The Godly Seed
The challege to be a patriarch
By Pastor Larry Bond:
"And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth." (Malachi 2:15)
Satan has always tried to destroy or corrupt the godly seed. From the murder of Abel, to the killing of male babies in Egypt, to the evil plot of Haman, to the Christian martyrs of the early church, and so on to the present day, the Devil has been vicious in his attempt to stop the godly line. When he could not kill, then he would corrupt. He could not destroy Christianity by killing Christians in the first three centuries, in fact it thrived under persecution, so he went to plan B: corrupt the church.
Even today he is still working his diabolic plan, but the problem is that many Christians are unaware of his modern day methods. It is my purpose in this article to expose his devious plan for destroying Christianity in this age. It's time to get our heads out of the sand, and see and face what is happening!
Yes, today he is still killing Christians in some parts of the world. Even though he knows this only advances Christianity, he hates us so much that he cannot resist the urge. But, there is a front on which he is being quite successful - the Christian home in America! There is a hellish conspiracy focused on the Christian home to either prevent there being a godly seed or to keep it from being godly.
The context of Malachi 2:15 is a rebuke to Israel because the men were "putting away" or divorcing their wives and dealing treacherously against them, the result being no godly seed. If Satan cannot destroy the godly seed he will try to prevent it! Churches today are filled with divorced people. There are now in America more single parent families than two parent families. It is difficult today to find men who qualify scripturally for leadership in the church - "the husband of one wife". Marriages broken by sin, selfishness, and pride resulting in single parent homes is a great victory for Satan! There will be no more godly seed and the existing children may be seriously damaged! Marital problems among Christians are in epidemic proportions today! It's all part of hell's plot to stop the godly seed!
Also, well-meaning Christian parents with good marriages are limiting the size of their families in the name of ministry, career, or some other worthy endeavor, and sometimes not so worthy. They have taken up the philosophy of the world that children only get in the way of success, that they are a bother, tie you down, and rob you of wealth, health, and happiness. It is not surprising that this worldly perspective, like all others, is diametrically opposed to the Word of God!
Psalm 127:3-5 says: "Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate."
Some parents say that as long as they don't refuse to have one child, they are fulfilling God's command to "multiply and replenish", but one child is actually subtraction, not multiplication. And besides, that certainly doesn't sound like a FULL quiver. Who would dare go into battle with only one arrow in his quiver? Psalms 127 and 128 make it very clear that children are a blessing of the Lord. In what other area of our lives would we ask for a blessing, "but only one Lord"? If God blessed us with good health, would we say "that's enough Lord, that's all the good health I can stand"? If God has provided financially, would we say “stop the blessings Lord”? No! We look for God's blessings everyday. "It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.
They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness." (Lam. 3:22-23).
I know of a dedicated couple who could not have children, but after much effectual, fervent prayer were blessed twice. They didn't want anymore of God’s blessings, so they stopped. What a shame!
Have we been deceived again by Satan? There is such great potential for God in a child, trained and nurtured by godly parents, and instructed in the Word of God from infancy. "And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures…" (2 Timothy 3:15). "Child" here is referring to a newborn. How many godly Timothys have never been born because Christian parents believed the Devil's lie? Would there have been a John and Charles Wesley, if Samuel and Susanna Wesley had had the same perspective as many Christian parents have today? As I look at my 14 children and 20 grandchildren, I see more than beautiful daughters, handsome sons, and cute grandchildren (ok, I'm prejudiced). I see potential for God!!! I see the godly seed!!! I have always enjoyed math - first we added, and now we are multiplying. It was a new baby about every two years, now 4-5 per year. Now if my children average 10 children each, in just two generations that's 140 grandchildren. How about 5 generations? Would you believe 140,000? What a glorious blessing! What an army of Christian soldiers! I've been called a patriarch, and I don't deny it! I may have a small insignificant ministry, but check out my posterity 100 years from now, if the Lord tarries! "Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD". By the way, I'm planning on them ALL being godly Christians as well, otherwise what's the point?
