Temple Baptist Church - 6-15-2014
A. Today is Father’s Day: Happy Father’s Day to all of you men. I say all of you men because, even if you do not have children, you men are “fathers” to all of our young people.
B. The importance of parents is found in two opposite verses of Scripture.
1. The Blessing of Honoring - Ephesians 6:2-3 Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) (3) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. (The promise of a good life coupled with a long life. This is the first command [and it is a commandment!] with promise.)
2. The Cursing of Disrespect - Proverbs 20:20 Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness. (Mistreat or speak of evil of parents is to get sideways with God! That is a promise!)
3. I am glad that when Barbara’s father died suddenly in 1970, everything was right in their relationship. I am glad that when my father died in 1988, everything was right in our relationship.
C. We normally make over the ladies more on Mother’s Day but you men are special to both the Lord and the family. One of my favorite verses is:
Proverbs 17:6: “Children's children are the crown of old men; and the glory of children are their fathers.”
D. I want to use this story of the Prodigal Son to bring out a truth often missed.
1. We all know the story of the Prodigal Son’s downfall that ended up in the hog pen. We often hear of “Coming Out Parties” but his was a “Coming To Himself Party.” I thank God for those prodigals who get right with the Lord and their families but not all do so.
2. I will arise and go to my father! Not to mother but to father. The importance of your father. In this story we see: the Foolishness of the Son, the Presumption of the Son, and the Restoration of the Son.
E. He arose and went home where the father restored him.
1. At this point, I want to key in on the presumption of the son. “I will arise and go to my father.” They did not have the communication available that we have today. No phones or cell phones; no email service, etc. so the son did not actually know for sure that his father was still alive or living in the same place.
2. He made an important presumption! He took for granted that the father would be both there and consistent. Thank God dad was there when he got home but, I wonder what it would have been like if dad had not been there.
3. What if dad had given up and sold the farm so to speak? What if dad had given up spiritually and left the will of God? What is dad had died and the son could only visit the cemetery where he was buried?
4. The Faithfulness of the Father. He could have quit looking or died while the wayward son was in the hog pen. He was not only at home waiting, he was at home watching. Had he not been there, what would have happened to the prodigal son?
F. Barbara and I have lost our fathers and, one of these days, you will lose yours!
1. You are going to lose one of the best Friends that you will ever have. Proverbs 3:12 For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth. (Even after you are grown, the father continues to try to guide you and look out for your safety. Your father will be there when you need him most. Your father will be there when you fail the greatest. Your father will be there to encourage and praise you when you succeed.)
2. You are going to lose the wisdom of a wise Counselor. Proverbs 1:8 My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother: (The valuable instruction of the Father - Your father has a vast resource of experience and knowledge that will prove valuable all of your days. The valuable correction of the Father.)
3. You are going to lose a Pillar of strength to lean on. 1 John 2:14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one. (Fathers are so different from moms and especially in the area of fortitude. I love my mom but my dad was a pillar of strength.)
4. You are going to lose a Refuge that you can always return to. Proverbs 22:28 Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set. (The prodigal son knew where to return to because he knew who was there waiting for him. “I will arise and go to my father” is a strong statement.)
Conclusion: Learn to love and enjoy your parents while they are here and you will have no regrets one day when they are gone. You will lose more than you can imagine when they are gone.