Take care of your Family: The Mandate of the Bible & the Example of Jesus.

This morning (10/25/2015) I preached the glorification of Jesus on the cross in John 19:16-30.  While Jesus was suffering crucifixion, He arranges for His disciple John to take care of His mother in His absence.

25 Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” 27 and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.

Here in the text, Jesus sets an example for us as he fulfills the command of God to “Honor your father and mother” (Ex. 20:12).  The reason I did not focus on this in the sermon much is that this is not John’s main point or intention as he includes this in the passion narrative.  It seems that John’s main focus is not on Jesus as our example but rather Jesus as being obedient to the father in our place and displaying his love for his people in creating a new family called the church.  Nevertheless there is still a lesson that we see by Jesus’ example.  Even in his great agony and pain, Jesus has a concern for the well-being of His mother.  As He is bearing the sins of the world, His heart is full of compassion for His mother, seeing His need to provide for her.

This call for us to take care of our family is modeled for us in this passage and also commanded of us in the Bible.  I already mentioned Exodus 20:12.  We also have 1 Timothy 5:8 which says, “But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”  This is a stern warning and a clear command.  A mark of a follower of Jesus is one who like Jesus has compassion on those in His own family, seeking even to their dying breath to preserve the well-being of the family, especially ones parents.  It is not the job of the government to take care of your parents (though I am thankful that they are often willing to help when there is need).  As long as you are still alive and able, it is also not the churches’ responsibility to provide for your parents (Read 1 Tim. 5:3-16).  It is your responsibility. Follow the example of Jesus and the mandate of the Bible: take care of your family, especially your parents.