SPIRITUAL FATHERS 3
In our last article on spiritual fathers we began to show how to identify true or pure fathers, and we will conclude it in our article this week.
The teaching of true or pure ministry gifts will be like rain that will cause fruit to come forth from the ground of the hearts of the saints.
Deuteronomy 32:2 KJV: My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass:
James 5:7-8 KJV: Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
So true fathers will give the rain of the teaching of the Word to cause the saints to bring forth the fruit of the Spirit in their lives. Unfortunately the Spirit of Babylon today has polluted many of our ministers and so they are not true fathers. However, God continues to use such people because His work must continue, even if they are doing things He does not approve of:
Philippians 1:15 KJV: Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will:
Philippians 1:18 KJV: What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.
Psalms 68:18 KJV: Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them.
We have examples in the Bible of people like Saul and Samson. God anointed and used them in spite of their disobedience until He could replace them.
Some so-called Fathers are not just only instructors, but are also hirelings who care more about the money they can make from God’s people rather than their spiritual well being.
While this is not true of all instructors it is true of many ministers today.
John 10:12-13 KJV: But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep.
2Peter 2:3 KJV: And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
A true father is one by virtue of his spiritual growth; he may either be developing or fully developed, but both states will have similar characteristics. A true father, therefore, is one who has the following characteristics: –
The fear of God evidenced by obedience to the instruction of wisdom of the Word of God:
Proverbs 15:33 KJV: The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility.
A daily habit of deep prayer in the Spirit with travail for at least about 14 years for developing fathers and over 21 years for fully developed fathers.
Hebrews 5:7 KJV: Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;
It took David, who is a type of Christ and end time Christian, about 14 years from when He was anointed by Samuel to become King over Judah first and then after another 7 years to become King over the whole of Israel. (1Sam. 16:11-13, 2 Sam. 5:4-5)
We see this pattern repeated again in Joseph: it took 13 years to become Prime Minister of Egypt and another 9 years for his dream to come to pass. (Gen. 37:2, 41:46, 45:6). So in these two witnesses: David and Joseph, who are types of Christ, this truth is established.
A well-balanced ministry of rightly dividing the Word of God: establishing old landmarks and breaking new ground.
2Timothy 2:15 KJV: Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
2Timothy 3:16-17 KJV: All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.
In summary, a true father will give himself continually to prayer and the ministry of Word to be able to birth, form and nurture spiritual children.
Acts 6:4 KJV: But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
You can receive instruction and example from spiritual fathers who are far away via their books and tapes. However, you also need discipline from a father you are submitted to as your pastor or one you can easily get access to locally. Therefore, it is vital for you to locate spiritual fathers according to the criteria given in the Word of God, and to follow them.
1Thessalonians 5:12-13 KJV: And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; And to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. And be at peace among yourselves.
Philippians 3:17 KJV: Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.
Hebrews 13:17 KJV: Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.
This way you will avoid being ensnared by the lusts of the flesh and miss entering into the Promised Land: the perfection and fullness of Christ.