Today we come to the 5th Commandment. I’m going to speak about that today.
We’re looking at what we can learn from the Book of Exodus and Israel’s journeys through the wilderness. And we’ve started looking at the 10 Commandments, the central event of the Old Testament in which God gives His commandments to His people.
All that comes after that is really about how they will be blessed as they keep God’s Commandments, and the judgment that would come upon them as they fail to keep God’s Commandments.
The 5th Commandment is in Exodus chapter 20 verse 12:
Honour your father and mother. There’s a basic assumption here that that you have a father and mother which no one would have challenged until our generation when, strangely, we have all kinds of weird and wonderful people who are saying that we have to be ‘gender fluid’, that we can’t talk about mother and father, we have to talk instead about ‘parent’, that you can’t have Mother’s Day, you have to have ‘Happy Birthing Parent’s Day’ apparently.
You have equality which means that you mustn’t use terms like ‘father’, ‘mother’, ‘son’, ‘daughter’, ‘brother’, ‘sister’, you have to talk about ‘parent’, ‘sibling’, ‘child’. And that’s happening both in America and here, in this country, and it is an attempt to obliterate the difference in sexuality and to erase, basically, what is part of our human nature.
A CNN reporter apparently said recently: ‘It’s not possible to know a person’s gender identity at birth, there’s no consensus criteria for assigning sex at birth.’
What do you make of that statement? How can anyone actually say that? Since the very beginning of time, in every culture, in every place, you can tell the gender or the sex of a child at birth simply by looking between its legs and seeing what is there.
And yet, somehow, these apparently intelligent people who often come out of universities and work in all kinds of places like CNN and the BBC, can’t tell the difference between a boy and a girl. Extraordinary!
And they say that you can change from being a boy into a girl, ‘gender fluidity’.
And this is all part of an assault upon the basic order which God has given in family life: a man and a woman become one and bring forth children.
There’s a pastor called John Sherwood who was arrested in Uxbridge just recently for making, apparently, homophobic statements after preaching from the Bible. He said that he was treated shamefully for doing ‘what my job description says‘. As he was arrested someone said ‘this is a Christian country’.
So, you don’t do this kind of thing in a Christian country. He was led away because the police had received complaints about his homophobic comments. He said:
Up until relatively recently, but very recently in human history, that would have not been a particularly outrageous statement. And yet, we find now that it’s apparently something which you can be arrested for saying publicly.
An extraordinary state of affairs which shows just how far our society is going from the will of God and from the word of God. An assault on the Gospel, in fact, an assault on the message of creation: that God made us, an assault on the family, and an assault on the Bible.
It does go right back to Genesis. In fact, when we’re looking at the 10 Commandments, you can’t understand them unless you believe Genesis 1 to 3:
Genesis 1 tells us that God made us. God made us in His image. God, therefore, has a right to give us instructions on how we’re to live, and we have to follow the Maker’s instructions.
Evolution tells us that there’s no God in creation, that we just come here by a series of accidents and that it happened over millions of years. Therefore, there is no God, there is no reason why we should keep God’s Commandments. We can make up our own rules about how to live and do what we like, which is what we see pretty much happening in many areas of our society today.
This it leads to a breakdown of family life and of values. But when we look at this subject of honour your father and mother, we have to embrace it in the whole concept of human sexuality and the human family life which is part of the creation mandate. It’s part of what God gave us in creation.
God tells us that humans are created in the image of God, distinct from animals. With a spiritual nature able to relate to God. Also, we are made by God as male and female, therefore, we have ‘fathers’ and ‘mothers’ who can have ‘sons’ and ‘daughters’, who can have ‘brothers’ and ‘sisters’. And we have that whole pattern of life which is given to us by God in the Bible, and the pattern of God for fathers and mothers is to care for their children, and for sons and daughters, to honour their fathers and mothers.
