Father's Day Sermon 2007
In honor of Father’s Day, I thought it would be appropriate to look at fathers in the Bible. In Genesis alone the word “father” appears 254 times. Many of these are genealogical.
· Adam, was the father of Seth,
· Seth was the father of Enosh,
· Enosh was the father of Kenan,
· Kenan was the father of Mahalalel…
Occasionally a description was attached to the name as in the case of Jabal who was the father of those who live in tents and raise livestock or his brother Jubal who was the father of all who play the harp and flute (4:20-21).
Neither of those descriptions tell us about their parenting skills.
This morning I want to look at the 2 men who are described as the fathers of mankind.
Looking at the first we have Adam.
4 1 Adam lay with his wife Eve, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Cain. She said, “With the help of the Lord I have brought forth a man.”
Why did she say that?
We need to remember that Adam and Eve didn’t have anyone to help them. There were no midwives or nurses standing by. There were no books on parenting. They didn’t have internet access. They had been kicked out of the Garden. Eve needed God’s help to give birth. And don’t forget Gen 3:16
16 To the woman he said, “I will greatly increase your
pains in childbearing;
Back to Gen 4:
2 Later she gave birth to his brother Abel.
Does that sound like an after thought to you? I have heard parents who have more than one child say they have tons of pictures of their first born, less pictures of their second born, and even fewer pictures of the third and following.
2b Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil.
Please don’t miss the significance of those words.
Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil.
Which of those 2 jobs do you think was easier?
Consider this, Go back up to Genesis 3: 17
17 To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat of it,’ “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. 18 It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. 19 By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground,
Day in and day out Adam & Cain are laboring in the fields together. They didn’t have servants. And the only other person who could have helped them, little brother was tending the flocks.
You know what happens next. Both boys bring an offering to God. Abel’s offering is accepted and Cain’s is rejected.
Back to Gen 4:
5b So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.
6 Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? 7 If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.”
Cain was angry. Where did Cain learn anger from? Do you think maybe his father had modeled anger and resentment to his son toiling by the sweat of his brow to eek out food for the family? Just a thought…
8 Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.
Whoa, where did that come from? How did resentment turn to murder so fast?
9 Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?” “I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
Where did Cain learn how to lie? Didn’t his father hide from God after eating the forbidden fruit? And then blame the whole thing on Eve?
In the same way Adam & Eve are banished from the garden, Cain must bear the consequences of his sin.
13 Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is more than I can bear. 14 Today you are driving me from the land, and I will be hidden from your presence; I will be a restless wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”
15 But the Lord said to him, “Not so; if anyone kills Cain, he will suffer vengeance seven times over.” Then the Lord put a mark on Cain so that no one who found him would kill him. 16 So Cain went out from the Lord’s presence and lived in the land of Nod, east of Eden.
17 Cain lay with his wife, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch.
18 To Enoch was born Irad,
Irad was the father of Mehujael,
Mehujael was the father of Methushael,
Methushael was the father of Lamech.
23 Lamech said to his wives, “Adah and Zillah, listen to me; wives of Lamech, hear my words. I have killed a man for wounding me, a young man for injuring me.
In other words Lamech had killed someone in self-defense. He told his wives that they need not fear any harm coming to them for the killing because if anyone tried to retaliate, he would retaliate and kill them. There’s that Cain heritage of murder 6 generations later.
But wait that’s not enough,
24 If Cain is avenged seven times, then Lamech seventy-seven times.”
Lamech thought that if God promised 7-fold vengeance on anyone killing Cain, He would have to give 77-fold vengeance on anyone attacking Lamech, since the murder was justified.
What about Adam’s other children?
25 Adam lay with his wife again, and she gave birth to a son and named him Seth, saying, “God has granted me another child in place of Abel, since Cain killed him.”
Let’s recap, Abel has been murdered, Cain has been banished from his family, and Eve gives birth to Seth. How would you expect Adam to parent this child?
26 Seth also had a son, and he named him Enosh.
6 When Seth had lived 105 years, he became the father of Enosh.
9 When Enosh had lived 90 years, he became the father of Kenan.
12 When Kenan had lived 70 years, he became the father of Mahalalel.
15 When Mahalalel had lived 65 years, he became the father of Jared.
18 When Jared had lived 162 years, he became the father of Enoch.
21 When Enoch had lived 65 years, he became the father of Methuselah. 22 And after he became the father of Methuselah, Enoch walked with God 300 years and had other sons and daughters.
