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July 11, 2021 1:00 am
The family is under attack by the devil and our sinful culture, all determined to destroy marriage, your kids, and the moral values taught in the Scriptures. The foundation of any society is the family, because families produce the next generation. So what should believers do when culture conspires against our families?Click here to listen (Duration 54:30)
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If the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do. The family is under attack by the devil and his political cohorts all determined to destroy marriage your kids and the moral values taught in the Scriptures, the foundation of any society is the family because families produce the next generation. So what should believers do when culture conspires against our families. Stay tuned from Chicago. We welcome you to The Moody Church.
Our weekly service of worship and teaching under the ministry of Dr. Erwin Lutzer on this program.
We begin a 10 part series on fighting for your family. Later in our broadcast will learn about rebuilding the foundation, the Moody choir comes now to open our service and in he and a you are as blessed as I am.
My music draws my soul to Jesus and certainly the choir has done that today if you come to a point in your life or had the experience where the end of the day.
Nothing else matters.
People have disappointed you.
Life is caved in dreams like shattered at your feet and at the end of the day. All that really matters is Jesus in your relationship to him and then receive my soul that lasted and so today we want to emphasize that I beginning a series of messages actually on the family and I cannot over exaggerate the importance of these messages and you'll find out in a few moments what I'm expecting as a result of them. I'm expecting all kinds of wonderful things to happen, as we submit to the word of God.
But let me say also that in keeping with our theme of being one people near the end of my prayer.
I'm going to invite you to pray with me and in your bulletin and I think also on the screen there is the Lord's prayer, and it's a prayer that we can pray it's not a prayer that he had to pray but were going to prayer together so you watch for that. And as I pray I want you to be thinking of the family to pray for what family is in need that you know about maybe because of the children issues. Divorce issues, relational issues, but could we bow together in prayer and come to this Jesus whom we had just heard about a lover of our soul father.
In these moments, we want to just extol you there so many things that we could pray for, but we know in our own hearts that what is most important is our relationship to you, Lord Jesus, for you have brought us to the father you've assured us that you do love us and that the father loves us even as the father loves you and so in these moments, we want to confess any sin that is hindered our fellowship with you.
Give us honest hearts hearts without deceit over father, help us to expose our sin to you, that we might be cleansed and forgiven and that we might be able to look into your face, figuratively speaking, and I know that we are received and welcomed and that we belong.
We adore you today and we extol the Lord our God, and bless his name for ever and ever father the world has more needs than were able to mention. And certainly we cannot bear the burdens of the world, whether or not it is explosions, terrorism, death, war over father or in our own homeland here in America. With so many spiritual and physical needs.
Today we want to wrap our arms around the globe and we want to pray father for it, but we are also thinking of some specific families that you laid on our hearts right now were going to give these to you and were going to believe you that after years of hardship and anger and resentment that we might experience as a result of your word and marvelous transformation. We might be able to look back and say, surely this is of God draws together. Lord, you know that we have huge financial needs as a church. Thank you for the faithfulness of your people. Thank you Lord that you are with us each day, and today we want to give ourselves to you in a new way as a congregation gathered in your name and asking that nothing might hinder the free working of your spirit among us.
Show us Lord what obedience really means.
And now together affirming the fact that we belong to you as a body we pray together. Our father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us and lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil for thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen. And fighting for your family. Could there be any topic that is more relevant, more directed a human need than this. I don't think so. We have no idea today.
What a family is.
Is it simply a collection of people living under the same roof. Kind of caring for each other traditionally used to be a mother and father and children. But that traditional families sell them eggs.
This would still exist, but it isn't the norm a member of the pastoral staff here said that he and his wife and several children were walking through Lincoln which is just north of us, and there were two women who were sitting on a bench and one nudged the other and said look I family. That's how unique a family is today one of my expecting as a result of this series, huge miracle. As a result of this series I want husbands and wives to be reconciled, not merely mentally and physically.
