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Saturday, June 20, 2015

Father's Day

It has been many years since I have heard Star Scott's teachings concerning the family and specifically fathers, but I suspect they have not changed throughout the years. He taught that fathers were to reinforce the teaching of the pastor rather than hear from God for the leading of their own families. He spoke of families having "family time" at church - "what better place?" he would ask. He emphasized that the family is secondary to the meeting of the church. In the midst of these teachings, he communicated the strong message that to stay home with your family on a Friday night for "family time" (he would say "family time" rather mockingly) was akin to indulging one's flesh. Scripture says otherwise and therefore I offer the following from the Source of all truth:

For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring to Abraham what he has promised him. Genesis 18:19

These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Deuteronomy 6:6-7.

But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. Joshua 24:15

Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction, and don’t reject your mother’s teaching. Proverbs 1:8.

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6

And fathers, don’t stir up anger in your children, but bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Ephesians 6:4.

But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel. 1 Timothy 5:8

…clearly recalling your sincere faith that first lived in your grandmother Lois, then in your mother Eunice, and that I am convinced is in you also. 2 Timothy 1:5.

But if any widow has children or grandchildren, they should learn to practice their religion toward their own family first and to repay their parents, for this pleases God. 1 Timothy 5:4.

From Pastors:

If therefore our houses be houses of the Lord, we shall for that reason love home, reckoning our daily devotion the sweetest of our daily delights; and our family-worship the most valuable of our family-comforts… A church in the house will be a good legacy, nay, it will be a good inheritance, to be left to your children after you.   Matthew Henry, Clergyman

A family is a place where principles are hammered and honed on the anvil of everyday living.  Chuck Swindoll, Pastor

In the family, life is brought not only to our doorstep, but into our kitchens, bedrooms, and dens. In the family, life is happening all around us, and it begs to be questioned, evaluated, interpreted, and discussed. There is no more consistent, pregnant, dynamic forum for instruction about life than the family, because that is exactly what God designed the family to be, a learning community.  Paul David Trip, Pastor

“The family should be a closely knit group. The home should be a self-contained shelter of security; a kind of school where life’s basic lessons are taught; and a kind of church where God is honored; a place where wholesome recreation and simple pleasures are enjoyed.”  Billy Graham

We do not develop habits of genuine love automatically. We learn by watching effective role models – most specifically by observing how our parents express love for each other day in and day out.  Josh McDowell

You want to mess up the minds of your children? Here’s how – guaranteed! Rear them in a legalistic, tight context of external religion, where performance is more important than reality.  Chuck Swindoll

Let no Christian parents fall into the delusion that Sunday School is intended to ease them of their personal duties. The first and most natural condition of things is for Christian parents to train up their own children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.  Charles Spurgeon

Having sat under Star Scott's teaching for many years, I can well imagine his rebuttal to the concept of "family time". During the years we attended Calvary, he frequently quoted this scripture:

Not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another--and even more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25

Mr Scott frequently used this scripture to justify the endless meetings we were required to attend. "and even more.......amen?!!!" he would emphasize. So my question is - why have the leaders and members of Calvary Temple put a limit on this scripture? If the meaning of this scripture is to encourage believers to meet together increasingly more and more, then why is CT only meeting 5 or 6 evenings a week? Why not every morning and every evening? Why not stay home from work? Or why not live in one place so that they can fulfill the "even more" portion of this scripture? Why has the leadership of Calvary Temple placed a limitation on "even more"?

According to Bible scholars:

There was a regular meeting of the church on the first day of the week. The believers were admonished to regularly attend this meeting of the believers - to be faithful to this church-wide meeting - and to remain faithful - and even more as we see the Day approaching. It did not mean to have more and more meetings - it meant to be faithful to the meeting of the church on the first day of the week.

In addition to the regular meeting of the church, there were other meetings for specific purposes. The church met to pray for Peter when he was arrested by Herod. Paul taught in the school of Tyrannous at Ephesus for almost 2 years. Many believers met in their homes for fellowship and breaking of bread. But these meetings were for specific purposes, or for a limited time, or attended by some and not others. The church - meaning the followers of Jesus Christ - was led by the Holy Spirit to carry out His work on the earth and therefore, met as God led them. To be equipped for that work, they met weekly. It is this weekly meeting that they were encouraged to attend "even more as we see the Day approaching".

If the church is to meet every night of the week as well as "even more", culminating in a constant attendance of "church", then the above scriptures concerning fathers and their families cannot be carried out. God set us into families for a reason. It is the place where fathers and mothers, being equipped by God, carry out the biblical teachings necessary to train the next generation. It is the parent's God-ordained responsibility to teach their children "when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up." The meeting of the church on the first day of the week is the time when the five fold ministry equips the saints to do this work in their families as well as their own Jerusalem.

Fathers in Calvary Temple are not able to fulfill the scriptures concerning their own families. There is no time for them to bring their own children up in the nurture and the admonition of the Lord when they are continually handing them over to others to do the work. And there is no example being set of a father seeking God for the direction of his own life as well as that of his family. His children are not learning to hear from God, they are learning to hear from the pastor. If we as believers are being equipped to do the work of the ministry, then we need time to DO it, beginning in our own homes.

Fathers, on this day, please take back your God-given right and responsibility to lead your own family.

Happy Father's Day

1 comment:

  1. Well written. To underscore your position, the church is not some place to go but who we are as believers in Christ. We don't go to church, we are the church!