Honoring God in the Home

Honoring God in the Home

June 4th, 1989 @ 10:50 AM

Genesis 24

And Abraham was old, and well stricken in age: and the LORD had blessed Abraham in all things. And Abraham said unto his eldest servant of his house, that ruled over all that he had, Put, I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh: And I will make thee swear by the LORD, the God of heaven, and the God of the earth, that thou shalt not take a wife unto my son of the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell: But thou shalt go unto my country, and to my kindred, and take a wife unto my son Isaac. And the servant said unto him, Peradventure the woman will not be willing to follow me unto this land: must I needs bring thy son again unto the land from whence thou camest? And Abraham said unto him, Beware thou that thou bring not my son thither again. The LORD God of heaven, which took me from my father’s house, and from the land of my kindred, and which spake unto me, and that sware unto me, saying, Unto thy seed will I give this land; he shall send his angel before thee, and thou shalt take a wife unto my son from thence. And if the woman will not be willing to follow thee, then thou shalt be clear from this my oath: only bring not my son thither again. And the servant put his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and sware to him concerning that matter. And the servant took ten camels of the camels of his master, and departed; for all the goods of his master were in his hand: and he arose, and went to Mesopotamia, unto the city of Nahor. And he made his camels to kneel down without the city by a well of water at the time of the evening, even the time that women go out to draw water. And he said, O LORD God of my master Abraham, I pray thee, send me good speed this day, and shew kindness unto my master Abraham. Behold, I stand here by the well of water; and the daughters of the men of the city come out to draw water: And let it come to pass, that the damsel to whom I shall say, Let down thy pitcher, I pray thee, that I may drink; and she shall say, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also: let the same be she that thou hast appointed for thy servant Isaac; and thereby shall I know that thou hast shewed kindness unto my master. And it came to pass, before he had done speaking, that, behold, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, with her pitcher upon her shoulder. And the damsel was very fair to look upon, a virgin, neither had any man known her: and she went down to the well, and filled her pitcher, and came up. And the servant ran to meet her, and said, Let me, I pray thee, drink a little water of thy pitcher. And she said, Drink, my lord: and she hasted, and let down her pitcher upon her hand, and gave him drink. And when she had done giving him drink, she said, I will draw water for thy camels also, until they have done drinking. And she hasted, and emptied her pitcher into the trough, and ran again unto the well to draw water, and drew for all his camels. And the man wondering at her held his peace, to wit whether the LORD had made his journey prosperous or not. And it came to pass, as the camels had done drinking, that the man took a golden earring of half a shekel weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten shekels weight of gold; And said, Whose daughter art thou? tell me, I pray thee: is there room in thy father’s house for us to lodge in? And she said unto him, I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, which she bare unto Nahor. She said moreover unto him, We have both straw and provender enough, and room to lodge in. And the man bowed down his head, and worshipped the LORD. And he said, Blessed be the LORD God of my master Abraham, who hath not left destitute my master of his mercy and his truth: I being in the way, the LORD led me to the house of my master’s brethren. And the damsel ran, and told them of her mother’s house these things. And Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban: and Laban ran out unto the man, unto the well. And it came to pass, when he saw the earring and bracelets upon his sister’s hands, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, Thus spake the man unto me; that he came unto the man; and, behold, he stood by the camels at the well. And he said, Come in, thou blessed of the LORD; wherefore standest thou without? for I have prepared the house, and room for the camels. And the man came into the house: and he ungirded his camels, and gave straw and provender for the camels, and water to wash his feet, and the men’s feet that were with him. And there was set meat before him to eat: but he said, I will not eat, until I have told mine errand. And he said, Speak on. And he said, I am Abraham’s servant. And the LORD hath blessed my master greatly; and he is become great: and he hath given him flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold, and menservants, and maidservants, and camels, and asses. And Sarah my master’s wife bare a son to my master when she was old: and unto him hath he given all that he hath. And my master made me swear, saying, Thou shalt not take a wife to my son of the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I dwell: But thou shalt go unto my father’s house, and to my kindred, and take a wife unto my son. And I said unto my master, Peradventure the woman will not follow me. And he said unto me, The LORD, before whom I walk, will send his angel with thee, and prosper thy way; and thou shalt take a wife for my son of my kindred, and of my father’s house: Then shalt thou be clear from this my oath, when thou comest to my kindred; and if they give not thee one, thou shalt be clear from my oath. And I came this day unto the well, and said, O LORD God of my master Abraham, if now thou do prosper my way which I go: Behold, I stand by the well of water; and it shall come to pass, that when the virgin cometh forth to draw water, and I say to her, Give me, I pray thee, a little water of thy pitcher to drink; And she say to me, Both drink thou, and I will also draw for thy camels: let the same be the woman whom the LORD hath appointed out for my master’s son. And before I had done speaking in mine heart, behold, Rebekah came forth with her pitcher on her shoulder; and she went down unto the well, and drew water: and I said unto her, Let me drink, I pray thee. And she made haste, and let down her pitcher from her shoulder, and said, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also: so I drank, and she made the camels drink also. And I asked her, and said, Whose daughter art thou? And she said, The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bare unto him: and I put the earring upon her face, and the bracelets upon her hands. And I bowed down my head, and worshipped the LORD, and blessed the LORD God of my master Abraham, which had led me in the right way to take my master’s brother’s daughter unto his son. And now if ye will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me: and if not, tell me; that I may turn to the right hand, or to the left. Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, The thing proceedeth from the LORD: we cannot speak unto thee bad or good. Behold, Rebekah is before thee, take her, and go, and let her be thy master’s son’s wife, as the LORD hath spoken. And it came to pass, that, when Abraham’s servant heard their words, he worshipped the LORD, bowing himself to the earth. And the servant brought forth jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment, and gave them to Rebekah: he gave also to her brother and to her mother precious things. And they did eat and drink, he and the men that were with him, and tarried all night; and they rose up in the morning, and he said, Send me away unto my master. And her brother and her mother said, Let the damsel abide with us a few days, at the least ten; after that she shall go. And he said unto them, Hinder me not, seeing the LORD hath prospered my way; send me away that I may go to my master. And they said, We will call the damsel, and enquire at her mouth. And they called Rebekah, and said unto her, Wilt thou go with this man? And she said, I will go. And they sent away Rebekah their sister, and her nurse, and Abraham’s servant, and his men. And they blessed Rebekah, and said unto her, Thou art our sister, be thou the mother of thousands of millions, and let thy seed possess the gate of those which hate them. And Rebekah arose, and her damsels, and they rode upon the camels, and followed the man: and the servant took Rebekah, and went his way. And Isaac came from the way of the well Lahairoi; for he dwelt in the south country. And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the eventide: and he lifted up his eyes, and saw, and, behold, the camels were coming. And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she lighted off the camel. For she had said unto the servant, What man is this that walketh in the field to meet us? And the servant had said, It is my master: therefore she took a vail, and covered herself. And the servant told Isaac all things that he had done. And Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent, and took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her: and Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.
Print Sermon
Downloadable Media

