August 2010

We need Christian fathers to be real men of God. We need every single father that is in the Lord to care about himself and each member of the family of which he serves as the head. What is there that Christian fathers ought to care about?

Every Christian father should care enough about his role as a father to take his responsibilities seriously. God has given specific instructions for Christian dads, so He certainly takes a father’s role seriously (Ephesians 6:4; Colossians 3:21). Fathers who do not put forth their maximum effort to be the best father possible are failing their kids, failing their entire family, and failing the church. If all fathers would take their role as a father as seriously as they do their jobs, financial investments, and leisure activities, many families and local churches would be a whole lot stronger.

Every Christian father should care enough about his children to spend time with them. Many kids officially live under the same roof that their father does, but he rarely takes time to be with them. He supplies funds for their physical and educational needs, but he is not there to communicate with them and show his love for them. Some Christian fathers have realized their shortcoming in this area, but for some of them it was too late – their kids had grown and left home. Brother, do not let that happen in your family. Spend much quality time with your kids.

Each Christian father needs to care enough about his kids to take a personal interest in what each one of them is doing. The apostle Paul wrote this about his past work among the saints in Thessalonica: “As you know how we exhorted, and comforted, and charged every one of you, as a father does his own children” (1 Thessalonians 2:11). What is expected of a father? In part, that he exhort, comfort, and charge each one of his own kids. That requires that he know what they are doing. A real father does not turn the upbringing of his kids over to others. His wife and other relatives can help, but they can never take a father’s place. Kids need their fathers to play a major role in their lives. Dads must show genuine interest in them, including their needs, their desires, their dreams, and areas in their lives in which they need to do better.

All Christian fathers should care enough about their kids to teach them how to be responsible and practice self-discipline. Fools despise wisdom and instruction (Proverbs 1:7), and it is also true that foolish and lazy fathers fail to share wisdom and instruction with their children. Kids do not take responsibility and show self-control by accident. They need guidance. Fathers need to take the lead in providing this guidance. What about those cases in which a child makes choices that go against God’s ordained arrangement of authority?

Every Christian father should care enough about his kids to discipline them. “Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect” (Hebrews 12:9). God expects a Christian father to help his children understand the need to respect authority and follow rules. He also expects them to show their kids that actions have consequences. A father that loves his child disciplines him promptly, while a dad “who spares his rod hates his son.” The Bible says so (Proverbs 13:24).

Each Christian father needs to care enough about his kids to teach them the Bible. That is surely a significant part of what God intends for fathers to do: “And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). God has always wanted His people to teach His word to their kids (Genesis 18:19; Deuteronomy 6:7). Bible classes organized by a congregation can help children grow in their knowledge of the truth, but fathers are the ones who are ultimately responsible for their kids being grounded in the truth. No excuse for failure in this area is acceptable! When kids raised in a Christian home do not know the Bible well, that says a lot about their fathers.

All Christian fathers need to care enough about their kids to set the right example before them. Little eyes are watching and little ears are hearing what fathers say. Faithful fathers will be able to tell their kids, “The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:9). A father’s pattern, whether good or bad, can go a long way in influencing his children to choose the path that leads to life or the one that leads to destruction.

Christian father, take your responsibilities seriously. Your wife, your kids, and the church need you to be a good father. Demonstrate by your action and speech that you really care. May God bless you.

Roger D. Campbell

TRUTH is published monthly by the Klang church of Christ in order to help educate, edify, encourage, and equip the saints of God.

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