MOTHERS OF THE BIBLE

Have you ever wondered when Motherís Day began here in the United States?

President Woodrow Wilson signed a joint resolution in Congress on May 9, 1914, recommending that the federal government observe Mother's day. The next year, the president was authorized to proclaim an annual holiday. Though this is special one time event each year I think that we all should honor our mothers on daily basis. Before I begin my lesson I just want share with you a few things about mothers.

What is a mother?

        A mother is one who will nourish, love and care for her child.

        A mother is a night watchman as she keeps a ear out for her childs cry at night and will immediately spring out of bed to comfort her child

        A mother is a doctor and nurse all rolled into one. No matter what kind of boo boo a child has it is only a mothers kiss can make it feel better.

        A mother is one who can change a stinky diaper with a smile on her face.

        A mother is a time keeper as she keeps up all the events in her childís life and she makes sure they make it to them on time.

        She doubles as taxi driver or chauffer whatever it takes to get their child where they needs to go.

        She is a chef and makes meals that are best for her children

        A mother is a councilor and works with her childrenís emotions during difficult times.

        A mother is a referee when it comes to disputes between her children.

        A mother is a great comforter when her child wakes up from a bad dream or bad weather.

        A mother is great encourager one who gives her child what they need to succeed.

Although overworked and underpaid, Mother doesn't complain. She would work her fingers to the bone for her children. She'd come to their rescue, no matter what the cause. These are, after all, her God-given 'talents' to take and use for the glory of God. HE expects Mother to raise and nurture her 'children' to become the best they can be in this world, and equip them for what is needed to get to the other side!

The Bible tells us in many places that a mother is to be honored. In fact it was the 5th commandment in the 10 commandments found in:

 

Exodus 20:12 ††12 " Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the LORD your God is giving you. ††We also find in the NT as well in:

 

Ephesians 6:1-3 Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.2 "Honor your father and mother," which is the first commandment with promise:3 "that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth."

 

So as you can see our mothers are to be respected and honored and not just on mothers day but on every day.

 

Sarah Abrahamís wife

 

The impatient mother.

 

God had made a promise to Abraham that his descendents would be more numerous than the stars and no doubt Sarah was aware of this but much time had went by and she had not yet conceived. She apparently thought that she was never going to conceive but she was not going to let her infertility stop her from providing Abraham with children.

 

Genesis 16:1 Now Sarai, Abram's wife, had borne him no children. And she had an Egyptian maidservant whose name was Hagar.2 So Sarai said to Abram, "See now, the LORD has restrained me from bearing children. Please, go in to my maid; perhaps I shall obtain children by her." And Abram heeded the voice of Sarai.3 Then Sarai, Abram's wife, took Hagar her maid, the Egyptian, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan.4 So he went in to Hagar, and she conceived. And when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress became despised in her eyes.

 

We learn Sarah has taken matters into her own hands and it works. She gives her maid servant to Abraham and she was able to bear Abraham a son. Some might say, oh thatís wonderful she accomplished her goal. However, this was not in Gods plan. Sarah took matters into her own hands and tried to take them out of Gods hands. A lot of people are like Sarah in this regards. When we donít get the results we want from God in a timely manner, what do we do? We take matters into our own hands just like Sarah did and most the time when we do this the result do not come out like we want them to. Thatís what happened to Sarah when Hagar bore a child for Abraham. Apparently Hagar was dishonoring Sarah because she could not conceive. Perhaps she was making mean comments such as donít you wish you could produce a child like me. Because of this Sarah dealt with her maid harshly and Sarah very unhappy about this whole mess. Iím sure Sarah wished that she had never taken matters into her own hands. She should have just waited on the lord and trusted in him. We have all felt like Sarah because we have all taken matters into our own hands and then after we did whatever it was then we found ourselves asking the question, why oh why did I do that?

 

Now after Sarah was way past the age to conceive a child God lets Abraham know that is Sarah was not going to bear a child.

 

Genesis 17: 17 Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said in his heart, "Shall a child be born to a man who is one hundred years old? And shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?"18 And Abraham said to God, "Oh, that Ishmael might live before You!"19 Then God said: "No, Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac; I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his descendants after him.20 "And as for Ishmael, I have heard you. Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly. He shall beget twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation.21 "But My covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah shall bear to you at this set time next year."

