The state of affairs in the world today wherein corruption and criminality is ubiquitous makes it evident that the land has been smitten with a curse as the prophecy of the prophet Malachi predicts. Indeed, we see revealed in these two verses culminating the Old Testament, the fundamental root-cause of all that corruption and criminality — a dearth of fatherhood.
“Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. “And he will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse.” (Mal. 4:5-6)
History and sociological statistics tell us that wherever and whenever there is an absence of fatherhood there is an increase in sin and rebellion in any society, along with the resultant crime and corruption that sin and rebellion engender. The produce of a dearth of fatherhood, both in individual lives and collective society, is disorder and disobedience of all sorts and kinds, both to God’s authority and God’s delegated authority — human authority — on earth. The lack of fatherhood produces rebellion and lawlessness of every kind, which always strongly impacts every society wherein it transpires not merely in a negative way, but a destructive way. The ultimate end of lawlessness is always destruction of the underpinnings that hold any society together. Thus, the pattern is that fatherlessness begats lawlessness, and lawlessness begats destruction. “If the foundations are destroyed, What can the righteous do?” (Psa 11:3), the Spirit laments through the Psalmist. Moreover, it is this destruction of the foundations of human society that has a profound part in causing the entire world to reel and “everything that can be shaken” to be shaken in this last hour.
The profound and far-reaching negative impact of fatherlessness is manifest in every segment of societies around the world today as well as in the church realm. Desperate beyond comprehension and expression is the need for Godly fathers to emerge in both realms to manifest the effects that inure only from the spiritual function of fatherhood!
Sunday, June 17, 2007 (Date written)
This article is actually the fourth in a series of commentary on the phenomenal promises contained in Psalm 112 (first article). Before I get into the message of this post, I feel it necessary to preface it with some comments about where I’m coming from in what I’m saying, due to the controversy of the subject matter.
Please understand that I am not one of those “prosperity preachers.” I do believe the modern “Prosperity Gospel” has brought immeasurable spiritual harm to the Body of Christ at-large on a global basis. However, too often we tend to “throw out the baby with the bathwater.”
There are a great number of passages of Scripture telling us how much God indeed does want true believers to “prosper and be in (good) health even as our soul prospers.” But, the last part of that Scripture is the weightier and balancing part. Prosperity, success, and divine healing and health taken out of context of the rest of Scripture that speaks of seemingly antithetical and counterbalancing matters can become an abomination to God because that is precisely what God calls “a false balance”:
A false balance is an abomination to the LORD, But a just weight is His delight. (Prv. 11:1)
There is no doubt that the pendulum has swung too far to the extremes concerning prosperity and success in the preaching and teaching of some, especially among the “name it and claim it,” “blab it and grab it” crowd — the so-called “Word of Faith” camp. Unfortunately, when that happens the swing of the pendulum is equidistant in the other direction as well. I’m for the true or correct balance in all things; and I believe God is too.
The problem is that when writing about such matters where there is controversy and error and excess on both ends of the spectrum it is difficult to speak the truth without sounding to those who favor one extreme of the pendulum swing that you are part of and aligned with those favoring the other extreme. In my own case, I’m not part of any doctrinal camps except God’s. My desire is to be aligned with the Truth. Of course many would make the same claim regarding their own doctrinal positions, but any truth taken to extremes becomes error, yet the error of the extremists does not make the real truth, as defined by the preponderance of God’s Word, i.e., “the whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:27), any less true.
I really believe the only safeguard against error in the quest for truth is that we must have a contemporaneous co-existence of the Spirit with the Truth in order to come down on God’s side with a correct, vis-à-vis a false, balance. As the Spirit said through the Apostle Paul, matters of truth are “spiritually-appraised” or -discerned. That’s why Jesus called the Holy Spirit, “the Spirit of Truth.” May we all seek and possess the “Truth” of the Spirit in all these vital matters of the Kingdom.
With that preface, let’s move on to the message of this post. If you did not read the previous editions, I urge you to do so. For those who have not read it in previous posts, here is this powerful Psalm again in its entirety.
1 Praise the LORD. Blessed is the man who fears the LORD, who finds great delight in his commands.
2 His children will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed.
3 Wealth and riches are in his house, and his righteousness endures forever.
4 Even in darkness light dawns for the upright, for the gracious and compassionate and righteous man.
5 Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice.
