This morning being Mother's Day, I wanted to preach a sermon that has to do with mothers. The verse that I wanted to point out in 3 John, I'm going to come to later in the sermon, where it says, "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth." What I want to preach about this morning is just how much our mothers have done for us in our life and, therefore, we ought to honor them and do something for them in return.
Now flip over, if you would, to Genesis, Chapter 35. I was just thinking about everything that our mothers do for us from the cradle all the way until we're adult men going out and living our own life. First of all, just the pregnancy is difficult. I don’t know about you ladies, but my wife gets very morning sick when she's pregnant. She literally is just severely ill for about 3 months, not to be graphic, but to the point where she's throwing up 10 or 15 times a day sometimes because she's just so sick from being pregnant. A lot of women go through other similar issues when they're pregnant.
Mothers go through a lot to bring a child into this world, but then when you think about actually coming to the birth, giving birth is actually a pretty dangerous thing. In fact, a lot of women have died giving birth. Even today, still, there are women who die giving birth. There are a couple of examples of this in the Bible. Look at Genesis, Chapter 35. It says in Genesis 35, Verse 16, "And they journeyed from Bethel and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath, and Rachel travailed and she had hard labor."
Isn't labor always hard? That’s almost a little bit redundant, because when women are in labor, it's one of the most painful things that they ever go through in their lives. It says, "It came to pass that when she was in hard labor that the midwife said unto her, 'Fear not, thou shalt have this son also.' And it came to pass as her soul was in departing, for she died, that she called his name Benoni, but his father called him Benjamin and Rachel died and was buried on the way to Ephrath," which is Bethlehem.
Flip over to 1 Samuel, Chapter 4. Here's another example of this in the Bible, 1 Samuel, Chapter 4. Not only do mothers go through all the trials of pregnancy, they have to gain about 20, 25, 30, 40 pounds. I think my mom said that she gained 40 pounds, 45 pounds when she was pregnant with me. If you want to understand what that’s like, just pick up 45 pounds and carry it around for a while. I have a weighted vest that weighs 40 pounds, and every time I put in on, I think, "Goodnight, this is what it's like for women that are pregnant carrying around all this extra weight." It's tiring, it takes a lot. It becomes this exercise just to live your life when you're pregnant, when you're carrying all that extra weight, and just the sickness and just going through that whole process.
Then you get to the labor, there's all the pain and the hard labor, the travail. Then, of course, it's even dangerous because many women have died giving birth, as we see a couple of these examples in the Bible. Look at 1 Samuel 4:19, "And his daughter-in-law, Phinehas' wife, was with child, near to be delivered, and when she heard the tidings that the ark of God was taken and that her father-in-law and her husband were dead, she bowed herself and travailed for her pains came upon her. And about the time of her death, the women that stood by her said unto her, 'Fear not, for thou is born a son.' But she answered not. Neither did she regard it. And she named the child Ichabod, saying, 'The glory is departed from Israel because the ark of God was taken,'" and because of her father-in-law and her husband.
You say, "Well, Pastor Anderson, that was just back, women only died in labor back then because they didn’t have the hospital and they didn’t have all the technology and the medicine." In fact, even today, women do die giving birth, even today. It does happen. Not only that, but if you look at the statistics of giving birth at the hospital versus giving birth at home, the mortality rate is actually the same. Pretty much any study you look at … I've looked at several studies. My wife gives birth at home. A lot of women give birth at the hospital. The death rate is about the same.
Some will show the hospital to have a little higher mortality rate. Other studies might show the home birth to be a little higher mortality. It's just an inherently dangerous process, giving birth. There just are things that can go wrong. Whether you're at the hospital, whether you're at home, there are risks to giving birth. Literally, your mother risked her life to bring you into this world. It was literally she went into the jaws of death and basically gave birth to you and went through all that pain and suffering. Then after that, then she still had to take care of you. She had to breastfeed you, which is obviously physically taxing on the body.
Then I was thinking about all the diapers that are changed. Now I went online to try to research how many diapers go on a child in its lifetime. We're not going to count when they become old and need them again. Anyway, "National Geographic" did a study where they came out with 4,000 diapers, but that is way too low. I don’t know what in the world they got that from. I guess these are people who just leave their kid in the dirty diaper for a really long time, but for those of us who change the kid's diaper a little more often than that, even if you just changed it 6 times a day, that would be over 2,000 diapers a year. Probably more reasonable would be to say that you're changing the diaper about 8 times a day, sometimes even 10 times a day.
