Restoring Baptism!

Dad often said, “I DON’T BELIEVE IN BAPTISM, I BELIEVE IN JESUS… HE COMMANDED IT, SO I DO IT!” Having said that (and hopefully gotten your attention), Mike Kellett mentioned 7 things for studying the Scriptures which I like. In short they are:
1. Context is king 
2. Establish “What it means then and there, before what it means here and now. (This includes researching the cultural history as well.)
3. Scriptures have a “center of gravity”. (All Scripture is inspired of God, but not all Scripture are equally important.) (Seek BALANCE and don’t pit one Scripture against another.)
4. Must strive to be “full of grace and truth (genuineness).”
5. Look for harmony with other texts (Matthew 12:1-7).
6, Must involve the Holy spirit, and be humble (in searching the Scriptures.)
7. Parallel (contributing) Scriptures must be considered.

There is no doubt as to the meaning of “Baptism” as well as it’s purpose in the New Testament. “Restore” it, by “understanding what it meant then and there, before teaching it here and now.” Faith finds it power in the object. Don’t believe in “repentance, confession, or baptism… BELIEVE IN JESUS, and do what He says. You cannot separate “baptism” from faith, grace, remission of sins, nor the Spirit. These don’t contradict each other, they “work” together. “We have heard the glorious sound, JESUS SAVES, JESUS SAVES…” Don’t forget it!

The word “baptism” is transliterated or taken from the Greek word “baptizo”. It is “from “bapto,” to dip. Immerse, submerge for a religious purpose, (John 1:25).” (The Complete Word Study Dictionary New Testament” by Spiros Zodiates). It was understood then, and it should be understood now, to mean the same thing. The purpose is made clear in Acts 2:38, “Repent and be baptized, everyone of you in the name (possession of) Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

Dad went somewhere to preach and he noticed the banner above the baptistery which proclaimed only the first part of Acts 2:38. He got up and said, “What happened to the rest of the verse? Don’t you believe that too?” Pretty tough! Not many preachers would do that. The point is, we tend to over emphasize “baptism” we leave people thinking that we believe in “water regeneration,” which we DO NOT! Jesus taught in John 3:5 “I tell you the truth, NO ONE can enter the kingdom of God (be saved) UNLESS he is born of water and the Spirit.” Seeking balance and harmony in Scriptures force me to the understanding of ONE BIRTH, with TWO ELEMENTS. I can only baptize in water, but I cannot give the Holy Spirit. You cannot put one before the other, but then you cannot separate them. Jesus is the Giver. Restoring “baptism” involves two elements in the ONE BAPTISM (Ephesians 4). “A Spiritless water birth is no more beneficial than a waterless Spirit birth.” As Dad put it, “water without the Spirit gets one wet, without the life giving power of God.

Yes, restore BAPTISM!

Share Button

“Tinkle,Tinkle” You Are Gone!

Jack Exum

Jack Exum

It really happened back in the early days of Dad’s preaching career… when, I could not say. I remember sitting with Dad in his office in Lake City and he told me that one day many years before, when he was a young minister that he went to visit one of the members of the local church where he served. He knocked on the door, and a rather stately older Christian lady came to the door and invited him in. They sat for a time talking, and he asked to use the restroom. No problem… he went, shut the door behind him and used the bathroom. Well, afterwards he came out, and thanked her, saying how much he enjoyed visiting and hoped to see her in church soon. He then left to visit another member of the church.

All was well, or so he thought. Later that week, he was asked by the leaders to come to their meeting and he obliged. In the meeting they mentioned that one of the members had complained that he had visited her and went to use the restroom, and that when he did “he made sounds.” To use mom’s terminology, he “tinkled.” Well, things digressed from there and because of this, he was asked to leave, and find employment somewhere else. “Tinkle, tinkle… you are gone!”

There are many reasons why preachers loose their jobs. Some are very justified… Some reasons are no more than excuses of weak leaders who have not learned or are not willing to deal with some disgruntled brethren.

So it seems to this scribe, that perhaps it behooves ministers to be careful how they “tinkle,” or “beef up” their preaching a bit on the need for brethren to “grow up,” or encourage leaders to stand up and support the minister when dealing with the immature within the congregation who have little more to do than pick at everything and complain when something doesn’t go the way they want. Another thought is, don’t be so quick to move at the first sign of trouble… Work through it, deal with it (properly), and get on with the work of the minister. Sometimes brethren don’t need to “get their way,” sometimes they just need to grow up, and get busy in the service of the Lord. Then maybe little things won’t bother them so much.

