to obey them. It means to show them respect and love, to care for them as long as they need us, and to seek to bring honor to them by the way we live.

2. Christian children who obey and honor their parents will be blessed. “The fifth commandment has a promise attached to it: ‘That thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.’ This promise originally applied to the Jews as they entered Canaan, but Paul applied it to believers today. He substituted ‘earth’ for ‘land’ and tells us that the Christian child who honors his parents can expect two blessings. It will be well with him, and he will live long on the earth. This does not mean that everyone who died young dishonored his parents. He was stating a principle: when children obey their parents in the Lord, they will escape a good deal of sin and danger and thus avoid the things that could threaten or shorten their lives. But life is not measured only by quantity of time. It is also measured by quality of experience. God enriches the life of the obedient child no matter how long he may live on the earth. Sin always robs us; obedience always enriches us.

“So, the child must learn early to obey father and mother, not only because they are his parents, but also because God has commanded it to be so. Disobedience to parents is rebellion against God. The sad situation in homes today is the result of rejecting God’s Word. By nature, a child is selfish, but in the power of the Holy Spirit, a child can learn to obey his parents and glorify God.”

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 17 — Ephesians 6:1-3 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #41)

family-reading-praying-together

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:1-3:

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.

2 Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;

3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

—–

D.L. Moody said, “It is a masterpiece of the devil to make us believe that children cannot understand religion. Would Christ have made a child the standard of faith if He had known that it was not capable of understanding His words?”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “Yearly we use mountains of paper and rivers of ink reprinting dead men’s brains, while the living Holy Ghost is seeking for men to trample underfoot their own learning and deflate their inflated ego.”

—-

Today, we are going to take a deeper look at the command for children to obey their parents, specifically as it applies to Christian children, from Warren Wiersbe’s Bible Exposition Commentary. And by the way, I am sharing these homilies regarding these verses on how children ought to obey in the home, not just to the children themselves, but probably more so to the parents who have forsaken their responsibilities and duties of raising their children up to obey in the first place. I am sharing with you today four powerful points that Warren Wiersbe brings out of this passage so clearly that it’s not worth the time to try to improve upon it. I will share two today and two tomorrow, if the Lord should tarry His coming. He goes on to say:

1. Christian children are to obey their parents because they themselves “are Christians. This argument is an application of the theme of the entire section, which is ‘submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.’ When a person becomes a Christian, he is not released from normal obligations of life. If anything, his faith in Christ ought to make him a better child in the home. To the Colossians, Paul enforced his admonition with ‘for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.’ Here is harmony in the home: the wife submits to the husband ‘as unto Christ’; the husband loves his wife ‘even as Christ also loved the church’; and the children obey ‘in the Lord.’

2. Christian children are to also obey their parents because “obedience is right.” There is an order in nature, ordained of God, that argues for the rightness of an action. Since the parents brought the child into the world, and since they have more knowledge and wisdom than the child, it is right that the child obey his parents. Even young animals are taught to obey. The ‘modern version’ of Ephesians 6:1 would be, ‘Parents, obey your children, for this will keep them happy and bring peace to the home.’ But this is contrary to God’s order in nature.”

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 16 — Ephesians 6:1-3 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #40)

family-reading-praying-together

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:1-3:

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.

2 Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;

3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

—–

Billy Graham said, “A child who is allowed to be disrespectful to his parents will not have true respect for anyone.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “God never intended His Church to be a refrigerator in which to preserve perishable piety. He intended it to be an incubator in which to hatch out converts.”

—–

Paul calls the command to obey one’s parents “the first commandment with a promise.” It is likely that he is referring to the similar statement found in the book of Exodus in what is called the Ten Commandments. It reads: “Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.”

Now, in Old Testament times, this command had a very literal application. Deuteronomy 21:18-21 reads: “If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them: Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place; And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard. And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and all Israel shall hear, and fear.”

As you can see, having a long life in the land of Canaan was a very vivid concept for Hebrew children.

Even though this kind of punishment does not take place today, Paul tells us that the reward of long life still comes to those who obey and honor their parents. H.W. Hoenher said this promise “states a general principle that obedience fosters self-discipline, which in turn brings stability and longevity in one’s life. Stated conversely, it is improbable that an undisciplined person will live a long life.”

It is indeed a general principle, and one that I have stated many times to members of my own family, both young and old: ‘God blesses obedience and He does not bless disobedience. He never has and He never will.’ I have found it to be true that people who live a clean, godly life often live longer and are more fruitful and fulfilled than those who do not. So, children and young people, if you want to be blessed and you want to live a long life, obey God by obeying and honoring your parents.

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 15 — Ephesians 6:1-3 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #39)

family-reading-praying-together

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:1-3:

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.

2 Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;

3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

—–

James M. Gillis said, “The salvation of society is in the family and the reconstruction of family virtues, parental authority, and filial obedience. The family is the nucleus of all society. You can have no prosperous state unless the family is healthy. You can have no effective church unless the family is sound. The family is the organic cell from which all human societies are constructed.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “If Christ waited to be anointed before He went to preach, no young man ought to preach until he, too, has been anointed by the Holy Ghost.”

