A Man of God!
June 19, 2011
Today is Father’s day. A time we set aside to honor our Fathers. While I believe that Father’s Day does not deserve the treatment of Mother’s Day, it actually was founded as a follow up due to mother’s day. A 16 year old girl was listening to a sermon at church one day on mother’s day and wanted to do something to honor her father who lost his wife, her mom, while giving birth to her 6th child, leaving him alone to raise them all.
Today with the divorce rate being as it is; we have lots of single dads as well. Now my opinion is that it takes both parents to raise a child; moms and dads who live together and moms and dad who live apart. But sense today is Father’s Day we will focus on the man of the house.
Anyone can be the donor; it takes a real man to be a father. But just because you may be a good provider for your family, just because you may make sure they have the best education, or you make sure that they excel in every activity they are involved in. That might make you a good dad, but that does not make you the best dad that you can be. What good does it do to provide your kids with all the love and all the opportunity to exceed in this life and not lead them to a relationship with Christ? Time on this earth is short…eternity is forever.
To be the best dad you can be you need to be a man of God. Even being a Christian does not mean that you are a man of God. I know some professed Christians who are not very good examples as dads.
So what does it take to be a man of God? We are going to look at an Old Testament Prophet who shows us the example of what a Godly man should look like. A little background here, Elijah was a prophet like no other sense the days of Moses. His name literally meant, “The Lord is my God”. We read in the beginning of the chapter that Elijah told the King of Israel that there would be no dew or rain. Now this is important because the Canaanite belief was that only the false god Baal could govern the dew and the rain. His challenge was simply; “Who is the real God, Baal or the Lord?”
The Lord then sends him away from there and tells him to hide by a brook. So he goes down and hangs around this brook and the Lord gives him room service by having the ravens feed him; bread and meat every morning and evening. But then the brook dries up from no rain. Then the Lord sent him to a widow to provide for him.
This is where we get to our points on what a Godly man is to look like. First a Godly man needs to be…
A man of CONVICTION!
A definition of the word conviction means a fixed or a firm belief. His belief was in the word of God. When you think about it, going to a widow was not a very smart choice as far as the world’s eyes are concerned. Widows were exceptionally poor. There was no equal opportunity in those days. The men were the primary bread winners in the family. A widow had very little opportunity to survive much less take on another mouth to feed. But he did what the Lord told him to do. 1 Kings 17:9 "Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. See, I have commanded a widow there to provide for you."
It wouldn’t have made any sense to me. I would have said, just have the birds bring the water. But Elijah was a Godly man and a man of conviction; He believed and did what God told him to do. 1 Kings 17:10-12 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, indeed a widow was there gathering sticks. And he called to her and said, "Please bring me a little water in a cup, that I may drink." And as she was going to get it, he called to her and said, "Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand." So she said, "As the LORD your God lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar; and see, I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die." She didn’t have anything. Yet Elijah because of his convictions, believed what God said He was going to do. He was going to provide for Elijah by this poor widow. My point is no matter how crazy it may seem like at the time; No matter how difficult the circumstances, we need to be men of God and obey Him no matter what.
I believe that God not only wanted to prove that to Elijah but he also wanted Elijah to share in his conviction. We read in 1 Kings 17:13-16 And Elijah said to her, "Do not fear; go and do as you have said, but make me a small cake from it first, and bring it to me; and afterward make some for yourself and your son. For thus says the LORD God of Israel: 'The bin of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil run dry, until the day the LORD sends rain on the earth."' So she went away and did according to the word of Elijah; and she and he and her household ate for many days. The bin of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of the LORD which He spoke by Elijah.
By being a man of conviction and sharing his conviction, he was leading the way for someone else to believe in God as well. If you truly want to be a man of God, not only do you need to be a man of convictions, but you also need to share your convictions. You need to be the light that can lead others out of the darkness. You need to share your convictions with your children. Like I said earlier, what good does it do to provide all the love, provisions, everything we can to ensure our child’s success in this life and not lead them in the right way for the life to come? To be a Godly man…woman…whatever… you need to be a person who has conviction by believing and doing what God tells you to do and then to share that conviction with our kids and others. The next thing to be a man of God you need to be…
A man of COMPASSION!
When God provided for Elijah, not only was he provided for, but also the widow and her son. 1 Kings 17:15 So she went away and did according to the word of Elijah; and she and he and her household ate for many days.
