Where are the Real Fathers in America?
Thank God for Fathers
The Need for Godly Fathers
In this country today the family unit is falling apart. It is the nuclear family that is the basis of any good and prosperous society and when it breaks up, the doom of that society isn't far behind.
And yet we are living in a time when God's design is being ignored to the point that very few even know what the proper definition of family really is anymore. In many cases the father is seen as simply a sperm donor, who is a necessary evil and can be replaced or left out completely without any consequences.
Also, on television and in movies where they do show a traditional nuclear family, the father is often depicted as stupid, out of touch and old fashioned at best. And a tyrant at worst.
Adding to all of this is the growing decision by a vast number of people in our country not to get married at all but to live together instead. This reflects the growing lack of commitment of this generation to anything, even to their responsibility to the the family. But for those who do get married, a vast majority don't see the marriage covenant as a permanent, till death do us part commitment. Rather than: "As long as we both shall live", it is instead: "As long as we both shall love."
We are living in a culture today where half of all marriages end in divorce. Because of this, in America, 24 million children live absent their biological father. And the consequences are truly devastating.
I. A Society Without Fathers
Many studies have been done in our country and others, and we can see how having no dad in homes is truly taking a toll on our children. In practically every aspect of life fatherless children are hurting. For instance, in school they do more poorly by far and drop out of school on a larger scale.
The majority of youth runaways and suicides today are from fatherless homes. And if you go into the jails, most of the youths there had no dad. Another example of this problem is the vast number of youths who are in institutions as chemical abusers. Three-fourths of them had no fatherly influence in their lives.
We could go on and on and the statistics overwhelmingly prove that dads are as important as the Bible tells us that they are in the family.
II. The Bible on Fathers
It was God Himself who established the family in the first book of the Bible. When the Lord created Eve as a helper for Adam and they became one flesh in Genesis 2 the first family was formed (2:20-25).
The Father is given the responsibility of being the head of the household. The wife is to submit to her husband and the husband is to love his wife as Christ loved the Church and gave Himself for her (Ephesians 5:22-33). Jesus gave Himself by being willing to die for us, so the husband has a heavy responsibility that should not be taken lightly.
The children are to obey both parents and honor them (Ephesians 6:1). However, Paul points out specifically to fathers that they must not exasperate their children but bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). Dad is to be both a spiritual leader and main disciplinarian (Hebrews 12:6,7; Proverbs 3:12).
Unfortunately even in many Christian households fathers are abdicating their roles as the spiritual leader and are leaving that job to their wives. In many churches, there are more moms than dads who bring their children on Sunday, if any parent at all comes. Some parents just use the church as a free baby sitter for two hours every week. When this happens, the children won't place a very high value on church attendance, or on the worship of God as they grow to have families of their own.
The question is: "Where are the husbands and fathers in America who will step up to their God-given responsibility and lead their households well? Where are the dads who will teach their little girls what type of man to look for in a future mate by being that type of man themselves? Where are the guys who will demonstrate to their sons what being a man should look like? Where are the real men who will love their wives as Christ loved the Church and would die rather than see any harm come to their families? These are the fathers who do their best to show, by their love, the love of God- our Heavenly Father.
There are a few around. However, they are a rare breed and on the verge of extinction in this society in which we live. For all of you fathers and grandfathers out there, if you are not doing so, it is time to step up and be the man God intended you to be. The world needs more godly fathers and it needs them now!
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