Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Generations of Godly Men

10 The son of Jediael was Bilhan, and the sons of Bilhan were Jeush, Benjamin, Ehud, Chenaanah, Zethan, Tharshish, and Ahishahar. 11 All these sons of Jediael were heads of their fathers’ houses; there were seventeen thousand two hundred mighty men of valor fit to go out for war and battle. (I Chronicles 7:10-11)

Passages such as this, buried in lists and lists of names, are mines full of gems that inform us of many aspects of the mind of Christ.

1. In God's eyes, the generations are defined by the men of that age. In those generations where God is delighted in the sons of men, the men are "men of valour fit to go out for war and battle." The modern, metro-sexual male, is an abomination in the eyes of the Lord (Deuteronomy 22:5); having no valour, and totally unfit for the war against unholiness and the many battles against wickedness in high places.

2. Family is defined by its male heads. In the Godhead is Fatherhood, and this fatherhood is reflected in the fatherhood of families. God's intention is that fathers raise sons, who marry and become fathers, who raise sons, who marry and become fathers, and on through the generations. These fathers must be men of valour, and fit to war against everything that militates against the family. Women are only safe when they live under the protection of a Father who is a man of valour and fit to go to war and battle; or live with brothers who are men of valour and fit to go out for war and do battle; or marry a husband who is a man of valour and fit to go our for war and do battle. A woman, outside the context of men of valour and fit to go to war and do battle, is a very weak and vulnerable creation.

3. God intends that godly, men of valour are heads of large families. The notion that children are a hindrance to a comfortable lifestyle is a self-centred, ungodly notion, it is not Christian. God's original commandment was: "Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth." (Genesis 1:28). He has never withdrawn that commandment, and the nature of valour is a commitment to obedience to the commandments of God, even to the extent of imprisonment and death. Yes, obedience to the commandment to be fruitful and multiply will be difficult in many ways, however, a man of valour will train his children in the Faith, and in this way, the kingdom of God shall be extended, family by family, in time and on earth. The alternative is to choose to have small families, and watch the influences of godliness diminish in the land until God's people are enslaved by the wicked. Sadly, this has been the route of many modern churchmen; choosing personal peace and affluence over godly off-spring.

It pays to slow down in the passages that appear simply to be lists of names. Wonderful gems of God's wisdom can be mined there.

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