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This Is Not Your Grandfather's Family, Part 2

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
February 17, 2022 7:05 am

This Is Not Your Grandfather's Family, Part 2

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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Today on Insight for Living, from Chuck Swindoll.

The pressure on young families today cannot be compared to simpler times. And how do couples cultivate healthy relationships with those who hold opposing views? Today on Insight for Living, Chuck Swindoll suggests that the answers are contained in God's manual on marriage.

He's teaching from Genesis 2 and 3. Chuck titled today's message, This is Not Your Grandfather's Family. There's a plan underway to desensitize us.

Never doubt it. I agree with Robert Lewis, a pastor up in Little Rock, who wrote in one of his works, Real Family Values. The Christian family looks on while people in authority make decisions that contradict everything they know to be true. Anesthetized by a corrupt culture, many families have lost the ability to discern between good and evil. Our moral edge has become dull. Our children sit next to us on the sofa at night soaking up the opinions, values, and images of a godless society. Our silence and passivity are lethal to them. And then we have the audacity to marvel at their lack of spiritual passion and their propensity for moral compromise.

If you have been asleep during any part of the last number of years, it's possible that your senses have been desensitized. If you have found yourself rethinking some truths that you know are in the scriptures but wonder now if they're relevant, you're on your way down the slide. Hopefully, we can get back on our feet and have a message that rings with hope and relevance and love and truth.

Now, how's that for an introduction? I realize our time is short, so let's go after what hasn't changed. What hasn't changed? First, the heart of humanity hasn't changed. You are by nature, by choice, and by birth depraved. Without the redeeming power of Christ, you cannot pull yourself out of a moral nosedive. And even with Christ, if he is not in control, you will still erode. So the power of the Holy Spirit working alongside the power of Christ, this hasn't changed.

You are able to do something, but you can't do it on your own because the human heart hasn't changed. Second, God's desire for his people hasn't changed. God is holy and just and pure, and he tells us in the scriptures to be like he is. So he expects his people to be holy and just and pure, not prudish, not dated, not cranky, but holy and just and pure. And it can happen, or he's given us a directive that's impossible to fulfill, and God doesn't do that. God is faithful and compassionate. He wants us to be faithful and compassionate. Yes, we can think correctly and still have compassion. Yes, we can take a stand against what is clearly wrong and against the scriptures and at the same time love and reach out in true interest to the lives of those who differ with us. Yes, Christ spent his life doing that.

They crucified him, didn't they, come to think of it. Don't expect that you will be embraced by the public in general because you stand for the truth. Just know that if you do it correctly, there will be lives impacted. You may be starting at a school where you'll have roommates who are of a different way of thinking.

Your life will speak volumes to those roommates and those in the student body. It will be remarkable what a difference your life can make, not preaching, not carrying banners, not crusading, but living a life that's godly and holy and faithful and compassionate and pure speaks for itself. Third thing, God's truth remains unchanged as revealed in the scriptures. By the way, Ben, I don't know if you thought about this or not, we'll think more about it next time, but God holds the patent on marriage. His idea, it wasn't ours. He came up with it. In fact, in Genesis 2, finally, we're getting into the scriptures. In Genesis chapter 2, we come in this creative plan to the moment when God says that is not good.

Up until now, everything's been good. He made the earth, it was good. He made the seas, they were good. He made the sun, moon, and stars, they were all good. He made the creatures, they were good.

He made the plants, they were good. Everything is good, in fact, very good until you get to verse 18 of chapter 2, and for the first time in the Bible, the word not appears. It is not good.

What is it? Verse 18, chapter 2, that the man remain alone. Some of you cynics are saying that's because he wasn't married and he said that, but stay with me. This is a passage of primary reference. This is a passage that can't be repeated or I should say isn't seen before this one. When it comes to marriage, this is the first passage. This is the first one, God's plan.

You can't go back to a better, more complete account of it or even a mention of it until you get to 2.18. So in this passage of primary reference, let's let this shape our thinking. God looks at the man as he is alone and God says, not good, that's not best. The aloneness is not good. And then he says, I will make him a helper suitable for him.

I hear the breaks. All of a sudden, women say, helper? The Hebrew word means slave. No, it doesn't. I'm just, come on, you know I'm jerking you around with that.

None means slave. Here's the way I like to describe it, the man sings the melody and the woman sings the harmony. It's a beautiful duet that's put together by God. And all alone, your voice can't carry it, Adam. You can't do it alone.

It's not something that pleases me nor will it really satisfy you. There is another you need who is suitable for you. This is all part of his plan put into words that we can, at our best, do our best to understand. I will make him a helper suitable for him.

I'll bring someone alongside who will harmonize with his life. Who will fill in the spots that are missing and add the things that aren't there on his own. Now, remember, Adam's never read Genesis 2, so he doesn't know what's coming.

As he watches things happen, all of a sudden the animals begin to walk in front of him. Verse 19, out of the ground the Lord forms every beast of the field, every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name. Did you know that Adam named all the animals? He was never stumped, he was never at a loss to know what a good name would be for each one of these birds and animals, cattle or whatever.