  
Play Audio

Show References:
ON OFF

HONORING GOD IN THE HOME

Dr. W. A. Criswell

Genesis 24

6-4-89    10:50 a.m.

 

This is the pastor bringing the message entitled Honoring God in the Home.  The staff of our wonderful church asked me to prepare a series of messages between Mother’s Day and Father’s Day on the family, and this is one in that series, Honoring God in the Home.

Our background text is the twenty-fourth chapter of the Book of Genesis.  There is not a more beautiful or moving story in all literature than the twenty-fourth chapter of Genesis.  If we had time, I would speak of it.  Abraham is seeking a wife for his son Isaac, and he calls his faithful servant Eliezer and sends him to his own father’s house in Haran of Mesopotamia, there to find a girl to be brought back, to be engaged, and to be married to his son Isaac.  And the story that follows after is filled with prayer and with appeal to the Lord God in heaven.

Honoring God in the Home.  I have three parts in the sermon: first, honoring God in the home in the building of the home; second, honoring God in the home in the character of the home; and third, honoring God in the home in the remembrance of home.

First: in the building of a home.  It is vital beyond any way that it could be said in syllable or in sentence that our children and that our young people be brought to the knowledge of Christ as Savior and Lord.  Practically all, if not all, of the great decisions in our lives are made when we are young: whether we accept Christ as our Savior, almost always that decision is made in childhood; when we enter into the fellowship of the church, the family of God; our education and the choice of a vocation practically always is made in the youth time of life; and finally, the choice of a life’s companion, the building of a home.  That is why it is so vital that the couple to be married bring to that exchange a covenant vow, a heart dedicated to God, and a soul that seeks the will and way of our blessed Lord.