But spiritually, even to the level of their souls so that they become partners in the marriage relationship. I'm hoping that husbands are going to start praying with their wives.
In fact, later on in the series. There's going to be an entire message entitled the power of praying parents, but I mean before that, maybe even that one husbands will begin to pray with their wives. Why can't we trust God to bring prodigal's home. As a result of prayer. Why can't we trust God to take singles and two help them to understand how that as singles they can authentically live as sons and daughters for a holy God and bless God and make a wonderful contribution to the body of Christ, so that they are content as singles. Why can't we trust God like that.
Now this is going to happen.
I want you to have two prayer requests, and this is going to take prayer long ago, I learned that it isn't my messages that change people. It's the spirit of God working through the word of God, and that's why every message is going to also have an assignment if you don't do the assignments and if you don't pray nothing will happen. It'll be the same old same old. Because even as the serpent destroyed Adam and Eve in the garden in the very same way, the serpent, the devil continues huge massive attacks against the family and so if we're not prayerful and seek the Lord. I hate to tell you but listening to truth will not change you the first thing that I want you to do is to ask God for a miracle in your own heart. What has to be changed in your heart. Some of you maybe have come to this, and there is bitterness in your life. There is anger there is resentment. Some of you have shut down emotionally because of all of the pain. Can we expect God and believe God to bring some healing so that you can love again so that you can continue to live in a meaningful way.
Despite the past can we trust God for that. So the first miracle is one that I want you to have within your own heart. The second miracle is for someone else made it. Is your spouse.
Maybe it is a child. Maybe it's a relationship you still can't we have more than that and obviously you can have a number of people for whom you're praying.
But at least two one for yourself. One for somebody else and I hope that when this series is over we all testified that good marriages have become better and bad marriages have at least become good or at least on the way but it will take faith, prayer and fasting. The title of this first message is that rebuilding the foundations you know if a building is located at the foundation then instructed to sell Pastor Lutzer my family looks like the Tower of Pisa and how the word some on the foundation.
Everything got wrong and will see where the foundation really got off track but will also see how God rebuilds these messages are going to be laced with plenty of grace because the intention is not to beat anyone down but to show need and then show God's amazing undeserved mercy in the lives of families and that's where were going and thank you for the journey forward to plunge right in because we got around to cover today and by the way, each message will have an assignment and normally I put the assignment at the end of the message but as I look at this message today. It doesn't really fit. There's all given to you upfront. Take your pan and write down first Corinthians chapter 13 the great love chapter, first Corinthians 13 don't look now, don't find it on your iPhone. It'll be there after the service and what I want you to do is to pray it as a prayer every single day for seven days and if you're married at least once with your spouse prayer together don't have an argument to simply say this is what love looks like and you read it and you read it and you meditate on it. Don't read those 13 verses fast think about their meaning that your assignment well so much for intro. I am excited about getting into the word of God anybody here excited in getting into the word of God. I sure hope you brought your Bible and it could I tell you that Tim in the pews. There is a Bible and you can very easily find Genesis chapter 1 that should not be a difficulty at all and the first thing that were going to see in this passage number one front is simply this, that both men and women are created in the image of God, both men and women are created in the image of God. Notice it says in Genesis chapter 1. I'm actually right in the middle of verse 26 or I begin with verse 26 then God said, let us make man in our image, and, after our likeness, and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the heavens, over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.
So God created man in his own image in the image of God he created him male and female he created them in my Bible whenever I underline something it's always with a red pencil actually not in ink, pencil, but just a regular red pencil.
