Why the Community Suffers When Mature Fathers Are Silent

We need our men, in particularly our fathers. They are the ones who provide structure, identity, fear, and reverence for society—showing that actions have consequences. Those of us who have grown up in households with our fathers know what I mean. When your mom said, “I’m going to tell your father, “The fear of God came over you. All fathers have something important to offer even in their process’ of maturation.

Mom could give us a whipping, but it was nothing like the discipline of our father. This was acceptable as our men hold a position of authority as the head of the household keeping the household in order. This same structure of discipline was missing in King David’s household. Even though, he was a man of war along with his brothers; the bible is silent on David or Shimeah, David’s brother providing discipline or correction to their children which led to confusion and an early death for two of the sons of David’s household.

You know the story of Amnon and Tamar. Amnon loved Tamar but lacked the wisdom of a father in how to properly pursue the woman he loved. Thus, he experimented on her with perverted wisdom from his cousin. The result was the rape of his half-sister, which it was normal to marry half-sisters in those days.

David did not see this rape coming. So, he was inactive in protecting his virgin daughter. She had to rip off her virgin garments and take her place among the unmarried women who were no longer virgins. This had an effect on her worth as the community she lived in placed a heavy value on virgin women. So much so, that a man could return his wife after consummation if he suspected she was not a virgin.

Tamar needed reassurance. Amnon needed correction, punishment and discipline, and instruction from his father David. His deceitful cousin needed direction badly from his father Shimei. The silence of their fathers still spoke causing more confusion. There is a proverb that says a child left to himself brings his mother to shame.

The other side of that says the rod of correction and reproof brings wisdom. A person doesn’t have to be a literal child but immature in areas where wisdom and correction are needed. When the oversight of a wise parent isn’t there such as a father or mother—the child is left to his/her immature devices making hurtful and many times unnecessary mistakes.  This is true of the stats on fatherless children.

Absalom is the second son who was affected by the silence of his father and uncle. He decided to lean to his own devices taking justice into his own hands. He murdered his half-brother Amnon. His next feat was to raise his hand against his father. He must have felt he could rule with justice greater than his father. This led to his early death. We all know David was a man after God’s own heart full of wisdom and favor. How did that wisdom not get passed down to his sons?

Aside from his indiscretion in seeking a married woman and the murder of her husband, he was very qualified to intervene showing justice and providing instruction to his sons. Whatever it is occupying the time of our men, our fathers—please seek to place instructing your sons and maybe additional sons at the highest priority. If men do not, just like David’s family suffered rape and two unnecessary early deaths—our communities will experience the same. The more men are in the position the better chance we have to form healthy marriages that lead to healthy families and healthy communities.

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