After World War II there was an enormous rise in divorces in our beloved America, and a part of that I can well understand.  For three years of the war I was pastor in Muskogee, Oklahoma, and the military had built just outside of the city a very large camp.  The 42nd division and the 88th division were reactivated in that camp.  The 88th division, especially, was composed of boys, just very young, from the streets of the cities of the Northeast, from the streets of New York and Hartford, Connecticut, and Boston, Massachusetts.  And in the days of my pastorate there, beyond what I could think for, I performed the marriage ceremonies of those youngsters from the streets of New York City and American Indian girls who were reared in the country and in the Cookson Hills in eastern Oklahoma.  And I cannot forget the trouble of heart that I felt in performing those many marriage ceremonies.  They didn’t fit.  And the marriages, it seemed to me, were under the exigencies of the war and were entered into without prayer and dedication.

There is not anything more vital for the building of the nation and for the salubrity and health and vitality of the church and the kingdom of God than that the marriage covenant be made in the will of God and in the blessing of our dear Lord.  There has never yet in the history of mankind, there has never yet been a nation that has survived in the collapse of that marriage vow.  Not one.  I suppose the greatest history that’s ever been written in human speech is this one by Edward Gibbon entitled, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, written about two hundred years ago.  And in that study he says that for five hundred years there was not a divorce among the Roman people.  Five hundred years, not a divorce.  Then he describes the decline and fall of the Roman Empire, these people who conquered the civilized world.  And Edward Gibbon says the leading cause for the disintegration and the decline of the power of the Roman people was this: the disintegration of family and of the home.  This is the thing that burdens my heart about our beloved America.  The values of the world are decimating the spiritual repercussion that the Christian has toward God, and America is becoming increasingly secular in its home life, and our families are beginning to disintegrate.

One of the most amazing things that I observe and read in my pastoral work as a shepherd of God is this: one out of every four divorces in America is of a couple who are reaching toward twenty years in their home life.  It is unthinkable, it is indescribable, what is happening to our American people, and the end of it lies in a tragedy beyond any way that language could describe it.  I repeat: There has never yet been a nation that has survived in the collapse and the dissolution of the marriage vow.

Second: honoring God in the home in the character of the home.  And I have three things to speak of there: the family life, and the devotional life, and the church life.  The family life.  One of the things that you’ll observe in reading God’s Holy Word is the modeling that is found in Holy Scripture.  It’s amazing to me.  For example, Paul will say in 1 Corinthians 11:1, “Be ye followers of me, as I am a follower of Christ,” a model.  One of the most ancient principles of education is modeling.  For example, those ancient rhetoricians would make assignments to their pupils and say, “Now, you take this subject, and you prepare it and present it as, say, Demosthenes would do it or as Cicero would do it,” modeling.  So it is in the Bible: modeling.  These are the models that God would have us pattern our lives after.  Now, I’m going to take one from the New Testament and one from the Old Testament.  Modeling, the building of the home according to a model in Holy Scripture.

Now, in the fifth chapter of Ephesians:

As the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their husbands in every thing.

And husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it…

So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies…

We are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones.

For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.

This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and His church.

[Ephesians 5:24-32]

 The model of a home.  The Christ figure in the home is the husband, and Christ was a servant.  He washed the disciples’ feet [John 13:4-5].  He went about blessing and doing good [Acts 10:38].  The Christ figure in the family is the husband.  He’s a servant.  And the church figure in the family is the wife, subject unto Christ, but loving and obedient.  It’s a beautiful, beautiful thing.  In the third chapter of Galatians Paul writes, “there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female” [Galatians 3:28].  We’re all equal in the sight of our Lord, husband and wife, but we play different roles.  There’s a role for the husband; there’s a role for the wife.

There is a word ekklesiola, ekklesiola.  Now, you’ve heard the word ekklēsia all your life.  That’s the word for the church: ekklēsiaEkklesiola means “a little church,” and that is God’s picture of the home.  It is a little church with the husband, the Christ figure, and the wife, the church, that loves the Lord and bows in His presence.  It’s a beautiful thing.

Now let me take the model from the Old Testament.  As you read, you will find one of the major causes of divorce, of the breaking up of the family, is in-laws.  Now, in the fourth chapter of the Book of Exodus, you have one of the most dynamic stories that you’ll ever come across in the Bible.  Moses, you remember, for forty years worked on the back side of the Midian desert for Jethro, and he married Jethro’s daughter Zipporah [Exodus 2:21], and when the Lord God called Moses to go down into Egypt to deliver his people [Exodus 3:10], why, there occurred a vicious and violent confrontation between Zipporah and Moses over circumcision [Exodus 4:25-26].  You see, Moses had two boys, two sons, by Zipporah, and she was a pagan, a heathen, and the boys were not circumcised.  And there occurred a violent confrontation between Zipporah and Moses over the circumcising of those two sons, and they separated.  They parted.  And Zipporah went back to her father, Jethro, and took the two boys with her [Exodus 18:2-5], and Moses went down into the land of Egypt to deliver the Israelites alone, by himself, his family gone [Exodus 18:2]. 

