Day 16 Theme: Marriage & Family
If any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel– 1 Timothy 5:8
We live in an age of self-justification. We can excuse or explain almost any personal behavior or habit or shortcoming, making a case for our own innocence. But Paul here cuts through all our layers of self-defense and plainly states our obligation.
If you, husbands and fathers, are not carefully laboring to provide the food, shelter, and clothing that are needed by your family—to the best of your ability—then you are not a Christian, no matter how much you may protest to the contrary.
In fact, Paul says, you have denied the faith of Christ by your actions; therefore, you are worse than an unbeliever, because you are bringing reproach on the name of Christ. You cannot claim an allegiance to Christ, on the one hand, and selfishly or carelessly deny the help to your family that Christ demands of you.
These words may sound strong or harsh, but in reality they are helpful and loving. We might be tempted to deceive ourselves on this issue, if it were not so plainly worded for us. Our families might suffer because of our thoughtless neglect, except that Paul has forced us to consider them.
If you have failed in this regard, do not give up; it is never too late to repeal your denial of the faith, to throw off your unbelief, and to show your commitment to Christ by laboring for the welfare of your family.
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About Lasserre Bradley, Jr.
Lasserre Bradley, Jr. is the director, and has been the speaker on the Baptist Bible Hour radio broadcast since he started it in 1953. The messages on the program come form the pulpit of the Cincinnati Primitive Baptist Church where he is senior pastor and has served for 47 years. Pastor Lasserre is also editor of the Baptist Witness and author of other Bible-based literature including I Feel Overwhelmed, Six things To Remember In the Time of Crisis, and The Christian Home.
Lasserre and his wife Emily, have three grown children: Leanna, Peggy and Lasserre III. He and Emily consider it a special blessing to have17 grandchildren.