Summary: 7 qualities of a godly Father
Father’s Day -2017
Genesis 18:19 (NIV)
“For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing what is right and just, so that the LORD will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.”
I have been thinking a lot about father’s the past week or two. The Scripture we just read is our Heavenly Father talking about one of our forefathers. Then we have our earthly fathers. Those fathers can be known in many different ways. We have biological fathers, step-fathers (or step in fathers) we have absentee fathers and even deadbeat dads. There may be more descriptions of fathers if we really think about it. What it all says is that being a father is a complicated thing. We are all human (with the exception of the Heavenly Father) and that means we are all imperfect. The best of fathers fail their children in some ways. We can’t help it. That’s why we need a Heavenly Father. Nevertheless, the Bible gives us, if not a job description, at least some qualities of a good father. You see, any fool can make a baby – and a lot of them do – but it takes a man willing to learn and to grow to become a godly father.
This morning I want to share seven things a godly father does; seven things we fathers need to strive for. The first thing a godly father does is found on the gift we gave you this morning. A godly father 1) lights the way. Those flashlight/pens with that inscription on it is to remind you of that. A father lights the way. Another way to put that is that a godly father teaches. The Greatest Command in the Bible tells us that. Do you remember that Jesus said that the Greatest Command was to -
“love the Lord with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” Deuteronomy 6:5
But the Scripture doesn’t stop there. The command does not stop there. There is no period or comma. It continues –
“These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6:6-9
God is telling the fathers that they have a responsibility to teach the child to love Him with all their hearts. And He tells them how to do it. He tells them how to impress this command on the children. He says, talk about it when you sit down or walk along the road; when you lie down to sleep and when you get up first thing in the morning. The teaching continues all day. They are to tie those Scriptures to their hands and foreheads and write them on the doorframes of the house and gates. Teaching doesn’t happen by accident. You have to teach on purpose. You have to plan it or it probably won’t get done. Fathers teach your children to love God.
The proverbs says, “Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6
The New Testament says, “…fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.” Ephesians 6:4
One of the most important things a father does is to teach his children – and we are teaching them whether we want to or not. Absentee fathers and deadbeat dads are teaching them they aren’t very important. Fathers, teach your children to love Jesus as your first priority. The “National Center for Fathering” said,
“Kids observe everything! [And that’s] the greatest revelation of being a parent—how much they observe. This is something that we as parents sometimes overlook or underestimate. When we parents do good things for others, the kids understand. When we parents are not kind or understanding of each other or we interact poorly with other people, our children observe and know [that], as well.” From “A Father’s Example: “Kids Observe Everything”
A father, secondly, is a leader The Scripture we started with is our Heavenly Father explaining that one of our forefathers (Abraham) is to LEAD or direct his children. It even tells what he is to lead them to do – to keep the way of the Lord. What way is that? By doing what is just and right.
“For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing what is right and just…”