Summary: In this message I try to answer the following questions.Has sin infiltrated the church because we have loved our sons and daughters more than Jesus? Have we tolerated sin in our homes in order to show unconditional love?
Jesus said if any man or woman love son or daughter more than Him, he or she is not worthy of Him (Matthew 10:37). What does that mean? Thomas Coke said the following regarding our passage, "He who preferreth the friendship of his nearest relations, though the sweetest of all earthly satisfactions, to my religion; renouncing it, that he may enjoy their goodwill; is not worthy of being my disciple; does not deserve to be called a Christian."
Has sin infiltrated the church because we have loved other things and people more than God? Have we loved our sons and daughters more than Jesus? Have we tolerated sin in our homes because we love our children more than God? Have we loved our friends and acquaintances more than Christ? Have we tried to love them and not offend them but inadvertently loved them more than our Savior? Have we offended Him and denied Him by refusing to acknowledge what scripture says about their behavior? We don’t want to be like Eli, who honored his sons more than he honored God (1 Samuel 2:29, 30). God was angry with Eli for not taking a sterner approach with his adult sons regarding their attitude and service in the temple. They were sleeping around with the women in church and taking more than they should from the offerings. God’s word has not changed He still requires us to love Him with all our heart, soul and mind (Matthew 22:37).
Our job is to teach our family members to love and obey God. God said, Abraham would inherit the promised land because he would command/teach his children to obey Him. Let’s read the text: God said… …. “Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do, seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?” For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him (Genesis 18:18-19). Did you notice Abraham inherited the promised land because he would obey God and encourage/teach his children to obey Him. Receiving the promised land was not ALL about Faith but Faith and Obedience.
Again, as parents we need to obey God and teach our children to obey Him. We need to teach our children the word of God and confront them when necessary, instead of partaking in their sin. I have seen parents out of a desperate desire to love and accept their children, backslide themselves! They actually stopped going to church and started going to bars and clubs with their child!? The devil is crafty, he will use anyone to get you to turn your back on God, including your own children. Jesus loved Peter but he was not going to let Peter get him out of the will of God. When Peter tried to get Christ to deny the way of the cross, He said, get behind me Satan, you do not have in mind the things of God but the things of this world! Fleshly sins and pleasures are things of this world they are temporary. If a son or daughter, friend, or relative prefers to have in mind/pursue the things of this world you must continue to speak the truth in love, while walking in obedience.
Some of us have neglected to teach our children the word because we have been focused on trying to teach the world, and they have turned to rend our garments (Matthew 7:6). Sometime ago I read the obituary of a classmate, who had been killed. I was surprised to learn his father was a preacher. I never saw the man when we were growing up! But he had a church and was ministering/sharing the gospel with hundreds of other people but not his own children. It's easy to fall prey to this but this is not what God wants. It's easy to go about the city or country, traveling, speaking, while leaving our families behind to fend for themselves. How awful it will be at Christ's inauguration, to celebrate with the people we've led to the Lord minus our own children and family members.
God calls families, we dare not instruct others while neglecting to instruct own. We should be encouraged to speak truth regarding the integrity of scripture and God's purpose for it to them. For" all Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for instruction, for conviction, for correction, and for training in righteousness." 2 Timothy 3:16.
When Job's children were out partying He was concerned for their souls, He rose early in the morning to offer sacrifices for each one of them. Notice Job was not out partying with his children but at home in prayer for them. He appears to be a wise man, allowing his children to go through the stages of youth (partying, cussing, goofing around) as it is common to man. He knew they would need to be covered in prayer to get through this stage successfully. The verse said, he was concerned they would sin and curse God in their heart, so he we was probably constantly in their faces saying, obey God, guard your heart, stay away from sin. They probably brushed him off but they knew his values, they knew he was a man that feared God and shunned evil. He wasn't overbearing, he let them live their lives, while living holy himself. We don't compromise holiness in order to fit in with family members.