When they're a newborn, even more than that, but on average, say, 8 times a day. That’s 3,000 a year, so we're talking more like 6-7-8,000 diapers that went on your bottom when you were a baby. Your mom has changed your diaper 6-8,000 times. That’s a staggering number. Can you imagine if we were to just stack up right now 7,000 diapers right here at the [primary 00:06:13] auditorium, how big of a pile that would be? I thought about buying them just for the illustration purpose, just stacking them all up, but I didn’t want to be flagged as a terrorist because I saw a thing on the Homeland Security, "See something, say something." One of the factors that you could be a terrorist is if you see someone buying too many diapers, so I didn’t want to be on anymore watch lists than what I'm already on.
By the way, every diaper costs about 25 cents. You change the diaper, it immediately goes to the bathroom, 25 cents, 25 cents, 25 cents. Thousands of dollars, thousands and thousands of diapers that your mother put on your bottom, not to mention feeding you, just caring for you, clothing you, worrying about you. Mothers worry about their children. There's just a lot that goes into raising a child.
Go to Song of Solomon, Chapter 8. Not only did your mother carry you around in pregnancy and gain all that weight, become sick, throw up, do all that. Not only did she risk her life to give birth to you, not only did she go through all of the physical strain of breastfeeding you and diapering you and feeding you and caring for you and taking care of you, but also, hopefully, your mother taught you and trained you as well. Here's a good verse in Song of Solomon, Chapter 8, Verse 2. It says, "I would lead thee and bring thee into my mother's house, who would instruct me." Okay, so here's this lady speaking of the fact that she was instructed by her mother.
Another scripture that’s similar to this is in Proverbs, Chapter 1. You might as well turn there because I'm going to show you several things in Proverbs. In Proverbs, Chapter 1, in Verse number 8, it says, "My son, hear the instruction of thy father and forsake not the law of thy mother." Proverbs 31:1. You don’t have to turn there, but it says, "The words of King Lemuel, the prophecy that his mother taught him."
There's a lot of scripture that talks about mothers and fathers teaching the word of God to their children and just teaching other things to their children. Just things that go … I thank God for my mother, who was in the service this morning, and my mother taught me how to read. She taught all of us how to read. Now we were not home-schooled. She did home-school us for 1 year, but usually we went to Christian school or public school. She taught us all how to read before we went to school. Before we even went to kindergarten, we already knew how to read.
Honestly, the hardest part about home-schooling is teaching your child how to read. That’s the most frustrating, difficult part about it. Once you can teach them how to read and once they know how to read, it's all downhill from there on home-schooling. That's the hard part. I thank God when I was 3 years old, my mom did the painstaking job of sitting with me and reading "Hop on Pop" with me, and she penciled in all the short vowels and the long vowels and taught me how to read with "Hop on Pop" and "One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish." Those are the 2 books I learned to read from.
She could have just been watching TV. She could have just been fooling around and doing this, doing that, waste not, but she took the time to do the boring, painstaking job of sitting with me and reading "Hop on Pop" 5 million times until I learned how to read. I appreciate that, because that caused me … When I did go to school, I was ahead of the game. I already knew how to read. I was able to read books, read my Bible, and get smarter. When you start out ahead like that, it helps you to stay ahead. I appreciate my mom not just saying, "Hey, just go play, just go outside, just get out of my hair, just leave me alone. I'm trying to watch my soap opera." At least she took the time and loved me enough to instruct me and to teach me and to train me.
Then other times also home-schooling obviously even furthers that instruction and furthers that teaching. I remember my mom home-schooled us for 1 year, and when she home-schooled us, the thing that I remember the most is PE. In fact, that’s the only thing I remember about being home-schooled. I don’t remember any other subjects, but I remember PE. I remember my mom taught us. She said, "For PE, we're going to do gymnastics." We thought this was the coolest thing. That was her favorite sport when she was in school, so she taught us gymnastics and she taught us how to do headstands and handstands and how to do flips and handsprings and all kinds of stuff.
I just thank God for my mother who instructed me, and you ought to be thankful to your mother for the things that she taught you. Hopefully, you have a Godly mother who taught you the Bible and taught you how to read and taught you these different things. If you are a mother, let these words sink down into your ears. God expects mothers and fathers to teach and to train their children and to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord and also just to teach them how to read, math, and things like that as well.
