Children need fathers and mothers. But children need fathers more, especially good fathers. Here is why.
First, let me say, one of the most joyous experiences as a parent is when one’s toddler says ma-ma or da-da for the first time.
My children are adults. However, I remember the day when my daughter broke out into a happy dance, rocking back and forth as she held onto the coffee table. She then looked at me and with a big smile, said, ma-ma. Funny thing is, I knew she had called her father da-da before she called me ma-ma.
No problem. In the Bible, da-da is first.
The Hebrew word for father is av. It means begetter, progenitor, the originator (of the family), creator, inventor, a benefactor or guardian, advisor, head, leader, chief ruler. A good husband/father is all this and more. We can see why children need fathers.
In Christ, a husband and wife have spiritual equality. However, they differ biologically, emotionally, and in their thought processes. They have different roles and distinct order in the home—husband, wife, children.
A father’s role in his children’s lives is immense. He is:
Husbands/fathers have the primary responsibility to be the leader at home. If they are Christ-followers, they should lead following Christ’s example. (See Eph 5.)
Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6 (NKJV)
Children need fathers to:
—educate them in the knowledge of God
Ephesians 6:4 says: And you fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord. In other words, don’t goad them. Encourage them.
—identify and help them to develop their gifts and talents
In the Bible, the father named his children based on a visible trait or quality or according to the child’s prophetic destiny. Thus, every time the child’s name is spoken, the child is being drawn toward his future.
—prepare them for life in general
Preparing children for life includes instructing them in the parallel courses of life, i.e., wisdom v. folly. God-inspired teaching, reproof, correction, and instruction in right living is the basis of a good education. (2 Tim 3:16)
A loving father confirms the value of his children. He listens, supports, and speaks encouraging words to them. He affirms his love for them.
A father/husband is the guardian and protector of his family. Children need fathers to help them feel secure and safe. A child’s home without a father is like a city with no walls. The family is vulnerable to attack.
God chose Avram (Abraham) to be a father of many nations because God knew Abraham would command his children after him. He knew Abraham would charge his children to know God, live right, and treat people right.
Let’s pray that the hearts of men everywhere be turned to and sensitive to their children.
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Capazin Thornton is a Christian speaker and author in Orange County, California.