I have all of the plural pronouns underlined, and God said, let us that is the plural for God and hence already in the Old Testament of the Trinity make man in our image, after our likeness. You'll notice it says let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, male and female he created them. Verse 28 God blessed them, God said to them plural both man and woman, be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth, what does it mean to be created in the image of God. Yes, most assuredly personality to be sure it involves that, but it's much more than that. It is really representative leadership representative rule over the earth and on ancient times. If there was a king that was ruling or a feral or a Caesar is image would be in various parts of his empire where he personally couldn't be, and the fact that is image was there was proof that he also rules this territory though not physically present… Of course, is everywhere, but God was saying Adam and Eve, I want you to rule the world for me and I want you to have dominion you'll notice it says let them plural have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the fowl of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth roulette for me that indicates also stewardship accountability for how Adam and Eve are going to rule, but the first thing that we have to understand is that women and men are equal in value equal in value equally created in God's image very important to what God intends to do well.
I'm sure that all of you are saying amen to that.
But now I'm going to get into a land mine and I'm going to just look at the Bible and were going to see if you give me enough time and listen to the end. I think you're going to say this really makes sense God's word does make sense, and so be patient and every once in a while I might have to hear from you that you're still with me because were going in territory that is so countercultural that when this is over somebody's going to suggest that I be put into a museum, but this is God's word.
Listen carefully set aside your stereotype because were headed on a trip.
Thanks for coming along secondly is very clear in the Bible that though they are of equal value and are to rule together.
It's also very clear that they have different roles. Adam's role is one of responsibility for his wife and for everyone else and within his family. Now this is found in chapter 2. You must understand that Genesis 1 gives us the summary in all God created Adam and Eve and he created them etc. etc. and Genesis 2 now gives the sequence of how it happened and noticed that to appear in the text. It's very clear. First of all, Adam is created first chapter 2 verse seven then the Lord God formed the man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, man became a living creature been humorously said that sometimes women expect far too much of men considering their origin but it says the Lord God formed the man he didn't create the woman back here now Adam is created first, Adam is given the command in verse 15, the Lord God took the man and put them in the garden of Eden to work it to keep it in the Lord God commanded the man, you may surely eat of the tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat of the day that you eat thereof, you shall die didn't tell even that now, obviously, Adam told Eve that as we find in the next chapter. But God says this is to you, Adam, because you have ultimate responsibility for your wife all the way through this passage, then God creates the animals and what does God do he brings to Adam the birds of the heaven and animals of the field and what ever the man called them.
Verse 19 last part of the verse.
Whatever the man called them. That was its name. That indicates his authority the Old Testament. You see, the ability to name something or someone shows your authority, so Adam here has authority over all the beasts he calls them and names them. Then, of course, as you know the rest of the story.
Adam falls asleep. God chooses to create femininity out of masculinity.
God takes a ribbon and he creates the woman and you'll notice that he looks to the man announces what are you going to call her.
You also have authority here and it is Saddam Hussein is that this is this last is verse 23 is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh, she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of the man to God's is okay. That's what you call her. That's what she will be. Adam has ultimate responsibility men and women equal in value. The woman's role is going to be incredibly important. She is going to be as suitable help meet for him.
But in the order of authority, she is to work with him and he has ultimate responsibility for her before God. Now I can imagine somebody says wow how are you preaching this well first of all, it's in God's word. Thank you very much but also why is it that there is such an massive attack against this in our culture massive attack.
One of the reasons is because people confuse ability with roles you see people or say what you mean women are inferior know why can't there be women elders.
I know some women who know the Bible better and they're better Bible teachers than elders and we say yeah were not arguing with that were not arguing about a woman's intelligence or ability. Let me speak to you very plainly I think I have so far and it's even going to get plainer as we go along. I think that Margaret Thatcher is probably the greatest Prime Minister that Britain ever had since the days of Winston Churchill. Now you can disagree with me politically and then later on, forgive me for your views but apparently there is some look at that iron lady the way she ruled Britain and anyone question her leadership ability, but when she gets home she has a responsibility to complement her husband in terms of what she is doing to encourage her husband.
She has to be at help meet for him in the home because someday when they stand before God. She will be accountable, but her husband is going to be the one who is going to be accountable for the way in which he led his wife spiritually and the way in which he brought up his children.
