Observations from today’s readings and today’s S-WOD, Sunday, 16 April 2022:
Happy Easter! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87lY7fFs6ns
Listen to Skip Heitzig talk about Leviticus 15– https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=twjse5DfbmU
Psalm 45:17 — “I will perpetuate your memory through all generations; therefore the nations will praise you for ever and ever.”
Our readings have much to say about God’s desires for the Christian family. First, Christian families must recognize their total reliance on the grace and blessings of God. (Psalm 45:2) They must be led by honorable, mighty men who fight for “truth, humility, and justice,” who “love righteousness and hate wickedness.” (Psalm 45:4, 7)
Also, these families must be led by godly, noble matriarchs who are fully devoted to their husbands and who honor them in every way. (Psalm 45:10, 11; Proverbs 12:4) Through wisdom, these women build secure homes for their families. (Proverbs 14:1; Proverbs 31)
Together, these parents lead a house that flourishes because they don’t just hope for good but rather are diligent enough to “plan for good (Proverbs 14:11, 22, 23),” working very hard, and investing in the capabilities required for future productivity. (Proverbs 14:4) The Christian family should be characterized by love and faithfulness. (Proverbs 14:22) The Christian home should be a sanctuary (Proverbs 14:26), a place where everyone feels safe.
A Christian home must be led by noble parents who raise generations of noble Christian leaders after them. (Psalm 45:16) As the Bible says, “Did he not make them one, with a portion of the Spirit in their union? And what was the one God seeking? Godly offspring. (Malachi 2:15)”
Every Christian has made mistakes in parenting, perhaps some big ones. Today is a new day. Trust God with the past and the future. Seek to parent today like your Father in Heaven would, walking in His grace, which is sufficient in your constant failure.
- Psalm 127:3-5 — Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.
- Deuteronomy 11:18-21 — You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land that the LORD swore to your fathers to give them, as long as the heavens are above the earth
No one has had perfect parents. Forgive your parents unconditionally and honor them.
- Exodus 20:12 — Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.
- Ephesians 6:1 — Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.
- Proverbs 23:22 — Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.
- Colossians 3:20 — Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.
- 1 Peter 4:8 — Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.
“And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers….” (Malachi 4:6) Pray that God will move in the hearts of your family members (including you) where there might be brokenness and disunity. The most important institution established by God on earth is the family. He created it, and He will empower it for His glory. The secret to a strong, united, loving and joyful family is to build it upon the foundation of Jesus Christ and to rest (or abide) upon that foundation — “For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” (1 Corinthians 3:11) God desires your family to be united in Him for your joy and for His glory — “Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one…. The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.” (John 17:11, 22, 23)
Proverbs 17:1 – “Better is a dry morsel with quiet than a house full of feasting with strife.”
This has application to national politics. We are so wealthy as a nation and yet so divided. This is a reality of human nature, revealed in homes and in nations and throughout the Bible. When people are doing well, they tend to forget God, become self-centered and selfish, and cause strife with others. Often, God doesn’t give people comfort and security because He knows it will ruin their character.
Proverbs 17:2 – “A servant who deals wisely will rule over a son who acts shamefully and will share the inheritance as one of the brothers.”
Salvation came to the Gentiles. “…through their (Jews) trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous.”
Proverbs 17:3 – “The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold, and the Lord tests hearts.”
God puts you through hard times to make you more precious.
Proverbs 17:5 – “Whoever mocks the poor insults his Maker; he who is glad at calamity will not go unpunished.”
If you show contempt for others, you are convicting yourself. Your heart is not right with God, and you are failing to accomplish you life’s mission of reconciliation. 1 Corinthians 5:17-20 – “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.”
Proverbs 17:9 – “Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends.”
Our primary command is to love. Do you cover over offenses?
Proverbs 17:27 – “Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.”
How you handle contention reveals to true level of your knowledge and understanding.
“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 16 Apr 22: Pray that God will help you to demonstrate His love and His ways to your family today. Draw closer to God so you can draw closer to your family, and pray that God will inspire you other family members to do likewise.