Grow in grace!

 

Share Button

Exum’s To Keene New Hampshire!

We are very excited about our new work here in Keene with the West Keene Church of Christ. It is a small congregation of about 35 and we are so grateful to the Lord for opening this door of opportunity.

While Indonesia is still on our minds and in our hearts, we are thrilled and blessed to have this opportunity to serve in this community. This too is a mission field, and we have fallen in love with the people and the work here. Our plans now are to work in Indonesia one month per year getting to know and understand the work and help empower the brethren there to grow in grace and winning the lost for Christ.

We are presently in the process of moving in and of course the process is difficult. We covet your prayers for this work and love hearing from any who write. I am sorry that I have had to take a break in writing articles for jackexum.com during this time, but we will be starting to write when we get settled.

Thank you and god bless you all.
Grow in grace!!!

Share Button

“Thank God for Forgetfulness We have To Move On”

 

Jack And Ann Exum

Jack And Ann Exum

When I was a boy of twelve, I was saved. My Dad baptized me and I heard the congregation sing, “O Happy Day, which fixed my heart on thee my Savior and my God…” I knew nothing about what being a Christian was like. That was 69 years ago and I’m still learning.
When I was nineteen, I married my sweetheart Ann. I knew even less of what being a husband was like. Now sixty one years later, I am still learning. My precious Ann is in the nursing home and I still don’t understand or fully grasp the meaning of it all.
I was reading a book (502 pages) called “Dead Center,” and I ran across this saying, “Thank God for forgetfulness – we have to move on.” It was an unusual string of words and I made a note of them. I just thought they would make a good column. Hear what the apostle Paul says, “Once I was alive apart from the law, but then the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died… Did that which is good then become death to me? We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. I do not understand what I do, but what I hate I do… As it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me… I have a desire to do good, but I cannot carry it out (Romans 7).
Paul was holding the garments of those who stoned Stephen and later declared… Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man… but for that very reason I was shown mercy, that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life (Acts 7.58; I Timothy 1.12-16).
“THANK GOD FOR FORGETFULNESS – WE HAVE TO MOVE ON.” So it is with you and me and most who will read this article. The black deeds, terrible acts, the knowingly ungrateful sins were recorded in my life as with many of yours. I had to learn love, patience and forgiveness. But what about all the baggage of sin in your past? Hear again the Apostle Paul who wrote, “Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3.12-14)(ESV).
If I could interview Paul, I would ask, “Do you remember the stoning of Stephen?” “No” He would reply. “I remember the name but not the circumstances.” “Tell us a bit about the days when you were persecuting those “believers of the Way.” “I can’t recall those days and events anymore. You see I believe we ought to shut the door on those things that are evil behind us, and press on to the prize of the high calling in Christ.”
“Were you not afraid when you were condemned to death by Nero in Rome?” “No, because while I was there I spent time in prayer, and singing, and sharing my faith in Jesus… and I also wrote a number of letters to Timothy and Titus encouraging and instructing them on carrying on. I also had Timothy bring some parchments and books which kept me busy reading. In fact I did say this to Timothy, “and constant friction among people who are depraved in mind and deprived of the truth, imagining that godliness is a means of gain. 6 But godliness with contentment is great gain, 7 for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. 8 But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content.” “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8 Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing” (I Timothy 6.5-8; II Timothy 4.6-8)(ESV).
Paul did not live to see the “Fall of the Roman Empire,” but he realized Jesus was in control. His life was one focused on what lay ahead, not on what lay in the past. Our lives cannot “move on” while spending untold hours, and energy on dwelling on the past. The Hebrew writer says, “Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. (Hebrews 7.25).
Thank God for forgetfulness – We have to move on!”
Grow in grace!

 

Share Button

Rudy Snores!

