Marriage and Fathers

Posted by on May 24, 2016 in Pastor's Desk | No Comments

From Pastor Becker’s heart to yours……
We live in a time spoken of by the prophet Isaiah: “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” (5:20). As you read the selection from Martin Luther’s Large Catechism on the sixth commandment below, realize that while the sad condition of our sinful hearts has not changed, the promotion of whatever is contrary to God’s Word by the government and the entertainment industry as good and normal should cause us alarm. In light of recent assaults on Biblical morality by these agencies, we might well thank God that the pastors and congregations of our church body, the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, are pledged to faithfully confess the unchanging truth of God’s Word.
But inasmuch as there is such a shameless mess and cesspool of all sorts of immorality and indecency among us, this commandment is also directed against every form of unchastity, no matter what it is called. Not only is the outward act forbidden, but also every kind of cause, provocation, and means, so that your heart, your lips, and your entire body may be chaste and afford no occasion, aid, or encouragement to unchastity. Not only that, but you are to defend, protect, and rescue your neighbors whenever they are in danger or need, and, moreover, even aid and assist them so that they may retain their honor. Whenever you fail to do this (although you could prevent a wrong) or do not even lift a finger (as if it were none of your business), you are just as guilty as the culprit who commits the act. In short, all are required both to live chastely themselves and also to help their neighbors to do the same. Thus God wants to guard and protect every husband or wife through this commandment against anyone who would violate them.

However, because this commandment is directed specifically toward marriage as a walk of life and gives occasion to speak of it, you should carefully note, first, how highly God honors and praises this walk of life, endorsing and protecting it by his commandment. He endorsed it above in the Fourth Commandment, ―You shall honor father and mother. But here, as I said, he has secured and protected it. For the following reasons he also wishes us to honor, maintain, and cherish it as a divine and blessed walk of life. He has established it before all others as the first of all institutions, and he created man and woman differently (as is evident) not for indecency but to be true to each other, to be fruitful, to beget children, and to nurture and bring them up to the glory of God. God has therefore blessed this walk of life most richly, above all others, and, in addition, has supplied and endowed it with everything in the world in order that this walk of life might be richly provided for. Married life is no matter for jest or idle curiosity, but it is a glorious institution and an object of God‘s serious concern. For it is of utmost importance to him that persons be brought up to serve the world, to promote knowledge of God, godly living, and all virtues, and to fight against wickedness and the devil.
As we mark Father’s Day on June 19, I call on and challenge all Christian fathers – myself included — to become the spiritual leaders God has called them to be. That involves at least two things:

  • Instruct the members of his house in the chief articles of the Christian faith, the Ten Commandments, the Apostles’ Creed and the Lord’s Prayer, “As the head of the family should teach them in a simple way to his household” and
  • Faithfully bring them to the Divine Service on the Lord’s Day. “For where the heart stands idle and the Word is not heard, the devil breaks in and does his damage before we realize it” (Large Catechism, 4th Commandment).

If this doesn’t happen, it matters little whom we elect to represent us at the local, State or National level.
Pastor Paul Becker

Open my eyes that I may see wondrous things from Your law (Psalm 119:18).