Unification News for

February 1998


Becoming the Kind of Father You Really Want to Be

Fatherhood is Not For Babies
by Emma S. Etuk, Ph.D.
Reviewed by Bob Selle

Being a father involves much more than just having sex and siring offspring. Dr. Emma S. Etuk, a Nigerian-American history professor who lives and works in the Washington, D.C., area, makes that point over and over again in his little 97-page book. [Emma is a male name in Nigeria].

In it, Etuk, who is also founder of Nigeria for Christ Ministries, draws heavily from the Bible to construct a model of the ideal father. His assumption is that you can't be a good father without approaching the ideal through the Word of God.

"In America today, fatherhood is highly sexualized," Etuk writes. "And children, the dear products of our procreative endeavors, have become the unpleasant casualties of our free-for- all, insatiable sexual appetites.

"Fatherhood is not for babies. It is for mature adults.'"

Since children are "God's precious gifts to us," each child needs as good a father as possible.

So how do we become a good father? Etuk asks us to look at God, the Heavenly Father, and at Jesus Christ, the perfect image of God.

Jesus well describes God's nature in his Sermon on the Mount. There, God is depicted as allowing His sun to shine on the just and the unjust. God is liberal and good. He is loving, tolerant, patient, kind, and forgiving. This is the way a father should be, Etuk says.

There are four requirements to being a good father: 1) physical maturity, 2) intellectual maturity, 3) financial maturity, and 4) spiritual maturity.

To be physically mature involves not just sexual maturity but sexual purity.

Intellectual maturity means having a good level of education, one which will allow the father to guide his children through the many challenging areas of the educational system and the rest of today's society.

Financial maturity involves keeping a stable, decent-paying job prior to having children.

Spiritual maturity means being thoroughly and deeply grounded in God's truth and in prayerful relationship with God.

All in all, Fatherhood Is Not for Babies is a good read-inspiring and conscience-rousing. It can be bought for $7.95 by calling 1-800-325-9492 or 1-800-688-4986. 

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