When Family Forsakes Us

Jeremiah 12:6 ESV  For even your brothers and the house of your father, even they have dealt treacherously with you; they are in full cry after you; do not believe them, though they speak friendly words to you.”

I have begun a new sermon series on the book of Jeremiah. You can find the sermons (just one so far) on here at sermonaudio.com/crc, youtube channel Unholy Charade (here is a link to the first sermon), and on the Christ Reformation Church Facebook page.

Jeremiah understood by hard experience what the cost of following Christ is. And one of the prices he paid was that of being hated by his family and close friends.

Jeremiah 20:10 ESV  For I hear many whispering. Terror is on every side! “Denounce him! Let us denounce him!” say all my close friends, watching for my fall. “Perhaps he will be deceived; then we can overcome him and take our revenge on him.”

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Child Custody and Solomon’s Wisdom

1 Kings 3:25-28 ESV  And the king said, “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one and half to the other.”  (26)  Then the woman whose son was alive said to the king, because her heart yearned for her son, “Oh, my lord, give her the living child, and by no means put him to death.” But the other said, “He shall be neither mine nor yours; divide him.”  (27)  Then the king answered and said, “Give the living child to the first woman, and by no means put him to death; she is his mother.”  (28)  And all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice.

This account of course is given to us in Scripture to demonstrate that the Lord had indeed given King Solomon wisdom that could only come from the Spirit of God. Solomon, in this, is a picture of the Messiah who will one day judge the earth in perfect, unfailing, all-knowing wisdom.

As I read these verses, the whole child custody, family court business came to mind. Because actually what Solomon was dealing with was a child custody case, and to resolve it with perfect justice, he needed to find out which woman was lying – which was evil and which was righteous. By the Lord’s own wisdom, he was able to get to the bottom of it.

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Abuse and the Wilderness Family Adventure

Colossians 2:20-23 ESV If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why, as if you were still alive in the world, do you submit to regulations– (21) “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch” (22) (referring to things that all perish as they are used)–according to human precepts and teachings? (23) These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-made religion and asceticism and severity to the body, but they are of no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh.

It doesn’t work. The wilderness family adventure is not an answer to our troubles. My first church was in the mountains of Montana, 70 miles from a store of any significance. I loved that place. Spectacular mountains, streams, fishing and hunting like you can’t believe. Firewood and woodstoves. The first snows in November. Saddle up your horse in the yard and ride out into the woods. I loved it and I miss it. We lived there for 8 years.

But the church there was hell. Constant infighting. Mostly unsaved people who got very low marks in “plays well with others.” Abuse? Ha! In those little picturesque cabins in the woods, you wouldn’t want to know what went on in many of them. That church persists to this day. I hope that genuine Christians rule there now. I hope.

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