4 Characteristics of a Godly Dad

Dad and daughter(If you like, click “play” on the video below to listen to the audio as you follow along with the text.)

Pastor Mike here.

I want to talk to you about being a father your kids can count on.

And the way I want to do it is by offering you four characteristics of a godly dad.

Jesus’s earthly father, Joseph, displays each of the characteristics in Matthew 1:18-25.

JOSEPH CONTROLS HIMSELF SEXUALLY

The first characteristic Joseph displays is: He controls himself sexually. How do we know it? Well, we know it from v. 18 and 25…

Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows. When His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together (that’s the part of the verse I wanted you to see) – before they (Joseph and Mary) came together. (Matthew 1:18)

And then now in the last part of v. 24 and then in 25, it goes on…

And [Joseph] took her (Mary) as his wife and kept her a virgin until she gave birth to a Son – and kept her a virgin until she gave birth to a Son. (Matthew 1:24-25)

And so according to these two verses, Joseph controls himself sexually both before and during marriage.

Do you see that in Matthew 1:18 and 25?

It’s the first characteristic of a godly dad that Joseph displays and that our kids need: Fathers who are not controlled by the flesh, but by the Spirit.

JOSEPH TREATS HIS WIFE LIKE A GENTLEMAN

And then now the second characteristic of a godly dad that Joseph displays is: He treats his wife (to be!) like a gentleman even when she “fails” him.

In the last part of v. 18 and then v. 19 we discover that…

[S]he (Mary) was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man, and not wanting to disgrace her, desired to put her away secretly. (Matthew 1:18-19)

And most men discovering their fiance sleeping around (though Mary really isn’t) would have blown their tops. And then to be pregnant, too?! But Joseph isn’t like this. And even though he has a lump in his throat, a hole in his heart and his dreams are shattered, Joseph treats Mary like a gentleman even when she “fails” him.

And when he could have had her publicly humiliated and made her life miserable, Joseph doesn’t do it.

It’s the second characteristic of a godly dad that Joseph displays and that our kids need: Fathers who forgive and trust God even in the midst of the most heart-wrenching and painful circumstances.

JOSEPH IS SPIRITUALLY SENSITIVE

And then now the third characteristic of a godly dad that Joseph displays is: He is spiritually sensitive to the things of God.

In v. 20 and 21, it reads…

But when he (Joseph) had considered this (had considered the surprise pregnancy of Mary and divorcing her secretly), behold an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for that which has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:20-21)

And you gotta believe Joseph is seeking the Lord for his part (being the righteous man that he is) over what’s happened to him and his wife-to-be and crying out to God in his spirit. (Ya think?)

And then God speaks to Joseph. And the bottom line of it: Joseph knows it’s God speaking to him. How does Joseph know? Because he’s spiritually sensitive to the things of God.

It’s the third characteristic of a godly dad that Joseph displays and that our kids need: Fathers who can tell when it’s the Lord’s voice versus when it’s the pizza they had for dinner the night before.

JOSEPH DOES WHAT THE LORD TELLS HIM TO DO

And then now the fourth characteristic of a godly dad that Joseph displays is: Joseph does what the Lord tells him to do.

Matthew 1:24 reads:

And Joseph arose from his sleep, and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him [in the dream].

And it’ll be just so important for Jesus to have a dad that’s an example of obedience.

And as this crazy story of a woman getting pregnant by the Holy Spirit and then Christ’s father’s challenged to accept or not accept marrying her still – and he accepts it – and despite it’s craziness it ends up being God’s plan!

Jesus needs to have a dad that’s an example of obedience as He Himself is going to face the very same thing in His own life.

“What do you mean, die on a cross to save the world? That’s crazy! Isn’t there an alternative?”

Jesus is gonna face a similar scenario like Joseph did where He’s going to have to come to grips with God’s plan for His life that seems crazy.

Joseph’s a pioneer for his Son (Christ) in this way. I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about it. Joseph’s walked the path and shown that sometimes God’s plan is crazy. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t God’s plan.

It’s the fourth characteristic of a godly dad that Joseph displays and that our kids need: Fathers who do what the Lord tells them to do. Fathers who obey God.

(If you can’t see this video, click here.)

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About Mike Campagna

Mike Campagna (affectionately known by some as Pastor Mike) is making the most of web technologies to encourage disciples. A self-proclaimed “twitterholic,” one twitter follower describes him as the "jogging, blogging, tweeting Pastor." Visits to Pastor Mike’s blog (http://www.aheartforgod.org) number in the hundreds of thousands. His video blogs have been viewed over a half a million times. His day job is content manager/social media specialist for Sugar Pine Realty. Pastor Mike and his family have lived in the Sonora area of California since 1997.