Go ahead and turn to Proverbs 31, but while you're turning there, let me read you another scripture from Psalm 22. You say, "Why are you preaching about this?" I want to start off the sermon by just trying to help you appreciate and understand what your mother has gone through for you so that you can better appreciate her and love her on Mother's Day, because a lot of times we just don’t think about things, we just take things for granted. When you're growing up, you take your dad for granted, the fact that you live in a nice house and drive nice cars and everything. You don’t realize what it takes to earn that paycheck.
Then when you grow up and you have to earn that paycheck, you find out that when you're 18, 19, 20 and moving out on your own, you're not living in a nice house like Mom and Dad lived in. You're not driving a fancy car like they drove. You're living in a small apartment. You're driving a small, beat-up car because you realize that things cost a lot more than you thought that they cost. Then you begin to appreciate what your parents have done. Children, honestly, you need to stop and think about what your parents do for you.
Those of us that are adults, let's not forget what our parents went through for us and the sacrifices that they made to make sure that we had good clothes, to make sure that we had good food, to be sure that we learned things. Just taking the time even to go out and play with us and maybe teach us sports or just take us hiking or dirt bike riding or whatever it was, at least spending time with us, building a relationship with us, giving us things and doing without themselves. Being a parent is a sacrifice. That's why so many people today don’t have kids or have very few kids, because they don’t want to make the sacrifices to take care of children in this world. We need to stop and be thankful for our mothers today and realize that they did work hard and diaper our bottom thousands and thousands of times. We need to not lose sight of that.
Now stay in Proverbs 31, but in Psalm 22 it says this, "But thou art he that took me out of the womb. Thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother's breast. I was cast upon thee from the womb. Thou art my God from my mother's belly." Now what's an interesting thing about that statement, "Thou art my God from my mother's belly," it shows that parents have a great influence on their children even when they're in the womb and even when they're in a newborn state. They're learning.
I thank God that I can truly say that God is my God from my mother's belly, because when I was in my mother's belly, I was going to church. I was going to church as a fetus, all right? I was in church. I was hearing the preaching through the womb. I remember when my wife was pregnant with our first child, Solomon, we would read the Bible. In fact, we read the entire Bible, cover to cover, out loud to her belly. Just so you know. You say, "Oh, come on, he can't understand that," but you know what, there's something to that, just speaking God's words to that child, because then when he came out of the womb, he's already used to hearing his parents' voice. He's already used to hearing God's word.
We sang the hymns. He's already used to hearing the hymns. He's already used to being in church and hearing some guy yelling. Then he comes out of the womb and it's like, "Oh, I'm used to this yelling from the pulpit. I'm used to the singing. I'm used to hearing the Bible read." Even as a newborn and even as a baby, you should read the Bible to your child. Then they just grow up with it, just from the very beginning. They just keep hearing God's word and keep hearing the hymns. They can grow up and say that they have a goodly heritage and that God was their God from their mother's belly, that they were brought up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord from day one.
Look at Proverbs 31. It says in Verse 1, "The words of King Lemuel, the prophecy that his mother taught him." Here we have an example of a mother teaching her child the word of God, teaching the Bible. Even to this day, I can think of things Biblically that my mother taught me. I can think of things that she taught me and doctrines that she expounded to me. My mom is actually the one that led me to the Lord when I was 6 years old. I still remember her showing me John 5:24 by the bedside when I kneeled down and prayed and received the Lord Jesus Christ as my savior.
She showed me John 5:24, "Verily, verily I say unto you he that heareth my word and believeth on him that sent me has everlasting life and shall not come into condemnation but is passed from death unto life." She explained to me the gospel, explained to me [inaudible 00:16:06] the believer, many other Biblical things that she taught me growing up. That’s the job of a mother, and if you have a mother that brought you to church, if you have a mother that taught you any Bible verses or taught you the word of God whatsoever, you ought to be thankful to God for that because not everyone has that. You ought to remember that and be thankful for that.
Now let me transition to the next part of my sermon. First, I just wanted to kind of maybe remind you of some things that your mother has done for you both physically and, hopefully, spiritually, hopefully intellectually, things that she did for you. Now let me turn around and say okay, well, what can we do for Mom? What does Mom really want from us? It's Mother's Day and we want to do something nice for our mother. We want to show our mother some love.
