Summary: Father’s Day sermon praising the fathers of the congregation.
Today is celebrated in this country as Father’s Day. A day when we honor those men who helped give us life and have nurtured us through life. As a church member, I have always had a pet peeve concerning Father’s Day. On Mother’s Day, the preacher gets up and praises all the mothers, placing them high upon pedestals, and attributing to them no wrong, which is fine, they deserve it. But on Father’s Day, the preacher gets up and tells all us Fathers that we need to be better fathers, and then proceeds to point out all the ways we fall short.
There are other differences between Father’s Day and Mother’s Day. On Mother’s Day almost all the children in this country call their mothers. On Father’s Day, almost all the children in this country call their fathers...collect! A small boy said, “Father’s Day is just like Mother’s Day, only you don’t spend as much on the gift, and I say, “what gift?”
I believe that fathers do not get the respect they deserve. Some modern day women believe the only thing a man is good for is to help them make a baby and then he is of no further use. And in this day of medical technology, even that role has been diminished.
Even those men with families are not always honored and respected for the contributions they make to the family. Perry Koehn went to the doctor the other day and the doctor told him, “Perry, you are in terrible shape and you have got to do something about it. First tell Debbie to cook more nutritious meals. Then tell her that you’re going to make a budget and she has to stick to it. And tell her to keep the kids off your back so you can relax. Finally, you need to stop working like a dog. Unless there are some changes in your life, you’ll probably be dead in a month.”
Perry then told the doctor, “This would sound more official if it came from you. Could you please call Debbie at home and give her those instructions?” The doctor agreed that he would call Debbie. When Perry got home from the doctor’s office, Debbie rushed to him, “Oh Perry, I talked to the doctor. Poor man, you only have 30 days to live.”
This morning I am going to do my best to honor the fathers of this congregation instead of chastising them to be better fathers. Can we as Christian fathers be better? Of Course. But that is for another day. Today I want to look at Scripture and honor the fathers of this
congregation through that Scripture.
GOD’S ROLE FOR THE FATHER.
God has several roles for the father.
1. The father is to be the leader of his family.
After the three men told Abraham and Sarah that they would be parents, they then started to leave and go to Sodom. As they left, one said,
“I have chosen him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice.”
Command is a word that we sometimes shy away from because it is so open to abuse. However, God has placed the man in a position of responsibility in the family. Remember that even though Eve sinned first, Adam was ultimately held responsible. In the Bible, that incident is always referred to as “Adam’s sin.” God holds the father responsible for the faithfulness of his children. Because God gives fathers responsibility, he also gives them the authority of command. Joshua exercised that role that God gave him when he told the people of Israel in Joshua 24:15, “Choose for yourselves today whom you will serve, but as for me and my house, we WILL serve the Lord. For Joshua’s family there was no doubt whom they would serve.
2. The father is to be the instructor of his family.
In that well known passage in Eph. 6:3 we are told, “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger; but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” I believe that we have spent too much time cautioning fathers against provoking their children and far too little time emphasizing the second half of that verse in which the fathers are encouraged to teach their children about God.
And in regard to that, children are commanded to listen. In Prov. 4:1, the writer said, “Hear, O sons, the instruction of a father, and give attention that you may gain understanding.” Isn’t it amazing how our father’s knowledge increases or diminishes depending on how old we are.
The writer of Proverbs says if we properly instruct our children, we can reasonably expect a certain outcome. Prov. 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Now that is a passage that has caused all of us fathers many sleepless nights. We need to understand that this is a general statement that has a LOT of exceptions. Just because we are good parents does not mean that our children will always “go the way he should go.”