RudyRudy is not my dog! He came “in the baggage” with my brother who recently (within the last 6 months) came to live with my wife and I (and our dogs and cat).
Now at first, Rudy stuck pretty close to Bob and sometimes still does, however, he has become quite adept at sleeping in our bedroom, and “yips” or barks to get into bed with us. When he does, he tries to dig in under the blankets to get warm. Sometimes he meets with opposition with Little Bit (our 20 pound weeny dog), who promptly lets him know “who’s boss!”
The problem is that Rudy snores! I don’t mean a little bit (no pun intended), he snores loud and continuously. Try sleeping with that in your ear! He gets restless about every five minutes for the first half hour, so he is continually moving about seeking a new spot or position. It usually takes me about five minutes to get the idea, HE HAS TO GO! So, off the bed he goes. Then he finds some pants or shirt or towel on the floor, and wallows out a sleeping place and goes to sleep. THE SNORING CONTINUES!
I have thought of getting a C-Pap for Rudy. I wonder if they make C-Paps for little dogs. Probably not. Trying to imagine getting a mask on the little snorer(?), and then try and get the right settings so “the poor wee dog” doesn’t “blow up” like a balloon. This is more than I can handle, so I am thinking of getting some ear plugs.
Now Rudy is in my office, on a special chair, with cushions, SNORING and he has precipitated this article.
An application:
Usually when we get married, we don’t see all the faults etc… “We’re in love!” Over time, the faults seem to get a bit annoying… “Honey, would you mind…”
Since marriage is a covenant, and you promise to God, and your spouse DIVORCE is not on the table. Then you have to work through the little and the big things. (Even snoring!)
Relationships bring many blessings, but they bring many challenges as well. Tolerating and learning to “love above the fault line,” is so important, in relation to church as well.
Jesus knew what it was like to “be stuck” with someone like I am “stuck” with Rudy. His disciples were not bargains for sure. He chose them, worked with them, taught them, corrected them, loved them… to the end (and beyond).
The best example was Jesus giving his life for them, but a good example is when he was eating the Passover with them just before His crucifixion, and since no one wanted to do the honors, He gets up from his place at the table, lays aside his garments, and girds himself with a towel, and gets a basin of water and begins washing their feet. We know the story well… but we don’t like the implications. John 13 records it all, as he goes from one pair of smelly feet to the next, and He even washed Judas’ feet! Hard to imagine, right? If it were me I would be tempted to break a toe or something… But he washed his feet just as gently and tenderly as he did the others.
Then he came to Peter’s feet.  Peter pulls back, and refuses. “No Lord, you’re not washing mine!” What’s the matter Peter… you got six toes on your foot? Are you too good to have your feet washed? Jesus tells Peter, this is an “either – or” situation… Either you allow me to wash your feet or else YOU HAVE NO PART IN ME. What does that mean? It must be pretty important, right?
Sometimes we are not very consistent. We insist on doing or not doing because, “that’s what it says!” We want to be exactly correct on “what is” and “what is not commanded,” because we want to be saved, thinking “perfect performance means we’re heaven bound.” Wrong! Heaven is a grace thing.. not a perfect performance thing. When we come to things like washing feet… we say, “Oops, this is figurative.” “This is cultural” “Jesus didn’t literally mean “wash feet.” Well what did He mean? Was it their culture? Yes. Why did they do this? They wore sandals, and walked dusty roads.  Yet he says “If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you” (John 13:14-15). If we lived in a culture where this was done, we would do it… but not to be saved. The question then is, why is this so vital that He said what He said to Peter? My opinion is that He is addressing the underlying problem of Peter (and many of us today)… PRIDE! This is something so vital both to family, and church, that He says “”If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.” If we were in a culture similar to that of Jesus time, and foot washing was the norm of hospitality, What would you think about someone who would say, “You ain’t washing my feet!” Got a problem right? In the family, and in church, we got a problem when PRIDE rears its head.
How do you love someone (or something) like Rudy? Learn the lesson of HUMILITY! Learn to SERVE! Get self out of the way, and GROW in this not so easy attitude or mind set. Yet Jesus learned… Jesus let go of… He was willing to “take on” and even to wash feet, because he loved.
Getting a basin of “God’s grace,” and washing the dirtiest feet, is not a matter of bragging, but just learning to love someone (or something) “anyway.”

