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Jun 16, 2024

Parent Fails To Avoid | Father’s Day 2024

Parent Fails To Avoid | Father’s Day 2024

Passage: 2 Samuel 13:1-19

Speaker: Matt Petty

Series: Stand Alone Message

Category: Sunday Sermons

Keywords: church, faith, god, sermon, kids, bible, family, children, christ, gospel, father, hope, sermons, jesus christ, christianity, parents, bible study, parenting, dad, parent, fathers day, self improvement, parenting advice, parenting tips, fails, study the bible, bible teaching, godly parenting, christian dad, burnt hickory worship, burnt hickory baptist church live stream, motivational speech, parent fails, parenting and family, parenting hacks

Today, on Father’s Day, we explore the scripture and examine what it means to be a Godly parent. In 2 Samuel 13, we see the story of Amnon, David’s son, and the tragedy of sin in his life. Our goal in this is to take away examples of parenting failures we need to avoid as we raise our kids, and also what we can do to overcome failure as a parent. We should never set an example we don’t want our kids to follow, live angrily without providing wisdom and discipline, give them everything except our presence, or simply do nothing. We need to be more concerned with pointing our children to an eternally joyful relationship with Jesus instead of concentrating on how much they like us. Are you setting an example you want your children to follow? Is your anger simply selfish venting? Do you need some encouragement or to explore the next steps in helping you become a Godlier parent? Do you have questions about Jesus? We would love to connect with you, take the time to answer any questions, and point you toward additional resources and classes to grow your faith and parenting, so reach out today. You can always take the next step by visiting

Amen. I know that when you walked into the building today, you could just about feel the leftover energy from all those kids this week. It has been a great week at VBS. I'm going to tell you this. It is an awesome week when you add VBS plus a whole bunch of construction workers. to be in the church this week. I'm not sure who had the most fun out of them. Look, I know one of the blessings and curses of this church is that so much goes on, and so many of us know a little bit about many things. One of the things I wanted to do this morning was just pause in the moment and shine a little bit on what God was able to do this week. All right. What he's able to do. It's hard for me to know all the stories and things that happen here. And I work here and know there's frustration on your end.

So I've invited Josie, our children's ministry director, to be with us this morning. And just to give us a little glimpse into how God moved this week. Look, we all know how big the week was, Josie, but give us a little snapshot of some of those things we don't even realize. As we know, there was a lot of traffic. We know there was a lot of in and out of the building. We know that there were kids everywhere. But give us a little glimpse and maybe just some quick stats on some things we don't think about that happened this week. Give us just a little glimpse into that.

First of all, I just want to say thank you if you brought your kids. We had a wonderful week. Volunteers, thank you for being here. It was an incredible week. I have to tell you, we had record attendance this year. Last year, we averaged about 900 to 1000 kids on campus. This year, between 12 and 1,300 kids were on campus. So that was... Come on. Just to give a little reference to that, that's larger than most elementary schools. On a campus with a whole lot of volunteers. Which is awesome. Four hundred volunteers, to be clear. So, thank you for coming alongside us. It was, it really was incredible. We tried to think about volunteer hours, the number of hours that our volunteers poured into the week. So they were here three hours a day for five days. Plus, they had leader training, and they had set up days. So we thought, let's just give them 20 hours in this building for that. 20 times 400, you've got about 8000 hours, which, divided by 24 hours a day, is about a year's worth of volunteer time poured into the week. It is an incredible undertaking. It's 60 classrooms. We filled nearly every classroom in this building. We filled every space in this building.

Sixty classrooms, with about an average of 20 kids per classroom. It's 40 different rotation schedules that they're all moving around on to get them to Rec, and to craft, and to music. Crafts: there were over 5000 crafts that had to be assembled, you know so that the kids could put them together. It was 6000 snacks. I know that Miss Martha and Miss Joy and their team put together 1200 little cups of cheese to serve along with the soft pretzels on Fridays. This is not your barrel drinks and butter cookies of our days.

Amen. Yeah, so it was a really good week, and it takes many hands to do the work. And so, just thank you for your prayers and for all the ways that you came alongside us. You know, I know that a lot of us grew up in VBS. If you're if you're a Church kid, in fact, if you were like me, your parents sent you to every VBS they could during the summertime. I wanted to think that was for my spiritual growth. But later on, I just figured out it was free, and it was away from them. So it kind of worked out that by the end of the summer, I could just teach that curriculum to the next group. But, you know, a lot of us grew up in that. And, in fact, we had one volunteer here. They volunteered for Josie this week, who was turning 86 years old, and her first VBS was when she was four. When she was four years old. So things have changed a little bit. It's no longer just slowing down in the parking lot and dropping your kid off. I mean, you have to walk in and do the check-in. It's like walking through. It's like watching little tour guides walk people through the buildings with signs that they're holding now and all these rotations. It was an absolutely incredible week. But Josie, I know that your team, man, y'all worked, and y'all did so much, and there are so many resources. I mean, you don't realize just even the budget that goes into having over 1500 people in this building for five days. Because this is not a paid event, For those of you who don't know this, this is a show-up-for-free thing. But Josie, with all of that and all those hours and all that stuff. Why not just film a video and send it to the kids? Why is why is all that worth it?

Well, the first reason we do it is because the Lord tells us to do it. You know, Jesus says, go and tell. And so we want to be obedient to that. And that really is the heartbeat of Burnt Hickory. I mean, you saw it last week with our team that went to Kenya, and this week, our middle school students are going to collide. So, that is our mission to go and share the good news of Jesus, but also because we know that what a life spent serving and loving Jesus means. And we want that for our kids, so we really just want to take the time to pour it into them. There were so many stories from around the building as I went, and I talked with volunteers, but on Monday, I taught in a worship rally. Truth comes from God. That was the lesson for the day. And I got back to my office and, I had this note sitting on my desk; and it was on top of a Bible, and it said, could you please sign this Bible? The boy, who is unchurched, asks his teacher if there is any way that I can get one of those books that Miss Josie has. Because we were talking about, you know, the truth is, is said to us in God's word, and he wanted to have that with him.

So that was exciting. And then, just walking through, I encountered two different moms who were just standing there in tears because they had just learned that their child had accepted Christ as Savior. I got an email from a father who said, hey, we have been praying for this family who are friends of ours. And my son invited their son to come. And he accepted Jesus as Savior. And they were able to take him and get a Bible. And he was just asking for our continued prayers for that family, that that child would be able to speak into that family. So, by the end of the week, there were 85 children who had given their lives to Christ.

Come on. Wow. You know, one of the. Things that that happen in this place sometimes are because of what we're seeing God do. I think sometimes we take that for granted. I think sometimes we take for granted the fact that this week, 85 kids went from death to life and were adopted into the family of God. And that is worth every single hour. Now, it's easy for me to say because I just greeted people at the door, but. But man, that's worth it. Church. And we want to thank you for all that you do. You know, this obviously is the biggest week of kids ministry of the year. Not to downplay anything else we do. But it also gives us a little bit of an indication of where kids are, Just in the community in general. I can't tell you, just standing at the front door, how many families that I had never seen before. Never had an encounter with it. Josie, how many new families had their kids involved with VBS this week? Well, if they told us, some did tell us, but there were about 175 new families in Burnt Hickory. Man, that identified it. Wow. That's pretty cool. And in that, one of the things that Josie was kind of kind of bringing me and the light from this week is that the kids are a little bit different. Now, you know, when I was growing up, when a lot of you guys were growing up, and you went to a VBS, there was almost a little bit of an assumption that you knew a little bit about the Bible, right? That you knew what the Bible was. You knew maybe even who Jesus was and maybe even have heard of him before. But what Josie was saying to me this week, and what I wanted to share with you guys, is that kids are a little bit different now. We would say it is especially kind of post-COVID. There is a slightly different foundation in what we're finding about kids. Josie, tell us a little bit about where kids are now as opposed to where they used to be.

Yeah. We have seen a shift in children, and you can kind of quantify it over the past five years as, pre-Covid, post-Covid, the kids who came through Covid, you know, we had them in isolation, and they were responsible for their own education. There was a lot of fear that went into that. And so we were seeing kids with much higher levels of anxiety and depression. But then, on top of that, there are just two other things going on. One of them is that we really are living in a post-Christian era where we, the kids, like Matt just said, used to come to us with a foundational understanding that, you know, God is our creator. They had their identity because they were created by God, and they don't come to us with that anymore. Now, they have a very secular worldview, which says that they are responsible for their own identity. They get to create it. They get to project that identity out into the world. So there's this understanding that it's my truth and your truth, and that isn't to be challenged. Then you've got the rise of technology. And it's not just technology that we have. It's smart technology. It's artificial intelligence that has really taken hold. And so, they have this sense of autonomy and increased agency that they are in control of.

They're learning they did it during Covid. They've got their devices. And if they want to know something, they can get that information back very quickly. But because it's just them and their device, they think that they're in control, and this increases their sense of agency. And so they're not really interested in somebody speaking to them. And so it becomes harder and harder to present them with ideas about biblical truth because their worldview says, if you challenge my truth, then you are harmful.

Wow. And in that, it's the beginning point way, way before, which is what you saw in the video of introducing them to truth, introducing them to Jesus, introducing them to the Word of God. And that's why the materials this year focused on truth, which is so, so important. Josie, what is one thing now, looking back at the week, what is one thing that all of us this week could just kind of pray over your, the children's ministry here, there at the church?

Well, pray for the parents. Pray for the kids. This is a new generation. This is because they have different challenges than any other generation. has had. But then, yes, pray for us as we're ministering to them and as we're ministering to families that we can develop relationships and give them a sense of belonging so that we can develop trust and able to so that we're able to speak into them. Then, just pray for these 85 kids as they start their walk with Christ that we can come alongside them and help them to grow well.

That's right, church. We have some work to do to raise this next generation of believers. Would you do me a favor and just thank Josie? Do it well enough so that the people in the Children's ministry can hear you this morning, Josie. Thank you, thank you, thank you for all that you guys have done. Amen. You know, I was thinking through this week, and I can't think of two weeks back to back that have been more exciting in the life of this church than the two weeks that we have just got to walk through here.

All right, well, look, if you got a copy of Scripture today, I want you to do me a favor and turn to second Samuel. Second Samuel, chapter 13. Second Samuel, chapter 13. As you're finding it, what you're going to quickly notice is that second Samuel 13 is quite possibly one of the strongest, one of the saddest, and one of the most evil texts in the Old Testament, much less one of the worst Father's Day passages of all time. All right. You're just going to see that really quickly. It happened on Mother's Day, and we're going to happen today because what this passage does is show us a little bit of a glimpse of a guy named King David that we're not used to seeing. When we think of this guy in the Old Testament named King David. Many of us who read the Old Testament would say that King David is this guy who's after God's heart. This is God's man who wrote the Psalms. This guy is one that we should emulate in his worship, and he taught us through the book of Psalms how to love God. However, the converse is that there is another side to King David's life. Many of us forget about it sometimes. In fact, if you were to ask his friend Uriah what kind of friend David was, right? Uriah would have a little bit of a problem with their friendship. Seeing that David killed him. Right? He would have a little bit of a problem if you were to ask Michelle, one of his many wives, what kind of husband David is. Michelle would say he is not the best husband that you can ever have.

On top of that, for relevance today, If you were to ask David's kids, they would probably all agree that David's parenting was a joke. It was an absentee parent at best, that he wasn't a good father, and that he and his family, as a result of all of those things, kind of mixed in together. He and his family had so much tragedy, so much controversy, and saw so much evil lived out in their lives. And you may be wondering, just for a point of mentioning this for a second, you may be wondering, as we're about to read this text, Matt, why in the world are things like we're about to read in the Bible? All right, I want to cover that before I read it because after I read it, you're not going to think about this anymore. You know, God has given us his word. And part of God's Word has given us a goal to live towards. But the part of God's Word is an example to run the other way. It's examples of people who have failed. Or if you could say, have paid the dumb tax for us, right? Have done things that have now given us an example of how to live the other way. Some things in the Bible we need to live up to. Some things are examples in the Bible that we need to run away from and live in the other direction. In the passages that we're about to read, the scribe's part of King David's life is a challenging passage for us as dads and us as parents, and really for all of us as believers, to live in another direction. Because the passage we're about to read is filled with injustice, with evil, with lust, and with actions that do not represent who God has called us to be. But it gives us a glimpse into David's life so that we can run the other way. Now, let me give you a couple of disclaimers before we jump into the passage.

This passage is heavy, all right. It's heavy. It is not PG. All right. It has it is not PG. In fact, for some of you with younger kids, it is going to make your Father's Day luncheon a little bit awkward if they ask some questions. All right. Just going to tell you that up front. There's way more in this passage that we're not going to get to, but this passage will give us some food for thought of how we as dads should be living, how we shouldn't be living, and how we can be the model for people of what it looks like to live in Christ. All right, so let's read it. And then I'm going to give you a couple of parents fails this morning that we can all learn from. Here we go. Second Samuel chapter 13 starts in verse one. It's kind of long, so stay with me. Here, it is said that in the course of time, Amnon, the son of David, fell in love with Tamar, the beautiful sister of Absalom, the son of David. Now, for sure, this is a one-sided fixation. All right. You'll figure this out in just a minute. This is not love. It is pure lust. He is obsessed with Tamar, which is his half-sister. All right. Just half-sister. Same dad, different moms. All right. Verse two. Amnon became so obsessed with his sister Tamar that he made himself ill. She was a virgin. That word means she was young. Marriage, age, sexually pure, and it seemed impossible for him to do anything to her.

Now, Amnon had an advisor named Jonadab, the son of Shimeah, David's brother. Now, this is his first cousin. He's an advisor to the king or his advisor to the King. Son. It's his first cousin. And it's Tamar’s first cousin. Because they're married, right? Jonadab was a very shrewd man. And he asked Amnon, why do you, the king's son, look so haggard morning after morning? Why won't you tell me? Amnon said to him, here it is. I am in love with Tamar, my brother Absalom’s sister. So listen to what this shrewd cousin said in verse five. He said this. He said, go to bed. Pretend to be ill. Jonadab said, when your father comes to see you, say to him, I would like my sister Tamar to come and give me something to eat. Let her prepare food on my side so I may watch her, and I may eat it from her hand. So Amnon lay down, and he pretended to be ill. When the king came to him, Amnon said, I would like for my sister Tamar to come and make me some special bread in my sight so that I may eat from her hand. Now, let's just be honest. It's already weird, right? But hold on. It's going to move from weird to sickening and evil very quickly. Verse seven: I just got the rest of you back. Like what? Watch this. It says this. David sent word to Tamar at the palace: go to the house of your brother Amnon and prepare some food for him. So Tamar went to the house of his brother Amnon. All right. So, to the house of her brother Amnon, who was lying down. She took some dough. She kneaded it. She made some bread on his side, and she baked it. She took the pan and she served him bread, but he refused to eat it. Send everyone out of here, Amnon said. So everyone left him.

Verse ten. Then Amnon said to Tamar, bring the food here into my bedroom, that I may eat from your hand. Tamar took the bread that she had prepared and brought it to her brother Amnon's bedroom. But when she had taken it to him to eat, he grabbed her and said, come to bed with me, my sister. No, my brother, she said, don't force me to do such a thing. Such a thing should not be done in Israel. Do not do this wicked thing. What about me? Where could I get rid of this disgrace? And what about you? You will be like one of the wicked fools in Israel. Please speak to the king. He will not keep me from being married to you. Listen, I'm already mad reading this. I mean, where's the rest of the family? Where is anyone that is going to fight for this pure girl? This is evil. Keep going. Verse 14. But he refused to listen to her. And since he was stronger than she, he raped her. Then Amnon hated her with intense hatred. In fact, he hated her more than he loved her. And Amnon said to her, get up and get out. No, she said to them, sending me away would be a greater wrong than what you have already done to me. But he refused to listen to her.

He called his personal servant, and he said, get this woman out of my sight and bolt the door after her. So a servant put her out and bolted the door after her. She was wearing an ornate robe, for it was the kind of garment that the virgin daughters of the king wore. Tamar put ashes on her head and tore the ornate robe that she was wearing. She put her hands on her head, and she went away, weeping aloud as she went. Now, you can almost see this in your mind if you're paying attention. You can almost feel the tension. You can feel the brokenness. You can see the hurt. You can see the evil in the taking advantage of and the predatory action by this man on this young girl. But it keeps going. Look at verse 20. That's not bad enough. Watch this. Verse 20. Her brother Absalom said to her. Has that Amnon, your brother, been with you? Be quiet for now, my sister. For he is your brother. Do not take this thing to heart. And Tamar lived with her brother at her brother Absalom's house as a desolate woman. Now, keep going because this next verse sets us up to talk about David's legacy and the absentee fathering, which really sets the stage for his whole family. There's so much here, but here's the point I want to make this morning. Verse 21. Watch this. It says that when King David heard all of this, He was furious. He was furious. Now, at first glance, we're all going, yeah, he should be furious. Yeah, he's the king. Bring down hell and wrath on everybody involved here, David. But I want you to see something here. Watch what it says. After he was furious, it says. And he was furious. Period.

That's all that happened. Nothing else happened in the story. In fact, look at the next verse, verse 22. It says in Absalom, that's our brother, right? I never said a word to Amnon, either good or bad. He hated Amnon because he disgraced his sister Tamar. Listen, this is one of the most sick tragedies in the whole Bible. But you got to know the rest of the story. The rest of the story is this. For two full years after this happened, David, the king, Father David did nothing, said nothing, and did not get involved. Absalom, the brother, did nothing. Nothing happened in anyone's life except for the life of the sweet Tamar being destroyed. Such an evil thing happened to her, and David did nothing. To which you're asking the question, Matt, why in the world would God put this in the Bible? Why would he put such an evil thing in the Bible? Well, we could use it to teach sexual ethics and honor God with all of our decisions. We could use it to teach the idea of the effects of lust as it takes over people. We could use it to ask the question, where is good God in a broken world, and what are the effects of sin? But today, because it's Father's Day, I want to look at it through the lens of how in the world this family got into this situation and had a dad named King David who did nothing. How did that happen? And I want to look at this through the lens of four ways that David failed and four ways that I think many of us, including myself as parents, fail. And I want us to learn from them, and I want us to commit today to run away from those things. It'll make more sense in just a minute.

Let me give them to you. I'm just going to walk through four parents, or you can call them believer fails. Okay. If you're not a parent, you might be one day. These also work for just being and living the life of a believer. Here's the number one I want you to write down. Here's the first fail. Number one, be an example that you don't want your kids or others. You don't want your kids to follow. Do you want to fail as a parent? Be an example that you don't want your kids to follow. You say, Matt, what does that have to do with anything? It has everything to do with anything in this story. Why? Think about King David's life just for a minute. You don't know anything about King David. Yeah, he had a godly side over here. But his life in relationship life and his view on women and sexuality was incredibly grotesque. It was absolutely immoral. When you think about his life as a whole, he had many wives and he had many concubines. Even when you just think about his encounter with this lady named Bathsheba that led to murder, that led to adultery, that led to a child that died, that led to all of that. It is an incredibly bad example of what it looks like to have a sexual ethic that honors God in our lives. David, as a result of that, had zero credibility and zero moral standing pertaining to any sexual matter when he tried to speak into his kid's life. And that's the point here. The point here is David can go call Absalom out for this. David couldn't stand in front of people and talk about not doing this, not committing adultery, and not having a bad sexual view of life. Why? Because David's life lived it, and he couldn't call his kid out on it.

Dad, let me just be honest with you. Mom, Dad, believers, listen. The example that you live in this life is one of the most important things you can do. One of the most important things. Why? Because most often, my parents listen to me closely. Here's the principle. What we are is what we will tend to get. What we are is what we will tend to get. Whether it's you leading your friends, or you leading your friend group, or you leading your kids, what you are is what you will tend to get. Now, I'm not saying I always notice I put the word tend in there on purpose. I grappled over that word for hours. Why? Because sometimes that doesn't happen. But most often, it does. Yes, God can radically deliver your kids, break the curse, and change the family. But I'm telling you, Dad, your family will follow you. It's going to follow you, and it's going to be like you and your kids. They see it all. Those things that you think you're hiding from your kids right now, you ain't hiding them for your kids. They are more. They are more in your life than you know it. They will become like you. David's kids knew him. They saw him. And in many ways, what did they do? They adopted. What are we seeing? They adopted his sexual ethic. Without adopting his boundaries. You know this is true in life, right? Parents and your kids will adopt your values, but most often, they will not adopt your boundaries.

What does that mean, Matt? That means that while you have a point in your life, you will stop regardless of your values. Most often, your kids will take that boundary 23456 steps further. It comes from all areas of life. Do you think one time a week or one time a month is good for the church or is two times a month good for the church? Or are we going to be barely on the fringes? What does that mean for your kids? That means I'm not going to be involved with church. When you think this on sexual things, that's what your kids are going to want. The problem with David's kids is they adopted his values but not as boundaries. Amnon, what did he do? He picked up his dad's view of women as objects. The view on women is, if I want it, I'll go get it. But he didn't adopt his dad's views on hey, I'll stop at it right here. Yeah. David committed adultery. He had multiple wives and multiple concubines. All that was evil because he was a king, especially. But his view of women was so low his son saw that, and he took it three steps further. Dads, listen to me closely. Our kids are going to go pretty much in the direction we live, but their boundaries will most often go farther. So let me ask you, just to point blank this morning, where is your life pointing them? Is your life in the situation David's life is in right here? Where you feel like, man, I can't talk and step into my kid's life. I can't correct my kid. I can't walk beside my kid because look at my life.

Here's what I'm going to tell you. Dads, listen, you don't have to be perfect, but you do have to speak to your kids, and you need to repent. From where you are, allow God to look into your kid's life and go, hey, look, I know I'm not perfect. I know I've failed, but I'm going to tell you. We and this family are going to live under the name in the banner of Jesus Christ. It's exactly why David didn't step. That's exactly why he failed. But let me give you the opposite side of this. Here's the deal also that when we do choose to live in holiness, here's the cool thing about most of our kids: when they see that as a value of our life and they see that as a value of our family, they will even take that two steps farther and live it out in their lives. Number one, parents fail; be the example that you don't want your kids to follow. Here's the second one. Number two from David's life. Live angry without providing wisdom and discipline. Live angry without providing wisdom. And this will be so. Matt. What does this have to do with anything? Well, go back to the text. Look at verse 21. It says when King David heard all of this, he was furious. But there's a period there. There's a period. I want you to understand something here. Anger was not the problem. Anger is not the problem here. The problem is that David did nothing else. He didn't provide wisdom. He didn't provide guidance. He didn't provide accountability. And that never goes anywhere.

In fact, you know what I'm talking about, right? How many of you grew up with a friend's family? I'm not gonna say your family. Right. With a friend's family. Their general idea was your friend would do something stupid, and that family over here would just blow up. There would be lots of yelling, lots of shouting, maybe even lots of cursing, maybe even a throwing of something. And then, 30 minutes later, everything was just back to normal. That's what's happening here. And that is not pointing to godliness. There has to be follow-through. There has to be an action plan moving forward. There has to be accountability. There has to be a responsibility taken. In fact, write this principle down for all of us. Listen, anger is not discipline or parenting. Anger without forward action, I’m about to step on some toes, is nothing more than selfish venting. It's nothing more than venting. It's nothing more than pitching a toddler fit. But yet you're an adult. That's all it is. If your M.O. is just to get angry and just to get mad and just to go off on everything, but yet there's no accountability. There's no stepping forward, there's no forward movement. All it is is you pitching a little fit. And I guarantee you all your kids are going to do is put their hands in their pocket and go, hey, when you're done, I'm done. Because that's what they're doing. You see, David just said he was angry. Anger is not a sin. The question is, what will we do with our anger? Where will we move our anger?

Anger is not a sin. Anger is a tool that God has given us to pursue justice and righteousness in the world. In fact, you cannot read the Bible and not see that anger is part of God's character when it has to do with holiness and justice, right? Ephesians 4:26. What does Scripture say? It says in your anger, do not sin. Do not let the sun go down when you're still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. What does that mean? I mean, you're a couple. You can never go to sleep at night if you're ever angry. No, you will never go to bed, right? But what that does mean is this. It means that you need to take the time to put a plan in action of how, even if you are angry, you are going to take steps to move in godliness and reconciliation for the moment. And if you don't, what happens? The anger festers, the anger builds, the anger blows up in your life, and before you know it, what does that do? It cracks open a little bit the spot where Satan can get in. And go ahead. Now, on this, I own this, and it ain't about disciplining your kids. It's just about you pitching a fit on the side. Man. I can promise you, Mom and Dad, uncontrolled anger is huge. It might not show up today, but it will show up on a counselor's desk or in an office one time later down the road. I promise you, it will. I promise you. What's the plan? We can't avoid anger, but we can control what we do with our anger and how we attach godly wisdom and godly action to it. That's where David blew it. So, number one. Be the example that you don't want your kids to follow. Number two is to live angry without providing wisdom and discipline. And this one goes right here with it. Number three, here's how you fail as a parent. Just do nothing.

Just do nothing. Again, David was furious. But what did he do? He did nothing. He did nothing. Apparently, this was David's M.O. throughout some of his parenting career. Now, we only have two really descriptive verses about David's parenting when it comes to discipline. This is one of them that we just read that he got angry. The second one is in First Kings chapter one, first Kings chapter one. There are a couple of little pieces in there, and one of David's sons was trying to steal the throne from another one of David's sons. And what did David do about it? Even though he knew that God had ordained Solomon to be the next king, what did David do about it? You're right. Nothing. He didn't do anything about it. He just sat there. Now, give him a little bit of credit. He was old at this point, but he literally did nothing so long that his wife had to rebuke him and so long that all of his advisors looked at him and said, David, if you don't do something about the situation, the whole kingdom and the whole house is about to fall. Parents, I have news for you. If your M.O. is to do nothing, your house is going to fall. It's going to fall. Apparently, this is what David did. But the question is why? Why did David do nothing?

Now, look, I don't know biblically why he didn't do anything, but I can take a guess at it. Let me give you three guesses as to why I don't think David did anything. I think there are three reasons why we don't do anything. Number one, I don't think David did anything because he looked at his life, and he said, hey, my life is not in a place to be calling anybody out right now. Dads, moms. I think that's why we don't discipline our kids sometimes. Number two, I don't think David did anything because he just didn't want to be bothered. As a parent. Have you ever been there, parent? You just had enough, and you're just like, hey, let's just let this thing blow over. And number three, I don't think he did anything because he wanted to be liked more than he wanted to be a parent. And I'm telling you, dads, I think number three is spot on for our community. Let me just say this: I'm going to move on the right. We are not called to be our kid's friends first. And we're definitely not called to be their friend’s friends first. So, if your mode of operation is that you just want to be liked by your kids, you are not leading them to holiness. And I promise you, at one point, it's some time in life you are going to have to make a moral decision. Am I going to be their parent, or am I going to continue to lead them down the road to hell? Our goal is not to be liked.