What is the best thing that we can do for our mother? Obviously, it's great to, of course, give her a phone call, tell her that you love her, give her a gift, do something nice for her, take her out to eat. Those are all great things, but there are some other things Biblically that I think that your mother wants. When you stop and think about everything that your mother did for you, you should think to yourself, "You know what, I ought to do something to make her happy, because she's done a lot for me. I ought to show her some appreciation and some retribution."
Look at Proverbs 31. It says, "The words of King Lemuel, the prophecy that his mother taught him. What, my son? And what, the son of my womb? And what, the son of my vows? Give not thy strength under women nor thy ways to that which destroyeth kings. It is not for kings, oh, Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine nor for princes strong drink lest they drink and forget the law and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted. Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts. Let him drink and forgeteth poverty and remember his misery no more."
Here we see when the mother is teaching her son, 2 of the things that she warns him about are the strange woman and also about drinking. Now I don’t think any mother wants to raise her child to be a drunk. Here we see scripture where the mother is trying to teach her son, "Look, don’t grow up and be a fornicator. Don’t grow up and be a whoremonger. Don’t grow up and be sleeping around and committing all this lewdness. Don’t grow up and be a drunkard and a fool and waste your life." I think one of the best things that you could do for your mother is grow up and be a respectable, Godly person that she can be proud of.
Steven Anderson: Why did your mother give birth to you? Why did she die for you and feed you and take care of you? Because she wanted to raise you up into a son that she would be proud of, that she would love, that she would want to spend time with, that she would feel like her investment paid off, not to raise a loser. The best thing you could do for your mother is not to be a loser. Do you think mothers want to raise a child so he can grow up and not have a job? Raise up a man that would grow up and be just a derelict? Be a drunk? Be a whoremonger? One of the best things that you could do for your mother is live a Godly, respectable, clean life.
Steven Anderson: Make her proud, make her happy to have you as a son. Not only that, it says in Verse 8, "Open thy mouth." This is more of what the mother is teaching her son, "Open thy mouth for the dumb in the cause of all such as are appointed to destruction. Open thy mouth, judge righteously and plead the cause of the poor and needy." Here she's teaching her son not only not to be a whoremonger and a fornicator, not only not to be a drunk and a loser, but also she's saying, "You know what, do something with your life to help other people. Help the poor, help the needy. Open your mouth for those that are appointed to destruction."
Let me tell you something, when you're going soul-winning, that’s 1 way that you're doing that because let me tell you something, people that are not saved, people who don’t believe on Jesus Christ, destruction is their destiny. They're going to go to hell. The Bible teaches here that we should open our mouth for those people. Mothers would like for their sons to grow up and do something Godly with their life, do something righteous with their life, do something that makes a difference in the world that will get them rewards in heaven because of what you did and they raised you and taught you and then you go out and do great things for God. That’s something that they can have as an accomplishment for themselves, that they raised you.
Now turn to Proverbs, Chapter 10, Proverbs Chapter number 10, and while you're turning there, let me just quote for you some scripture here. I think this is an interesting parallel in the Bible. In 3 John, Verse 4, it said, "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth." Now that's a pretty powerful statement when you say, "I have no greater joy." Remember I said, "What can you do for Mom?" Don’t be a loser. Be a Godly, righteous, respectable person.
I know that nothing would make me happier as a father … I'm sure I could speak for my wife as well when I say this as a mother. As a father, I know nothing would make me happier than that my children grow up and live a clean, Godly, decent life and love God and serve God and win souls to Jesus Christ. That would make me happier than anything. Even if that meant them living in some distant place where I didn't see them very often. Even if it meant that I couldn’t interact with the grandkids as much. Look, the thing that would be the most important to me wouldn’t even be how they feel about me, how much they like me. It's just do they love the Lord.
Steven Anderson: Are they serving God? Are they making me proud by serving God with all their heart, mind, soul, strength? That’s way more important to me than anything else. "Oh, your child could be in the Olympics." So what? "Oh, I want my child to grow up and be a professional athlete so I can vicariously live out all my failed attempts at stardom on them and they can …" No. What matters to me is that they would just grow up and serve God.
Steven Anderson: "Oh, you want your children to be rich, right? You want them to go to the fancy school and make all the money." Look, I would not care if my children were dirt poor for the rest of their life and never made it financially. I want them to live a clean, Godly life.
