Lesson 2: Putting Down Foundations
18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen. Matthew 28:18-20.
Aim of the Study
As trees of righteousness we are called to have solid foundations. This involves going through a process of discipleship (this is explored later). The foundations we establish allow us to understand we have been made for a purpose. We are therefore given strong foundations, so we can be released intentionally and purposefully into the place God has made us be like a skilfully shot arrow hits the target. Strong foundations ensure our children can stand strong, endure and thrive in anything that comes against them and have godly character even when live gets tough. The can also fulfil God’s main objective in releasing the knowledge of the glory of God throughout the earth.
· What is the great commission?
· How are arrows and children similar?
· Do our children have a purpose?
· How does this fit in with releasing the knowledge of the glory of God?
· Why are strong foundations important?
· How can strong character be formed?
· What is our legacy we leave to our children?
· Do our children have to grow up in their faith as well?
As we are growing into maturity and knowing the only truth in the world comes from the Word, God is ready to reveal His truths in our lives. God is releasing us in a very important and exciting time in history where He is preparing His bride, the church, for Jesus' return. Not only are we being purified, God is releasing us from the world, and revealing to us how He wants to live as His people both individually, as the church, and most importantly as families. No longer does God want us to be conformed to the world, but Jesus is transforming us as He renews our mind through reading His Word, are taught the Word and allow the Holy Spirit to speak to us.
2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Romans 12:2 (NKJV)
The purpose of this study is to examine the importance of our roots or foundations.
1. Fulfilling the Great Commission
Jesus has given us the 'Great Commission'. We are to go out and make disciples of all nations. The first place we need to start is in our homes, with our children. Having the important task of discipling our children, teaching them to observe all things Jesus has commanded us to do and when they are ready baptising them in the name of Jesus.
18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore[a] and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.[b] Matthew 28:18-20.
2. Preparing our children as arrows.
We are warriors with a God given purpose. Our children are as arrows that we are now preparing to be released and to fly true into the purposes God has for them. Only when they are fully prepared can they fly straight, hit the target and be most effective for God both now and when they leave home.
3 Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
4 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,
So are the children of one’s youth.
5 Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them;
They shall not be ashamed,
But shall speak with their enemies in the gate.
Psalm 127:3-5 (NKJV)
3. God has made our children for a purpose
Our children have been created by God for His plans and purposes. They will be most happy and fulfilled as they are doing what God has for them in life. Our role as parents is to teach and equip them for what God has made them to do in the world and then help them in hearing what God is calling them to do.
10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 (NKJV)
4. God wants us to release the knowledge of the glory of God in our homes and them equip our children to go out and do the same wherever they go.
God has said on two occasions in His Word that the whole earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord. Our children need to know God, be filled with His glory and then be taught how to release the knowledge of the glory of God wherever we go.
14 For the earth will be filled
With the knowledge of the glory of the Lord,
As the waters cover the sea. Habakkuk 2:14 (NKJV)
9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain,
For the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord
As the waters cover the sea. Isaiah 11:9 (NKJV)
21 but truly, as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the Lord— Numbers 14:21 (NKJV)
5. We want our children to have strong foundations and roots that go deep and ensure that they bear fruit and have leaves no matter the circumstances.
Psalm 1 talks about what it looks like when we have a strong foundation.
2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
And in His law he meditates day and night.
3 He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither; Psalm 1:2-3
We contrast this with what happens with the person who does not have the foundations in God.
24 Scarcely shall they be planted, Scarcely shall they be sown, Scarcely shall their stock take root in the earth, When He will also blow on them, And they will wither, And the whirlwind will take them away like stubble. Isaiah 40:24
a. The parable of the sower - grow and bear fruit.
The soil needs to be prepared and need to ensure the seed grows but also endures to produce fruit.
18 “Therefore hear the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside. 20 But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles. 22 Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. 23 But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.” Matthew 13: 18-23
b. Wise man who built his house on the rock
With strong foundations, which is on Jesus, our children will be able to withstand anything that happens in life.
24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: 25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.
26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: 27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.” Matthew 7:24-27 (NKJV)
6. We want our children to have a strong character
a. We want our children to be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. In James 1 we read that this occurs through trials where our faith is tested. Allowing our children go through trials is not something to run away from but embrace.
2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. James 1:2-4.
a. Developing character is something that is overlooked in today's society. In Romans 5 we read that tribulations or hard times actually are the things that produce character in people. Hard times are not something that we hide from children but using God's wisdom allow them to go through some hard times and support them as they work through these things.
3 And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; 4 and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Romans 5:3-4
a. As God comforts us as we go through tribulations, we can then use how God had comforted us to comfort others. We have been given a gift we can minister God's comfort to others. In 2 Corinthians 1 we read:-
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ. 2 Corinthians 1:3-5
7. We leave our faith in Jesus as a legacy for our children
It is wonderful to read in 2 Timothy how Paul acknowledges Timothy's mother and grandmother and how their faith helped lay the foundation to him being able to minster to others powerfully. Their strong faith build up Timothy so he could become a minster for God
3 I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day, 4 greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy, 5 when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also. 6 Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. 7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:3-7.
8. We want our children to grow up in the faith
We do not want our children to remain as babies in the faith, but to grow up strong and able to discern the truth and to live this truth in their lives.
14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— 16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love. Ephesians 4:14-16
God is calling us to become trees of righteousness with solid foundations. The best way to do this involves going through a process of discipleship (this is explored later). Life is not a random thing where things happen through chance, but we have been made for a purpose. Developing strong foundations is essential so we can be released intentionally and purposefully into the place God has made us be like a skilfully shot arrow hits the target. Strong foundations ensure our children are able to stand strong, endure and thrive in anything that comes against them and have godly character even when live gets tough. The most exciting thing that will happen is that we can also fulfil God’s main objective in releasing the knowledge of the glory of God throughout the earth.