Friday, June 13, 2014

Fathers Bless Your Children

Fathers - Bless Your Children

      “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one's youth.  Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; They shall not be ashamed, But shall speak with their enemies in the gate.”  Psalms 127:3-5

    “Speak blessings upon your children.  Of all the tools God gave you to raise a child, the most powerful is your tongue.  Use it for good.”  Hayford

1. Jesus The Example.

    “Then He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them, but His mother kept all these things in her heart.  And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”  Luke 2:51-52

    “This verse contains the history of thirty years. It describes the growth of our Lord as a natural, human growth (compare Luke 1:80); for, though Jesus was truly divine, he was also perfectly man. To try to distinguish between the divine and human in Jesus, is to waste time upon an impracticable mystery which is too subtle for our dull and finite minds.  His life expanded like other human lives. He learned as other boys; he obeyed as other children. As he used means and waited patiently for growth, so must each individual Christian, and so must the church. Though the latter is a mystical body, and animated by the Holy Spirit, it must nevertheless make increase of itself before coming to the perfect man—Eph 4:16.”  —McGarvey, Four-Fold Gospel

    “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."  And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.”  Eph 6:1-4

    “The power of words is not evident just when God uses them in creating.  It is also evident in His ways that teach us how to live within that creation.  All the Father’s laws are essentially God’s guidelines for making life “work” in the realm He has created for man’s fruitfulness and fulfillment.”  Hayford

2. The Many Ways to Bless

    The first order of blessing is reflected by the simplest things we might do, which, though seemingly ordinary, carry an immense weight in telling children they are loved, cared for, valued and being “looked over” (rather than overlooked).

    Remember those childhood experiences when you simply sensed the approval or care of a parent or loved one? We can learn from the ultimate Father by noting how He blesses us with His attentions in distinct ways that parallel our warmest memories as children when someone blessed us in simple yet affirming ways:

    An arm over the shoulder or an embrace in a time of disappointment or fear (see Deut. 33:27)

    A pat on the back or a firm steadying hand at a crucial moment (see Ps. 139:5)

    A whisper in the ear, giving quiet assurance or secret instructions (see Is. 30:21)

    A snug tucking in bed when surrounded by the darkness of night (see Ps. 127:2-3)

    A kiss on the cheek or being dandled on a parent’s knee (see Ps. 103:13; “pities” is translated from the Hebrew word rawcham, which means “to tenderly love or caress”).

    Blessings that come in words: (1) words that affirm and approve; (2) words that commend and compliment; (3) words that specifically speak love and affection; (4) words that invoke hope and self-confidence; and (5) words that answer pain and disappointment with support and faith.  It is never wrong to encourage hope.

    The fountainhead blessing in the Bible is found in Numbers 6:24-26. This is the blessing God ordained that the priests of Israel use to speak blessing in His name over His own children, whom He called “the children” of Israel.

    “And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying:  "Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying, 'This is the way you shall bless the children of Israel. Say to them: "The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you; The Lord lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace."  "So they shall put My name on the children of Israel, and I will bless them."  Numbers 6:22-27

      Paul’s blessing: “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.”  2 Cor 13:14 (NKJV)

Friday, June 6, 2014


Pentecost is always new and continuing

     “Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. And he said, “Yes, it was written long ago that the Messiah would suffer and die and rise from the dead on the third day. It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.’ You are witnesses of all these things. “And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven.”  Luke 24:45-49 (NLT)

     “But in fact, it is best for you that I go away, because if I don’t, the Advocate won’t come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment.  The world’s sin is that it refuses to believe in me. Righteousness is available because I go to the Father, and you will see me no more. Judgment will come because the ruler of this world has already been judged.”  John 16:7-11 (NLT)

     1. The Church must live in the power of Pentecost.

     The first need of the church is to always live Pentecost.  We pray: God by Your Holy Spirit renew Your wonders in our day as by a new Pentecost. 

     Many throw up their hands in despair today.  The church is dying, they say.  Even Christians who are strong spread gloom, even though this is contrary to what they believe.  While the church is arguing over issues and fine points, other things are happening.  The second largest religion in W.Va. is Islam.  The second largest in OH is Judaism.  The second largest in CA is Buddhism. Have the “gates of hell” really prevailed against the church?  NO!!!

     Peter the Apostle said: “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.” 1 Peter 3:15-17

     2. A real Christian is a man of Hope. 

     We must take hold of hope once again and restore it to its rightful place.  Hope is a doctrine issue. 

     “Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.”  1 John 3:1-3

     3. The Church must relive the Book of Acts.  

     Warning.  “We have made the Church an organization just like any other.  We made it able to stand by itself.  And now we are trying to get it to work.  It does, more or less, but it works like a machine and not something alive.”  Athenos

     We should read Acts and relive the time when the 120 disciples were together in the upper room.  They were preparing to receive the Promise/Gift which is Jehovah The Holy Spirit (Acts 1:4,8).  We see in Acts the Holy Spirit directing and confirming the Lord’s church as they reach out to the world.  We always need the wind and fire and spiritual power that the written word testifies to.  We must look beyond human limitations and allow the power of God to work in and through us.  We need to open the windows of the upper room and allow the first breeze of God’s Springtime to blow through us.

     The hour of suffering is the hour of God.  The situation seems hopeless – then this is the time for hoping.  Along with Abraham we trust God: “Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.” Romans 4:18

     4. The power of faith/trust.

     Paul said: “For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life (2 Cor. 3:6).  Some read with a veil over their face, but faith in Christ takes away the veil.  Remember the God of the OT Church is also the God of the NT Church.  God called Abraham to be the Founder of a Spiritual Family.  True Israel believes!

     “Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit.”  1 Cor 12:3

     “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body--whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free--and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.  For in fact the body is not one member but many.”  1 Cor 12:13-14

     “Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.  For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future.  There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all.”  Eph 4:3-6 (NLT)