This past Lord’s Day at FBC was Baby Dedication day. It was a joyful occasion for me as the pastor of the church, but more importantly as the father of two children who were dedicated. I love the opportunity to get babies on the stage for the church to see and pray for. I also love the clear example the parents are setting as they vow to raise their children in a Christian home.
I preached from Colossians 3:18-21 on the “Word Centered Home.”
Due to unforeseen issues, we had to cut the sermon (and the service) a little short on Sunday. For that reason, I wanted to write out the last point of the sermon for the men who got the short shrift of their section of the passage!
Husbands, Lead Your Families With Christ-like Leadership
Notice the two directives that Paul gives men in this passage:
“Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them… Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.”
If I were to sum up those two verse in one sentence I would say it like this: men, be careful with your gifts! God made you a man for a reason. He made you tough, strong, and aggressive. He did so because you were made to lead and protect. Masculinity is a good gift from God. However, like all good gifts from God, it is often used for evil! The Spirit is warning you through this passage concerning the ways you’ll be tempted.
You will try to achieve God’s good design for your household in sinful ways. You want your wife to submit to something, and she doesn’t, and so you get angry. You become harsh. You use God’s gift of masculinity against your wife instead of for your wife. The glory of God in the design of your home becomes about you and not God. You must always fight against the temptation to lead like Satan would have you lead. Think about it: you want your children to obey, and they won’t. So you provoke them. You discourage them. Instead of lovingly leading them, you choose to abuse the good gifts God has given you.
This is how we are tempted as men. We are tempted to take God’s good design and use it in sinful ways. Is that not precisely what Moses did when he murdered the Egyptian? He was trying to achieve the liberation of God’s people through his own strength, in his own way. That is not how God would have you lead.
Instead, we should lead like Christ. Jesus didn’t rage. He did not intimidate. Jesus led through love. Jesus led through sacrifice. Are you willing to do that? Jesus doesn’t snuff smoldering wicks or break bruised reeds. Are you willing to take up the loving, self-sacrficial mantle of Christ in the way you lead your family?
This is the way I want to challenge you. Will you give and give and give and give and give and give and give and expect nothing in return? Give your life away for the glory of God! Sacrifice for your family! Lead like Jesus, and trust you’ll find ample reward in His kingdom.