Summary: A Father's Day sermon that examines Abraham's fatal decision to betray his wife out of fear of Pharaoh, and the consequences of the "faltering faith" of this otherwise great man of faith.

When a Father’s Faith Falters

Father’s Day Message

Chuck Sligh

June 21, 2015

TEXT: Turn to Genesis 12


Since it’s Father’s Day, men, I’m going to do us all a favor. I’m going to help your wives understand you with Chuck Sligh’s Dictionary of Man Phrases. Men know what they mean by what they, but you ladies sometimes need a little translation, so here are a few translations from my newest best-seller.

• When a man says, “It would take too long to explain”, he means: “I have no idea how it works.”

• When a man says, “Take a break, Honey. You’re working too hard”, what he means is “I can’t hear the game over the vacuum cleaner.”

• When he says “Can I help with dinner?”, he means “Why isn’t it ready yet?”

• When a man says “I can’t find it”, what he really means is, “It didn’t fall into my outstretched hand, so I’m completely clueless.”

• When a man says “You look terrific!”, that translates into “Oh please don’t try on one more outfit, we’re late and I’m starving.”

• When a man says, “That’s not what I meant”, He means: “If something I said can be interpreted two ways, and one of the ways makes you sad or angry, I meant the other one.”

It’s always fun to laugh about the differences between men and women, but I want to have a serious heart-to-heart talk with our men this morning about a very serious matter.

Illus. – Let me illustrate by telling about a man in our church in Tennessee I’ll call Dave (not his real name). Dave faced some very difficult problems in his life with his second wife. Before long, he started skipping the Wednesday evening service. Soon he was missing Sunday evenings, and his attendance became spotty on Sunday mornings until he eventually he dropped out of church altogether. Dave had four kids—all of whom had come to faith in Christ and serving God when he was walking with God. But as time went by, they too turned away from the Lord, following Dad. Both of his oldest sons ended up on drugs. Their older daughter was also on drugs and had a baby out of wedlock. The younger daughter followed right in the footsteps of her sister. Sadly, it can all be laid at the door of Dave and his faltering faith.

Abraham was a great man of God in many ways, but he multiplied for himself and his descendants many sorrows because of a time in his life of faltering faith. Men, since this is Father’s Day, I want to tell you a cautionary tale of a father who did many things RIGHT—but sadly failed in one area of his life, with tragic consequences. I hope that you will not make the same kind of mistakes.

Turn now to Genesis 12:10-20 – “And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; for the famine was grievous in the land. 11 And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt, that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon: 12 Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they shall say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive. 13 Say, I pray thee, thou art my sister: that it may be well with me for thy sake; and my soul shall live because of thee.

14 And it came to pass, that, when Abram was come into Egypt, the Egyptians beheld the woman that she was very fair. 15 The princes also of Pharaoh saw her, and commended her before Pharaoh: and the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. 16 And he entreated Abram well for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he asses, and menservants, and maidservants, and she asses, and camels. 17 And the LORD plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai Abram’s wife. 18 And Pharaoh called Abram, and said, What is this that thou hast done unto me? why didst thou not tell me that she was thy wife? 19 Why saidst thou, She is my sister? so I might have taken her to me to wife: now therefore behold thy wife, take her, and go thy way. 20 And Pharaoh commanded his men concerning him: and they sent him away, and his wife, and all that he had.”

As we examine this sad story, notice with me…


Abraham was in the place of God’s choosing. He had been called by God from Ur of Chaldees through Haran, and was now in Palestine, the place God had called him to. He had settled into the land…but then famine struck.

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