Many of us will celebrate Father’s Day by honoring beloved fathers or men who are father figures in our lives. Traditionally, we’ll honor these men by presenting them with gifts and sentimental cards. Some of us may even have cookouts and family gatherings. This day is a great opportunity for us to recognize and remember the importance of fatherhood.
As we recognize and honor earthly fathers, we should also recognize and honor our Heavenly Father. The Gospel shows us the important role God, the Father, has in our lives. His written word shows us that we can have a personal relationship with the Almighty God, which goes far beyond knowing Him just as “Creator.” His goodness and wonderful promises are found throughout both the Old and New Testaments. For instance, His living word tells us that we are the Father’s beloved sons and daughters and have been adopted by Him. It also says we are joint heirs with Christ. Unfortunately, there are many precious people wandering the earth who have no knowledge of these glorious truths. Many of them are influenced by other religions that are founded upon lies and deceit, which paint a picture of God quite different than the truth in scripture.
In the Middle East, where Islam is the dominant religion, the Qur’an teaches that god is not a father to anyone. According to both the Qur’an and Hadith, there are 99 names of god and not one of them reference him as a father. Allah is just another one of those names.
Take a look at the contrast:
Allah is distant, Father God is not.
Where Allah shows no love, Father God shows unconditional love that is everlasting.
Islam offers hopelessness, Jesus offers hope.
Islam’s holy book provides no real guidance. In Christianity, the Holy Spirit provides guidance, comfort, and empowerment.
In Islam, salvation is based on works or good deeds, trusting if you do enough good works or deeds you may enter heaven and be saved from hell. Salvation in Christianity is faith-based — no works required — and available to all who believe in Jesus.
Spiritual fatherlessness abounds not only for those residing in the Middle East, but throughout the world. Within our GCM network, disciple makers living in hostile environments are consistently bringing this love of the Father to the unreached. On Father’s Day, let’s pray for those who do not yet know God as their Father. May He deliver them from the lies and deceit of their religion. May His hands be upon those who are courageous enough to follow the truth, which is only found in Jesus.
In a chaotic world that is lost, where hope seems fading, there are many people who yearn for more. A people whose hearts are void of hope and love. A people searching for the truth. A people desiring more meaningful lives. And their only hope is found in the One True Living God – a God that is eternal, a Father. A God who loves them unconditionally and desires a personal relationship with them. A God who knows each one by name and knows the number of hairs on their heads. A God who will be their Father if they will reach out to Him through His son Jesus, the only way to Him. A God who says yes to them and to all who are searching.