Well, as the days passed, finally Israel came out, and they were wandering in the Wilderness of Sin.  And Jethro the father-in-law, the father-in-law Jethro, never criticized Moses, never spoke ill of his son-in-law, and while they were wandering in the wilderness, Jethro brought Zipporah and the two boys back to Moses.  And he instigated and initiated the reconciliation of Zipporah and Moses [Exodus 18:1-7].  The in-law did it.  And if I could say in passing, Jethro must have been one of the wisest men who ever lived.  He instituted a court system in Israel that liberated Moses for the tremendous problems that he faced in guiding those people to the Promised Land [Exodus 18:13-27].  But isn’t that wonderful?  Isn’t that great?  Isn’t that a model?  Instead of the in-law adding to the divisiveness and destruction of the home and the family, the in-law, Jethro, is the instrument by which the family is put together again.  That’s a model for all of our in-laws.  Help the children.  Bless them.  Minister to them.  Make it possible for them to have a beautiful home life together.

I haven’t time even to begin to speak of these things.  The devotional life of the home.  I do not think I’ve ever seen a more beautiful picture, a precious painting.  It is a poor family, evidently poor by the furniture and by the way they’re dressed.  It is a poor family, and they’re at their table with their heads bowed, saying the blessing, asking grace at the table.  And the artist has painted a picture of our blessed Lord with His hands extended above that praying family.  Sweet people, do you say grace at the table before you break bread?  Do it.  Do it.  It will sanctify and hallow everything in your home.  That’s just one in the devotional life of your precious family.

I speak now of its church life.  We never go astray and we never go wrong in our work life, never.  It is always in our social life, always.  And if, in our social life, we can center it in God and with God’s people, in the church and in the ministries of the church, you will have a godly and a beautiful home.  And I speak now of just one facet of it.  There are four Ds that are dreadful: debt, divorce, disease, and death.  I take just one of them: debt.  Debt.  When you read, you will find most of the researching people say that money is the first cause of divorce; money.

I can give you in a sentence an answer for every problem you’ll ever face in your financial life.  If you will follow this pattern of 10 and 80 and 10, I don’t care who you are, where you are, you will be blessed in the financial, monetary facet of your family and of your life.  Ten: this belongs to God: ten.  Eighty: this belongs to me and the necessities of life.  Ten: and this belongs to the savings account.  Put it into the buying of a house or in a government bond or whatever.  If I have a dime, this penny belongs to God; these eight cents belong to me; and this penny belongs to the savings account.  If I have a hundred dollars, this $10 belongs to God; and this $80 belongs to me for the necessities of my life; and this $10 is for the savings account.  You will never ever have any problem in your life with finances and with money if you’ll do that, if you’ll do that.  God bless us.  God is in that.  I am an old man.  I’ve been a pastor for 62 years.  I’ll be 80 years old this year.  I have never yet, not yet, either heard of nor have I read of anybody anywhere, under any circumstances, who has ever found fault with that kind of a division.  Do it and God will bless you in your home.

Last: honoring God in the home in the remembrance of home.  A long time ago in the 1600s, there was a very gifted preacher by the name of Increase Mather.  For sixty years he was pastor of the Second Church in Boston.  Seventeen of those years he was president of Harvard College.  Increase Mather wrote a little pamphlet entitled, “The Duty of Parents to Pray for Their Children.”  Now, Increase Mather had a wonderfully gifted son called Cotton Mather.  Cotton Mather was pastor of that same church, the Second Church in Boston, for 43 years.  Anyway, Cotton Mather wrote a pamphlet, and here’s the title of it:  “The Duty of Children Whose Parents Have Prayed for Them.”  What a wonderful thing: honoring God in the home and the remembrance of home.  The thought of it, the image of it, the remembrance of it brings us back to God.