 

Even Abraham was amazed at what the Lord was telling him. This just go to show you that with God all things are possible. So, a great lesson we can learn from Sarah is to not take matters into our own hands, but to be patient and put our trust in Gods timing.

 

Hannah is a good of example of this.

 

This story is found in 1Samuel. We learn from 1Sam 1:1-7 that a man by the name of Elkanah (L- ka- naw) had 2 wives named Peninnah (pen- in Ė naw) and Hannah. Peninnah was able to have children but Hannah could not. When they would go once a year to worship God and make sacrifices Elkanah would make an offering and give a portion to Peninnah and her children but he would give a double portion to Hannah because he loved her so much even though she had not bore him any children. This was very troublesome to Hannah and all she wanted to do was to be a mother and it certainly didnít help matters when Peninnah would give her a hard time about not having any children yet.

 

1 Samuel 1:8 Then Elkanah her husband said to her, "Hannah, why do you weep? Why do you not eat? And why is your heart grieved? Am I not better to you than ten sons?"9 So Hannah arose after they had finished eating and drinking in Shiloh. Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat by the doorpost of the tabernacle of the LORD.10 And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed to the LORD and wept in anguish.11 Then she made a vow and said, "O LORD of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your maidservant, but will give Your maidservant a male child, then I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life, and no razor shall come upon his head."

 

As you can see Hannah was getting very depressed she prayed to God from her heart with eyes full of tears. She poured her soul out to the Lord and asked him to allow her conceive a son and that she would give him to the lord all the days of his life. She put her trust in the Lord and the lord heard her prayer and answered it and she bore a son. She even named him with an appropriate name because Samuel means ďAsked him of the Lord.Ē Now she stayed at home with Samuel until he was weaned then she took him to the priest to let him forever serve the Lord.

 

1 Samuel 1:24 Now when she had weaned him, she took him up with her, with three bulls, one ephah of flour, and a skin of wine, and brought him to the house of the LORD in Shiloh. And the child was young.25 Then they slaughtered a bull, and brought the child to Eli.26 And she said, "O my lord! As your soul lives, my lord, I am the woman who stood by you here, praying to the LORD.27 "For this child I prayed, and the LORD has granted me my petition which I asked of Him.28 "Therefore I also have lent him to the LORD; as long as he lives he shall be lent to the LORD." So they worshiped the LORD there.

 

Not only did Hannah do the right thing by trusting in God and his timing. She also kept her promise she made to the Lord about giving her son over to him. Since Hannah was so faithful and a wonderful mother we learn that God blessed her with even more children.

 

1 Samuel 2:20 And Eli would bless Elkanah and his wife, and say, "The LORD give you descendants from this woman for the loan that was given to the LORD." Then they would go to their own home.21 And the LORD visited Hannah, so that she conceived and bore three sons and two daughters. Meanwhile the child Samuel grew before the LORD.

 

Jochebed (jock Ė a Ė bed) Moses Mother

 

She is good example at what a mother is willing to do to save her child.

 

Exodus 2:1 And a man of the house of Levi went and took as wife a daughter of Levi.2 So the woman conceived and bore a son. And when she saw that he was a beautiful child, she hid him three months.3 But when she could no longer hide him, she took an ark of bulrushes for him, daubed it with asphalt and pitch, put the child in it, and laid it in the reeds by the river's bank.4 And his sister stood afar off, to know what would be done to him.5 Then the daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the river. And her maidens walked along the riverside; and when she saw the ark among the reeds, she sent her maid to get it.6 And when she had opened it, she saw the child, and behold, the baby wept. So she had compassion on him, and said, "This is one of the Hebrews' children."7 Then his sister said to Pharaoh's daughter, "Shall I go and call a nurse for you from the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for you?"8 And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Go." So the maiden went and called the child's mother.9 Then Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Take this child away and nurse him for me, and I will give you your wages." So the woman took the child and nursed him.10 And the child grew, and she brought him to Pharaoh's daughter, and he became her son. So she called his name Moses, saying, "Because I drew him out of the water."