Not only were Elijah’s needs being meet, but also the widow and her household. God and Elijah both shared a compassion for this widow. But the compassion didn’t stop there. We read in 1 Kings 17:17-19 Now it happened after these things that the son of the woman who owned the house became sick. And his sickness was so serious that there was no breath left in him. So she said to Elijah, "What have I to do with you, O man of God? Have you come to me to bring my sin to remembrance, and to kill my son?" And he said to her, "Give me your son." So he took him out of her arms and carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and laid him on his own bed.
Picture this. The widow’s son becomes sick. He didn’t starve to death as the widow had originally predicted. He was so sick that he ended up dying. It says there was no breath left in him. From everything that I have learned in life, if someone is not breathing that is a pretty good sign that they are dead. So he picks this dead body up from his mother’s grieving arms and does not carry him to the boy’s room, but to the guest room, his own room, where he was staying. He had compassion for her. Her problem was his problem.
To be a Godly man or person, we need to have compassion for others as well. Psalm 112:4-5 Unto the upright there arises light in the darkness; He is gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous. A good man deals graciously and lends; He will guide his affairs with discretion.
God in His mercy showed us compassion by not giving us what we deserve. He showed us compassion by allowing His only Son to be nailed to a cross and die a cruel death. When Jesus saw the crowds, the bible says that He was moved with compassion. We need to be Christ-like and have compassion as well. We need to have compassion on those who are hurting in our church. We need to have compassion to those hurting in our community. We need to have compassion on those both on our soil and foreign soils across the land. We need to care about them physically, mentally, but most importantly…Spiritually. People need the Lord and to be a Godly man or person we need to show compassion. The next thing to be a Godly man, we need to…
Be a man of CONNECTION!
In life I have found out that it pays to have connections. People often call me to seek advice seeking to use some kind of connection that I might have because they know that I know a lot of people. Being is sales the last 20+ years; you have the opportunity to meet a lot of people; from auto repair, to roof repair, to people just looking for employment. It pays to have connections. But the best connection for anyone is to be connected with God. Elijah knows that. We read about that in 1 Kings 17:20-22 Then he cried out to the LORD and said, "O LORD my God, have You also brought tragedy on the widow with whom I lodge, by killing her son?" And he stretched himself out on the child three times, and cried out to the LORD and said, "O LORD my God, I pray, let this child's soul come back to him." Then the LORD heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came back to him, and he revived.
Elijah didn’t have any special medical powers. He didn’t have a defibrillator in his room and shock the boy back to life. He did have a connection with the One who could. HE PRAYED and cried out to God. And God heard Elijah and by having that connection with God, the boy’s life was restored.
To be a Godly man, woman or child, you need to have a connection with God. The same God that Elijah prayed to is the same God that you can pray too. It’s tough being a parent. Sometimes it’s tough just being. But we have a Heavenly Father who wants to be connected with us. We need to be connected with Him on a daily basis. We need to be connected to Him with our prayers. We need to read His love letter, the bible, He left for us. James 4:8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
To be a Godly man or person you need to be connected to God. And the last point I have; to be a Godly man you need to be…
A man of CERTAINTY!
When Elijah took that dead boy from his mom and carried him to his room, he was certain that God would hear him and God would heal him. He had experienced God’s power and he had no doubt what God was capable of doing. 1 Kings 17:23-24 And Elijah took the child and brought him down from the upper room into the house, and gave him to his mother. And Elijah said, "See, your son lives!" Then the woman said to Elijah, "Now by this I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of the LORD in your mouth is the truth."
“See, your son lives!” He was certain of what God could do. How about you? What problems are you facing? Are there any burdens in your life that you think are too big for you to give to God and He is not able to take care of them? To be a Godly man, you need to be certain that God is bigger than any problem, any circumstance, anything this world hands you. 1 John 4:4 You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.
You need to be certain of your relationship with Christ. It’s not about being good or going to church; it’s a personal relationship with Him. You don’t have to hope, think, or guess; you can know that you have that relationship with Him.
Because of Elijah’s actions the widow said, "Now by this I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of the LORD in your mouth is the truth."
When others see your life, your actions, do they know that you are a man or person of God? The best sermon is not the one heard, but the one seen. When your kids look at you, what do they see? Do they see a person who loves and lives for Christ? When you neighbors, your co-workers, those you come in contact with on a daily basis see you, do they think, “That is a man, a person, of God”?