There are parents who longed to have more children, but for physical reasons could not, or in some cases, God took them. It is to these couples that my heart goes out, for they truly understand that children are a blessing of the Lord. Generally however, the root problems today of limiting family size are selfishness, pride, and rebellion. A new car, a new house, or a trip to Hawaii is more desirable than godly children. A career may be more appealing to a wife than dirty diapers, runny noses, and sleepless nights. Big families often bring criticism and condescending attitudes that hurt our pride. And, after all, a 15-year-old station wagon does not help our macho image! The Israelites were in rebellion when they refused to go into Canaan at Kadesh-Barnea because of a lack of faith. If God directs us to not limit His “little” blessings, shouldn’t we have faith that He will provide for them? Refusing to walk in faith is rebellion!
The second attack Satan is making on the godly seed is to keep it from being godly.
Exodus 8:28 says, "And Pharaoh said, I will let you go, that ye may sacrifice to the LORD your God in the wilderness; only ye shall not go very far away: intreat for me."
This is the same message that parents are hearing today by Satan and the world: "Don't get too weird, don't get too fanatical, don't go too far! Christianity is fine, but your children need to feel accepted by their peers. Moderation is the bottom line." I have seen some horses and cows graze all along the fence line, even reaching through for a few green morsels on the other side, when there was plenty of nice grass out in the middle of the field. Why must Christians live so close to the fence, even reaching through for a few worldly tidbits? The pressure by the world on Christian parents today is great! We are being continually bombarded by worldly ideas even by Christians, causing us to doubt our convictions. “Everybody else is living around the edge, maybe we’re wrong.” Have you had that whispered in your ear? If we don't live far away from the fence, some of our children are going to fall through it. Satan wins!!!
Exodus 10:10-11 says, "And he said unto them, Let the LORD be so with you, as I will let you go, and your little ones: look to it; for evil is before you. Not so: go now ye that are men, and serve the LORD; for that ye did desire. And they were driven out from Pharaoh's presence."
What Pharaoh was saying was go but leave your little ones behind. There are good Christian fathers today that are serving the Lord but lack the backbone to take their sons and daughters with them! They listen to good music, but their children are tuned into so called “contemporary Christian music” (Christian words with a rock beat). Mom and dad dress right, but the kids look like the world. A sure sign of this problem is when junior wants to spend time with friends instead of family; or when the “19-year-old” 14-year-old daughter wants to date; or when sports and movie stars decorate their rooms; or when they want their own TV, a lock for their bedroom door, and a headset. I rejoice when I see my children surpassing me in godly character. I want them to be mightier in spirit than me, and to be closer to God than me. Some of my children have memorized more scripture than I. Melissa decorates her bedroom walls with scripture. Vicki has just finished memorizing all 5 chapters of the book of James and Isaiah 53. My older children are more perceptive about good and evil than I am. In fact, they have even helped to lead me away from the fence in some areas! They have intensely tender hearts toward the Lord, taking His Word very seriously. Though we personally disciple our children, yet they have also been discipled by the greatest Christians in history through reading many biographies of missionaries, martyrs, and ministers of the gospel. My hope is that my grandchildren will excel their parents in their Christian walk, and so on, that each generation might be more godly than the previous one.
My children have been blessed with a godly heritage of at least three generations. How blessed they will be five generations from now, as they look back at a Christian heritage of eight generations? What great things for God will they do!!! Idealistic? Maybe, but let’s look at some examples in history.
Jonathan and Sarah Edwards had ten dedicated, godly children. A study of their 729 descendents over five generations showed that 300 were preachers, 65 were college professors, 13 were university presidents (this was in the days when colleges and universities were godly institutions), 60 were authors, 3 were congressmen, and one was a vice president. By contrast, the ungodly Mack Duke and his brother married sisters, and the study of their 1026 descendants over five generations showed that 300 died an early death from wicked living, 140 spent an average of 13 years in the penitentiary, 190 were prostitutes, and 100 were alcoholics. It cost the State of New York $1,200,000 to take care of all those derelicts.
May Christian parents, as stewards of the godly seed, be challenged and committed to the vision of a godly heritage!