6 Surely he will never be shaken; a righteous man will be remembered forever.
7 He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the LORD.
8 His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes.
9 He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor, his righteousness endures forever; his horn will be lifted high in honor.
10 The wicked man will see and be vexed, he will gnash his teeth and waste away; the longings of the wicked will come to nothing.
The entire Psalm 112 is speaking about the righteous man who fears the Lord and who finds great delight in his commands. Yet, in speaking about this man and his life, the focus is not only on him, but also on his children, his household, and the inheritance and legacy he leaves behind that continues to live long after he is gone. Thus, this man is a father and grandfather, and the patriarch of a lineage that follows after him.
As I was musing upon what I would be writing next in this series, the Lord suddenly and unexpectedly began giving me some prophetic revelation concerning the topic reflected in the title of this post. On this Father’s Day of 2007, I am making a start at sharing some of what He showed me, in the context of the current series.
Reclaiming Fatherhood and Restoring Fathers!
Note: Though all the writing experts say to do so is a major no-no, I need to preface this article with a bit of a disclaimer, which is that I am not supplying a lot of Biblical citings to support what I say here, as one usually does in writing articles or books. I felt that the Lord wanted me to post this article pretty much in the form I received it — as a prophetic revelation. It is more revelational than it is instructional, meaning didactic, or given in the form of teaching. Albeit, I certainly believe it to be Biblical, that is, in agreement with the Bible, or I would not be publishing it. What I pass on here was revealed through the Spirit (prophetic revelation) and thus is spiritually appraised, and cannot be understood merely through the carnal mind and intellectual reasoning (cf., 1 Cor. 2:6-16).
It simply cannot be an accident or coincidence that the Old Testament concludes in the last two verses in the last chapter of the last book, Malachi, with this prophecy:
“Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the Lord. And he will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children, and hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse.”
As I stated at the beginning, I believe the primary purpose of the prophetic, or at least the Elijah-type of prophetic ministry, those who operate in the “spirit and power of Elijah” (Lk. 1:17), is to restore fatherhood and reclaim fathers, both in the spiritual and natural realms (more on this in Part 2 of this series).
The state of affairs in the world today makes it evident that the land has been smitten with a curse as the Malachi prophecy predicts. Corruption and criminality is ubiquitous. We see revealed in this one passage of Scripture culminating the Old Testament, the fundamental root-cause of all that corruption and criminality — a dearth of fatherhood.
History and sociological statistics tell us that wherever and whenever there is an absence of fatherhood there is an increase in sin and rebellion, along with the resultant crime and corruption sin and rebellion engender societally. The produce of a dearth of fatherhood, both in individual lives and collective society, is disobedience of all sorts and kinds, both to God’s authority and God’s delegated authority — human authority (Rom. 12).
Indeed, fatherhood is the expression or manifestation on earth of God’s authority. God is a Father — the ultimate Father. He created the human race out of His need for fellowship with someone other than Himself — i.e., the Godhead.
Fatherhood is comprised of unique properties and characteristics, and produces unique results that cannot be produced through any other office or function. There is no substitute for fatherhood; when it is absent there is a void. When there is a void, there is the absence of the things that fatherhood provides. The void of fatherhood can be filled by nothing else.
Motherhood, though needed and necessary, is no substitute for fatherhood. Mothering cannot replace or substitute for fathering. When and where there is motherhood but no fatherhood, there is a stark lack of what fatherhood provides, along with the inevitable and unavoidable fruits of that lack. One of the most significant and impactful of those voids is that manhood and all God intended it to entail is not modeled. In that vacuum, a male child cannot see what Godly manhood looks like and has nothing to emulate, and so the vacuum is often filled, in some respects, instead with traits and thought patterns modeled by the women who are the authority figures in his life.
God is Love (1 Jn. 4:8). Moreover, God is “THE” Father — the original and preeminent Father. Thus, Fatherhood is synonymous with Agape-Love, i.e., the God-kind of Love. Fathering is the ultimate expression of love (God, who is a Father, is love). Godly Fatherhood Love — Love of the Spirit — is the purest love.
