Summary: Every home needs work! It is a good thing that there is a blueprint we can follow to build strong homes!
Pt. 1 – Working Dads
I know very few people who ever enjoyed home work. I am sure that many of you, like me, did everything you could do to avoid homework! Make up lame excuses like my dog ate it! It wasn’t something that was fun. If you didn’t do it you got in trouble and you suffered the consequences. I remember growing up that I couldn’t do anything after school until my homework was complete. Home work is still necessary. I think that most of us should probably stop doing other things until we get our homes in order and repaired. The truth is that even though I know of some great homes and great marriages I know of no home, no marriage, and no relationship that doesn’t need constant work and care. God’s Word gives us a blueprint to help our homes work.
We start today with dads! If our homes are going to be what they are supposed to be then we have to start with the dads! Did you know that 93% of the Americans in prison are men and that 85% of those are from fatherless homes? Dads we have work to do. Men you are the key component in your family!
I think the best way to illustrate what dads should be doing is to show you an example of what dads shouldn’t be doing!
Text: 1 Samuel 2:12-17, 22-23, 29
12-17 Eli's own sons were a bad lot. They didn't know GOD and could not have cared less about the customs of priests among the people. Ordinarily, when someone offered a sacrifice, the priest's servant was supposed to come up and, while the meat was boiling, stab a three-pronged fork into the cooking pot. The priest then got whatever came up on the fork. But this is how Eli's sons treated all the Israelites who came to Shiloh to offer sacrifices to GOD. Before they had even burned the fat to GOD, the priest's servant would interrupt whoever was sacrificing and say, "Hand over some of that meat for the priest to roast. He doesn't like boiled meat; he likes his rare." If the man objected, "First let the fat be burned—God's portion!—then take all you want," the servant would demand, "No, I want it now. If you won't give it, I'll take it." It was a horrible sin these young servants were committing—and right in the presence of GOD!—desecrating the holy offerings to GOD.
22 Now Eli, who was very old, heard about everything his sons were doing to all Israel and how they slept with the women who served at the entrance to the tent of meeting. 23 So he said to them, “Why do you do such things? I hear from all the people about these wicked deeds of yours.
29 Why do you scorn my sacrifice and offering that I prescribed for my dwelling? Why do you honor your sons more than me by fattening yourselves on the choice parts of every offering made by my people Israel?’
"And so, my son," said Eli, "what happened?" 17 The messenger answered, "Israel scattered before the Philistines. The defeat was catastrophic, with enormous losses. Your sons Hophni and Phinehas died, and the Chest of God was taken."
18 At the words, "Chest of God," Eli fell backward off his stool where he sat next to the gate. Eli was an old man, and very fat. When he fell, he broke his neck and died. He had led Israel forty years.
A. The #1 enemy men face is apathy
Eli heard reports about what his sons were doing. He was disconnected. He was so disconnected from what his own sons were doing that he had to rely on the reports of others!
And then when he found out he was apathetic towards what they were doing!
Men I want you to hear me loud and clear. . . The #1 enemy that we face is apathy. Many would say our biggest enemy is lust. Our society is saturated with sex. Some would say it is pride or anger. However, I believe these are all symptomatic of apathy in our walk, in our diligence, in our romance.
Men you have to admit we are aggressive by nature. It doesn't matter if its business, football or cornhole we fight for domination! You have an alumni game and men who haven’t touched a basketball or football in a decade will put themselves in the hospital trying to prove they still got it. Yet when it comes to family and leading our kids we tend to become passive allowing our wife to lead.
Adam subdued garden but couldn’t step up and fight for his family. He stood idly by and watched the enemy lead wife astray. Apathy ...Too many of us are following in footsteps of our father Adam. We are too apathetic for our families good. Eli’s apathy cost his family their lives, destiny, and favor. Our apathy does the same things! We are without passion! So we have too many wives that are widowed and children are orphaned even though the man is still alive and living in the home. May need to check some man cards because too many of our men are men by anatomy but neutered by apathy!