 

Grow in grace brethren…
Rudy

Share Button

“The Home: Problems and Solutions” (Post Script)

This article is part 6 of 6 in the series Christian Home

Looking through Dad’s Bible, I found these notes, hand written October 1, 2000. Evidently he was taking notes from Neale Pryor. Here are his notes…
—————————————————————————–
“THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR IN THE FAMILY”
(Forgiveness – Three parts love and seven parts forgiveness.)
1.) PARENTS: Forgive your children – (e.g. Absalom)
2.) CHILDREN: Forgive your parents
3.) BROTHERS AND SISTER: Forgive each other
4.) HUNSBAND/WIFE: Forgive each other
5.) YOU: Forgive yourself.
——————————————————————————-
The importance of forgiving one another cannot be over-stated when dealing with relationships. If you parallel the church family and the home, the need for FORGIVENESS in both are easy to see.
What is “forgiveness?” Dad had this definition, “To grant free pardon, and cease to feel resentment.” He preached this all across the brotherhood, and finally, after a lesson on “Dealing with bitterness,” a lady met him at the door and told him she disagreed with him. She and Dad sat and talked, and she explained that in her opinion his idea was over simplified… and that “ceasing to feel resentment” takes time. The healing of the heart and emotions doesn’t just happen over night (although it can). Forgiveness opens the door or begins the healing process. From that time, Dad changed his message to be more balanced.
The reason for adding this to the short series on the home, is that nothing takes the place of forgiveness! A home without a forgiving spirit will not last. Too many hurts, short comings, and faults (whether innocent or on purpose) just seem to pile up in the heart. Paul says, “Love does not keep a record of wrongs…” and yet that is exactly what happens in many a heart. Finally the “pile” gets too big, the pain and emotional distress gets too hard to handle, and divorce is pursued as the only way out, and while this is not an article on the DRM question, we need to try and help before relationships in the family, and in church (divisions), get to the point of no repair. Just preaching “agin it,” doesn’t help. People need some PRACTICAL ADVISE AND HELP. Congregations need some PRACTICAL help and advice.
When a family experiences divorce.. it is because the marriage has died long before. Often the result of a lack in humility and mercy. Humility asks for forgiveness (free pardon,) and mercy (not getting what you deserve) grants it. It is much like God’s grace, right?
When a congregation “divorces” (divides), it is usually due to a lack of humility (and an abundance of pride), and a lack in mercy towards each other. Given the fact that a congregation is composed of people from different backgrounds, carrying different baggage from the past, means there must be a lot of patience and wisdom in dealing with this. Romans 14-15 deals with this idea at length, where the “weak” and “strong” must “stay in the struggle.”
Loving your wife, and loving brethren, demand an understanding and practice of always being ready to forgive.
There is something more we need to add… “put up with one another.” Fact is “you ain’t gonna change each other,” and probably “you aren’t a bargain to live with either.” Everyone has “baggage” and things which need corrected… No, you won’t change other people, at least not always, on everything. Begin with yourself. In the home or in a congregation, there are things you just need to accept, or at least give time to grow.
Here is something I picked up from Dad which applies both to ALL families and congregations.
1. YOU ARE NUMBER ONE IN MY LIFE. (Putting others before yourself is extremely important, because selfishness, or thinking everything revolves around you will destroy relationships.)
2. I ACCEPT YOU AS YOU ARE. YOU ARE FREE TO BE YOURSELF. (Just think about it… when a person becomes a Christian, God has accepted him/her. The first thing we begin to do is tell them, “You gotta change this or that.” Before long they het the idea that THEY ARE NEVER GOOD ENOUGH! Growth comes more by observance than coercion. Just imagine yourself in their place. How do you react when change is being pushed on you? Not so well I imagine. ACCEPT THEM! LET THEM GROW AND CHANGE OVER TIME! TEACH AND ENCOURAGE WITH THE LOVE YOU SHOULD HAVE FOR A HUSBAND OR WIFE.
3. MAKE NO MORAL JUDGMENTS. Dad told Mom, “I will not make any moral judgments about you.” Well, he failed in this. He tried though. Making moral judgments is a touchy area. CAUTION should be used, CARE AND LOVE should be evident. Listen friends, you can correct someone on almost anything, if they are certain it is coming from a heart of love!
4. YOU ARE FREE TO HAVE YOUR FEELINGS. Feelings aren’t right or wrong… they just are! You need to understand this. When someone is upset, the worst thing you can say is, “you shouldn’t feel that way.” Again, put yourself in their shoes. Try saying, “You have a right to your feelings…” Just listen! This is hard for preachers… I know this first hand. Dad was a great preacher… his problem (in his words), “I just have a hard time listening.”
5. NO DIVORCE! You say, “What if I have been through divorce?” Are you a believer, washed in the blood of Jesus? “Yes.” Have you repented sincerely of the (divorce) past? “Yes.” Then begin where you are in God’s forgiveness and grace, and promise your spouse DIVORCE IS OUT OF OUR PICTURE. WE ARE IN THIS FOR LIFE!” You may say “Well I haven’t been through divorce.” Then you need to tell your spouse the same thing! NO DIVORCE!
Congregations and families need to stop the sin of quitting on each other (divorce). God hates it! Instead learn how to forgive. Don’t preach against “divorce” and push for “division” in a congregation. It is hypocritical to say the least.
Husbands, wives, (especially children,) congregations, need to know… WE WILL NOT HAVE ANY PART IN “QUITTING ON EACH OTHER.” Mark and avoid the one who spreads division wherever they go. Keep the unity of the Spirit. Build and encourage the home and congregation you are part of.
Grow in grace!