Beyond obedience, the next thing God wants children to do is to “honor thy father and mother.” The word “honor” means to respect or to reverence.

Honoring one’s parents goes beyond obedience. A child might obey his or her parents but do so grudgingly or only because they feel like they have to. A child who honors his parents recognizes and respects their authority in his heart regardless of his feelings. He shows deference and respect in his attitude and his actions.

Paul is writing to a culture in which a person’s honor — how they are seen and treated by others — is very important. Younger people were expected to respect and show deference to their elders at all times. Under Greek custom, a child was under his father’s authority until the father died. Under the Roman custom, the father’s authority extended until he was 60 years old. So, even adult children were expected to show respect for their parents.

In Jewish culture, rabbis took the laws of Moses and delineated specific ways children were to honor their parents. For example, according to The Jewish Encyclopedia of Moral and Ethical Issues, the Hebrew word for “honor” means “dignity.” Thus, for a child, “keeping parents clothed and fed when they can no longer do so for themselves retains their dignity. Similarly, helping them in and out of the house preserves their dignity. Thus, the first mitzvah [Jewish law] is to preserve a parent’s dignity at all costs.” Another term, “morah” is the real word for honor and respect. ‘A child showed respect and honor by not sitting or standing in a parent’s designated place and by not interrupting when the parent was talking.’

The God-ordained authority structure not only keeps the family from devolving into chaos, but it does the same for society.

Let’s pray.

Now, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior, please keep in mind that the Bible says, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” Just pray and ask Him to come into your heart and He will. I will be sharing more on the matter of salvation in the next segment of our service which starts in about 5 minutes.

Revive the Family Prayer List

PRAY FOR SPECIFIC FAMILIES

Philippians 4:6 says, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”

— Linda in Fort Worth, TX
for her brother to be completely delivered from alcohol & grief over the murder of his only son
for her daughter to come back to You

— Teresa in Albany, GA
for her daughter and oldest son to recover from the death of their brother and to be healed
for Teresa to stay strong

— Linda in Ledyard, CT
for her prodigal husband to return to You and come home

— Virginia in Barbados
for her nephew, Fachad, to be released from prison; for her husband to stay employed; for her to become debt free

— Kenesha in Kenosha, WI
bless her as a single mother, provide for her and her children; give her the right kind of job that pays well; lead her to a good church home

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PRAY FOR CHURCH LEADERS

Paul said in Ephesians 6:18, “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.”

Members of the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention

John Mark Simmons of Nevada
Mark H. Ballard of New England
Abbott J. McCollum of New Mexico
Richard R. Wilburn of New York
B. Scott Davis of North Carolina
Joe Knott of North Carolina
Terry H. Montgomery of North Carolina
Jeffrey B. Watson of North Carolina
Stanley J. Welch of North Carolina
Ralph Jenkins of the Northwest region

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PRAY FOR GOVERNMENTAL LEADERS

1 Timothy 2:1-2 says, “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”

U.S. CONGRESSPEOPLE

Andre Carson
Earl L. Carter
John R. Carter
Matt Cartwright
Kathy Castor
Joaquin Castro
Steve Chabot
Jason Chaffetz
Judy Chu
David Cicilline

Doing Family God’s Way, Part 13 — Ephesians 6:1-3 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #37)

family-reading-praying-together

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:1-3:

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.

2 Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;

3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

—–

Stephen Felker said, “Children and youth who profess to be Christians, listen up! Your obedience should arise out of the conviction that such submission is the will of God. You must obey your parents because the Lord bids you to do so. You really will be much better off in life if you do.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “Oh! my ministering brethren! Much of our praying is but giving God advice! Our praying is discolored with ambition, either for ourselves or for our denomination. Perish the thought! Our goal must be God alone. It is His honor that is sullied, His blessed Son who is ignored, His laws broken, His name profaned, His Book forgotten, His house made a circus of social efforts.”

Some parents make the mistake of surrounding their children with an environment where there is no structure and no expectations. They believe that they should just ‘let kids be kids.’ But we see here in God’s Word that God has some expectations of children — especially children in Christian homes and children who have chosen to follow Jesus Christ.

Paul writes directly to the “children.” He is speaking to them. The Bible Exposition Commentary pointed out the fact that the letters written by the apostles were read aloud in the general assembly of believers. Children were present with their parents in the “main service.” They were not scuttled off to “youth group” or “children’s church.” Thus, Paul does not say, “Parents, tell your children…” He addresses the children directly, as the letter would have been read aloud.

What is God’s command to children — “obey your parents.” In the order and structure of the home, that is what children ought to do — obey their fathers and mothers.. The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia says “obey” “carries with it the ethical significance of hearing with reverence and obedient assent. It is suggestive of ‘hearing under’ or of subordinating one’s self to the person or thing heard, hence, ‘to obey.'”

Children ought to obey their parents ‘in the Lord.’ This does not mean that children are required to obey only Christian parents, but that they ought to render their obedience to their parents — saved or unsaved — as obedience to the Lord. Just as a husband is commanded to love his wife as Christ loves the church and wives are commanded to submit to their husbands as unto the Lord, children are to obey their parents as though they were obeying God himself — because they are, in fact, obeying God. It is the right, correct, and proper thing to do.