Steven Anderson: Listen to all the Amens of men who feel the same way that I do. They don’t care about the athletic achievements or the money or the fame. What we care about the most is that they would just serve God and just be good people.
Steven Anderson: That we would have raised them right in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. I bet you that most mothers would probably agree. That's what I want out of my kids. That’s better than just a box of chocolates or just a bouquet of flowers, as you're a loser, living some loser, ungodly, worldly, wicked life, "Oh, here's flowers. Here's a gift." No. Live a Godly life. Do what your mother taught you. Forsake not the law of your mother. That’s what your mom wants out of you more than anything else is that you do right. You that are 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 years old, you're at a dangerous time in your life. You better realize that your parents are counting on you to start making Godly, righteous decisions and doing the right thing on your own.
Steven Anderson: They’ve taught you, they’ve raised you, they’ve held your hand, but now it's time for you to start making decisions and doing the right thing on your own and not to just go out and live the life of a fool, but to make Mom and Dad proud of you that their work and their labor was not in vain.
Now he said in 3 John, "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth," meaning that the way to bring the greatest joy to your parents is to walk in truth, to do right. Listen to this. You don’t have to turn there, but in Proverbs 17:21, it says, "He that begetteth a fool do it to his sorrow …" watch this … "and the father of a fool hath no joy." Think about that contrast. He said, "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth. The father of a fool has no joy." What an extreme, having no joy and just having no greater joy. That’s a pretty big difference. We could apply this to a mother as well. Being a fool is the thing that’s going to make your mother the most grief.
I was thinking about all the mothers in the Bible who were just grieved by their child. Look down at your Bible there in Proverbs 10:1, it says, the proverbs of Solomon, "A wise son maketh a glad father, but a foolish son is the heaviness of his mother." When we hear the word "heaviness" here's our modern-day word for that, "depression." Depression, you think of pressing down, drooping down, heaviness, just extreme sorrow. The Bible says that a foolish son is the heaviness of his mother. How would you like to be the heaviness of your mother? You already made her 40 pounds heavier when she was pregnant with you. Now you have to be making her all depressed and sad because you are being a fool.
I was thinking about children that made their mother upset in the Bible, and I thought of Esau.
Steven Anderson: Esau married a heathen girl. He did not marry one of God's people. He married a Godless heathen, and it said that it was a sorrow of mind, it was a grief of mind unto his mother, Rebekah. She was depressed about it. She literally said … because she had 2 sons, Jacob and Esau. She said, "If Jacob marries 1 of these women like Esau married, what good shall my life be unto me?" She had this thing like, "I don’t even want to live anymore if my son …" Now, look, doesn’t that kind of coincide where it said, "No joy"?
Steven Anderson: She said, "I don’t even want to be alive anymore if my other son lives his life the way that Esau is living it, if he goes out and marries one of these heathen girls." Now stop and think about that. Maybe you should stop and think about that when you're going to date a non-believer, you're going to date some heathen girl, or you're going to date some heathen boy. You need to stop and think about the sacrifice that your mother has made for you. Don’t be a heaviness to her. Don’t be a grief of mind to her. Don’t make her worry all the time because she sees you living your life in a way that’s not pleasing to God.
Flip over to Chapter 15. We saw that in Proverbs 10:1, "A foolish son is the heaviness of his mother." Go to Chapter 15. It says in Verse 20, "A wise son maketh a glad father, but a foolish man despiseth his mother." Now the word "but" there is a conjunction, right?
Congregation: it is.
Steven Anderson: These 2 phrases are in the same verse for a reason. We don’t ever want to just think that, oh, these are just 2 separate disjointed ideas. No. They're in the same sentence, they're in the same verse, and they are connected by a conjunction, "but." We need to understand that these 2 things have something to do with one another. You see, the books of the Bible, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon, what do we call that section of the Bible?
Steven Anderson: The Poetic Books, because if you look at the Old Testament, it's not in exact chronological order. It puts the Old Testament books in sections. First, you have the first 5 books, which is the Mosaic Law or the Pentateuch. Then you have what's called the Historical Books, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, first-second Samuel, first-second Kings, first-second Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther. Those are called the Historical Books. Then after that, you have the Poetic Books, Psalms, Proverbs, et cetera. I just listed them.