In Genesis chapter 1, the very first chapter of the Bible, in verse 26, God says:
So God created man in His own image, in the image of God. He created them male and female. He created them, and God blessed them and said to them: be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth and subdue it, have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, over every living thing that moves upon the earth.
Two very clear things come out of that:
1. That humans are distinct from animals, and
2. That humans are made up of male and female who are both human but are different.
And that’s God’s design. God’s design in creation was determined in making us male and female.
And if you think about it, as I was saying earlier, this current assault on this view with transsexuality, homosexuality, all these things is actually not just an assault on general moral values, it’s an assault on God, on God in creation.
God in creation made them male and female, and He made all creatures, almost all creatures, male and female. They have their seed within them, they’re able to reproduce after their own kind, and all this has to be evidence of God in creation.
If you come to my meetings, you know that I am a creationist. I believe that, in the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. I believe that that is the only logical and real description of what happened in the beginning. Evolution is an idea which has come about in the last 200 years. It is based upon human speculation about what happened at the beginning, by people who weren’t there at the beginning.
Everything the evolutionists decode about evolution they’re reading into evidence which they see in ‘the here and now’, which they project back to the beginning of time, but it’s speculation, it’s not provable because the events can’t be reproduced, they can’t be recreated.
We have a description in the Bible of what happened in the beginning by one who was there. Now, we weren’t there, so we have to decide: Do we believe what God says about how we came to be here? Or do we believe what men say about how we came to be here?
And it makes a huge difference about how we see everything that follows, including most of the Bible, and to how we live.
I believe that the evidence is clear that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth and when we look at the subject of masculinity and femininity, male and female, and procreation, it’s one of the clearest evidences to me of God in creation. It can’t have come about simply by the random process of evolution.
One of the arguments which creationists like myself use against evolution is what we call ‘irreducible complexity’. It sounds a long word but I’ll tell you what it means quite simply: that there are certain things which are so incredibly complex and that, without them, you cannot have life. Therefore, they must have been designed.
Think about that in your life. You have eyes which are incredibly complex. So much so that Darwin himself said that:
That’s what Darwin said.
Richard Dawkins says: ‘Well, it could have happened over millions of generations.’ But you then have to ask the question: How did those generations survive for millions of years if they were all blind? What’s the answer to that?
You then have the idea that it all came about by an accident, and by a gradual progression. But you if think about the complexity of your body, your brain, your heart, your lungs, your life, your bloodstream, it’s all incredibly complex and it all has to work together.
Therefore, someone must have designed it and it must have had a beginning by somebody who knew how to design it. And anyone clever enough to do that would be God.
When you come to sexual reproduction, that, to me, is one of the clearest things that could never have come about through evolution.
Following the process of evolution, these things have to come about over millions of years, by gradual development.
If you think about sexual reproduction, you have a male and a female who are both of the same species, that have different body parts and those different body parts, coming together, (the sperm fertilizing the egg in the womb) produce the child. It’s the only way it can happen, the only way you can procreate.
It didn’t evolve over millions of years. The only logical event explanation for it is what God says in the beginning: that all creatures have their seed within them able to reproduce after their own kind, whether it’s birds or bees or humans, fish, whatever. They all have different body parts of the same species which are able to reproduce and it’s a sign of the the fact of God in creation.
When you attack this, you’re actually attacking God, His Word and His order for society.
As we go on in Genesis, we see that the next passage in Genesis chapter 2 verse 24 says:
The first institution in the Bible is the family. Before the church, before the government, before the synagogue, the temple or anything else, God speaks about the family. The man shall leave his father and mother, and become one flesh, that is, be joined to his wife.
They shall become one flesh, they become one flesh and by becoming one flesh they then create the next generation. And the next generation does the same thing, and so does the next generation, and so, the human race survives by procreating according to God’s plan.
That gives us the first reason to honor your father and mother. Why do you honor your father and mother? Because they gave us life. Without them there is no coming into this world, there’s no coming together for life.