The responsibility will be on on his head and not hers responsibility for her.
Yes. Will see this in the text but not ultimate responsibility.
Like her husband is going so that even in a relationship like that. She is to complement her husband to support an emotionally, spiritually, physically, in which ever way she can within the structure of the home and the bringing up of the children and then the Bible makes it very clear. The same kind of principle applies also to the church so obviously women have abilities and may I say this, that in the early church women oftentimes took a role that is even greater and spend some of our evangelical churches but always the Bible says that even when it comes to teaching. She should not usurp the authority of the man is nothing wrong with being in subjection. After all, Margaret Thatcher herself was in subjection to the Constitution of Great Britain. We are in subjection to the laws of our country and the laws of our land. We are all subject in some manner to one another and this is the teaching of the Bible, the ultimate responsibility is to man, and she's to be as suitable help meet for him to give you another reason why there's so much confusion and resistance and that is because of the misunderstanding of the meaning of the word submit you say and that's taught in the New Testament you say submit. I can imagine some woman saying oh so you want me to be his doormat so that he can wipe his feet on me and I'm supposed to submit.
So let me speak to your heart. First of all, and tell you know that's not at all. The teaching of the Bible is the very reason that when God created the woman he took her out of the side of the man and not out of his feet was so that people would understand. She's not to be under his feet to trample her. She is created out of his side so that she can walk with him through life and in walking with him through life as his partner.
Walking to gather the imagery is not not that of a servant and a master in the Bible is so beautifully nuanced at this point, even though it uses the word submit nowhere in the Bible does it say that a man can demand submission from his you're a Christian woman you have to submit to me. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that, but it does have some very clear instructions to man full-time job, actually husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the church, dwell with them according to knowledge, honoring your wives that your prayers be not hindered. That's the responsibility of the man.
Normally, unless a woman has been deeply hurt by men and therefore has a lot of unresolved anger. Most of the time in that kind of a situation. She will submit.
But as time goes on. I have to help you to understand this, that when I talk about submission is not master slave. In fact, the Bible talks about men also submitting to their wives.
It is a mutual kind of sin, mission. It is the kind of submission where they are one together. I tell you I don't use the word fool often, but I am today I'm in a good mood. You notice that today I'm on a roll. I'm going to keep going and then pick up the pieces later husband you are of will. It will not communicate with your wife about important decisions I'll tell you something, God, you can even clap if you want here God often has led me through the wisdom of Rebecca.
While I have ultimate responsibility for her and the kids before God.
She is a wise woman and furthermore furthermore, not only is she a wise woman whom God is often used to give us guidance but to the Bible talks about a kind of submission about meeting people's needs. I to say this about Rebecca that in the years that we have been married. She has spent a lot more time and energy needing my needs than I have.
Meeting hers and I say that to my shame, but you know there are couples today where they're not meeting each other's needs. They're not caring.
I met husbands or wives and my husband doesn't care. We live under the same roof, but we're not together in anything and by the way, the division of responsibility in the Bible between husbands and wives, fathers and mothers is not entirely clear. And that's for purpose because every family is different. You know, for example, you know, does she always do the cooking.
Well, but I just throw this out here no extra cost.
But you know when Abraham and Sarah when they had visitors and by the way, Sarah called Abraham Lord still waiting for an old man have not heard it.
Sarah called Abraham Lord, and you know what when the visitors came Abraham was out there helping her prepare the meal they prepared it together. I thought I'd let that rather than thinking about this is yours.
This is yours. Of course, there has to be a division of labor, but why not do everything you possibly can to gather.
Now there's something else I've to say about the submission.
Since it's such a controversial word.
It is a discerning submission discerning wife does not say even if my husband asked me to do something immoral or illegal. I have to do and why. Because the wife, the Christian wife realizes that she has an obligation to Jesus, which is even greater than the obligation to her husband and so there are wives today around the world who are Christians whose husbands are totally opposed to their faith. The wife shouldn't give up her relationship with Jesus, but she has to learn under the good hand of God and by grace, how to exercise.
