Summary: Sermon deals with living a godly life by allowing God’s Son and God’s word to permeate your life.
Like Father, Like Son
West Glendale Baptist Church
Pastor Don Jones
Father’s day is all about fathers. It is our day to enjoy being waited on and pampered. My wife would say it is just like every other day.
Father’s Day, contrary to popular misconception, was not established as a holiday in order to help greeting card manufacturers sell more cards. In fact, when a “father’s day” was first proposed, there were no Father’s Day cards!
Mrs. John B. Dodd, of Washington, first proposed the idea of a “father’s day” in 1909. Mrs. Dodd wanted a special day to honor her father, William Smart. William Smart, a Civil War veteran, was widowed when his wife (Mrs. Dodd’s mother) died in childbirth with their sixth child. Mr. Smart was left to raise the newborn and his other five children by himself on a rural farm in eastern Washington State. It was after Mrs. Dodd became an adult that she realized the strength and selflessness her father had shown in raising his children as a single parent.
The first Father’s Day was observed on June 19, 1910, in Spokane, Washington. At about the same time in various towns and cities across America, other people were beginning to celebrate a “father’s day.” In 1924, President Calvin Coolidge supported the idea of a national Father’s Day. Finally in 1966, President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation declaring the third Sunday of June as Father’s Day.
Father’s Day has become a day to not only honor your father, but all men who act as a father figure. As many in this room know, it is easy to become a father but it is difficult task to be a father.
The passage this morning is about living the Christian life. It even gives us steps, not simple steps, but steps in accomplishing God’s will in our lives. Does it give us fathers a life plan and goal to reach? Yes, but it is not a particularly easy thing to do especially in light of today’s world view.
It has been said that those who aim at nothing will always hit it. That is especially true when it comes to the Christian life and being a godly example as a father. Let’s turn our attention to the five principles Paul gives us to living the successful Christian life.
Cue slide - Rule
The first step to walking in sync with the Lord is to allow the peace of Christ to rule in your heart. This has a two-fold meaning.
Primarily, it means that you have at some point received Jesus as Lord of your life. At one time we were at war with God, all of us. We rejected Him and his Son and we were living contrary to His purpose and His will. We were in essence, doing what we wanted to do according to our will. The peace of Christ comes from no longer being at war with God because we trust and believe in Him and live according to His will. Ephesians 2:3-5 gives us a description of this war and peace. It says,
"All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. (The war.) But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved". (The peace.)
Until you are ready to receive Jesus as Lord of your life, all endeavors of godly living will fail. Jesus is the starting point of living a godly example before others.
Secondly, the peace that Paul speaks of comes from knowing that God loves you and desires only the best for you. Scripture says you have the provision, protection, and power of Almighty God. He even gave His only Son for you. That’s how much He loves you. What do you have to worry about? Nothing!
The peace of Christ is to rule our lives. The word "rule", brabeuetoô that we find in this passage literally means "to umpire". We are to allow the peace of Christ, knowing He died for us and we are no longer at war with God, knowing He gave His only Son for us and loves us perfectly, guide or "umpire" all of our decisions.
Cue slide - Rejoice
Secondly, we are to rejoice and be thankful. Verse 15b says,
"And be thankful"
When we know that God loves us and that Christ died for us we cannot help but rejoice. Add to that the fact you don’t have to worry because God is in your corner and you can’t help but give thanks and rejoice. The literal translation says we are to "continually" be thankful. It is similar to Philippians 4:4-7 where Paul says: