We are to express our honor, respect, and love to God in everything we do. How does one show honor and respect for God?
Tomorrow is Father’s Day, a day when the family is encouraged to take some time to let Dad know how much he is appreciated.
My favorite Daddy’s Day...
So, the holiday, like so many other holidays is set aside as a time to show honor to somebody; in this case, dad; in others, mom, the boss, former presidents...
And, as with all manmade holidays, we can run into the danger of hypocrisy. Do we lavish upon dad gifts accompanied by words of devotion and praise only to spend the other 364 days of the year showing him less respect or honor? Of course, Dad’s not going to feel genuinely appreciated if he is not otherwise honored throughout the other days of the year.
Matthew 15:1 Matthew 15:1Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying,
American King James Version× Then the scribes and Pharisees who were from Jerusalem came to Jesus, saying,
Matthew 15:2 Matthew 15:2Why do your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread.
American King James Version× "Why do Your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread."
Matthew 15:3 Matthew 15:3But he answered and said to them, Why do you also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
American King James Version× He answered and said to them, "Why do you also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition?
Matthew 15:4 Matthew 15:4For God commanded, saying, Honor your father and mother: and, He that curses father or mother, let him die the death.
American King James Version× For God commanded, saying, 'HONOR YOUR FATHER AND YOUR MOTHER'; and, 'HE WHO CURSES FATHER OR MOTHER, LET HIM BE PUT TO DEATH.'
Matthew 15:5 Matthew 15:5But you say, Whoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatever you might be profited by me;
American King James Version× But you say, 'Whoever says to his father or mother, "Whatever profit you might have received from me is a gift to God"—
Matthew 15:6 Matthew 15:6And honor not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have you made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition.
American King James Version× then he need not honor his father or mother.' Thus you have made the commandment of God of no effect by your tradition.
Jesus, here, is paraphrasing from Isaiah 29...
Matthew 15:8 Matthew 15:8This people draws near to me with their mouth, and honors me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
American King James Version× 'THESE PEOPLE DRAW NEAR TO ME WITH THEIR MOUTH, AND HONOR ME WITH THEIR LIPS, BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR FROM ME.
Matthew 15:9 Matthew 15:9But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
American King James Version× AND IN VAIN THEY WORSHIP ME, TEACHING AS DOCTRINES THE COMMANDMENTS OF MEN.' "
So, we might gather from these scriptures and others that to show honor is not only a day set aside, but an ongoing behavior. Christ goes on to explain in the book of Luke the extent of devotion we should have toward God by comparing it to the love of our families.
Luk 14:26 "If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.
Matthew 10:37 Matthew 10:37He that loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
American King James Version× He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.
How do we put Christ first in our life? How do we put our Father in heaven first? To put it more simply, how do you and I put God first?
What does it mean to put God first? Is God first in priority, with lesser and lesser attention to other lesser priorities (1, 2, 3, 4...)? Is God first and all others second (1, 2, 2, 2...)? Or is He first in how you deal with all priorities (2 for 1)?
Matthew 25:31 Matthew 25:31When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit on the throne of his glory:
American King James Version× "When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory.
Matthew 25:32 Matthew 25:32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats:
American King James Version× All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats.
Matthew 25:34 Matthew 25:34Then shall the King say to them on his right hand, Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
American King James Version× Then the King will say to those on His right hand, 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
Matthew 25:35 Matthew 25:35For I was an hungered, and you gave me meat: I was thirsty, and you gave me drink: I was a stranger, and you took me in:
American King James Version× for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in;
Matthew 25:36 Matthew 25:36Naked, and you clothed me: I was sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came to me.
American King James Version× I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.'
Matthew 25:37 Matthew 25:37Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we you an hungered, and fed you? or thirsty, and gave you drink?
American King James Version× "Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink?
Matthew 25:40 Matthew 25:40And the King shall answer and say to them, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these my brothers, you have done it to me.
American King James Version× And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'
We are required, and what I mean by, required, the Spirit of God will urge us toward this, to express our honor and respect to God, our love for God, in everything we do; in spending time with our families, in how we do our work, and even in our own personal recreation.
It’s a “two for one” deal. We could say that God is number one, but that God our Father and Jesus our Brother cannot tell the difference between how we would behave toward all that comes second to God.
You’ve all heard the recommendation to put God first, then family, then job, etc., etc., and this is helpful advice for helping us manage priorities of time. Job is third on the list, but it pretty much takes the cake on monopolizing our time. So the advice is helpful is reminding us not to invest even more into our work at the expense of time set aside for God and family.
The concept that God is first and all others should be second is also helpful advice on where we should stand, that if we are challenged, we will always choose God. Yes, we will even choose God over family. As an example, Jesus even invited disciples to leave all of their other responsibilities in life, good things, family and profession, to follow Him in ministry. You and I will always be challenged in this life to choose something over God, but remembering that EVERYTHING is always second to God can help us make the right decision no matter how painful for the moment.
But besides these two approaches, hearkening back to Matthew 25 where Christ declares how the saints took care of Him. Again, I say, it’s a “two for one” deal”. When we think of Father’s Day for tomorrow, we should think about how we show honor and respect in every aspect of our lives.
Face of Christ, Chris Rice
Honor your father AND your mother! Honor the gray head! Honor your boss! Honor the stranger! Honor the king! Honor all people as you would show honor to God.
Two for one is a great deal! Don’t miss out on this great deal!