(Part 2 of 3)
The first breakdown of the family is seen in Genesis 4:8-9. The effect of Adam’s sin is seen in the envy of Cain and in the killing of Abel. Did Adam fully explain to his boys God’s plan of salvation? Did Cain’s jealousy open the door for the murder of Abel? Decisions that people make play a big part in the destiny of a family and in the plans that God purposes.
In Genesis 16, Abraham lets Sarah decide how they should implement God’s promise of a son. Abraham abdicated his responsibility when he went in to Hagar. Hagar conceived, and then Sarah blamed Abraham by saying, “My wrong be upon thee.” The Ishmael-Isaac controversy exists to this day. Ishmaels are produced by thoughtless and hurried decisions that heads of households make.
In Genesis 27, Isaac was getting old and his eyesight was failing him. He was not able to assert strong leadership. A decision had to be made soon as to who would become the head of the family following his death (Esau or Jacob). Rebekah took advantage of her husband’s weakness and schemed. The Bible says that Esau was Isaac’s favorite, but Jacob was favored by Rebekah. Isaac favored Esau because of his love for venison. Rebekah loved Jacob because of a prophecy God had given her in Genesis 25:22-23. Isaac was not able to make a wise decision when it counted. The controversy still exists to this day between the Arabs and the Jews and it is getting worse.
In 2 Kings 4, the son of the couple who had made a room for the prophet Elisha was out in the field with his father. The son developed a severe headache. The father (head of the household) said to an employee, “Take the lad to his mother.” The father had made a bad decision. He didn’t pray nor was he concerned enough for his son to take him home himself. He was too busy. His care for his crop was more important that the care for his son. The mother had to send for the man of God Elisha. This too often is the pattern in today’s society, that the head of the household leaves the responsibility to the mother. The man of the house is the first line of responsibility against evil happenings.
In 1 Samuel 1-2, Eli was Israel’s spiritual and judicial leader. He was a failure at home. He was able to make decisions for the nation but not for his home. Evil spirits came in and controlled Eli’s two sons. They were “sons of Belial; they knew not the Lord” (2:12). The two boys seduced women that assembled in the church. They did evil things. They were raised in a God-believing home, yet reached adulthood without a personal knowledge of God. It was a matter of public record because the Holy Spirit recorded their deeds. 1 Samuel 2:25 records that the boys did not listen to their father. Eli did not discipline his children (1 Samuel 3:13). The Bible teaches that we should correct our children (Proverbs 23:13-14, 29:15). God holds the parents responsible for the way their children should go (Proverbs 22:6).
In 1 Samuel 3-4, Samuel is now the prophet and spiritual and judicial leader of Israel. He became one of Israel’s greatest prophets (Jeremiah 15:1). With all of his great anointing, he failed as a father; 1 Samuel 8:2-3 reads, “Now the name of his firstborn was Joel; and the name of his second, Abiah: they were judges in Beersheba. And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre [money], and took bribes, and perverted judgment” (KJV). Samuel was away from home a lot (1 Samuel 7:15-16). A head of the household that is away too much is part of a growing problem. Samuel’s sons did not have enough attention from their father. He was not able to shape their lives by right counsel, so the devil did it by wrong counsel. People excel at the job at the expense of their children. The head of this household did not take time to set a godly course for his sons.
(To be continued…)
Pastor George Belobaba
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