The Influence Of A Christian Home

 

Please read  Gen. 2:18-25—

    God made Adam out of the dust of the ground, breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. He stood there before his Maker innocent, and unspotted. But perfect as he thus stood, Adam was a lonely, solitary being. There was not among all God’s creation a help-meet for him. God causing a great sleep to come over him took a rib, formed woman, and she was brought to man . There in the  garden, they were united in holy wedlock,  God commanding them to be fruitful replenish the earth with a worthy race, subdue creation and rule over  it.

 

    Thus God established the home as a unit of society. Centuries before there was a state, school, or even a church There were homes instituted by God as places where men and women should live together in love and happiness, and where children should be born and properly reared. The fellowship God ordained between one man and one woman for life, is God's definition, and designation for marriage.

 

    Marriage is God’s supreme gift to the human family, and is the safeguard of civilization.  The home as designated by God is the bedrock of society. The supreme matter of importance to our nation is not our schools, although they are important.  It is not our government although a necessity for society¾ The matter of supreme importance ¾to our nation¾ is the home. The  home though it be  a tent, a or a palace fair, the home is a fortress where husband and wife are to   submit themselves one to another in the fear of the Lord.  Where parents rear their “children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.  Where children obey their parents in the Lord and where God’s Word has a place of authority and esteem.

 

    The homes can be a lot of what heaven is all about if God is given His proper place within. One  noted marriage counselor said it this way, "The couple who understands that their marriage union is for Someone far greater than the two of them….. has discovered the secret gateway into marriage at its best."  When things go right in the homes, things are right in most every area of our lives.

 

 

    To often today our homes are  neglected  and do  not perform their  God given functions. Our children's view of God is formed and either nourished or perverted by the home.  A child's initial perception of God is framed as eyes of innocence, contemplate the demeanor of the father in the home. There is an irrevocable link between a child's understanding of " our fathers on earth"  and "our Father who art in heaven" 

 

    The presence or absence of respect for authority is the work of the HOME!… A child's attitude toward marriage is shaped by the marriage of which he or she is a product. The strength of any nation is dependent upon the strength of its homes. The strength of the home rests upon a proper understanding of the nature of God, and  a practical application of those principles in the home.

 

    I would like to emphasize three points for your consideration . 1st - The home has been commissioned with the training of the children. The home is where the alphabet of the gospel is first learned. One of the great handicaps of the church today is the indifference of many parents to spiritual values.  When there is a decline of family worship, with it comes a decay of our nation. The lack of spirituality today in our children is traceable to the absence of godly homes. Great homes are necessary to produce great men, 

 

    The home functions as God has appointed it when there is parental authority. Lawlessness in the nation, is bred in the home.   The child who does not respect the authority of the parents¾ will not respect the authority of God, nor the powers that be,  when he comes to adulthood. Children are often ruined by parents too easy going ¾ to indifferent  to church and worship ¾ God said this of Abraham:  "19For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him"                           (Genesis 18:19).

 

    A preacher once told of visiting a home where a little boy about 6 years of age insisted on picking up a cat by the tail. The mother said ¾put the kitten down”, but he didn’t. She said again, “put the kitten down or I’ll spank you”, But he didn’t and she didn’t.  She finally stated  Put the kitten down or the preacher will bite your ear off”. The child didn’t put the cat down and the preacher didn’t bite his ear. But the preacher said he left saying to himself , “a criminal career has started in this home.”

 

    In a Juvenile court where some children were in trouble.  The Judge in a speech stated  Parental neglect as the cause of  90% of our juvenile cases.” He stated that parents are legally responsible for civil damages caused by their children. They could serve time not for the criminal offense but for negligence ¾ contributing to their children's moral offenses. (Reader’s Digest). I read of a story where ¾children in Memphis Tennessee had stolen a large number of golf balls¾ were caught and in trouble. Their parents collectively called a counselor as to what  could be done with these children. Can you imagine the old-fashioned fathers and mothers a  few years ago doing a thing like that? I visualize my father   saying this to me "Son set your house in order, for you are going to die".  My father knew how to handle that kind of thing. It began with a Godly father's counsel and ended out behind the barn in the wood shed, if necessary.        We need today God fearing, Bible reading  mothers and fathers who “command their children after them” Too many children don’t have the proper parental authority at home today." Bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord" (Ephesians 6:4).

