Happy Father’s Day!
Seven months ago, I preached my Dad’s funeral after he died of a heart attack at 54 years of age. At his funeral, I thanked God for my tears. I thanked him for giving me a dad that I cried for, a dad that I hurt for. I thanked God that I had a dad I would miss; one that taught me so many valuable lessons, a dad that truly loved me unconditionally.
Today, I remain thankful for my Dad, and yet my thoughts go to the dad’s all over South Africa that are teaching their sons doctrines contrary to the Scriptures!
The “Abakwetha” ceremony is one in which the elders of a tribe will gather the young men, ranging in age from 17 – 20, they will be circumcised, and for the next nine weeks instruct them in what it means to be a man.
They begin the ceremony by sacrificing a lamb, and a witch doctor will then conduct the operation on the young men. The elders, dad’s and granddad’s of these young men, will teach them that being man means having multiple women, and that there is no reason to be faithful to one woman. They will tell them they are not really a man if they do not have multiple partners. They will teach their sons that they must sacrifice in order to appease their ancestors. They will teach them that a man can handle his alcohol. They will spend the next several weeks teaching them doctrines of “manhood” that will send their sons to a Devil’s Hell!
I pray that through the power of the gospel, that we will be able to teach them the Word of God, and that being a man of God is the most rewarding position we may ever hold! I pray that I will demonstrate these lessons first to my own sons and that they will become men of God because it was first exemplified in my life! Today, my prayer for father’s day is that God will allow me to see a generation of young men that will be taught that true manhood is attained by submitting ourselves to Jesus Christ and being faithful to preach and proclaim His gospel to a lost and dying world!
Your Missionaries to South Africa,
Stephen, Ashlee, Peyton, and Eli
The Underwood Family