Summary: Exposition of Ps 78 about the failures of fathers to be an example, and the need to train our children differently than present

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Text: Ps 78:1-8, Title: Hope for Families, Date/Place: NRBC, 6/22/08, AM

Opening illustration: Play the trailer for the bible study • Nine out of ten parents of children under age 13 (85%) believe they have the primary responsibility for teaching their children about religious beliefs and spiritual matters, while 11% said their church is primarily responsible. (2003) • Nearly all parents of children under the age of 13 - 96% - contend that they have the primary responsibility for teaching their children values. (2003) • One out of every five parents of children under 13 (19%) has ever been personally contacted or spoken to by a church leader to discuss the parents’ involvement in the spiritual life and development of their children. (2003)

A. Background to passage: There is no need detail you with shocking statistics about the percentage of teenagers that have tried drugs and alcohol, or experimented sexually. There is no need to remind you of divorce rates within and without the church. No need to tell you that MTV, the public school system, the liberal media, and internet pornography want to destroy our families and our children, or at least turn them against Christ. I probably should remind you what a sorry job that men are doing across the board at loving our wives as Christ and training our families to love Christ above all things. And so among all the assaults against our family, there is still hope. Although let me gently remind you that Jesus placed family second to discipleship on the priority scale of life (and we could preach on that a while, but we won’t today). Family is extremely important to the plan of God for the nations and for His glory. Therefore…

B. Main thought: Point two in our vision statement is that we need to strengthen families.

A. Avoid Past Mistakes (v. 8)

1. This psalm is a teaching psalm to pass on crucial information to generations. And one of the things that it does is list in very clear terms the failures of those responsible. Fathers are commissioned in the word of God with the ultimate responsibility to family. Headship is not about authority, as much as it is about responsibility. And this psalm reminds us that the fathers will be held accountable for their failures to oversee the spiritual growth and faithfulness of their families. The specific things that are mentioned are that fathers: 1) forgot truth about God (v. 7), 2) failed to walk with God (v. 10-11), 3) rebelled against God (v. 17), 4) failed to trust God and believe Him (v. 22, 32), 5) failed to be faithful (v. 36-37), 6) and tempted God, provoked God, and apostasized from the faith (v. 56-57).

2. Heb 5:12,

3. Illustration: “Preach always, and use words when necessary.” Remind them of the statistics of effectively unchurched people in our area by age bracket—conclusion: we have failed to reach the generations. Look at the appearance of our church age wise, every service except for Sunday AM, tell about Tony’s parents calling the other day and talking about Jesus and repentance and salvation, Ronald Reagan’s daughter

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