Opportunities of Fatherhood

Proverbs 1:1-9

1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel:

2 To know wisdom and instruction,

To perceive the words of understanding,

3 To receive the instruction of wisdom,

Justice, judgment, and equity;

4 To give prudence to the simple,

To the young man knowledge and discretion--

5 A wise man will hear and increase learning,

And a man of understanding will attain wise counsel,

6 To understand a proverb and an enigma,

The words of the wise and their riddles.

7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge,

But fools despise wisdom and instruction.

8 My son, hear the instruction of your father,

And do not forsake the law of your mother;

9 For they will be a graceful ornament on your head,

And chains about your neck.

This message was preached at FBC Toulon, IL by Albert Harmon see it toulonbaptist.com

This message is adapted from The Handbook of Bible Application Copyright © 1992 by Tyndale House Publishers,

We all have various opportunities in life. Some will be come rich, while others will become famous. Some will become successful while others will influence nations.

But the greatest opportunity any of us will have is the opportunity to influence our children.

  1. Fathers have the opportunity to be good role models for their children.
    1. Our actions speak louder than our words.
      1. Our children are far more likely to do what we do than to do what we say.
      2. And there are certain things that cannot be taught by instruction.
      3. And there are some things that are easier caught than taught.
      4. Children learn values, morals, and priorities by observing how their parents act and react every day.
      5. If parents exhibit a deep reverence for and dependence on God, the children will catch these attitudes.
    2. Let them see your reverence for God.
      1. Through your prayer life.
      2. Through your dependance on God.
      3. By those you consider close friends.
      4. By your attendance at worship.
    3. Teach them right living by giving worship an important place in your family life and by reading the Bible together.
  2. Fathers have the opportunity to train their children in the art of decision making.
    1. BIBLE READING: Numbers 30:1-16
    2. KEY BIBLE VERSE: Now Moses summoned the leaders of the tribes and told them, "The Lord has commanded that when anyone makes a promise to the Lord, either to do something or to quit doing something, that vow must not be broken: the person making the vow must do exactly as he has promised." (Numbers 30:1-2, tlb)
  3. Under Israelite law, parents could overrule their children's vows.
    1. This helped young people avoid the consequences of making foolish promises or costly commitments.
  4. From this law comes an important principle for both parents and children.
    1. Young people still living at home should seek their parents' help when they make decisions.
    2. A parent's experience could save a child from a serious mistake.
    3. Parents, however, should exercise their authority with caution and grace.
    4. They should let children learn from their mistakes, but protect them from disaster.
  5. It should never become a power issue but a matter of doing what is right because that is what God says we should do.
  6. Fathers have the opportunity to teach their children the Scriptures.
    1. BIBLE READING: Deuteronomy 6:1-25
    2. KEY BIBLE VERSE: These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 6:6-7, niv)
  7. This passage provides the central theme of Deuteronomy.
  8. It sets a pattern that helps us relate the Word of God to our daily life.
  9. We are to love God, think constantly about his commandments, teach his commandments to our children, and live each day by the guidelines in his Word.
  10. God emphasized the importance of parents' teaching the Bible to their children.
  11. The church and Christian schools cannot be used as an escape from this responsibility.
  12. The Bible provides so many opportunities for object lessons and practical teaching that it would be a shame to study it only one day a week.
  13. Eternal truths are most effectively learned in the loving environment of a God-fearing home.
  14. Fathers have the opportunity to train their children in applying the Scriptures.
    1. The Hebrews were extremely successful at making religion an integral part of life.
    2. The reason for their success was that religious education was life-oriented, not information-oriented.
    3. They used the context of daily life to teach about God.
    4. The key to teaching your children to love God is stated simply and clearly in these verses.
      1. If you want your children to follow God, you must make God a part of your everyday experiences.
      2. You must diligently teach your children to see God in all aspects of life, not just those that are church related.
  15. Fathers have the opportunity to seek God's will for their children.
    1. BIBLE READING: Matthew 20:20-28
    2. KEY BIBLE VERSE: Then the mother of James and John, the sons of Zebedee, brought them to Jesus and respectfully asked a favor. "What is your request?" he asked. She replied, "In your Kingdom, will you let my two sons sit on two thrones next to yours?" (Matthew 20:20-21, tlb)
  16. The mother of James and John asked Jesus to give her sons special positions in his kingdom.
  17. Parents naturally want to see their children promoted and honored, but this desire is dangerous if it causes them to lose sight of God's specific will for their children.
  18. God may have different work in mind--not as glamorous, but just as important.
  19. Thus parents' desires for their children's advancement must be held in check as they pray for God's will to be done in their children's lives.

All that is the good news:

Now the bad news:

You only get one chance to do this. Your children are only young once.  

 

This message was preached at FBC Toulon, by Albert Harmon. See it at http://toulonbaptist.com