Share Button

“Five Hurtles To Radical Faith”

Hurdling is an exciting part of the Olympics. The idea is to run a distance of say 110 yards, and overcome the hurdles that are evenly set and must be cleared without knocking them over or falling, and be the fastest one to finish.
I don’t know where Dad got this outline, but evidently he was listening to a speaker and taking notes. Using a play on words, instead of “hurdles” he used “HURTLES.”
“FIVE HURTLES OF RADICAL FAITH”
The story of Jesus healing Jairus’ daughter
Text: Mark 5.21-end
“And when Jesus was passed over again by ship unto the other side, much people gathered unto him: and he was nigh unto the sea. And, behold, there cometh one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and when he saw him, he fell at his feet…”
1. DIGNITY: He was a ruler of the Jewish synagogue. While many rulers hated and despised Jesus… while Jairus did not. Jairus was a hurting, disturbed, broken man. Life happens, and when sickness and death comes, it shakes all concerned, even this ruler of the synagogue. In great humility, he falls on his face before the Lord. He did not care what others thought about him. He cared not what other “rulers” thought of him. “Dear Lord, I beg you, please come, I need you now,” was the only thing he could say. Dignity was “out the window” as he approached his only Hope for his daughter. Pride is gone, the hurt and pain humbles the greatest. Dignity disappears in His presence.
2. DELAY: “Hurry up!” “Let’s go right now!” The panic of his voice is easy to hear as you read the text. Yet there are interruptions that always seem to come challenging our patience and faith. In vv 25-34 there is a woman who has trouble of her own. She was bleeding, and not just for a day… this had gone on for twelve years! Doctors could not help… and again Jesus was her only Hope. She interrupts His journey to help Jairus, not meaning to, because she just wanted to touch his garment and be healed and disappear into the crowd. Question: What do you do when God makes you wait? We get angry because we want help NOW! “I’ll go and get another God if you can’t put my needs first!” In our time, we demand fast food, ATMs, Quick Lubes, and Drive-Thru dining. We just don’t want to wait. Even the Lord’s Supper is timed down to five minutes so as to keep us on schedule to get thru services on time to “beat the Baptists” to lunch. What a shame. Remember how Abraham was made to “wait” for the promised son, Isaac. Recall what happened when he didn’t. Remember how Moses had to wait 40 years to be ready to serve. When he was 80 years old, God says, “Ok Moses, it’s time to go see Pharaoh!” Then you have Elijah, Jesus, Paul and others… who experienced this “waiting” period, or call it “the wilderness.” This is a tough “hurtle” when we are hurting.
3. DESPAIR: Men came and told Jairus, “Your daughter has died.” “It’s too late… even Jesus can’t help you now.” “Don’t bother the Lord anymore.” The words of men are full of despair as all hope seems lost. Yet the words of the Son of Man quietly say, “Do not be afraid… only believe.” “JUST BELIEVE!” We get nervous with these words. We are ready for some doctrinal battle. Why does Jesus say this? What if we change this to “JUST TRUST ME!” That’s all He is saying. So many times I see in my life this is what is lacking. In times of trouble, in times of despair, when all seems lost, “JUST TRUST ME.” Jairus saw what GOD was doing.
4. DERISION: Professional mourners were already “doing their job.” The girl was dead inside the house, and everyone knew she was dead. It was now time to mourn the loss of something wonderful in this couple’s life… their daughter. While they cry out and mourn, Jesus tells Jairus, “She is not dead, she is just sleeping.” Everyone laughs and mocks Him. “Are you crazy… she is dead!” The Creator is mocked! The source of life is derided! The world is no different now as it was then when Paul says, “But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness” (I Corinthians 1.23). Jesus simply says, “JUST BELIEVE IN ME!”
5. DEATH: “It’s over, she is gone.” When Dad passed away, we were there. My sweet wife saw him take his last breath. She lay across him and cried. It still brings tears to recall. He was so much to us all. BUT…”I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words” (I Thessalonians 4.13-18).
Jesus breathed his last, was taken from the cross, buried… BUT “death could not keep its prey.” He arose!