Mother, in particular, plays a very hard role in bringing us into life, in going through nine months of relatively hard labor which becomes very hard labor when it comes to the actual birth of the child.
So we have to give honour and thanks to our parents because they have brought us into life and because, whatever the circumstances of our birth, whether we come from a loving family or the opposite, everyone has a father and a mother.
You can’t come into the world without having a father and mother.
Now, sadly, some may not know their father and mother for various reasons, and may not have experienced good things at their hands. But, as I said, it’s impossible to become a human being without a male father who provides a seed and the mother who provides the egg that is fertilized by the sperm in reproduction. And that’s one, first, primary reason why we should honour our father and mother, because they gave us life just as God gave us life in the first place.
Those who’ve received life should give thanks to the ones who have given them life. And the Bible says we should honour them. In fact, It says honour your father and mother, full stop!
It doesn’t say ‘if they’re good parents’, it just says honour your father and mother. So, there is some basic Commandment which God gives us to give thanks and to honour our father and mother for giving us life.
Now, there are reasons why people may not have respect for their parents. Parents may have broken the 7th Commandment, they may have committed adultery, fornication. We have to recognize that we live in a fallen world and this area of sexuality is one of the areas which Satan attacks most strongly, to cause problems in people’s lives and the Bible tells us always that sex outside of marriage is always wrong.
The reason for that is that every sexual act has the possibility that it’s going to bring forth a child. We could say we have contraception now, so that changes things slightly but the actual act itself can always bring forth a child.
Bringing forth a child carries great responsibility. Therefore, God says that first you should come together in marriage, be committed one to another so that if a child comes out of your relationship (a man with a woman), then you’ll care for that child. You then look after it and you have a responsibility not just to your husbands, to wives until death do you apart, but also, to your children right through their lives.
So, there is a prohibition if you like, in the Bible, on sex our side of marriage because it’s irresponsible. It may bring forth a child and when it does happen, most likely, very often in our society today, the father ‘does a bunk’ and leaves the woman with the child and that creates the fatherless children of whom we have many of in our society.
Once, when I was traveling, I had an image of this, when I was up in the North of Norfolk and there’s an area near King’s Lynn where the river Ouse is actually higher than the ground that surrounds it below. The river is higher than the land around it. The land is so low that big barriers called levees have been built for the river flow through.
I felt the Lord said that ‘those levees are like the barriers which I give on human sexuality. If you take them away, then the river becomes something destructive. It’s going to flood and destroy the land round about it. If the banks are there, then the river flows and it’s productive, it can be used for boating, for pleasure, for fishing, for trade. All kinds of useful things can come from it, but, take them away, and it becomes a destructive thing.’
I saw that as God’s rules on sexuality are kept, sexuality becomes something which is creative and good in God’s sight. If they are taken away, sexuality then becomes something which is destructive and which ends up destroying the neighbourhood round about.
We see of course in our society already the wreckage caused by sexual immorality, unwanted children, fatherless children, single mothers, unfaithfulness, divorce, abortion and homosexuality. Now, we have transsexuality, and all these things come to spoil human life.
God’s rule is pretty clear, it’s pretty simple. It says: sex within marriage is okay, it’s good. Sex outside of marriage is NOT okay. It’s very simple but not so easy to do.
The Bible is pretty clear it says: male is male, female is female and you can’t change it.
I said it’s not easy to do but it’s actually easy to do if you just keep God’s rules, keep God’s Commandments.
The Bible is also very clear that marriage is a relationship of a man and a woman, not of a man and a man, or of a woman and a woman. And if to our society today that sounds discriminatory and unfair, well, tough! That’s how it is. We have to accept what God says and it is something which has been accepted pretty much by all cultures up until now.
It’s only in the last, I suppose it began in the 60s with ‘the swinging 60s’, when I sort of came to age, but now it has accelerated to encompass most things I’ve been talking about.