Our Hunger for God Empowers Our Children
Nearly twenty-five years ago, a divorce turned my life upside down. This upheaval caused me to be apart from my two children most of the time. It was tough being an estranged father and, at the same time, trying to be a committed believer, godly father, and an example for them.
My only hope was to cry out to the Lord. This resulted in me feeling He wanted me to study the Bible in which I discovered some great blessings for us.
I will surely bless you, and I will surely multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore. And your offspring shall possess the gate of his enemies and in your offspring all the nations of the earth will be blessed because you have obeyed My voice.(Genesis 22:17)
The angel of the Lord spoke the above blessings to Abraham when the patriarch laid his promise −his son Isaac −on the altar and raised his knife to slay him as an offering to God. Abraham’s willingness to obey the voice of God and to trust Him for his provision, even though there was nothing in sight, brought forth this prophetic promise for all of his children and offspring.
Jewish believers receive all of the blessings of Abraham through the patriarch’s covenant with God. Gentile believers receive the same blessings through our faith in Christ Jesus because we are heirs according to the promises given to Abraham.
What this means is that if we believers endure trials and the testing of our faith, trusting God to bring us through them, like Abraham did, God will bless our children:
(1) with possessing the gates of their enemies and
(2) people will be blessed by our children.
Possessing the gates of the enemies?
In Abraham’s time, cities had walls around them, protecting the city dwellers from their enemies. The gates of the cities were the entrances into the city through the walls and whoever controlled the gates ended up controlling the city. So, possessing the gates of the enemies represents power and control over enemies.
Thus, this blessing of Abraham states that our children will have control over their enemies and will bless other nations (or people).
Who is the man who fears the LORD? He will instruct him in the way He should choose. His soul will abide in prosperity, and his descendants will inherit the land. (Psalm 25:12-13 NASB)
“His descendants inheriting the land” specifically refers to Israel’s descendants inheriting all of the land God gave them in the Middle East or the Promised Land. For us Gentiles, it means that our offspring will inherit the Promised Lands for their lives, whether it is spiritual or temporal.
I have been young, and nowam old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread. He isever merciful, and lends; and his descendants areblessed. (Psalm 37:25-26 NKJV)
The children of righteous parents will never have to beg for food because the Lord will be their provider. And also, because the righteous parents are gracious with their gifts to others, the children will be blessed.
Praise the LORD! How joyful are those who fear the LORD and delight in obeying his commands. Their children will be successful everywhere; an entire generation of godly people will be blessed.(Psalm 112:1-2 NLT)
Parents who fear the Lord and obey His commandments will have successful children.
He will bless those who fear the LORD, bothsmall and great. May the Lord give you increase more and more, you and your children. (Psalm 115:14 NKJV)
Parents who fear the Lord will be blessed and their children will be even more blessed.
The righteous who walks in his integrity— blessed are his children after him! (Proverbs 20:7)
Walking in God’s ways brings blessings to our children.
“And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.(Joel 2:28)
Peter referred to this verse in Acts 2:17. Thus, if we walk in the fear of the Lord and in His ways, we can believe our children will prophesy and see visions.
For our children to receive these blessings, the responsibility rests on us parents. We need to be righteous before the Lord, fear Him, and obey His commandments to the best of our abilities. But even then, we must use our faith to believe these blessings will be poured out on our children.
Prayer: “Father, because I am a believer in Jesus Christ, an heir to the blessings of Abraham, have Your Spirit dwelling in me, obey Your voice and Your commandments, and greatly fear You, I believe that my children −(names)−shall posses the gates of their enemies, shall be a blessing to other people, shall inherit the Promised Lands for their lives, shall not be beggars, shall be successful in whatever they attempt to do, shall have greater blessings than I have enjoyed, shall prophesy, and see visions. Now, I thank You, Father, that Your word is truth and that I can stand on it, no matter what my eyes may see; and I thank You that it is Your responsibility to make Your words come to pass in My children’s lives. In Jesus’ name, amen.”
(The above is an excerpt from Praying for the Frozen Chosen: Our Children by Larry Nevenhoven, © 2016, Amazon eBook)
(Continued in Part 5)