I was in the Pacific Garden Mission in Chicago, and as I sat there, big on the wall on that side was John 3:16.  Well, I understood that.  John 3:16.  And to my amazement, big on the wall on the other side right back of the pulpit, the wall there, was, “When last did you write to Mother?”  Well, I thought, “Of all the things incongruous!”  John 3:16, the gospel.  That’s right.  But this: “When did you last write to Mother?”  But as I sat there in that mission and turned it over in my mind, I could easily see the cause and the reason to get that wayward, homeless boy to thinking about his mother.  We need to think about God.  That is, if the mother was a godly somebody.

O Lord, how vital it is that the father and the mother in the home be godly parents.  And when the son or the daughter thinks about home, it brings back to the heart of the child the remembrance of God.  And I can tell you this: that child, I don’t care who it is, whether it be Adele Suddeth, who is so devout, or a wayward child, they don’t forget Mother.  You just can’t.  God made it that way.

In this last war, there was an American boy wounded, mortally so, on the battlefield in France.  And the lad was taken to a base hospital in England.  And in his delirium, as the lad was dying, he began to call for his mother: “Oh, Mother, Mother, Mother.”  There came a woman into the ward.  She walked over to that bed and put her arms around that dying American boy and said to him, “My son, your mother is here.  I am here.”  And the boy cried, “Oh, Mother, Mother!  I knew you would come.  I knew you would come.”  Well, there was a senior nurse in the ward watching that drama, and she walked over to that woman and said to her, “This is absolutely the most miraculous and amazing thing I have ever seen in my life.  This American boy and his mother from America should be here just when he dies.”  And the woman replied, “Kind nurse, I’m not his real mother.  I just heard him calling for ‘Mother,’ and I came, and I took her place.  I thought that his American mother would understand.”  Dear me.  What a wonderful thing it is if the mother of our children can bring to the mind and memory of the child something of God and of the way of the Lord.

And sweet people who have shared with us this hour on television, I pray that your home will be a Christian home, that your children will be brought up in the love and admonition of the Lord Jesus.  There is not anything into which you could pour your heart and life that has the meaning of listening to and giving your heart to the blessed Lord Jesus.  And if you don’t know how to accept Him as your Savior, you call us.  The number is on the screen.  And there will be a devout Christian counselor who will guide you into the way of our Savior.  God bless you and your home and your children.

And in the great throng of people who fill this sanctuary here in this dear church, in the balcony round, down the stairway, on the lower floor, down one of these aisles, “Pastor, God has spoken to me, and I’m answering with my life.”  To join the church, to give your heart to Christ [Romans 10:9-13], to listen to His voice, as the Lord shall make the appeal, on the first note of the first stanza, come, while we stand and while we sing.