We are called to live for Jesus, to point them to Jesus, and to biblically stand in the gap for Jesus. Your role is to be a temporary stand-in for God. That's who you are. You're not their friend. And look, I love to laugh with my boys. I love to laugh with my family. But at the end of the day, I'm fighting for their lives. And so is the culture. Who's going to win? Who's going to win? Man, I've heard so many kids say down the road, but I've never heard kids say they are in the middle of being disciplined. Hey, Matt, thanks for that. But I have heard many, many, many, many down the road and say, man, if my parents would not have fought for me, there's no telling where I would be. Here's the question. I'll put it in your notes. Are you more concerned with being, or are you more concerned with your kid liking you? Or are you more concerned with pointing them to an eternally joyful relationship with Jesus? I mean, let me be so vulnerable for a minute. I'm so thankful for earthly parents who did not care if I liked them but loved me enough to point me to Jesus even when I didn't like it. I'm so thankful for a Heavenly Father who is way more concerned about my holiness than he is about my temporary happiness. Parents. That's our role. In fact, Revelation 9 tells us really quickly that God loves. Watch this. Those who and whom I love, I rebuke, and I discipline. Hebrews 12:6 goes further. It says, the Lord he disciplines those that he loves. In fact, Proverbs 13:24 it goes even further. Whoever spares the rod hates their child. The one who loves their children is careful to discipline them. Look, we think we're loving when we're just letting our kids off the hook and doing nothing about it. I'm sure David thought, Man, I'm just being loving. I'm just being loving. But we're not.

What we're doing is we're secretly and silently agreeing with them with what they are doing. Parents, our role is to point to Jesus, to love them, to Jesus, to remind them about Jesus, to direct them about Jesus. We don't have to teach them how to live in the flesh. They learn that really early on their own. But we do have to continually fight for them and act on their behalf in the name of Jesus, which leads me to number four. Here's the last one. Here's the fourth parent fail. And this is just giving everything except your presence. Give everything except your presence. So, Matt, what does that mean? That means you do everything in the world to give him everything in the world, to provide every riches in the world. But yet you are not there. Now, look, there's no one verse in the Bible that points to this, to David's life. But man, we see it all over the fact that David was just an absentee parent. Yeah, there are some cultural things, but listen closely. David provided all the palaces in the world to his kids, but he did not provide his presence in the name of Jesus.

Do you know that quality flows out of quantity? You never know when that moment comes, parent. When you need to stop and pick up the pieces of your kids, parents, your kids need you. They're going to say they don't. They're going to say they hate you. They're going to say you should get away from them. They're going to say they don't want to hear from you, but I promise you, they need you, and they need you to raise them. Not a scream, not another person, not a YouTube, and not a real one. They need you, and they need your way more than they need your money. They need you. They need you. Matt, I'm just trying to provide an extra deal for my family to do it. No, no. What they need the most is you to provide you. You say, Matt, these are pretty heavy of what not to do. What should I do? Let me give you one, and then we're done. I promise. Here, this is a challenge. How do you live it out? Just be the follower of Jesus that you want your kids to be. That's it. So, how do I live this out in front of my kids? Just be the follower of Jesus that you want your kids to be. Let them see Jesus in you. Let them hear about Jesus from you. Let them know Jesus through seeing you.

I'm not saying be perfect. No, I'm saying apologize a lot. Right? But I'm just saying give them a model. Give them a model. Be the example. Discipline them with wisdom and obedience. Stand in the gap and act for your kids. Be present in the lives of your kids. How do I do that? Last verse. Here it is. Deuteronomy 6:6 says this. These commands I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk on the road. When you lie down when you get up. Tie them a symbol on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. Let's look at that as a whole. What does it mean? Just means look. You've got to know the Word of God. You've got to know the law of God. You've got to live the law of God. And here's what happens. And when you do that, and your kids catch you doing that, just stop and talk about it. That's way better than any family devotion. When your kids catch in, you live in holiness and say, let me just tell you what this looks like; live it. Somebody say, Matt, I have really blown it for a long, long time. Can I tell you the good news about this? It's not a secret. It's not. Everybody around you already knows it. So why not just look at them today? Maybe at lunch today. Maybe when your six-year-old is asking you what happened in the story, say this today, right?

Say, hey, fam, I’ve blown it a lot, and I'm sorry, but from this day forward, me and my house, we're going to serve the Lord. Listen, parents. Nobody's going to ever remember how you started your parenting career, but they're going to remember how you ended it. Today's the day. Would you pray with me?

Lord Jesus, today. Lord, I just, God, I just ask you to allow this text to saturate our souls. God, I just ask you to allow this moment to challenge us. As parents and as believers, we are to live the model of a Christ follower's life in front of all that we come to. God, I pray for dads in the room. Man, it's so hard to try to balance life. It is so hard to keep priorities the priority. God gives them courage and give them wisdom. Give them discernment. God, I pray for the kids in the room. They're just struggling right now. You put godly parents in their lives. Lord, in these next couple of minutes of worship. God, I pray that we are already, even now, beginning to devise a plan in our lives for how we can walk in your light and your love as parents and influencers for your gospel. We ask this in your name, Jesus.


