One of the great differences between all the creatures God made on earth and mankind is the long period of dependency. Many creatures are up and out of the nest in a matter of a few months. Human offspring however remain dependent longer than any creatures of comparable size.
When you’re born, you have absolutely no defense against predators, and we humans can’t really fend for ourselves for years. God designed this scenario because He gave human parents the great privilege of powerfully shaping the lives of their children like nothing else in the creation. It was God’s great plan that children would be dependent upon their parents such that parents would have the greatest influence upon the next generation making disciples of Jesus Christ of their children. Therefore the attack on the God ordained institution of marriage and the family makes perfect sense. It is always the attempt of the devil to destroy that which God has made. Satan’s attack on marriage is an assault on God’s design for human civilization and the blessing of mankind.
God has designated parents, a husband and wife, father and mother to be the most powerful influences in the lives of the next generation. This is why I believe Jesus gave the command in Matthew 23:9 “And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.”And also why the Fifth command instructs us to Honor our Father and Mother. Human parents alone are elevated to this high status. That is also why other institutions attempt to encroach upon that position of honor and influence; for example corruptions in the church have led some to demand people call spiritual leaders “father,”in direct rebellion against what Jesus has commanded us and in the civil government through history many dictators have taken to commanding people call them father, or to speak of their country as Fatherland, as if the soil gave birth to the people.
God created the bond of the family with that long period of dependency, 18-20 years, in order to provide for the greatest opportunity of influence, shaping and disciple making to take place in the family. Therefore when there is disruption in the family or disunity that becomes a challenge to the job of making disciples, and a challenge for the family to be a witness unto the Lord.
We are witnesses, that is we tell others, including our children, of God’s mighty works recorded in His Word as well as the mighty things Christ Jesus has done in our own lives. A survey was given to those attending training sessions for the Billy Graham crusade in Detroit years ago. One question asked, “What is your greatest hindrance to witnessing”? Nine percent said they were too busy to remember to do it. Twenty-eight percent felt the lack of real information to share. None said they didn’t really care. Twelve percent said their own lives were not speaking as they should. But by far the largest group were the 51 percent whose biggest problem was the fear of how the other person would react! None of us likes to be rejected, ridiculed, or regarded as an oddball.
Yet taking that risk is what it means to be a witness. We ought to pray that God would open doors for us to share our faith in Christ. Moses walked right through the door provided by Jethro who asked regarding his welfare. John White writes, “A good witness isn’t like a salesman, emphasis is on a person rather than a product. A good witness is like a signpost. It doesn’t matter whether it is old, young, pretty, ugly; it has to point the right direction and be able to be understood. We are witnesses to Christ, we point to him” (John White, The Fight).
The famed evangelist D.L. Moody once spoke with a woman who didn’t like his method of evangelism. “I don’t really like mine all that much either. What’s yours?” She hesitated and replied that she didn’t have one. Moody said, “Then I like mine better than yours.”
Have you been a witness for our King in this world no matter what the cost? Have you helped make disciples of men as we build the Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ? Let us worship Him and sacrifice to Him as we serve Him in this world, and let us be witnesses for His Glory.
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