Still, her wifely functions and being a helpmate even though she retains her faith and that's one of the struggles that happens all around the world and we must recognize that it's a discerning type of submission to God. Now the point to be made is simply this, that there is today a huge attack on the relationships that I've just been telling you about. You know then there's another attack. This attack against femininity and masculinity is so huge today that there have been people who have said oh you know there's fundamentally no difference between a man and a woman. You know, if we gave little girls trucks stayed play like boys and if we gave voice to Allstate feeding them and they be caring for them. Rebecca and I were at a meeting in Nashville. Couple of months ago and Dennis Prager was speaking about this and he named a professor who believed that in order to test it.
He decided that he would give these little girls.
Some trucks just to prove that if they had trucks they were going to act just like boys so he came back a while later in one of the little girl said should we put blankets on the trucks and their sleeping. I don't know about you but there were three boys in our family when we are given trucks. We didn't tuck them in for thereafter.
And if someone had given us a dull leader probably ripped its head off to see what was inside. In this massive attack where you have women trying to be like men and then being feminized is destroying our families in America today. Let me say that there is nothing as beautiful as masculinity, men being allowed to be men and women being allowed to be women without one thinking that they have to be like the other and for those who would that we should redefine the family were two men can be married where brother can marry his brother because after all he is in love and incest. Rules do not apply since there is no procreation, I say with a broken weeping hard father forgive them for they know not what they do. They really don't know what they are now. Sin messes this up really badly, so matter of fact, when we read the next chapter, Genesis 3, you know the whole story. Okay Adam and Eve sin right now. What happens there. Walking in the garden of the cool of the day does God say E did you eat the fruit of the tree. By the way, sorry about that guys look at here in verse nine, not making it up. The Lord God called to the man and said where are you have responsibility for your wife and later on, it says because you have listened onto the voice of your wife judged I just told you that you should listen to the voice of your wife should always be in communication. Always make decisions together, but if she gives you some bad advice and tells you to sin against God.
You responsibility to say no. Adam has the responsibility and what happens is the Lord God asks Adam, have you eaten of the tree and what does he say how guilty I know I had responsibility for my wife I'm guilty now, not a chance. All began here folks woman whom you gave this week will, she took of the tree and then what's a guy supposed to do. She was eating.
He blamed his wife, even though there wasn't a chance in the world that he had married the wrong one. God comes to the woman and said why did you eat certain the serpent beguiled me, and I ate there in the text. So the man blamed the woman. The woman blamed the serpent in the serpent didn't have a leg to stand on what happens next. Conflict is built right into marriage.
It's it's right here it says in verse 16 last part of the verse I will multiply your pain in childbearing speaking to eat your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you. Many commentators believe that because of the ambiguity of the word for it should really be against your desire will be against your husband, and he will rule over you when he says black you'll say white when he says blue you'll say green you will resent his leadership and you will chafe under it, but he will rule over and sometimes men rule badly on me were going to even deal with issues of abuse later on.
Sometimes men, but I am is built right into the relationship. No wonder Gen. Westmoreland. It is rumored, lecturing to the troops at West Point said to them, gentlemen don't even think about getting married until you've mastered the art of warfare I have to repeat that for some, the site is going to be built right into it.
Marriage is going to be difficult and the question is you want an escape hatch to get out of all the difficulties you get to egotistical self-centered people all thinking that the other person's obligation is to make them happy and is not working or do you want to build character and all the rest will talk about that later, but conflict built right into the midst of the marriage.
That's why man said I was married by a judge, now I wish that asked for a jury.
So conflict is going to be built right into the marriage relationship God is going to expel them from the garden. You know I got expelled them from the garden at the end of the chapter. There's no going back to Paradise.
See, I can imagine Adam and Eve saying to themselves what you know. Why don't we just go back so that things will be like they once were.