And would you stand with me? Listen, I'm going to be over here by the next steps, man, for just a minute. If today you want to make a decision to follow Christ, man, I love to talk to you. If today you want to put a pole in the ground and say, man, from this day forward, my life and my family's going to point in another direction. Would you just pray over me? Man, I'm over here. I've got some other trusted people over here. Maybe today, you just need to stand before the Lord and say, here we are, Lord, for you. Let's sing together.

Follow Along with the Message

Parent Fails to Avoid

June 16, 2024

2 Samuel 13:1
In the course of time, Amnon son of David fell in love with Tamar, the beautiful sister of Absalom son of David.
2 Samuel 13:2–4
2 Amnon became so obsessed with his sister Tamar that he made himself ill. She was a virgin, it seemed impossible for him to do anything to her. 3 Now Amnon had an adviser named Jonadab son of Shimeah, David’s brother. Jonadab was a very shrewd man. 4 He asked Amnon, “Why do you, the king’s son, look so haggard morning after morning? Won’t you tell me?” Amnon said to him, “I’m in love with Tamar, my brother Absalom’s sister.”
2 Samuel 13:5–6
5 Go to bed and pretend to be ill,” Jonadab said. “When your father comes to see you, say to him, ‘I would like my sister Tamar to come and give me something to eat. Let her prepare the food in my sight so I may watch her and then eat it from her hand.’” 6 So Amnon lay down and pretended to be ill. When the king came to see him, Amnon said to him, “I would like my sister Tamar to come and make some special bread in my sight, so I may eat from her hand.”
2 Samuel 13:7–13
7 David sent word to Tamar at the palace: “Go to the house of your brother Amnon and prepare some food for him.” 8 So Tamar went to the house of her brother Amnon, who was lying down. She took some dough, kneaded it, made the bread in his sight and baked it. 9 Then she took the pan and served him the bread, but he refused to eat. “Send everyone out of here,” Amnon said. So everyone left him. 10 Then Amnon said to Tamar, “Bring the food here into my bedroom so I may eat from your hand.” And Tamar took the bread she had prepared and brought it to her brother Amnon in his bedroom. 11 But when she took it to him to eat, he grabbed her and said, “Come to bed with me, my sister.” 12 “No, my brother!” she said to him. “Don’t force me! Such a thing should not be done in Israel! Don’t do this wicked thing. 13 What about me? Where could I get rid of my disgrace? And what about you? You would be like one of the wicked fools in Israel. Please speak to the king; he will not keep me from being married to you.”
2 Samuel 13:14–19
14 But he refused to listen to her, and since he was stronger than she, he raped her. 15 Then Amnon hated her with intense hatred. In fact, he hated her more than he had loved her. Amnon said to her, “Get up and get out!” 16 “No!” she said to him. “Sending me away would be a greater wrong than what you have already done to me.” But he refused to listen to her. 17 He called his personal servant and said, “Get this woman out of my sight and bolt the door after her.” 18 So his servant put her out and bolted the door after her. She was wearing an ornate robe, for this was the kind of garment the virgin daughters of the king wore. 19 Tamar put ashes on her head and tore the ornate robe she was wearing. She put her hands on her head and went away, weeping aloud as she went.
2 Samuel 13:20
Her brother Absalom said to her, “Has that Amnon, your brother, been with you? Be quiet for now, my sister; he is your brother. Don’t take this thing to heart.” And Tamar lived in her brother Absalom’s house, a desolate woman.
2 Samuel 13:21–22
21 When King David heard all this, he was furious. 22 And Absalom never said a word to Amnon, either good or bad; he hated Amnon because he had disgraced his sister Tamar.

4 Parent (Believer) Fails

1. Be an you don’t want your kids (or others) to follow.

PRINCIPLE: What we is what we will tend to get.

Luke 6:40
The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.

2. Live without providing wisdom and discipline.

2 Samuel 13:21
When King David heard all this, he was furious.

PRINCIPLE: Anger is not or parenting. Anger without forward action is nothing more than selfish venting.

Ephesians 4:26–27
26 “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 and do not give the devil a foothold.

3. Just do .

QUESTION: Are you more with your kid liking you or pointing them to an eternally joyful relationship with Jesus?

Revelation 3:19
Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline.
Hebrews 12:6–8
6 The Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”… 8 If you are not disciplined then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all.
Proverbs 13:24
Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them.

4. Give everything except your .

CHALLENGE: Be the follower of Jesus that you want kids (or others) to be.

Deuteronomy 6:6–9
6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

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