Questions:
1. Does your faith separate you from the crowd?
2. Does your faith operate in the face of trials?
3. Is your faith evident in your home? At work?
“You can trust god to save ALL THOSE IN JESUS”

Grow in grace brethren.

Those of you who are searching for meaning in life, why not explore JESUS. My little study on www.jackexum.com is called “Redeemed,” and is especially for those who are searching for hope in life, in Jesus. Take the opportunity to study. These are short concise lessons that take you through the Bible. Well worth the time. God bless you.

 

 

 

 

Share Button

The Home: Problems And Solutions (Part Three)

This article is part 3 of 6 in the series Christian Home

mom and dad collage 1Children that grow up without respect and understanding of parental authority, not knowing the meaning of a (definite) “yes” or “no,” are going to have problems. The family is the foundation of society, and when there are “fifty shades of grey” between right and wrong, then “right” and “wrong” seem to disappear. Children are in need of clear guidance, and a knowledge of right and wrong. This begins in the home where parents are the authority. Government is good to an extent, but never has been a good substitute for raising children.
1. Parental authority is LAW. “Law” is basically a rule of action. It must be established – accepted – administered God’s way and must never be in doubt. Parental authority is not up for auction. When a man and woman are married and have children, they are in charge. Responsible for feeding, caring, clothing, rearing, teaching, disciplining, loving, nurturing, and protecting their children. Much like the old example which Jesus used in John 10 of the shepherd caring for his sheep. Much of the “shepherd and sheep” idea can be a good illustration of parenting children.
2. Take a look at some passages here:
Ephesians 6.1-3 “Children obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honor your father and mother which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with you, and you may live long on the earth.” Point: IT IS WRONG FOR A CHILD TO DISOBEY AND DISHONOR PARENTS, AND WRONG FOR PARENTS TO ALLOW CHILDREN TO DO THIS.
Hebrews 5.8-9 “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by things which he suffered; And being made perfect , he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.” Point: LEARNING OBEDIENCE IS NOT EASY, BUT LEADS TO PERFECTION (MATURITY), ITS UP TO PARENTS TO TEACH.
I Samuel 3.13 “For I told him that I would judge his house forever, for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile and he restrains them not.” Point: PARENTS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR RAISING THEIR CHILDREN RIGHT. WHEN THEIR CHILDREN GO THE WAY ELI’S SONS DID, THEY MUST ACT TO RESTRAIN (STOP-DISCIPLINE) THEM.
Today, employees run the business, students run the school, minority groups run everybody (political correctness), children run the home! Old Chinese proverb says, “HE THAT RESPECTS NOT HIS MOTHER AND FATHER RESPECTS NO ONE ON EARTH.”
3. LAW does several things, it provides, prohibits, protects, and promises. Law is a rule of action, the basis of habits formed, the foundation of independence earned and learned, the father of understanding and provider of liberty. For example: Mom and Dad were our “supreme court,” what they said was law for us. Dad would say, “Jack, play here (and then he would lay the boundaries.) As long as I played within the boundaries provided, I was okay. I was free, to play to run, to hide or seek, to jump and laugh… I was obeying Dad’s law. I felt good about that. Its when I got too close, or crossed the line, that something happened. What happened? I was guilty, dirty, wrong INSIDE. Whether or not I was caught, I WAS WRONG. Similar to Adam and Eve when they disobeyed, “I was afraid… and I hid myself.” The innocence, the communion, the freedom and feeling of “rightness” was gone!
What if Dad had (as he did many times) caught me. Instead of getting a whipping or whatever the discipline required, if he had said, “Aw, it’s okay son… nobody going to whip you. nobody gonna touch you. Don’t worry son, I’ll protect you from everyone and everything.” As Dad said in his lesson, “You may as well give him a gun. He is not going to respect any authority.” Authority respected begins in the home, not in church or school! Surrendering parental authority to church or school is WRONG.
Want to solve some problems at home? Lovingly but firmly (re)establish parental authority. Lay out the rules and draw the lines, and the consequences for crossing them, and hold to it, “For this is right…”

Grow in grace!

Share Button