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Real Fathers TeachBy Rachelle Hamlin
Fort Fairfield Journal, March 20, 2013
Trouble in Paradise affected us all. So did trouble in Israel when Eli was Priest. Eli lost God's favor and was deposed by a toddler. God allowed Eli to live just until Samuel was mature enough to replace him. One day news came to the fat man sitting on his bench. His two sons were dead. He toppled off the bench dead. His daughter-in-law died in childbirth that day and his infant grandson was left with no fathers and no mother to nourish him.
For six months I spent 25 hours a week studying the Bible to learn about teaching-- one of the five spiritual ministries of the church-- yet the significance what happened to Eli escaped me. God expects families to create national safety through the hearts of the fathers. This explains a promise in the Bible that God will return the hearts of the fathers to the sons, and sons will turn their hearts to God. As with Sabbath ordinances, God expects parents to take responsibility for the holiness of households.
Nations of self-controlled men and women who rule their households well and teach their children and grandchildren worship God... that is God's will for Earth. Such people inherit the blessing of God and have need for nothing else. We shouldn't accuse Hebrews who only had yearly sacrifices to atone for sin when we have the once and for all atonement of Jesus Our Lamb. Nevertheless, all sin comes with unforeseen consequences. Samuel grew up in Eli's household, and although he walked with God, Eli's bad example affected Samuel and his sons. When the people saw Samuel's sons sinful and out of control, they had enough. They forced Samuel to create a monarchy. They no longer respected the Abrahamic Theocracy, even when the word of the Lord came.
Ichabod, the name of Eli's orphaned grandson, means: The glory is departed from Israel. Ichabod is a stigma we see in its hideous mature form everywhere throughout societies to this day. Selfish fathers do not take responsibility for creating a holy home, so there is no safety in our family lives. One turns against the other; war, not peace, reigns and rules. Children have no loving elders to restrain them. They are shoved out of their homes as if orphans to be raised as the property of ruling regimes. Then they do the same or worse with their offspring.
The line of human rulers stretched out from then to now and look at the history of continuous destruction that followed in its wake! Only where you see truly Christian leaders can you find a measure of peace and security. I do not say only when you find a Christian leading. If the leader lives a holy life in line with the laws of God, consequences will show it. Nominal Christians take the name of Christ in vain; they live exactly like Eli with the promises gone from the premises. Eli's two sons were dead spiritually before they died in war, and if Eli had not died spiritually first, Samuel would not have come to replace him. These things are consequences of inadequate love of the Living God.
I know a beautiful, warm and Godly minister. He and his wife love the Lord's people and live sacrificially. They are good examples of Christian marriage and service. They have three grown children including a son who appears to be following in their footsteps, taking a prominent place in the church and its services. But he exemplifies Eli's sons, full of status and promise but reaching out for what the world offers and presenting it as better than what the church offers. This shows most in the music that he is known for. You think you're at a noisy, satanic concert when he sings. He writes the "songs" himself, filled with God-words that do nothing to lift the soul, intoned with discord and dissonance. Although he is the only one in his group like that, he leads because he is the lost son of a modern Eli who is too busy to come to his concerts, too self-satisfied to realize his child and grandchildren's souls are in danger.
Charity and teaching begin at home. Jesus created a Kingdom of kings and priests to rule and reign with Him forever; the order of Melchisidek. Who was this Melchisidek who came to Abraham when he needed his guidance most? An unknown father who loved a son of God. Who was this Abraham? A father intimately involved with his son and grandsons, who taught them to know God. Who was this Jesus? An unknown Jew who gathered a family of twelve men, taught them well and then disappeared off the stage of life. Each were Melchisidek Priests. Each were Kings. We share in this order of kings and priests; we should represent an island of peace surrounded by trouble and turmoil.
This starts at home. Husband and wife must unify, vowing together that each of their children will walk uprightly and grow in the favor of God. This is a lifelong commitment that endures to the day they are old and they have to guide their child of seventy, or their grandchild of forty-eight. There the responsibility ends. The only responsibility they have after that is to make sure their children and grandchildren understand the Divine Ordinance to teach their children likewise.
1st Sam Ch 1 to 4:22,2 Chr 1:16, 2 Chr 20;33, Luke 1:7, Gen 14:18, Psa 110:4, Hebrews Ch 5 to end.
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