“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Proverbs 1:7
We are wrapping up a month of April wisdom, and I’ve shared some Strong Links with you that I’ve enjoyed. I want to pass along one more today as I think about fathering my kids.
Most of us know J.R.R. Tolkien as the author of The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy. But he was also a husband to his wife Edith and a father of four children – three boys and one girl, just like me. The famed writer used his gift to write a legacy of letters to his kids, many specifically for his sons regarding their sexual integrity. He urged them to maintain a biblical worldview even though it was very contrary to the worldly norms, even in 1941. Dr. Al Mohler shared pieces of them in his essay, “From Father to Son – J.R.R. Tolkien on Sex,” and I would urge you to take a look. It is full of wisdom and great perspective on sexuality with the Christian view of marriage.
When his sons were surrounded by a culture promoting sexual promiscuity, Tolkien was urging holy restraint. When the world pushed sexual pursuits without boundaries, he directed them towards the joys and satisfactions of monogamous marriage.
“He knew he was out of step, and he steadfastly refused to update his morality in order to pass the muster of the moderns.”
When biblical wisdom doesn’t line up with what surrounds us in the world, what’s the first to go? Do we deemphasize the Bible because it doesn’t fit our experience, or do we use the Bible as the plumb line against which to measure our experience? Godly wisdom doesn’t change. It doesn’t update to fit the morals of the day.
The more we hold fast to our biblical ethics, the more we stand out in society, and that’s exactly what we are called to do.
Philippians 2:15-16 emphasizes that we live in the middle of a “crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life,” just as Paul did.
If someone accused you of being out-of-step with the times, would you take it as a compliment?
Tolkien took it seriously that it was his job to teach his sons. One of the greatest things we can do as dads is to share the wisdom we’ve learned and the wisdom we wish we learned with them. It reminds me of King Solomon, known as the wisest of biblical kings, who shared his wisdom with “my sons” in the book of Proverbs.
Dads, if we don’t step up to the plate to urge our children in the ways of biblical wisdom, they will naturally fall prey to the culture around them.
If you don’t know where to start, check out our Sexual Integrity Resources and share them with your sons and daughters. It’s a great place to begin finding practical resources that line up with biblical wisdom.