Then you have after that the Prophecy Books. First, you have the major prophets. They are in chronological order. Then you have the minor prophets, and they are in chronological order with themselves. The Bible is divided into these major sections, and it's in chronological order pretty much within those sections, but these books that are in the Poetic Books, you'll notice this when you read Job, when you read Psalms, when you read Proverbs, when you read Ecclesiastes, and when you read Song of Solomon. One of the major themes of Biblical poetry is that he'll state the same thing 2 different ways or he'll always give you 2 sides of the same coin. Especially in the Book of Job, almost everything is stated twice, in 2 different ways. That's just how it is.
When you look at this phrase that says in Proverbs 15:20, "A wise son maketh a glad father, but a foolish man despiseth his mother," he's bringing up both the father and mother, and he's bringing up 2 aspects of this behavior. He's saying, "Look, a wise son makes a glad father, but a foolish man despises his mother." What he's teaching there is that when we despise our parents, that’s what makes us walk in a way contrary to the way that they taught us. That's what makes us live a foolish life. It's related. You say, "What does it mean to despise?" When we say the word "despise" today, we usually mean hate, but in reality, usually in the Bible when the word "despise" is used, it basically means to not properly respect. Not to give it its proper esteem and value is usually what the word "despise" means in the Bible when you read it.
What the Bible is teaching you is that if we respect our parents and hold them in proper esteem, that will affect our behavior and that will affect whether we make wise decisions in our life or foolish decisions in our life. How do we view our parents? How do we feel about our parents? If you're one who is disrespectful to their parents and you despise your mother, then you're not going to keep the law of your mother. You're not going to follow the instruction of your father because you don't have proper respect for your parents.
Look at Proverbs 23, Verse 22. Again, we'll see another one of these kind of 2-part statements in 1 verse. The whole Book of Proverbs is like this, "A wise son maketh a glad father, but a foolish son is the heaviness of his mother." Verse 22 of Chapter 23 says, "Hearken unto thy father that begat thee." What does hearken mean?
Steven Anderson: Listen. Our modern word for that would be "listen." What are the first 4 letters of hearken?
Steven Anderson: Hear. Yeah, so hearken means to hear or to listen. It says, "Hearken unto thy father that begat thee and despise not thy mother when she's old." It's saying, "Look, have respect for your parents in the sense that you listen to them and realize, hey, they know more than I do. I need to listen to them. They have wisdom and instruction to give unto me that will help me live a Godly life."
Look at Chapter 29 of Proverbs, in Verse 15. It says, "The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame." How would you like to be one that brings shame to your mother today, where your mother is just ashamed of you? She doesn’t want to talk about you. She'd rather not even mention you. She doesn’t want to bring up the fact that she has that particular child. "Let me tell you more about my other child over here." How would you like to be a child that your mother is literally ashamed of? What a horrible place to be on Mother's Day. What's the opposite of making your mother ashamed? Making her …
Steven Anderson: Making her proud, exactly. Look at Chapter 30, just 1 page over. You're on Chapter 29. Look at Chapter 30, Verse 11. It says, "There is a generation that curseth their father and does not bless their mother." Okay. Again, just showing that there are a lot of people today in our generation that do curse their parents and they don’t bless their parents. They don’t respect their parents and they don’t honor their parents and they don’t love their parents. That should not be said of God's people.
Jump down to Verse 17 of the same chapter. It says, "The eye that mocketh at his father and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out and the young eagles shall eat it." That’s a pretty strong curse placed upon those who don’t want to obey Mom. Isn't that what it says? They despise to obey Mom, he says, "The ravens of the valley shall pick out their eyes and the young eagles shall eat it."
Now I remember one time, I was a teenager, I was about 17, and I was memorizing Proverbs Chapter 30 when I was 17. I set a goal. I wanted to learn 1 of the proverbs. I looked at the Book of Proverbs and I decided I liked Chapter 30 the most. I memorized the whole chapter of Proverbs Chapter 30 when I was 17 years old, and I was still pretty worldly at that time. Even though I was learning a lot of Bible, I was still pretty worldly. I remember I went to the video store and I rented a video of The Doors. You know, the rock band from the '60s. Who knows who The Doors are? Pretty much everybody in the auditorium. Worldly church.
Anyway, I rented this video from the video store of The Doors, and it was The Doors in concert. I was, "Oh, okay, cool." I'm a 17-year-old and I had just memorized Proverbs Chapter 30, and I put it in the safe and I'm watching The Doors concert. Let me tell you something, The Doors is a wicked band.
Congregation: Yep. Amen.