After the birth of his son, Enoch walked with God. Why? Do you think Adam may have had an influence on his great4 grandson? I did the math Adam would have been 687 years old when Enoch began his walk with God.
23 Altogether, Enoch lived 365 years. 24 Enoch walked with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.
Only one other person in history did not taste death and that was? Elijah.
Methuselah was Enoch’s son. Enoch walked with God and was no more. Because Enoch’s relationship with God was so strong we would expect that his children also had a strong relationship with God. How strong was the relationship between Methuselah & God? Jump down to verse 27
27 Altogether, Methuselah lived 969 years, and then he died.
This is the longest life in recorded history. For Methuselah to be blessed with such a long life, he had to have had God’s favor. But wait it gets better. If you do the math you will discover that Methuselah died the year that the flood came.
Back up to verse 25
25 When Methuselah had lived 187 years, he became the father of Lamech.
Not the same Lamech who we read about earlier who killed a man in self defense.
28 When Lamech had lived 182 years, he had a son. 29 He named him Noah and said, “He will comfort us in the labor and painful toil of our hands caused by the ground the Lord has cursed.”
That’s the thing about sin it effects the just as well as the unjust. Adam’s sin not only affected the line of Cain but the line of Seth as well. Everyone suffered because God had cursed the land.
32 After Noah was 500 years old, he became the father of Shem, Ham and Japheth.
9 This is the account of Noah.
Noah is considered the second father of mankind, because his children populate the earth after the flood.
9b Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God.
Who else did we say walked with God? Enoch & Methuselah. Adam would have been dead for more than 110 years when Noah was born. Therefore the Godly heritage Noah received came from Noah’s grandfather & great grandfather.
11 Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence.
How did that happen? Don’t forget that we have the children and grandchildren of Cain populating the earth and intermarrying with the children and grandchildren of Seth. And also be mindful that before the flood people lived hundreds of years. Another cause for the evil, which we will not go into at this time involves fallen angels procreating with human women before the flood. As I said, we will save that discussion for another time.
12 God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. 13 So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth.
You know the story. God commanded Noah to build an ark
– a huge barge-like ship that would protect his family when the flood came. The ark was also to house a huge number of animals. I do not believe that Noah built the ark by himself. We know he had 3 sons, and in those days families worked together. We also know that in the Middle East, it is custom for the patriarch of the family to dictate what the family did. That Noah’s sons and their families were included in the plan of salvation in the ark by God says something about their character as well.
It would take Noah 120 years to construct this vessel.
1 Peter 3 tells us that during this building stage Noah testified against the unbelief and wickedness of his generation.
22 Noah did everything just as God commanded him.
We know what happens next. Noah & his family load up the ark with all the animals, and provisions they would need. The family enters the ark and God closes the door. The rains come for 40 days and 40 nights. The Bible records that the height of the flood was about 20 feet deep. The ark floats for 150 days and comes to rest on Mt. Ararat where Noah and his family and all the animals sit for about a year before the waters had receded and God gave them permission to leave the ark.
Now what do you think that family did for a year on the ark? They didn’t have television, or board games. I’m sure that it took a good part of their days to feed and care for the animals. I think it is safe to assume that when they sat down at the dinner table, Noah told his family stories that his Grandfather Methuselah and his Great Grandfather Enoch told him about their God – the same God that had preserved their family in the ark.
Fathers never underestimate the influence you have over your children’s lives. Tell them what God has done in your lives and in the lives of your parents and grandparents.
8 18 So Noah came out, together with his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives. 19 All the animals and all the creatures that move along the ground and all the birds—everything that moves on the earth—came out of the ark, one kind after another.
20 Then Noah built an altar to the Lord and, taking some of all the clean animals and clean birds, he sacrificed burnt offerings on it.
The first thing Noah did was build an altar and worship God. They didn’t prepare a family feast to celebrate getting off the ark. They didn’t go explore their new homeland. They built an altar and worshipped God. That should say something to us all. Our first action in every situation should be to worship God.
21 The Lord smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: “Never again will I curse the ground because of man, even though every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done.
9 1 Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth.
That’s the same thing he said to Adam & Eve (Gen 1:28)
2 The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands. 3 Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything.
Sound like dominion to me.
8 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him:
11 I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be cut off by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.”
12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: 13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. 16 Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.”