What We Get From Our Fathers

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Generational sins cast a long shadow. Patterns of toxic behavior are easily passed down from parents to children. But there is hope of breaking free. David’s failures as a father in 2 Samuel show us the dangers of abdicating power and responsibility. Yet his story also points us to a greater King and Father who offers a new way.

  1. Sin is contagious and it passes from generation to generation. David’s sons sinned in similar ways that David had sinned.
  2. David failed as a father in two major ways: by not executing justice when Amnon assaulted Tamar, and by not pursuing and connecting with his sons for many years. His passivity and cowardice allowed his sons to sin.
  3. The greatest sin in the story is David’s abdication of power and responsibility as both a father and a king. His unwillingness to use his power for good allowed evil to flourish.
  4. Breaking generational patterns of sin is difficult but possible through the power of the Spirit, prayer, community, and focusing on God as our Heavenly Father. Jesus sets a better example of how to lead and parent than David did.
  5. As followers of Christ, we are called to be pattern breakers – to love, pursue and connect in ways our own fathers did not. God’s love and grace can heal us and transform us to be the kind of parents our children need.

The choice is ours. Will we remain trapped in the sins of our fathers, or will we follow the example of Christ and become pattern breakers? Will we abdicate power or use it for good?

Our heavenly Father longs to heal our wounds, restore our hope, and transform us into the kind of parents our children deserve. Will we let him? Will we pursue our children with love, sacrifice everything to reconnect with them, run to embrace them before they are even in sight?

The power to change the story exists within us, if only we will set our hearts fully on the Heavenly Father who runs to meet us.


2 Samuel 13:1-15

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