Steven Anderson: They have a lot of wicked lyrics, ungodly. Jim Morrison was a very wicked, evil person.
Steven Anderson: I'm watching this Doors concert, and he was famous for this at concerts. They had these real long songs that go on and on. There were a couple of songs like that. They were 10-12-13-minute songs. In concert, he would just add all kinds of lyrics, just off the cuff. He would just go to the con- … Anybody who knows The Doors, they're familiar with this. He'd go to the concert, and he'd just add all kinds of lyrics, just on the fly. Every concert, the song is different because he's doing different lyrics and everything.
I'm watching this Doors concert, and this is literally what he started singing in the middle of a lot of songs. He said, "I don’t want to die in an automobile. I want to die in an open field." He said, "I want the ravens to pick out my eyes." He literally almost quoted this verse exactly, saying, "I want that to happen to me." That’s just to show you how satanic and how evil this guy is, that he either knew this Bible verse and is just referring to it and just placing this bizarre curse upon himself, or else maybe he's just demon-possessed and the devils are just leading him to say this stuff that’s just blasphemous and totally contrary to God's word.
God used that in my life because I just happened to be memorizing this chapter, and when I watched that video, I was like, "Well, I need to stop listening to The Doors. I need to stop renting videos like this," because it was like God was trying to show me something in that video, because it seemed like a pretty weird coincidence that he's alluding to this exact scripture.
Flip over and go to John, Chapter 19, John, Chapter number 19. Remember, that curse of dying in an open field and having the ravens pick out your eyes is a curse that God puts upon people who would despise to obey their mother. He said, you know, that’s the type of stuff that’s going to happen to you. God is not going to bless you. You're going to die an ignominious death where you're not being buried. That’s something in the Bible, when people are buried, that’s the honorable right way to deal with their remains when they die. Whenever people were just really wicked, ungodly people, God would place a curse upon them that the animals would eat them and that they would not be buried and so forth. There are a lot of places like that.
Look at John, Chapter 19. Let's just look quickly at Jesus, how he felt about his mother. Did Jesus love and appreciate his mother? Did he take care of his mother? Look what Jesus said in John 19:26, "When Jesus therefore saw his mother …" This is while he's dying on the cross. He's nailed to the cross, hanging from the cross. "When Jesus therefore saw his mother and the disciple standing by whom he loved, he sayeth unto his mother, 'Woman, behold thy son.' Then sayeth he to the disciple, 'Behold thy mother,' and from that hour, that disciple took her under his own home."
We see here that Jesus loved and appreciated his mother. His mother had taken care of him when he was a child and done a lot for him, and so even when he was dying on the cross, he made sure that she was taken care of by basically taking his favorite disciple, John, the one that’s called the disciple whom Jesus loved, and entrusting his mother to him, and saying to that disciple, "This is your mother." Basically saying, "Treat her like your mother. Do for her the things that I would have done for her if I would have been here," because, of course, Jesus is dying young.
He's dying at approximately age 33, and he's leaving his mother in the care of his most beloved disciple, John, who he had already known was going to outlive the rest and become very old. He basically is entrusting his mother under John and telling his mother, "This is your son now. He's going to take my place." It just shows that he loved and cared about his mother, because he only issued 7 statements from the cross, while he was hanging on the cross. The Bible records 7 things that he said, and this is one of them. It had some significance, that he loved and cared for his mother.
Now let me say this. Go, if you would, to 1 last place, Matthew, Chapter 10, Matthew, Chapter number 10. Matthew, Chapter 10. Look at Verse 37 in Matthew 10, because we know that Jesus loved his mother. He took care of his mother. There's no question about that. Look what the Bible says in Matthew 10:37. It says this, "He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me. And he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross and follows after me is not worthy of me."
Should we love our mother? Should we honor our mother? Should we respect our mother? Should we obey our mother? Yes. We should make her proud. We should never forget everything that she's done for us, but hold on a second. The Bible said that we should love Jesus even more than we love our mother.
Congregation: Right. Amen.
Steven Anderson: Now this isn't downgrading our love for Mom, but if he wants to give an example of having great love and affection, he uses the love that we would have for our mother. For example … You don’t have to turn there, but in Chapter 12 of Matthew, they come to Jesus and they say, "Behold thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee. And Jesus said, 'Who is my mother and who are my brethren?' And he stretched forth his hand to his disciples and said, 'Behold my mother and my brethren for whosoever shall do the will of my father which is in heaven, the same is my mother and sister and brother.'"
