Summary: Mother’s Day sermon revolving around Moses’ mother. There is a motherhood crisis in America where many have come to view children as a distraction rather than a blessing.
A Mother Named Jehocabed
I found some interesting titles for books about motherhood. Whoever wrote these books must have been mothers because they seem to grasp the job description quite well.
We begin with this one:
Motherhood is Not for Wimps. How many moms out there could say, “Amen”?
Dirty Little Secrets from Otherwise Perfect Moms.
Naptime is the New Happy Hour.
I Was a Really Good Mom Before I Had Kids.
My favorite: It Gets Easier and Other Lies We Tell New Mothers.
A Junior High science teacher lectured on the properties of magnets for an entire class. The next day he gave his students a quiz. The first question read like this: “My name begins with an “M,” has six letters, and I pick things up. What am I?” Half the kids in the class wrote, “Mother.”
This morning I want us to look at a mother in the Bible who demonstrated an amazing faith in God. She is an example for all of us. But before we do that I want to talk about a crisis going on in our nation. There is a lot of news about the economic crisis. It’s hard to flip through the channels without seeing several commentaries on the subject. Newspapers, magazines are all covering it. But the crisis I’m talking about is really more serious than the economic crisis. It’s a Motherhood Crisis.
What do I mean by Motherhood Crisis?
I’m talking about a sociological problem that will bring this nation down if it’s not addressed. The economic crisis that we’re in did not happen overnight. What’s bringing Chrysler and GM down? Years of promises that now have to be paid. Years of buildup in pension debt. The key difference between American manufactures and Foreign is the pension debt. It happened slowly; but one day it could no longer be ignored. There’s another crisis building as well.
Slowly the strength of this nation is declining in a way that people don’t seem to notice. We notice when its money. We notice when 40% of our IRA balance disappears. But I’m talking about a far more precious resource: people. We are now at an all-time low birthrate. In fact, as of 2004 the rate is not even at the replacement level. The fertility rate in this country is 43% less than it was in 1960. That shocking reality can’t be adequately depicted on a chart but there is one to let you see the trend.
Why is that so alarming? It’s alarming if you believe the Bible. Ps 127:3-5
Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward.
4 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one’s youth.
5 Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them;
They shall not be ashamed, But shall speak with their enemies in the gate.
What does that passage say about a nation’s ability to defend itself? It says you better have some strong young men and women to do the fighting or you’re going to be in big trouble. In contrast to our decline in population, it’s estimated that by the year 2000 the proportion of world’s Moslem population will rise to 22.4% as compared with 18.3% in 1975. The problem is in the trends. While our enemies are gaining strength, we are losing strength. It’s also happening to some of our closest allies. The Moslem growth rate in Israel is 2.4 times what it is among Jews—all due to higher birth rates.
When we look into the first chapter of Exodus, we find that Pharaoh understood this issue of population growth all too well. Ex 1:7-10 “But the children of Israel were fruitful and increased abundantly, multiplied and grew exceedingly mighty; and the land was filled with them. 8 Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. 9 And he said to his people, "Look, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we; 10 come, let us deal shrewdly with them, lest they multiply, and it happen, in the event of war, that they also join our enemies and fight against us, and so go up out of the land." He eventually issued an order to kill all the male Hebrew babies. We’ll talk about that some more in a moment. But do you see the principle? Increased birth rate means increased strength; decreased birth rate means decreased strength.
What accounts for this lower fertility rate in the United States? Are there atomic particles floating around making it harder for people to get pregnant? Have the terrorists managed to put something in our water that will slowly diminish our strength as a nation? Is there some kind of virus that is damaging women’s ability to get pregnant? No, but there is an epidemic causing it. It is an epidemic of selfishness.