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Beliefs Have Consequences Commentary #19
© 1999 Dorothy A. Miller
 “Which Came First, Fathers or God?

      So...how do you see it?
      Does this first view describe your model?

      God wanted to communicate with the people whom He had created and teach them some essential truth.  So He looked down on earth from His throne up in heaven and He got some ideas.  “Fathers...love and protect their children... Children...trust their fathers...ah those are good illustrations....I’ll use those! 

      Or is this second one your belief?

      The one and only God had great love to offer and created people with whom to share that love.  In turn He required from His creations not only love, but trust, respect, honor, and glory.  To illustrate this great love and His ability to nurture and teach us, He originated fathers and children to give us a demonstration of designed us to us lay eggs in the sand, leave and then have our offspring hatch later, fully independent...but He didn’t.  It would have been easier; no diapers to change, no scraped knees to bandage, no lessons to learn or lectures to give.  Why didn’t God do it this way? Because He wove into our very existence, though families, the qualities about Himself that he wanted us to know.

      Our God is not a reactive God who tries to figure out what He is doing as He goes along.  He is the omniscient God who knew everything we would ever do, and who saw our sinfulness and need for salvation before we were ever created.  The Bible says that God planned our salvation through Jesus before He made the world. 

      So what does this mean to you today?  I suggest it means a lot.

     Why do you think families are always under attack by Satan?  He knows that the closer to the Biblical role a father lives and raises his children, the easier it is for those children to understand and appreciate the fatherhood of God.  Those children are less inclined to doubt that God has their best interests at heart.  It is natural to believe that God will always tell the truth, love and care for them when their earthly father has already shown them that kind of model.

      But if you have not experienced that kind of wonderful father, it’s no wonder that you have struggled with believing that God loves you and wants the best for you.  Not only has Satan always tried to destroy families, he has also woven false ideas of the fatherhood of God in the twisted religions of the world.  Satan either suggests that God is some senile benevolent old man who winks at sin and never disciplines his children (and who misses most of the action anyway) or he promotes the image of an angry God who is never satisfied with His children and who loves hammering on them when they make mistakes.

      No good earthy father is like this.  How dare we believe this of God!

      The Lord is a God of perfect justice and certainly will discipline when necessary, but He is also a God of perfect mercy, grace and compassion...one who literally gave Himself to us demonstrate His love.  Through the substitionary death of Christ He proved his supreme love and perfect fatherhood.  How strange that most of us who know that about God, still live as if He wasn’t concerned about what we do each day.

      This week in a mall I happened to see a group of girls shoplift.  I told a clerk as quickly as possible, but they got away.  I prayed, “Lord if it is your will, can I see these girls again?”  I wanted to say to them, “It doesn’t matter that the clerk didn’t see you take that statue, and it doesn’t matter that I did.  The big part you are missing is that God saw you, and one day you will have to answer to Him.”

      I had hoped to be able to share the salvation message with them, but I didn’t see them again.

      Whether you had a good start with God through the example of a good earthly father or you did not...it is time now to begin trusting Him.

      The Bible says that even in a time of great sinfulness on earth that Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.  It says that King David asked God to search his heart to see if there was any wickedness in it and if there was he wanted get rid of it!  Actually whether we ask God to look in our heart or not...He still sees everything.  What does He see? Proverbs 15:3 says “The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good. 

      What is this loving God looking for?  The Bible tells us in 2 Chronicles 16:9 what He seeks: “For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him.”

      He wants to find people that He can bless.  Is this the God you know?  If not turn to Him today and you can know Him in this way.

      A little boy asked his grandfather if God could see everywhere at the same time.
      The grandfather replied, “yes.” 
      “But,” the little boy protested, “Why does He watch everything I do?”
      “That’s easy to answer,” the grandfather responded.  “It’s because He loves you so much He can’t take His eyes off of you.”... 
                                                                Beliefs Have Consequences!
 