Now he wasn’t just being disrespectful to his mother and brethren …
Steven Anderson: … because of the fact that when he wanted to show how much he loved his disciples and how important they were, he compared it to the love he had for his mother and he compared it to the love that he had for his brethren. We should have even more love for Jesus Christ than we have for our mother. Now, look, are there some times where people are in a bad situation where they might sometimes have to choose between God and mother? Yeah, and we should always choose the Lord. We should always choose Jesus Christ.
We talked about this morning having a Godly mother. I thank God for a Christian mother who raised me in a Godly way. A lot of us have a Godly mother. Some don’t. Now even if your mother is not a Christian, even if she did not teach you the Bible, you should still be thankful for her bringing you into this world, diapering you, feeding you, clothing you, and the things that she did teach you. You should still love your mother even if she's not even a Christian. Try to get her saved, do what you can, but you should love your mother anyway.
Let me say this. There could be obviously an extreme situation where a mother is so ungodly that there would have to be a choice made and say, "Wait a minute, I'm going to have to separate from my mother." God forbid, but it is out there. You see it in the Bible with Jehoshaphat. His mother was the queen, he was the king, and his mother brought in idolatry. He had to remove her from being queen and basically say, "God's commandments come first."
Let me say this. If today on Mother's Day we're thinking about, okay, Mom has done a lot for us, therefore we need to love her and be good to her and make her proud, we could say the same thing about Jesus Christ. Think about what Jesus Christ has done for us.
Congregation: [Inaudible 00:42:11].
Steven Anderson: He died for us, he's buried, he rose again. He's given us life, he's blessed us in so many ways. Just as we're to honor our mother, we should also honor our father in heaven and honor the Lord God, because he has done more for us even than our mother has done.
Congregation: Yeah. Yes.
Steven Anderson: We need to just stop today and just think about the people who have helped us in our lives, our mothers, our fathers, and the Lord Jesus Christ himself, and live our lives in such a way that would make them proud. Not be a loser, not be a fool, not be a drunk, not be a whoremonger, not be a fornicator, not be lazy, not waste our lives, but to do great things with our lives so that Mom would be proud and so that the Lord Jesus Christ would be proud. Remember what we said, that a child who is left to himself will bring his mother to shame. We talked about how terrible it would be to bring shame on your mother.
You know what, Jesus Christ said that we need to abide in him that we may have confidence and not be ashamed before him at his coming. Jesus said that if we're ashamed of him and his words in this wicked and adulterous generation, it said that he will be ashamed of us when he comes. Just as we don’t want our mom to be ashamed of us, we don’t want God to be ashamed of us. We don't want to bring shame upon Jesus Christ. You know what, when you live a wicked and ungodly life, and when you live a life just like our filthy world and generation that we live in and then you say, "I'm a Christian," you know what, in many ways it makes Christians look bad.
Congregation: Yeah, yes it does.
Steven Anderson: "Oh, yeah, there's an example of a Christian. He's the worst worker on the job. There's an example of a Christian. He's a drunk. He's a womanizer." What kind of a testimony is that? There are many Christians who destroy their testimony by living an ungodly life. Then when they want to give somebody the gospel, it's a joke. People won't listen because they say, "Well, you're not taking the Bible seriously. I can see that in your lifestyle." They don’t want to take the gospel seriously. When you live a life that lines up with the word of God, then when you open the Bible to give the gospel, people will be more likely to listen to you. Because you're taking it seriously, they might take you seriously.
Let's not be a shame to Jesus by living a life that’s unworthy of the calling wherewith we're called. Let's not live a life that would make our mother ashamed. Let's make Mom proud today, and let's make the Lord Jesus Christ proud. Those are 2 people that we owe a lot to. We owe a lot to our mother, and we owe a lot to Jesus. Let's make them both proud. I think the greatest joy that we can bring to both of those is when we do right, when we live a clean life. That’s what both Mom wants and what Jesus wants.
Let's bow our heads and have a word of prayer. Father, we thank you so much for our mothers, Lord, and for everything that they’ve done for us. Help us to treat them well and to express our love to them and express our gratitude to them, but not only just verbally or with a gift, but, Lord, help us also to live our lives in such a way where they would be glad that they had us and they would be glad that they raised us, Lord, and that they would be thankful for us and not be grieved in heaviness because of us. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.