Prepare Your Sons for War Part I
If a country faces a determined enemy, it’s only a matter of time. The soft targets will be hit first.
It doesn’t much matter if that country wants an enemy. It has one. It doesn’t matter if that country doesn’t want to go to war. War is coming. The only question is how will they fight when the enemy arrives?
That depends on preparation.
The moral life of a young man is a lot like that. He doesn’t choose war. War comes to Him.
This truth was brought home to me, yet again, about two months ago. It was that familiar knock on my office door.
“Dad, can I come in for a minute?”
In moments, my 12-year-old son began to unburden his heart, telling of the struggles engulfing him.
Without letting on, I was taken aback at the graphic nature of the attacks upon him. At 12 years of age. Satan fights dirty.
“I feel so weird. I wish everything would just go away.”
“Son, let’s think about those soldiers over in Afghanistan, right now. Do they expect to be attacked?”
“Because they’re in a war zone, and the other side considers them to be enemies.”
“That’s right. And you can count on the fact that they stay prepared for whatever they may face. But, what if there was a soldier who showed up without his combat gear and with no gun or ammo? Instead, he had sunglasses, flip flops, and shorts. That man would be considered a fool. It’s no different with us, Son. We are in enemy territory and are considered a threat. We can’t wish it away. The question for us is what are we going to do?”
Prepare Your Son For War
Your son’s interest in sexual things is natural, good, and right. He needs to know that . . . needs to hear it from you. God made him that way. There’s nothing wrong with him. “Son, I’m excited that you are in the process of becoming a man! Your interest in sexual things means you are a normal young man! It’s perfectly normal to be curious. God made us this way.”
1) Teach your son that he has an enemy that wants to take him down.
We don’t wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Ephesians 6:12
God makes things good and his enemy makes things bad. Satan twists every good thing that God wants us to enjoy. When we enjoy things God’s way, it’s beautiful. Satan’s way eventually leads to destruction and death.
2) Teach your son that being tempted doesn’t make you sinful. Having a dirty thought pop into your head doesn’t make you a dirty person. If that were true, Jesus would be sinful because the Bible says,
We don’t have a high priest who cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities (who can’t sympathize or understand our struggles); but was tempted in all points as we are, yet without sin. Hebrews 4:15
“Son, Jesus understands your struggles.”
3) Teach your son that you are tempted, too. I’m very honest with my sons. I tell them they haven’t thought, done, or are capable of doing anything I haven’t thought, done, or am capable of doing. They’re always surprised to discover that,
“You’re tempted, too, Dad?”
“Yes son, me too.”
It is encouraging for our sons to know they aren’t alone in battle – aren’t the only ones who are tempted and that God always provides a way to escape temptation. Sin is not inevitable. We aren’t victims.
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:13
4) Teach your son he is powerful because of the victory of Jesus Christ and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. The Scriptures say,
These things I have spoken to you that you might have peace. In this world you will have tribulation but, be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. John 16:33
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal (of the flesh), but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds. 2 Corinthians 10:4
5) Teach your son that he is a conqueror in this battle because the victory is already won.
. . . in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. Romans 8:37
. . . greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world. 1 John 4:4
6) Teach your son that sin does not have power over him. He can say “no” to temptation
For sin shall not have dominion over you; for you are not under the law but under grace. Romans 4:14
Of course, this all assumes your son has received the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. If your kids aren’t yet true believers and you’d like help with how to reach out to them with the Gospel, Click Here.
Our sons will only be able to resist the evil one if they understand the truth and then walk in it. Teaching them the Truth is our job, Dad & Mom. But, they need to see something else. Our children need good examples to follow. They need to see us walking in the Truth we are trying to teach them to walk in. Are you living a life of authentic faith in front of your children?
The enemy wants our sons (and parents!) to walk in defeat. Let’s be faithful teaching our sons to prepare for war. Only when they know the Truth and who they are in Christ will they be able to . . .
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and he will draw near to you. James 4:7,8
God bless you, Dad & Mom,
Matt Jacobson is the founder of FaithfulMan.com a biblical marriage, parenting, and discipleship ministry providing written and audio teaching, as well as couples marriage coaching. He is the co-host (with his wife, Lisa) of Faithful Life Podcast and is author of the bestseller, 100 Ways to Love Your Wife. Matt is pastor of Tumalo Bible Fellowship and is married to Lisa, founder of Club31Women.com (they have 8 kids!).