|Vol. 14 No. 2 February 2012||
Rodney Nulph, Associate Editor
The old adage “As goes the home, so goes the nation” is often more true than we wish to admit, especially given the nature of the home in 21st century America. It is no secret that far too many homes in our country are in serious trouble! The home and marriage are constantly being redefined by man’s terms to suit his current trends. What used to be unheard of is now being commonly accepted by society as “normal” functioning homes. Dear friends, the home is in crisis!
The home is in crisis due to definition. Man’s current definition for the home is far from God’s definition! In fact, in a recent television news broadcast, it was reported that “plural marriages” are on the rise. A “plural marriage” is defined as one man being married to numerous women at the same time. Sadly, the world is quickly accepting this sinful behavior and even going so far as to label it marriage. The grossly misinformed news anchor actually said that she could now see the benefit from this type of arrangement and “understood” why folks are changing their mindset toward such. Is one man married to multiple women God’s definition of marriage? Certainly not! God’s definition has always been and still remains one man married to one woman for life (Genesis 2:23-24; Matthew 19:1-9; et al). The home is in crisis due to definition!
The home is in crisis due to divorce. Our good brother Jim Duty recently referenced a couple for whom he had performed a wedding ceremony for some 50 years ago! What a blessing. Sadly, how many marriages last 50 years in today’s society? Statistics show that 50% of all first marriages will end in divorce. That is one out of every two marriages! Out of a congregation of 50 couples statistically, 25 of those couples will get a divorce! Good brethren, the home is in crisis! Let’s each remember that God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16). God has designed marriage to be for life (Matthew 19:1-9), with only one exception, not many! Marriage is to be enjoyed and adored (cf. Song of Solomon 1-8). We need to rekindle and recharge our marriages because Satan is after every happily married couple. The home is in crisis due to divorce!
The home is in crisis due to debauchery. How many children are now growing up in homes that have two fathers or two mothers? What was once unheard of and viewed as utterly despicable is now seen openly on our streets, among our children’s friends and classmates, among our employers and fellow employees. Dear brethren, homosexuality is still sinful and must never be tolerated! We as a nation are pushed daily to tolerate, not to judge, to be understanding and accepting. However, we can never allow this nation’s mindset to become ours. We have the mind of God (1 Corinthians 2:12-16), written and settled forever (Psalm 119:89)! God is not tolerant of any sin, and vehemently abhors the sin of debauchery and homosexuality (Leviticus 18:22; 20:13; Romans 1:26-32). God-fearing people are often made to feel like the minority and harsh if we fail to agree with such sinful practices. However, dear friends please remember that God plus “1” makes a majority! Even if every person on earth becomes accepting of this debauchery, we must never! God hates sin and He abhors the sin of homosexuality no less! Let’s be active in promoting God’s design for the home: male and female (Matthew 19:4-5). The old saying is still true, God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve!
We must be active in strengthening and defending God’s design for the home. We must never become complacent or indifferent to the attacks that are currently being placed upon the home and the family. Many homes in this nation are in crisis; where does yours stand among them? May God give us wisdom and help in creating homes that are pleasing to Him. God give us Christian Homes!
A young man was strolling through the woods and enjoying the beauty of God’s handiwork when he heard a stream nearby, and he walked down to view its course. He crossed over the stream and went toward a partially cleared section nearby. He soon realized that he was standing in the area where a large farmhouse had been ravaged with fire some time ago. He turned toward the rubble where the barn had stood, and then realized that this must have been a wild fire that caught the owners away from home. In a deep rut where steel-tired wagons had run, the man caught a glimpse of something bright. He stooped down, took his pocket knife out and unearthed the object. It was heavy, and mangled to such a degree that the man could only guess that it had been a massive man’s ring.
He had a friend in town who was a jeweler and a gold assayer, and he took the object to him for a professional evaluation. He left it for a week, and when he returned, he was amazed at what he saw. The dirt, soot, and scratches had all been removed, and the misshapen object was now a beautiful man’s ring. The young man realized that it was a ring all along, but its distorted shape and its physical appearance did little to make it appear worthwhile to anyone. This was especially true since the ring was not on someone’s finger, nor on a table or piece of furniture in a house. It was a ring whose shape had been spoiled, and somehow, it was in a deep rut, down in the barn yard. This was not a place where you’d expect to find jewelry. It was ‘out of place.’
How many people can you think of who are out of place and so obscured by sin and bad associations that they leave no clue that they are delinquent children of most high God? On the first occasion of their missing the faithful attendance at worship services, there might have been several who made inquiry about their absence. After that, the concern and alarm at failure to assemble seemed to be a little less troublesome than at first. These people soon forget what the Romans writer said. “Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:21). No one is immune to the works of the flesh. “There hath no temptation taken you, but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, Who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13). Did you ever stop to think that Christ died on the cross of Calvary for every man? “But we see Jesus, Who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that He by the grace of God should taste death for every man” (Hebrews 2:9). That means, dear friend, that Christ died for the vilest man you ever knew, just like he died for the finest man you ever knew. What is the difference?
Let’s let God’s Word settle the situation for us. “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23). Those who have obeyed the Gospel plan of salvation have a home eternal in the heavens if they remain faithful unto death (Revelation 2:10). Those, however, who have obeyed, but who have returned to walk in paths of darkness, have a place provided for them also. “The Son of Man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire…” (Matthew 13:41-42).