 

     The second point I wish to make is this,  The home must be the proper experience for the children. To many so called homes are nothing more than bread and breakfast lodgings   Lunch counters, and lodging quarters, a place where children hang out when their automobiles are torn up or when there are no school activities.  Many children do not have a real chance of being acquainted with mother and father.

 

    In  a survey, one hundred and twenty ministers were asked "what is the greatest influence you had for becoming a preacher?" One hundred of them stated " a Godly  Christian home". A vast portion of the young people who obey the gospel, come from Christian homes.  Thomas Paine  once said    I was an infidel before I was 5 years old.”

 

    William Lyon Phelps,  noted educator, Bible teacher and one time President of Yale University  stated:  I am extremely grateful to my parents for the religious and spiritual training they gave to me.  Every day of my life I am grateful. I would rather belong to the church than any other organization on earth. I would rather be a Christian than receive any other honor on earth."

 

    Paul selected a young evangelist to travel with him who had been raised by  generations of godly influence.  In 2 Timothy chapter 1 Paul in his salutation writes;   2nd  Timothy 2:1-5

    1Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus, 2To Timothy, my dearly beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. 3I thank God, whom I serve from my forefathers with pure conscience, that without ceasing I have remembrance of thee in my prayers night and day; 4Greatly desiring to see thee, being mindful of thy tears, that I may be filled with joy;  5When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also.

 

    The Christian home is the greatest influence upon a child, when it must be the proper experience.

 

    The third point is this — It is a hard task for parents to bring up their children  as they should be because example is so much more important than is rule.  Can parents act dishonest and expect the child to do otherwise?  Can we tell our “little white lies”  in their presence and expect them to tell the truth?  Can parents refuse to pray ,refuse to read the Bible and expect their children to have the proper respect for these things? Can parents habitually miss worship services  and expect their children to hold the services dear?

 

     Also, There must also be a bridling of the tongue in our homes.  "If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain" (James 1:26).  When parents do not rule their tongues in the home, there will never be peace in that home. When the husband’s position as head of the family is maintained by a loud  voice, and a strong arm, peace and joy will never  reside in that home.  When the wife in the home always speaks down of her husband instead of honoring him, it makes for sad relationships. Children often form their opinion of their parents based upon what they hear in the home.  There needs to be a proper role model for our children in the home.

 

 

 

God has given us specific guidelines  and  instructions  to follow:   There is more sociology in these verses than any college text book I'm aware of  hear them! 

 

    In Ephesians  5:22  speaking to  wives " submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord". In  verse 25 he addresses the  husbands:  "love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;".

 

Then to the children he states Eph 6:1-3 "Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honor thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth" (Ephesians 6:1-3).    Again  in 1 Tim. 5:4 "let them learn first to show piety (reverence, respect), at home, and to requite their parents: for that is good and acceptable before God. "Honor thy father and mother, respect and obey.  Again to the parents "And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord " (Ephesians 6:4).

 

    One noted marriage counselor (not Dr. Phil) was talking about vertical and horizontal relationships. Horizontal relationships are those when a couple join hands in marriage and begin a family.  He stated "If I had to name the one factor that accounts for more homes and marriage breakups, it would not be financial burdens or even infidelity, and these are huge factors, The single most factor family disturbance and divorce is the lack of communication….   The horizontal line that binds the home, marriage, the family is the blending of thoughts and feelings, openly expressed by each member of the family. " 

 

    Well, how do we maintain the vertical element in marriage,  the family relationship to God? The very same way we sustain the horizontal line communication. Communication with God. It is an old cliché but none the less true. "The Family Who Prays Together Stays Together." No more than a man and woman can consider themselves one and intimate creatures who never communicate to one another, could a couple consider their relationship with the Father healthy without communication with Him.

 

    I quoted  William Lyon Phelps  (former president of Yale University)  a moment ago ¾ I do so again: 

 

    "No man is a success who is a failure in his own home, and no man is a failure who is a success in his own home.

 

    As we close focus your mind upon the eternal home. Christ says, "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. " John 14:3. Let us remember that heaven is a prepared place for a people prepared. We prepare for heaven by obeying the gospel and living faithful.

 

contact:

Ron Cope Minister churches of Christ

email:  RonCope@chestnutmtchurchofchrist.com

phone:  (678)617-9658