So please read all below this sentence slowly, carefully and may your heart hear God. It is long but so is the life we each want to live. What you will read will make your long life one that truly benefits your world, our world. If you take these words to heart you will live a Life of Legacy. IMHO.
There’s no better way to honor the women of GBC, and our guests, than to lift up today some great truths that God inspired to be written in His Word, for your benefit.
Would you agree w/ me that Satan has pointed all of the artillery of hell at the home? Think about it:
Immorality / adultery / fornication / homosexuality / abortion / militant feminism / juvenile delinquency / sexually transmitted diseases…these are all sins hatched in hell, and they all have 2 things in common:
1. On the rise
2. Aimed at destroying the family
Good news today: God has a plan!
“When all else fails, read the directions” (men aren’t the best at this…putting together a toy, navigating a road trip, but this is for the ladies today anyway!)
v. 1 “become”
Ladies: have you ever told someone their outfit was very “becoming?” The word become in v. 1 literally means that she “beautifies” sound doctrine.
v. 10 “adorn”…this word in the Greek is the word from which we get “cosmetics” in English. If you really want to be beautiful, not just outwardly, but also inwardly…more than you need Mary Kay, or Merle Norman, you need to live God’s way, according to God’s plan.
Put on the lipstick of a kind tongue / blush of purity and innocence / foundation of Godliness / eyeliner of compassion / mascara of sincerity
[If the barn needs paintin'!]
Let’s look today at the things which adorn / become / beautify sound doctrine. And I hope that every woman here today will leave w/ a bag full of spiritual cosmetics, with an irresistible spiritual attraction that will ‘catch the eyes’ of a lost world beyond our doors.
1. Her Mandate*
v. 3-4 “teach the young women”
There’s no way around it…what the young women of GBC are supposed to learn about Christian Womanhood, they are not supposed to learn, primarily, from this pulpit, this preacher…but rather from their elders right here.
Our older women have a God-given responsibility to teach the younger women how to be good wives / mothers / homemakers. The younger women also have a responsibility, according to this passage, and that is to listen to the older women, and to avail themselves to their wisdom. Our 1 on 1 discipleship ministry features several of our mature ladies who disciple some of our younger ladies. This is God’s way, and He’s smiling at this!
Who is teaching the younger Christian women of today? Who is shaping their family values?
I’m afraid that in many cases it’s someone like Oprah. The world is sending all kinds of negative messages to our younger women:
“If you’re not happy / satisfied w/ the old goat…just leave him! After all, you have a right to be happy”
We need some older women who have been married for years to step up and say, you have the right to keep your commitment / vow before God…and…it’s not your love that sustains your commitment, it’s your commitment that sustains your love!
We need some older women to say, we’ve had our share of problems, bigger ones than you’ve had, and more of them, but it has worked because of commitment.
The world says: “If this pregnancy is unplanned, then simply destroy the evidence.”
Older women must respond: “the circumstances which surround a pregnancy do not determine the value of the child.”
Or, “I experienced an unplanned pregnancy, now let me tell you what they’ve done w/ their life, and how the surprise goes on day after day!”
Like my mom could say, “Though I had many female difficulties, and doctors warnings about bearing children, my unplanned pregnancy at the age of 17 is today preaching in Decatur, IL!” And it didn’t stop there, for after having me, an only child, my parents naturally said, “Well, we can’t top that!” …but then had another surprise, and today, my little sister Jami and husband, Josh are serving the Lord on staff in their church!
There’s probably not a woman in the house that appreciates the old English word used here, “aged”! We’re not talking about the elderly…But by definition, we’re talking about those of you whose children have left the house, or soon will leave.
If you fit that category, the Bible today reminds you of your mandate. It’s not a suggestion, or an idea if you’re interested, it’s a command…and if you are not investing your life into the lives of these younger women / not involved in the ladies’ ministries, then you’re not fulfilling all of your God-given responsibilities as a woman.
Why should I?
It's Her mandate…
2. Her Motive*
We don’t have to guess, it’s right here:
End of v. 5 “That the Word of God be not blasphemed”
You say, what does that have to do w/ it?
Simply put, the best thing you can do to improve the influence of this church in Decatur, IL, is to help build strong families! Every time the community learns of a family that falls apart at GBC, it contradicts, undermines, and marginalizes what we teach and preach here…it hurts our influence.
We’re preaching that Jesus is the answer to the world’s problems / that Jesus is the solid Rock on which to build a marriage and home…but for the most part, the world doesn’t listen to what we say…but oooooooh how they watch what we do!
And Paul is saying that when we allow homes in our church to disintegrate, the Word of God is blasphemed.
Now, don’t misunderstand, we’re to help the hurting! That’s the right thing to do / that develops influence too…that man or woman whose spouse left them can remain a testimony to God by remaining in church, and remaining close to God, and we have many like that.
But it’s a shame when it happens right under our noses, when there WAS something we could do about it…but we didn’t!