I'm sorry God says you can't go back. In fact, if you eat of the tree of life you live forever as a center I'm doing you a service by introducing death to get you out of the misery of sin.
So just know that that's actually death is a blessing to those who know the Lord to get out of his sinful life and all of its implications, and you can't go back can I may give you one more story. A friend of mine says that he loves to run his wedding videos backwards so that he can see himself backing out of the church of we. But you can't redo it.
Can you we've all had experiences. We wish for all the world like a friend of mine says there are many things that you can put back into the bottle but into the midst of this, God is going to introduce something he's going to get a Redeemer that's what it says in 15 don't have time to go into the verse.
But God is going to give us a Redeemer and furthermore Adam and Eve. They sewed fig leaves to hide their shame that it might have hidden them from one another but it couldn't hide them from God and what does God graciously do, you'll notice it says there in verse 21 of chapter 3 the Lord God made for Adam and his wife garments of skin and clothes know that God is saying, right out of the chute here God is saying there's no cheap answer to sin. God's his blood has to be shed, you will be covered. Your sin will be covered and will be taken away, but I just want you to know the fig leaves won't do it. What you come up with isn't the answer.
I'm the one that has to do it. I'm the one who has to clothe you, I will kill animals to give you skin and someday there'll be a Redeemer by the name of Jesus, the Lamb of God will take away the sin of the world and because of him grace and mercy and forgiveness is going to be poured into families course you know what happened to Adam and Eve. They had a number of children. Their oldest son was came cane in a real hissy fit killed his brother Abel because Abel was accepted by God and Cain couldn't stand the jealousy chosen and you thought that yours was the first dysfunctional family that right will not happen right here but from now on in the Bible where ever there is sin there is going to be grace when I talk about the man's role. For example, in marriage and the family. I'm going to point out to you that there are passages in the Bible where it says so and so did evil in the sight of the Lord all his days and then it says he had a son middle name, the son who walked in all the ways of the Lord and serve the Lord of his life. Read that and say wow how did that happen. Grace God gives you grace today you came from a family of abusive family, of alcoholism, a family of divorce in the bin deeply deeply wounded. You have an advantage over good family, a kind of advantage. Not that I envy your situation, but I noticed you know that you need grace, you know that you have to cry up to got there tons of Christians today brought up in wonderful families and they think yeah grace is kinda nice and you want because everything's going solo. It's not going well your candidate for God's matchless grace and furthermore, though grace does not enter closed doors you have to open your heart to grace can you trust God in a new way. During this series of messages and years of bitterness and stuff stuffed in your soul.
God can siphon it off. Just begin to pour into your life. Grace grace God's grace that is greater than our sin. And if you will.
Would you join me as we pray our father we ask in the name of Jesus that you might grant to all of us listening ears spun to whatever it is that we've learned today we pray father that he immediately couples would begin to pray, either individually or together for their children for their families for the relationship.
We pray that you might help us to lay down the sins that create barriers for those who have never trusted Christ as Savior made a believe on him. Even now the blessed it is when our transgressions are forgiven and our sin is covered.
We thank you in his name and in on today's Moody Church. Our Dr. Erwin Lidster spoke on rebuilding the foundations first in a 10 part series on fighting for your family as our series unfolds you'll hear teaching on the roles of mom and dad. Marriage and children also will face the threats posed by modern technology and the Internet as well as the curse of death and the rising danger of abuse within the home. Don't miss any of these crucial messages. The heart of any family is the mother next week. Join us as we look into the Bible and discover their mothers high calling Pastor Lutzer's book getting closer to God. Lessons from the life of Moses will be sent to you as our way of saying thanks for your gift of any amount to support The Moody Church. Our call us at 1-800-215-5001. That's 1-800-215-5001 online, go to moodyoffer.com that's moodyoffer.com or write to us at The Moody Church 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614. Join us next week for another Moody Church.
Our with Dr. Erwin Lidster and the congregation of historic Moody Church in Chicago