 

Moses mother loved him dearly and she was not about to have him thrown in the river because of the Pharaohs command. Now as we readthe story of what happened its easy to see that Jochebed was taking a big risk is putting her son on the river and allowing the Pharaohs daughter to see him. She could of easily order her servants to drown baby Moses. But, when the Pharaohs daughter saw the baby cry her heart melted. I think this would be a common response with just about any women. There seems to be a naturaldesire for most women to embrace a child that is crying and that is what Pharaohs daughter did. But, what I really like about this story is that Jochebed had the opportunity to teach Moses about God and the children of Israel until he was weaned and thisteaching stuck with him and never forgot it. I believe the influence that his mother had on him led him to defend one of his own fellow Hebrew people. Remember how he struck the Egyptian dead who was oppressing the Hebrew slave? Of course we all know that Moses goes on to be a very Godly man who leads the children of Israel out of Egyptian bondage.

 

All mothersand fathers alike can learn a great lesson from Jochebed. Its very important that we teach our children about God early on. What we teach them now will stick with them for the rest of their lives and will influence how they live their life in the future. We must understand that as Christian parents and grandparents that our children and our grandchildren look at us for examples. So you see, there is a great need for us to live a righteous life. In my lifetime I ran across people who will have all kinds of beer their refrigerator and they will tell their children that drinking is bad for them and that they cannot drink yet dad and mom drink like fish. What kind of message does that send to your children? I can tell most of them will end sneaking a drink so they feel big like mom and dad and chances are when they grow up and get out on their own their refrigerator will be full of beer as well. If you donít want your kids to drink than you shouldnít drink either. If you donít want your kids to use bad language then you donít use bad language. If youíre going to teach someone to do something you must set the example. This principle doesnít just apply to parents and grandparents it applies to all Christian in every situation.

 

If your friends and co-workers know that you are faithful Christian and they catch you doing something that a Christians should not do then you lose some of your ability to be a Godly example.

 

One last thought. I stated that we need to start teaching our children at a very young age but I want you to know that it doesnít matter how old your children are you should never give up on them. Take every opportunity you can to teach them more about God because you never know what influence you may still have on them. So never give up.

 

 

Naomi

 

Now lets turn our attention to Naomi and we will see a mother who shows great love to her daughter-in-law. Naomi was married and had 2 sons who were married to 2 women of Moab. Naomi was no doubt a very loving mother. But, the unthinkable happens and her husband dies then about 10 years later both her sons die. Parents never want to live longer than their children. Naomi decides to go back to Judah where she was from and her daughter- in Ėlaws wanted to go with her.

 

Again, this would indicate what kind of loving women this was that these ladies desired to stay with her. She tries to persuade them to go the mothers and leave her. One of them listens but Ruth does not.

 

 

 

Ruth 1:16 But Ruth said: "Entreat me not to leave you, Or to turn back from following after you; For wherever you go, I will go; And wherever you lodge, I will lodge; Your people shall be my people, And your God, my God.17 Where you die, I will die, And there will I be buried. The LORD do so to me, and more also, If anything but death parts you and me."

 

This shows how much love and dedication she had for her mother-in-law. They arrive at Bethlehem and Ruth goes out into the fields to gather up heads of grain. The field she goes to belongs to Boaz who is related to Naomi. Ruth catches the eye of Boaz and he wants her to continue to gather food from his field and to hang around his maid servants and she does this. When Naomi hears about this she gets excited for her daughter-in-law and she gives her good advice on how to be pleasing to Boaz and to gain favor in his site.

 

Sure enough Naomi advice pays off and Boaz and Ruth become married and have a child named Obed who would become Davidís grandfather. Naomi once again had the opportunity to hold a child in her hands and no doubt as a grandmother she helped take care and loved this grandchild very much. We can safely assume thatRuth would have learned a great deal about being a good mother from Ruth.

 

This is just another wonderful aspect of what mothers can do. We have looked a several mothers this morning and their characteristics. We have learned how important mothers are and how they are to be honored. We have also learned that we must be patient and trust in Lord timing and that there is great need for us to teach our children and our grandchildren about god and to be good examples for them and to those out in the world. As we grow in our Christianity I hope that we will all strive to do these very things.