Summary: These four fathers are superheroes of faith, yet they left examples of everyday parenting we can all imitate.
"Fathers Worth Following"
Happy Father’s Day!
The Bible lists several dads who were the kind of fathers whose examples are worth following. I have chosen four fantastic fathers in the Bible who got the attention of heaven. On one hand what they did was spectacular. On the other hand they only did what is expected of every dad.
That’s the wonderful thing about being a parent, even the common, ordinary things we do can have a tremendous impact. Going to work 5 days a week. Coming home every night. Coming home sober every night. Bringing the paycheck home to support the family. Being faithful to your wife. Being a moderate provider and a shelter from harm and evil. Throwing a ball. Sipping tea from a plastic cup. Pushing a bicycle with no training wheels. Saying "no." Saying "yes." Those things are so simple anyone can do them. But what makes them grand is not everyone has the fortitude to actually do them.
The men we will consider as follow-worthy fathers are: Noah, Abraham, Job and Joshua. These four guys are household names. Most of us know their stories. They’re famous Bible characters. They are super-heroes of the faith. Yet each of them did something which today’s dad can easily duplicate.
Noah - saved the race, by saving his family Gen. 6:5-10 (esp. 7-8)
When the world was falling apart one father went about life in such a way as to find favor with God in heaven. Every thought and every deed of every man was wicked. God planned to wipe mankind . . . from the face of the earth. . . . Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD because he was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God. Because he dared to be different rather than cowering to the spiritual climate of his peers, God saw a redeeming quality in the people He had created.
What a thought, to consider that one man living right in wicked world could get God’s attention. When the Lord looked at the world he saw a dismal picture. But when He saw Noah, He must have sat a little straighter in His throne. A smile must have formed on His face. And in that moment, as He considered Noah, God devised a redemptive plan. He decided on a way to save the one man who did what was right - and his family.
The world over "dad" is known to stand for a cause he believes in, even when that stand puts him in the minority.
Dads, it doesn’t matter what the rest of the world is doing, live right and you will secure the honor of your family. Your integrity may spare your family from the judgement of God. In fact, the way one man lives sometimes alters the course of world events.
Abraham - would command (instruct) his children Gen. 18:19 NIV, KJV, AS, LB
The Lord chose to set a nation apart in order to begin the process of redeeming the world through His mercy to that nation. To raise up that nation He chose a man who would lead his children in the way God wanted him to. He used Abraham as the founder of the nation.
When Abraham chose to live by faith he carved a path in the wilderness. As he stepped out to follow the will of God he demonstrated how to follow the Lord for his family. He taught them to keep the ways of the Lord by obeying His call.
I can imagine someone saying, "Yeah but Abraham had visions and revelations, I haven’t had any of those things." No, but we have 66 books full of visions and revelations waiting for us to receive. There is no need for the Lord to give us new revelations until we live by the old ones we already have.
Following God is a mystical experience, but it is also a practical experience. Abraham left everything that was familiar to him in order to inherit promises that were entirely unfamiliar to him. "Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you..." (Gen. 12:1) That’s pretty mystical. But haven’t we been called to the same sort of mysticism? Aren’t we on a journey to a land we’ve never seen? The practical part is getting up every morning and packing your things for that day’s trip. Abraham got up and started walking. "How will I know when I get there?" "I’ll tell you when you get there." "Alright. Are we there yet?" It’s the same for us. We get up every morning and do the things we know to do until the Lord tells us we’ve arrived.