HONORING GOD IN THE HOME 5/51 Mother’s day, 2/46 Radio class, 5/41 Muskogee, 5/66, 5/51 Gen. 24:1-4;7-20,58-67 <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> I.          In the Building of a home. Practically all our decisions made in the youth times of our life. A Christian or not.  Mostly childhood decisions. Vocation, training, schooling. Building a home, a life, a companion. Entering into the covenant without prayer…God…… <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (a)       Camp Guber. 88th division boys from NE Cities and Indian girls from country villages} married, but troubled. 42nd division (MacArthur Rainbow division)  After the war, an enormous rise in divorces. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Bringing to it our best: consecration, health, purity, devotion. The materials out of which the national fabric(destiny) is made. No nation has ever survived the collapse of marriage.  Edward Gibbons Decline and fall of the Roman Empire: progressive weakening of the family, leading cause of the fall. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (a)       “So long as there are homes” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> So long as there are homes to which men turn At the close of day; So long as there are homes where children are, Where women stay—- If love and loyalty and faith be found Across those sills—- A stricken nation can recover from Its gravest ills. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> So long as there are homes where fires burn And there is bread; So long as there are homes where lamps are lit And prayers are said; Although a people falter through the dark—- And nations grope—- With God himself back of these little homes—- We have sure hope. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> —Grace Noll Crowell. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Typology: Abraham, the Father   Isaac, the Son Eliezer, the Holy Spirit Rebekah,  the Bride of Christ (church) <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> II.          In the character of the homes. The kind of a home–Godly, Christian, devout. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 1.         Family life–a basic principle in scripture, “modeling” compare: Paul I Cor. 11:1 compare: Eph. 5:25-33 compare: One of the oldest principles of education: ancient. Another model, “in-laws” a reason for divorce. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (a)       Zipporah, Jethro   Ex. 4. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 2.         Devotional life–Grace at the table: poor family, grace at the table, Christ above hands outstretched in blessings. Bible read. Private devotionals. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 3.         Church life–Sunday an institution.  The Lord’s Day. Life centered in the church. The dreaded “Ds”= debt, divorce, disease, death. Money first cause for divorce. compare: Webster’s unabridged dictionary:66 column inches “take” :22 column inches “give” :3 to 1 in favor of take. compare: 10-80-10 plan      : 10 for God : 80 for necessities : 10 for savings <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (a)       “no complaint has ever come to me, whose tried” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Word of our aged counselors..Basic human need to give, savings=out of debt. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> III.         In the remembrance of home. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 1.         The Christian Mother, Father, Family. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (a)       Poem “Are all the Children in?” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> I think of times as the night draws nigh Of an old house on the hill, Of a yard all wide and blossom-starred Where the children played at will. And when at last the night came down Hushing the merry din,   Mother would look around and ask, “Are all the children?” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> ‘Tis many and many a year since then, And the old house on the hill No longer echoes to childish feet And the year is now, so still. But I see it all, as the shadows creep, And though many the years have been, I still can hear my mother ask, “Are all the children in?” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> I wonder if when the shadows fall On the last, short, earthly day, When we say goodbye to the world outside, All tired with our childish play, When we step out into that other land Where mother so long has been, Will we hear her ask, just as of old, “Are all the children in?” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> If a Christian father, mother, a life worthy of them. 1639-1723-devout 60 years Pastor, 2nd Church, Boston.  17 years, president of Harvard. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (a)       Increase Mather wrote a little book entitled, The Duty of Parents to Pray for Their Children. Many years later his son, Cotton Mather, reflecting that not even so competent a father as his own could guarantee the satisfactory piety of his offspring without their cooperation, wrote a book called, The Duty of Children Whose Parents Have Prayed for Them. Cotton Mather-eldest son, Assistant Pastor with his father. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (b)       Dr. Hill, Mt. Washington. So maligned, I knew him well. Every Monday morning wrote to his mother–loved her–took care. Changed my mind. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 2.         A home the remembrance of which leads to God. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (a)       Pacific Garden Mission-one Sunday–on one wall: John 3:16 On other wall: “When last did you write to mother?” Incongruous? No.  Think of mother, think of God. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (b)       “When Mother Prayed” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> “I think that I shall never see,” This side of God’s eternity, A scene as lovely as the one   Which met my gaze when day was done, In childhood years of long ago: My mother sings, ’tis sweet and low, Her face with love is all aglow, She turns the pages of  God’s Word, Her tender heart is deeply stirred. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> She kneels, she prays, Oh, what a prayer! I listen, lingering on the stair— “God bless my boy”–I hear my name, And there, within my heart, a flame Begins to burn—’tis burning yet. That hour I never shall forget! <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Though Mother dear into my heart, And now, like her, from cares apart, I pray.  Her prayers still follow me—- A touch, and by its gleam I see My home across the crystal sea. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> —David F… <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Many a boy, wanting mother. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (a)       The lad in the war, in England base hospital, delirious, crying “mother, mother”  The woman goes in: ” Here I am, your mother.” Oh mother…..I love you, would you take me home?”  After his death, the nurse, “I’m not his real mother, I just took her place…I know she would understand.”  Back home–some where in American–I know that a mother understood.  A comfort, the lad remembered. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> “Honoring God in the Home” Gen. 24 <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> A Home Born in Prayer <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> I.          Honoring God in the Building of a home.  The beginning of the home in youth time. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 1.         Personal purity, virtue, strength (the material) <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 2.         Selection of a mate. Decisions-praying about them all, especially this all-important.  (a) Camp Greber. 88th div. Holy purpose Prayer <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]>   II.          Honoring God in the Permanency of the Home. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 1.         The institution <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 2.         The vow <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 3.         The Word of God <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 4.         The obedience [my part as a minister of Christ, when I marry] [my part as a builder of a home, forever] <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> III.         Honoring God in the Character of the Home. Atmosphere, Attitude, Actions Children, God, Church. Christ the guest, head at table Social life Devotional life Church life Sunday morning invitation <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> IV.        Honoring God in the Remembrance of Home <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 1.         Their attitude toward us. –always their children–little children –happy to serve.  I, at 12 3. Doesn’t matter. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 2.         Our remembrance of them. –thoughtful (Dr HIll, every Monday a.m. writing to his mother.)  I thought “couldn’t be a bad man and so remember his mother.” –faithful to God, righteousness, holiness. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]>