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Beliefs Have Consequences Commentary #20
© 1999 Dorothy A. Miller
“Women...God’s Grand Design

      Have you noticed that the further from God a culture moves, the more distorted its view becomes about a woman’s role in society?  Whether it is the demeaning repressive view of females that leads societies ultimately to kill their unwanted girl babies or the replacement of God by female deities, both extremes are not the biblical view of woman. 

     Who would seek to distort God’s design for woman?  The enemy of all humankind...Satan.  The Bible describes Satan as the father of lies and a destroyer.

      Any time we allow Satan to delude us into a false belief, he destroys on two levels.  First and most obvious we are believing something that is not true, and remember, Beliefs Have Consequences.  Countless women, from newborns through adult, have been and still are shamelessly brutalized and killed by men who deem them inferior.  Also homes and cultures have paid a heavy price when they positioned women in places of spiritual headship and worshiped them.

      The second level of destruction when we believe a lie is this.  We miss the truth we should be seeing.  For example, when women are not allowed to, or simply do not, operate in their divine role, the losses to their children, husbands and culture are immense.

      We see in the Bible that God created Fathers to teach us many aspects of His own nature. We learn from the example of a good Father how obedience to God is wise.  We learn that God as our heavenly Father wants to give us the best gifts and lead us in paths that not only honor His name, but also ones that give us complete fulfillment.  Certainly our creator is best equipped to help us live in our unique design.  He can be trusted.

      But how about women and mothers? Remember in the Bible God uses the female pronoun “she” to refer to Israel, Jerusalem, wisdom, the body of Christ, the Church, and the Heavenly city Jerusalem the eternal home of believers.

      What can we learn about God from women?  We only need to look at God’s strategic use of women in the Bible to see the lessons.  In the early pages of Genesis God said that it was not good that man should live alone and He created a helper suitable for man.  God said man needed women as a companion, a helper.

      Throughout the Bible, when men were living righteously in God’s design, they honored their wives and daughters, and they often risked their lives to protect them.  We find in the New Testament a full explanation of that husband/wife relationship in Ephesians 5:22-33.  One of these verses, 25, explains it perfectly. “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.”  So women who allow themselves to be loved and protected by their husbands show us a special aspect of  God’s ability to protect Christians. 

      Also from a woman who honors her husband and respects him, we can learn submission and respect toward God. 

      Women from diverse backgrounds, such as Sarah the wife of Abraham and Rahab a former prostitute, are honored in the Bible.  In Hebrews chapter 11, God’s Hall of Fame, He lists people who had faith in Him.  Gender played no difference in their relationship to God.  They were honored because of their faith.  So women can illustrate faith as can men.  

      From before the creation of the world, God planned to bring His Son Jesus into the world through a woman.  Every Christmas we are reminded of Mary’s obedience to God.  She was full of faith and served God by keeping this child safe in her womb.  Mothers who love and protect their children, even in their wombs, even when circumstances are difficult, are demonstrating God’s love for everyone everywhere, at all times.  Mary also nurtured Jesus and raised Him up in the ways of the Lord.

      Another Mary was allowed to announce the resurrection of Jesus.  So too  women can be used to tell other of Jesus.

      We also learn about God from one of His many names in the Bible which is El Shaddai.  This combination of  Hebrew words connotes “The strong one who snuggles you to the breast,” as in nourishment.  Although in no way does the Bible suggest a feminine God, we all know of the wonderful secure feelings of being held by our own mom’s embrace.

      So we can learn much of God’s character from good women, mothers and wives.  From them we see illustrated companionship, nurturing, faith, and a picture of the supreme sacrificial love Jesus has toward His bride (the bride being all who will trust him as Savior.)

      To keep these divine illustrations clear and to disregard the lies of Satan, no one should ever look at woman either as inferior or as the spiritual head.  Neither is God’s design...
                                                        Beliefs Have Consequences
                              
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