Fulton County Gospel News

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The Bible and Fatherhood

By Charles Box

I have heard it and I think it must be true, "A boy loves his mother, but he follows his father." Tremendous responsibility is placed on the shoulders of the fathers. God’s word says, “And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4). “Father” is a word that is in the Bible many times. It is in 977 verses in our Kings James Version of the Bible. The plural “fathers” is in 515 verses in our King James Bible. Godly fathers make a difference in their families through their service to God.

The first time the word “father” is mentioned in the Bible it had to do with marriage. The first use of the word “father” in the Bible was when, “Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Gen. 2:23-24). Godly and scriptural marriages are beautiful. "Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge" (Heb. 13:4). When God joins a man and woman in matrimony, neither the man nor the woman has the right to dissolve this marriage. Jesus said, "Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder" (Matt. 19:6). There must be leaving and cleaving. God's will concerning marriage is for one man and one woman to be married until either the man or the woman dies. God hates divorce (Mal. 2:16).

The first time the word “fathers” is mentioned in the Bible it had to do with death.God said to Abraham, “And thou shalt go to thy fathers in peace; thou shalt be buried in a good old age” (Gen. 15:15). God wanted Abraham to know that his body was mortal. He would die a physical death and be buried after a long earthly life (Gen. 25:7-8). Physical death is the separation of the spirit from the body (Gen. 35:18; Ecc. 12:7). Abraham’s body died and he was buried with his fathers. His soul went into the spiritual world to be among other patriarchs who had died faithful to God.

The most beautiful times the term “Father” is in the Bible is when it refers to God.In giving the "model" prayer Jesus said, “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you” (Matt. 6:9-15). God is called Father by Jesus no fewer than one-hundred and sixty times. What a beautiful expression, “Our Father in Heaven.” Because God is Father and has a great love for mankind He has provided forgiveness of sins through Christ's death. "In Him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace" (Eph. 1:7). Our allegiance must be to God and to Him alone. God is the Most High God, our Father in heaven.

As physical fathers, we men should love, provide for, and lead our children to heaven. (1 Tim. 5:8). Let us protect our children from Satan and from the confusion of the world (Pro. 22:6). Love your children and love their mother! Fathers must work to be worthy of the love and respect of their families. Men, your children will follow your lead. Your responsibilities are awesome. You need the help of God to be the kind of father you should be. To become a Christian you must hear the gospel (Rom. 10:17), believe in Jesus as the Christ (Heb. 11:6), repent of all sins (Acts 17:30), confess Christ as Lord (Matt. 10:32), and be bap­tized to be saved (Mk.16:16). After baptism, remain faithful to God (Rev. 2:10). The best earthly father is the one who knows God as his Heavenly Father.

Charles preaches for the Walnut Street church of Christ in Greenville, AL





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