Why? Because there's innocence, there's no sin. His IQ was off the chart. The sin nature, the sin factor beginning at chapter 3, took a massive toll not only on us volitionally and in our emotion, but in our minds. The boundaries were much closer and our minds became darkened because of sin, but Adam is now operating in a context of innocence.

It must have been magnificent, breathing clean air, drinking and enjoying clean water, and eating fresh and good and healthy food. And along come these wonderful first-made animals and Adam names one after another. Watch closely, verse 20, the man gave names to all the cattle and the birds and every beast of the field and for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him. He was looking, he was looking.

Maybe one of these, maybe one of these. And there was not found, it means he was looking. And so the Lord knowing that there wasn't any one of those who would fill his life as she could and as she should, verse 21, the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man and he slept. And God took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh at that place and the Lord God fashioned into a woman the rib which he had taken from the man and brought her to the man.

Oh, this is so good. Adam's recovering from surgery. He looks up. There she is. Verse 23, verse 23 could simply be rendered, wow, but there's more here. Notice the word now, that's the emphatic word of the verse now.

In other words, at last, finally someone to fill the aloneness of my life. Finally, look, look, bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh. She shall be called woman, she was taken out of man.

And then principles are given for the first marriage, a man, a woman permanently, sacredly joined in harmony and hope for life. That's the plan. Never forget it. That's the plan. Can't be improved on. That's the plan.

It hasn't changed. In God's plan, there is monogamy, a heterosexual relationship between a man and a woman joined by God and to be lived out in the harmony of life. That's the plan. Sin messed up the whole thing. You know that.

But don't forget the plan. In fact, it is so lovely and fulfilling, the last verse of the chapter describes them as both being naked without shame. There is no self-consciousness. There is no uneasiness with one another.

There is no reluctance. There are sexual relations enjoyed to the maximum and frequently and fulfillingly from God. All from the Heavenly Father who made them saying man alone is not as good as man joined. And in the beauty and intimacy of this innocent setting, there is even freedom in their nakedness. That hasn't changed. That's still God's desire. In the bonds of marriage, there is this delightful intimacy found nowhere else. Now when you move from Genesis chapter 2 over to Deuteronomy chapter 6, much has happened.

Just a whole lot of things. Stay with me now. Abraham has been brought on the scene and with him the beginning of a Hebrew race. The Hebrew race has grown out of the millions. They spend over 430 years or over 400 years in the bondage of Egypt and God delivers them through a leader named Moses. He's at the age of 80. And by the time he comes to about 120 and the Lord says this is it for you, Moses, Moses sits down to write his last will and testament. His swan song is Deuteronomy. And like an old grandfather or great grandfather dying on his bed, Moses' family around him and he sets some principles in place so that they will all understand how the family is to operate.

Why is it so important? Because they are on the edge of a land that's been promised them. They will move into cities that they did not put together, live in houses they didn't build. They will eat from trees and vines that they didn't plant. They will drink from wells they didn't dig.

And they will enjoy a lifestyle so broad and big, it'll be easy for them to forget the monotheistic, deliberate, trinity kind of lifestyle lived when things were simple. So Moses said, I want to warn you. Here, O Israel, the Lord our God is one. Chapter 6 of Deuteronomy, verse 4.

Akkad, it means one in a cluster used for grapes. The Lord our God is Father, Son, Spirit. The Lord our God is one. He is to be your focus. Next verse, you're to love him with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your might. And not only that, you're to teach such to your kids. Verse 7, teach them diligently in the word is the term sharp. Sharpen the thinking of your kids when you are sitting in your house, when you talk with them, when you are walking by the way, when you lie down, when you rise up.

It's not a family altar once in the evening. It's a lifestyle of teaching. It's a way of life that you pass on to them. Why is it so important?

Why is he so exercised over this? Well, he tells us. He says in verse 10 at the end of the verse, I'm giving you great and splendid cities you didn't build and I'm putting you in houses that are full of good things that you didn't fill. And you will drink from cisterns you didn't dig and eat from vineyards and trees you didn't plant. You will eat and, listen, you'll be satisfied. And before you know it, the Canaanite lifestyle, which by the way is the foundation of the first steps of pornography.

You will find the Canaanite lifestyle a lot more appealing because you're living in Canaanite homes and dwelling in Canaanite cities and eating from Canaanite plants and drinking Canaanite water. And because not all of them have been removed, you'll start to change. Don't go there. In fact, verse 13, you're to fear only the Lord your God and worship only him and swear by his name. You say, Chuck, wait a minute, you are really pressing the point.

I mean, this is nothing but a club that he's beating him over the head with. Wait a minute, wait. Verse 24 doesn't say that. I'm giving you these commandments and statutes to fear the Lord your God.

Why? I have my Bible marked. The two reasons are for our good and for our survival. For our good and for our survival.

You know the implication? If you don't go there, it won't be good for you. And if you won't do that, you won't survive. Like I want you to survive. All this leads me to some principles that are true and timeless.

Listen closely. Complacency still blinds us from seeing realistically. Complacency still blinds us from seeing realistically.

