Summary: 1- a father’s instruction 2- a father’s discipline 3- a father’s love

INTRO.- ILL.- An eight-year-old boy is walking down the road one day when a car pulls over next to him. "If you get in the car," the driver says, "I’ll give you $10 and a piece of candy."

The boy refuses and keeps on walking. A few moments later, not to take no for an answer, the man driving the car pulls over again. "How about $20 and two pieces of candy?"

The boy tells the man to leave him alone and keeps on walking. Still further down the road the man pulls over to the side road.

"OK," he says, "this is my final offer. I’ll give you $50 and all the candy you can eat." The little boy stops, goes to the car and leans in.

"Look," he says to the driver. "You bought the Ford, Dad. You’ll have to live with it!"

What can I say? I don’t think I ever had to pay my kids or bribe my kids to ride with me, Ford or otherwise. Although I do think that some parents or fathers tend to bribe their kids perhaps just to get them out of their hair so they can go do whatever they want.

“Here, son, here’s a twenty. Go have fun while I go have my fun.”

ILL.- Someone said, “We’ve given our children too much, too soon and in some cases, it’s too late.”

I do think that most parents’ concern for their children is more material than spiritual. If they are doing all right materially, making a living, then we don’t worry about them. BUT WHAT IF THEY DON’T KNOW THE LORD AND/OR DON’T GO TO CHURCH, WHAT THEN? How do we feel about that? Or do we even care?

ILL.- A young boy came to Sunday School late. His teacher knew that he was usually very prompt and asked him if anything was wrong. The boy replied “no,” that he was going fishing but his dad told him that he needed to go to church.

The teacher was very impressed and asked the boy if his dad had explained to him why it was more important to go to church than to go fishing, to which the boy replied, yes he did, “dad said he didn’t have enough bait for both of us.” That sounds like some fathers.

ILL.- One day shortly after the birth of their new baby, the mother had to go out to do some errands. So the proud papa stayed home to watch his wonderful new son.

Soon after the mother left, the baby started to cry. The father did everything he could think of to do but the baby wouldn’t stop crying. Finally, the dad got so worried he decided to take the baby to the doctor.

After the doctor listened to the father all that he had done to get the baby to stop crying, the doctor began to examine the baby’s ears, chest and then down to the diaper area. When he undid the diaper, he found that the diaper is indeed full.

"Here’s the problem", the Dr. said, "He needs a change." The father was very perplexed, "But the diaper package says it is good for up to 10 lbs.!"

Eph. 6:2 "Honor your father and your mother, which is the first commandment with a promise."

We are commanded by our Heavenly Father to honor our earthly fathers and mothers. Not only are we commanded to do this, we should want to do this.

My father, Leo Shepherd, was not a perfect father, but he was a good father who loved me, provided for me, protected me, and tried to guide me as best he could. The thing that bothers me the most about my father is that as far as I know, he never accepted Christ. I think he believed in Christ, but he never surrendered to Christ.

I’ll never forget one time when I was back home, visiting with mom and dad. I was preaching at the First Christian Church of Iberia, MO, about 180 miles from Webb City, MO. Mom suddenly said, “I need to bring daddy up there and get him baptized.” I was shocked and speechless. Immediately my dad said, “You gotta get the head right first.” And he was right about that. That was his way of saying that he wasn’t ready yet.

A person must accept Christ in their mind in order to receive Him into their heart. My greatest wish for all fathers is for them to accept Christ, be baptized into Him and live the Christian life. THIS IS PERHAPS THE GREATEST THING THAT ANY FATHER COULD DO FOR HIS FAMILY, FOR HIS CHILDREN.

FATHERS, WE BLESS YOU! We ask God to bless you!

PROP.- I want to honor our fathers today by considering different aspects of a father’s life from Scripture.

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