During the last few years, there has been an increase in violent crime, including mass shootings by angry, young men. The proposed solution to these problems range from outlawing guns, spending more money on mental health, and looking at the effect of violent movies and video games. Others have looked at problems in the home. But few have offered real solutions.
This article brings up some good points about the need for fathers. He basically says that young men often have problems when they don’t have a father in the home. The loving care of a father and mother are important to the proper training of a young person. But this article leaves out answers to two important questions.
- Why are fathers not in the home?
It seems to me that many people, men and women, are trapped in the “intimacy without commitment” idea. The enjoyment of what God intended for one man and one woman during marriage (Heb. 13:4) has been replaced with self-indulgent pleasure with no responsibility or commitment. When an unintended child results from a moment of pleasure, it is often considered unwanted and abortable, and those who are allowed to live are often avoided by the father because he wasn’t intending for a child to result in the first place. The child then becomes a burden to him and an extra burden to the mother who raises the child without the father’s help.
The solution is for men and women to see the value of waiting for sexual intimacy until marriage. This is the way God intended for things to work. In the beginning, God stated that it was not good for the man to be alone (Gen. 2:18-25). His solution was marriage. One man and one woman were committed to each other and enjoyed the intimacy where God intended it to be … in a committed marriage relationship.
- What kind of fathers are needed?
The article mentions the need for fathers in the home and notes that many bad results have been documented from young men who had no father. While it is true that the lack of a father in the home is not best, the idea doesn’t address what kind of father is needed in the home. Is the need for a father so important that a drunken, abusive, or drug addicted man should be given access to their children? No, there are some scenarios when removing the father may be best.
However, if having a father in the home is God’s design and is part of the solution to our current societal problems, we should also figure out what kind of fathers are best in the home. God gives several ideas about this. First, the father should love his wife (Eph. 5:25; 1 Cor. 7:2-3). The man who loves his wife will be a good example for his sons to follow. He should also be a leader in the home (Eph. 5:22-24). This is not an abusive type of leadership as it is compared to the way Jesus is the head of the Church. When the father shows good and godly leadership in the home, the sons will see how to be a loving leader.
The last characteristic I will mention is from Ephesians 6:4. God doesn’t want fathers who provoke their children to become angry. Fathers who mock their children or push their buttons can cause their children to become resentful and angry. That can lead to angry outbursts outside the home and lead to fighting and violence. The opposite of this is giving the child a biblical worldview (Prov. 3:5-6; Deut. 6:1-9). How does God want him to think, speak, and act? How should he respond when someone wants to fight? What should he do when tempted to sin? A godly father will train his children in God’s ways as they are best.
The world is full of needy sons who need a godly father and mother in the home. This is God’s design for success. When the husband and wife love each other, love their children, and the family follows God’s advice for the home, there is a much better “chance” that things will go better. Why? God created us, knows what is best, and wants what is best for us.