Easy to drift, easiest thing in the world. Second, knowledge still frees us to think clearly. Knowledge still frees us to think clearly. You shall know the truth and what? The truth shall make you free. The truth will help you think clearly. Knowledge. Third, discernment still prompts us to act courageously. As I see these things and as I read God's truth and compare or contrast them to my world in which I live, I realize it's going to take some courage to take a stand. To be different.

It's going to take a lot of wisdom to know how to help my kids do that without looking like freaks or sounding like they're weird. Though some will jump to that conclusion no matter what. Complacency still blinds us from seeing realistically. Knowledge still frees us to think clearly. Understanding or discerning still prompts us to act courageously. Fourth, God still loves us unconditionally.

That is such a great truth. God still loves us unconditionally. He doesn't look down on us in these times and say, I'm finished with you. I've had my fill. You know, God's a God of great grace. Of course, he has the right at any time to pull the plug.

And he hasn't told me when he plans to do it. Frankly, I think we're sort of living on borrowed time. So time is of the essence.

Therefore, I've got some two-word applications to go with each one of these principles. First, wake up. Since complacency blinds and numbs us, we need to wake up. There's no time to be asleep, especially if you've still got small kids in the home.

Especially if you've still got teenagers running around looking for direction in the midst of what is for them a time of confusion, understandably. Wake up. Second, listen up. Listen up. Since knowledge frees us, we need the directives of God's word to counteract the messages and missiles of the media. Listen up. Third, since understanding and discernment prompts us into action, we need to step up and even speak up. Stepping into it rather than stepping away from it. We need to be modern-day sons of Issachar who understood their times and knew what Israel should do.

First Chronicles 12, 32. If there's legislation that comes out in defense of the family, step into it. Step up. Connect with that legislation. Cast your vote. Protect your family. There aren't many such statements available for us as a country when you see them and know of them. Speak up.

Tell your friends. Talk about it. Your oven may be self-cleaning, but society isn't. And I can assure you, when society casts its vote, it will not be with Scripture.

It will be against it. Fourth and perhaps most important of all, since God continues to love us, look up. Let's look up. You say, well, that sounds like a great way to end a sermon.

Does that ever help? Well, let me tell you a quick story, and I'm through. In the middle of the 18th century, Great Britain was in such a sad state of decline that Parliament had to be dismissed in the middle of the day because so many of its members were in a drunken stupor. Immorality was rampant in the land. Children were abandoned. Families were forsaken and fractured and in chaos. And God reversed the trend. How? Through the preaching of a man named John Wesley and another named George Whitefield, there began, through the strength of the pulpit, a message that spread into a revival that swept the land.

And some historians believe that revival spared Britain the bloody fate of France, torn by violent revolution. It was the courage of a few who said, we will look up to God and He will give us direction and strength. I'd like us to bow together. Please sit quietly before him. I don't know where the message today finds you, but I have the feeling there's been a twinge of conviction at various places.

Good for you. That's the beginning of change. Your feelings of uneasiness could very well lead you to decisions that could begin a change and a whole trend in a new direction for your home and family, beginning with you personally. If you've never met Christ, the Lord Jesus, who paid the price for your sins, certainly that is the place to begin.

And if you have met Him, your decisions now could not be more important if for no other reason than for the good and for the survival of your family. We'd love to talk with any of you struggling with these issues, needing direction, needing Christ. Go there.

Start today. Thank you, Father, for the pleasure of being in your presence and with your people. Thank you for your word and its penetrating message to all of us. May we, as a result of hearing and learning and making decisive action, make a difference in a world that's long since lost its way.

We pray in the name of Christ our Savior, and everyone say, Amen. You're listening to Insight for Living with Pastor Chuck Swindoll. To learn more about this ministry, visit us online at

And if you're feeling that twinge of conviction Chuck mentioned a moment ago and you'd like to take action, let me point you to a helpful resource. We're pleased to remind you that Chuck Swindoll has written a daily devotional. It's called Wisdom for the Way. In this inspirational book, Chuck provides 365 daily reflections. And as you walk with Jesus this year, we believe this wisdom from the Bible will help you discover balance, how to cultivate your most cherished relationships, and how to resist the temptations that can destroy a marriage and family. Ask for a copy of Wisdom for the Way.

The deluxe leather soft edition is available for purchase when you go to slash offer. Chuck's personal mission is to help you learn more about the Bible and its relevance to your life. It's all made possible, of course, because people just like you give voluntary donations. Through your gifts, you're receiving a constant source of Bible teaching for yourself and for countless others who've come to rely on Chuck as well. And so as God leads you, please remember the influence of your donation to Insight for Living. Our email inbox is filled with affirming notes.

Each one tells the story of God's faithfulness as men and women learn to apply the truth to their lives. To give a donation right now, call us. If you're listening in the U.S., dial 1-800-772-8888. You can also give online at slash donate. Join us again when Chuck Swindoll continues his practical study on marriage, Friday on Insight for Living. The preceding message, This is Not Your Grandfather's Family, was copyrighted in 2004 and 2006, and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2006 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-04 08:06:01 / 2023-06-04 08:15:06 / 9

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