Love, that is, Fatherhood, never fails. For, God never fails. Albeit, it is obvious that human fathers do fail. Nevertheless, though human fathers fail, fatherhood never fails, for God, from whom fatherhood of the Spirit emanates, never fails. God is a Father and He cannot fail. The failings or failure of fathers is not a failure of the office or function of genuine fatherhood.
To give an analogy, a particular president of the United States might fail to carry out his duties properly or productively, but that does not mean it is a failure of the office of the presidency. Because one person occupying the office of the presidency fails does not mean what constitutes the office needs to be modified, because the failing was the result of the person occupying the office not carrying out his duties properly, effectively, or competently. So also it is with fatherhood.
God is Spirit. Fatherhood, then, is of the Spirit, i.e., it is a spiritual matter. It is not merely an abstract concept or ethereal matter, meaning not of this world or non-substantial. Fatherhood is a manifestation of the Spirit of the Father.
Fatherhood is a spiritual and therefore a supernatural thing, not a human, natural thing. Yet, fatherhood cannot be merely “spiritualized,” that is, be manifest separate from the natural. While it is intrinsically spiritual, of the unseen realm, it is manifest in the natural, the seen realm.
Fatherhood is the reflection of the Father. Jesus said to the disciples, Philip in particular, “He who has seen Me has seen the Father,” demonstrating that the Son was a reflection of the Father.
The foundation of the Kingdom of God is fatherhood. In essence, all Kingdom principles are fathering principles, rooted in fatherhood.
There is no higher office or function than fatherhood. Our relationship with God is a relationship between a Father and His children.
Fathering failure, or the dearth of fatherhood, produces dysfunctional and self-destructive familial relationships, both in natural families as well as spiritual families, i.e., churches. The profile of dysfunctional families is fraught with rivalry, competition, jealousy, contentions, strife, and such things. Beyond the pews and behind the platforms, churches, because they are spiritual families, are likewise fraught with such things.
So it is also within the ranks of fivefold ministers. The primary cause of the lack of collegiality and collaboration, or colabor, that God intended to be manifest among fivefold ministers is the lack of godly and effectual spiritual fathering in the Body of Christ. Indeed, the blame for dysfunctional spiritual relationships and families must be laid squarely at the feet of Fivefold Ministers.
Dysfunctional leadership produces dysfunctional progeny (offspring). The unfortunate result of the dysfunctional leadership in the Body of Christ is the spiritual immaturity, impotence, and poor productivity now generally manifest in the Body of Christ (cf, Eph. 4:7-16).
Fatherhood is an exclusively male office or function. Only SONS can be fathers. Even illegitimate sons can become legitimate fathers. Females cannot father. The most spiritual female cannot father.
Fatherhood is intrinsically an internal not an external matter, even though it is manifested externally. It manifests from the inside out. Fatherhood cannot be externally worn like a shirt. Buying a T-shirt with “Super Dad” on it, does not make you a Super Dad or a Godly father, at all. If you are a father, the ultimate judge of whether or not you were a “Super Dad” will not be yourself or even your children, but God the Father, and one day every human father will stand before God the Father to give account for your fathering.
Fathering is not mere sentiment or emotion, but actions, actions of servitude. A father is simultaneously the ultimate servant, laying down his life for his family, and the ultimate source or gateway of agape-love which also entails genuine Godly authority to his family.
The awful legacy of the Garden of Eden was a fathering failure. Adam was created by God in the Image of God the Father. God intended for Adam to reflect Him even in his relationship with his helpmate suitable, Eve. Yes, Adam was to be a father to his wife; that is, God desired that he reflect the Heavenly Father on earth to his wife and family. Ultimately, Adam’s FAILURE was not in his following of deceived Eve, but in the spiritual FATHERING of his helpmate (wife).
In fact, it can be rightly said that the ultimate cause of “original sin” was a failure in reflecting the Image of the Father. When God created Adam in His own Image, He created a Father, because God is a Father. As a Father, God reproduced a father. Adam failed as the first human father of the first family. The first result of that failure was Adam and Eve’s precipitous fall into perdition, and the second result of his sin and rebellion against God was the rivalry mentioned before between his children. In this case the contention was murderous, in that his first offspring, Cain, was a murderer, who slew his brother, Abel. Right from the beginning of the human race we see demonstrated the irrefutable fact that when fathers fail, families fail. When the effectual function of fatherhood is absent, whether through abrogation or ignorance, the result is dysfunctional families, both in intra-family relationships and extra-family relationships, to one degree or another. In other words, absence of Godly fathering in a family produces dysfunction in the individuals of that family. Where that dysfunction is the most manifest, generally speaking, is in the members capacity to properly, productively relate with others in or out of the family. Extreme cases of that dysfunction is elemental to various psychological disorders involving relational dysfunction.