3. Her Manner of life*
v. 3 “as becometh holiness”
“behavior”=fragrance…you should have the fragrance of holiness emanating from you.
In the OT, the priest went into the holy place to burn incense to the Lord, and even when he departs the tabernacle and rejoins the others, the fragrance is still on his garments. And anyone who gets around him knows, he’s been in the holy place…he’s been w/ the Lord!
There’s an aura, a glow about a Godly woman, as the beauty of Christ just radiates from her life!
“not false accusers”
literally: not a gossip (form of insanity: “you know me, I don’t gossip, but…” and then they proceed to gossip. Anytime you do something and don’t even know what you’re doing…that’s got to be a form of insanity!)
immediately, the social drinker says, there it is, it’s ok to drink, as long as in moderation…I drink, but not much!
Well, before you get too carried away, remember that in Bible days wine was used medicinally (see message on social drinking) like what I call Baptist Bourbon (NyQuil). When Kimberly was sick she took it and that was fine / then 2nd night / getting better / 3rd night / got suspicious when I saw her mixing it with her soda!
In a broad sense, Paul is saying, don’t be a slave to an addiction, don’t be given to it.
Mandate—older teach younger, younger look to the older
Motive—Word of God be not blasphemed
Manner of life—live a holy, wholesome, healthy life
4. Her Message*
What, specifically, are the older supposed to teach the younger?
sober / discreet (v. 5)=serious minded, level headed, good judgment
No wonder her husband safely trusts her in Prov. 31, he trusts her to make good decisions, run the house well, and use time wisely.
Joke—man said, “If the stove were as hot as the TV around here, a man could get a hot meal!”
Joke—couple just finished honeymoon, she confessed, “I’m not a great cook, all I know how to make so far is meatloaf and banana pudding”…she sets it before him / he says, “No problem, just tell me which is which!”
Well, the Bible doesn’t say you have to be a great cook, but it says you should be level-headed, serious minded, and use good judgment…not like the guy that said, "Honey, you must think I’m a perfect idiot" / she says, "No dear…nobody’s perfect!"
Do you really have to learn to love?
Remember how it was back then in Bible days. Today we fall in love and get married…back then, it was reversed, arranged by parents! And though we don’t do it that way today, the fact remains, according to the Bible, you can learn to love him!
Behind every command of God is the omnipotent, powerful hand of God to enable you to do ANYTHING He commands, if you’ll obey and try, w/ His help!
Ladies, if you’ve been married, or were married, 20 years or more, please stand…remain standing…give them a hand!
According to God, it’s your responsibility to teach the younger women how to love their husbands…how they can make it for 20, 30, 50 years, and more!
Take a look around, now. Chances are these that are standing went thru what you go thru, and yet they stayed married, because they were committed. And look at the guys they learned to love! Give the Lord glory for that!
“Love their children”
Do you really have to learn that?
Well, you tell me. I think the womb should be the safest place on earth…but is it?
Then there’s the modern mother today who says, I love my child too much to spank them.
She needs to be taught what real love is. Prov. 13:24 “He that spares the rod, hates his son”
Old-fashioned purity=pre-marital purity / post-marital fidelity
The public school system that raised most of the young women of today, is the same one which kicked God out when their parents were young…and to think that our school system is capable of teaching sex-ed correctly is absurd. It’s not up to the school…and we need some older women who will teach the younger women, by example, and in word, how to be chaste! And we need mothers who will do the same for their daughters.
I’ve actually known Christian moms who gave their daughters contraceptives. Don’t you know that sends them the WRONG message? “If you can’t be good, be careful!”
“Keepers at home”
Interesting phrase coming from 2 Greek words: one meaning home, the other meaning worker…home workers!
I realize that many women go to work…and many have to.
But make sure you’re working for needs, and not greeds. Working for a higher standard of living is not worth the trade-off to your home.
Don’t be afraid to step out on faith. If your kids are still at home, it may take some sacrifice, and it may not work out on paper, but God will reward you for doing what’s right.
My wife may have a college degree, but she realizes that homemaking is a God-ordained / God approved occupation…there is no higher calling on the face of the earth, than to be a wife and mother.
What’s God’s will?
I Tim. 5:14 I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house…
Certainly some have to work, and the last thing I want to do on Mother’s Day is put you on a guilt trip, so don’t receive it any differently than God has said it.
The home is under attack today. And so, when all else fails, read the directions.
Aren’t you thankful today for mothers / women of God? As Mother’s Day, today is a day to honor them…but as the Lord’s day, it’s a day to glorify God…and what would glorify Him more than for women to recommit themselves today to their mandate, to teach, and learn from each other, to have the irresistible glow of Godliness, the attractive scent of one who’s been w/ God, the fragrance of holiness!
Lost: God’s way for the woman is-- #1, that she be born again. It would be wonderful to have a woman saved today…perhaps a mother’s prayers would be answered today and her child would be saved!