Husbandhood is synonymous with fatherhood. Now, not in the natural or fleshly realm, but again I say, in the Spirit realm. What I mean is that the characteristics of Godly fatherhood are the characteristics of Godly husbandhood. After the fall, God placed in the woman (females), an innate desire for her husband’s headship or authority over her (Gen. 3:16), as a covering or protection against demons, the fallen angels (1 Cor. 11:10), by whom (the serpent, Satan) she was deceived in the Garden of Eden. Though modern psychology paints it as a bane and something to be avoided, women are “wired” by God, in looking for a husband to look for a FATHER, because subconsciously she is searching for a man who will be to her what her father had been to her (if he was a righteous man and father) and she is also looking for the man who will be the father of their children, sons (fathers) and daughters (helpmates), who will as a product of their love and affection for one another continue the cycle of human reproduction.
Whether they know it or not, and though those steeped in modern feminism will bristle and gnash their teeth at such a statement, what women are subconsciously looking for in their lifemate is a man who will be to them what their father was to them. Though, it must be understood that when a woman is operating exclusively or predominantly in the flesh, rather than “walk(ing) in the Spirit” (Gal. 5) and therefore being led by the Spirit, she will not be guided by those internal, God-placed desires in her “search” for a husband.
Jesus said one of the primary reasons for His coming in the flesh was to show us the Father, and He said that he who has seen Him, has seen the Father. He was the Father come in the flesh. Jesus was the exact representation of the Father. He was not The Father, but He was the pure reflection or replica of the Father. And, whatever He saw and heard the Father doing, Jesus did, and He did or said nothing from His own initiative (Jn. 5:30; 12:49; 14:10). That was the model He came to present to us. He was the prototype of the Sons of God, the Holy Race, the People of God, who were born of the Spirit, and whose ultimate quest and goal is to emulate, or reflect, the Father in their living as well as their innermost-being.
Though He had no human wife and lain with no woman (and certainly no man, per the blasphemous allegations of homosexual reprobates of recent note), meaning He had no sexual relationship with any human while here in the flesh on Earth, He was the incorruptible Seed of the Father, who died and was buried in the earth, in order to undergo the miraculous metamorphosis of life and thereby become the Progenitor (Father) of the Holy Race, the people who once were not a people, but now are the People of God, the Holy Remnant, the Chosen Few, the Betrothed Unto Christ (1 Pet. 2:9). It was not only an immaculate conception but also immaculate reproduction, of the Spiritual, not the natural, realm. Thus, Jesus, while He is the Son of God and God the Son, was the Spiritual Progenitor and Patriarch of the Holy Race—i.e., Redeemed Humanity.
Here’s some Good News about fatherhood, fathers, and fathering:
- Human fathers are imperfect, but fatherhood is not imperfect, especially that of the Heavenly Father.
- Human fathers have faults, but the faults of human fathers is not a fault of fatherhood.
- Fatherhood can be delayed and/or suspended, but it can be reclaimed and restored.
- Fathers who were not themselves truly and properly fathered as sons can truly and properly father, because God said, “And all your sons will be taught of the Lord (God), And the well-being of your sons will be great” (Is. 54:13; Jn. 6:45), and God is the ultimate Father.
There is a lot more God has shown me about fatherhood that will bring abundant blessings into your life if you will simply receive it, believe it, comply with it, and decree it; in other words, if you will GET INTO AGREEMENT WITH GOD! It has the power to revolutionize your life, and as a result, the lives of others with whom you are related, either in the natural, or in the Spirit, or both!
In the Light of the Revelation of the Spirit regarding the fundamental function of Godly fatherhood, the prayer of every believer should be that God the Father would bring about a massive restoration and new regard for fatherhood in both the natural and spiritual realms all over the world, thereby mitigating to whatever degree possible the ill-effects that the lack of effectual fathering produces wherever it occurs.
To be continued in Part 2.