Affirming Motherhood

May 12th, 2019 Mother’s Day

Minoh International Church
Pastor Joseph Ricohermoso
Text: Select Bible passages


A video clip – “Kid Advice”

This is a Mother’s Day sermon. I’m preaching with much appreciation for that time-honored institution without the benefit of which we wouldn’t be here!

First of all, let me say that we shouldn’t get too sentimental about motherhood because:

  1. for some, biological motherhood isn’t possible;
  2. for some, mothers weren’t all that nice;
  3. for some, motherhood is “an accident,” and not always a welcome one;
  4. for some, motherhood under the very best of circumstances is still less than a bed of roses and a primrose path.

So, with all those qualifications, why bother with Mother’s Day at all?

I’ll tell you why — because for all its stumbling blocks, pitfalls and broken dreams, for all the soiled diapers, soiled wallpaper and spoiled plans, we’re talking about a beautiful ideal, a natural part of God’s creative plan to bring love and caring to light.

Motherhood is a constant demand for the gift of love and caring. Motherhood is a God‐given role. Take for example these biblical characters with this God-given role of motherhood:

  • Eve – the mother of all living
    イブ – 全人類の母

And Adam called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all living.
Genesis 3:20

20 アダムは妻をエバ〔「いのちを与える者」の意〕と呼びました。彼女が全人類の母となるからです。
創世記 3:20 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

  • Sarah – mother of nations
    サラ – 国々の母

“And I [God] will bless her and also give you a son by her; then I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of peoples shall be from her.”
Genesis 17:16

16 わたしは彼女を祝福する。彼女はあなたに男の子を産むだろう。すばらしい祝福を与えて、彼女を国々の母とする。彼女の子孫からは多くの王が出る。」
創世記 17:16 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

  • Mary, the mother of our Lord Jesus
    マリア – イエス様の母

30 Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus.
Luke 1:30~31

30 すると、天使が言いました。「こわがらなくてもいいのです、マリヤ。神様があなたにすばらしいことをしてくださるのです。 31 あなたはみごもって、男の子を産みます。その子を『イエス』と名づけなさい。
ルカの福音書 1:30-31 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

  1. Motherhood must be received, embraced and celebrated.
  1. The modern woman and motherhood

The rise of the feminist movement and their rallying cry for equal rights have contributed in the current trend and attitudes concerning the modern family. Without being simplistic and it’s obviously beyond the scope of today’s 30-minute message, we can barely scratch the surface to describe this societal change.

  1. Attitude

A lady in her late 30’s wants to be a mother but not a wife; more and more millennials marry later than the previous generations and thus delaying having children, and almost missing the childbearing age.

  1. Career and family:

Working mothers versus stay‐at‐home Moms. It’s almost always an either/or proposition rather than a both/and arrangement.
働く母 対 専業主婦。その話はいつもどちらかという話になり、どちらもという話になかなかなりません。

No one deserves a special day all to herself more than today’s Mom.

A cartoon showed a psychologist talking to his patient: “Let’s see,” he said, “You spend 50 percent of your energy on your job, 50 percent on your husband and 50 percent on your children. I think I see your problem.”

  1. It is not a curse. Though sin brought pain in childbirth.

16 To the woman He said: “I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; In pain you shall bring forth children.”
Genesis 3:16

16 次に女に向かって、神は言いました。「あなたは苦しみ抜いて子どもを産む。それでもなお夫の愛を求めるが、彼はあなたを支配する。」
創世記 3:16 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

But Genesis 1:27~28 precedes Genesis 3:16. There’s the original command before the fall. And the fall of man into sin hasn’t invalidated the command. The former says,
しかし、創世記3:16より前にあったのは創世記1:27-28. つまり、罪に落ちる前のもともとの命令がそこに書かれています。そして、罪のよってもともとの命令は決して無効になっていません。その命令とは…

27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
Genesis 1:27~28

27 このように人間は、天地を造った神の特性を持つ者として、男と女とに創造されました。
28 神は人間を祝福して言われました。「地に増え広がり、大地を治めよ。あなたがたは、魚と鳥とすべての動物の主人なのだ。」
創世記 1:27-28 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

Modern or not, with its attendant difficulties or challenges, Motherhood is foremost in God’s mind and in His plan for the world.

  1. Motherhood must be respected.

7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction. 8 My son, hear the instruction of your father, And do not forsake the law of your mother; 9 For they will be a graceful ornament on your head, And chains about your neck.
Proverbs 1:7~9

7-9 では、どうしたら賢くなれるのでしょう。まず主を信じ、主を大切にすることです。愚かな人は主の教えをさげすみます。両親の忠告に従いなさい。そうすれば、あとになって人々にほめられるようになります。

箴言 知恵の泉 1:7-9 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

“Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do.”
Ephesians 6:1, NLT

6 子どもは両親に従いなさい。神は、親が子どもを監督する権威を認めておられるのです。従うのは正しいことです。
エペソ人への手紙 6:1 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)


“When I [Paul] call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you [Timothy], which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also.”
2 Timothy 1:5

5 あなたの主に対する熱心な信仰は、お母さんのユニケやおばあさんのロイスに少しも劣らないことを、私はよく知っています。そして、今でもその信仰は変わらないと信じています。
テモテへの手紙Ⅱ 1:5 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

If your mother already passed away, respect and honor her memory with the life you live. No caring mother would want to see her child suffer and live in misery.

  1. Motherhood must be understood in the light of God’s Word.

Just like in other areas of our life, we find wisdom and guidance from God through His Word. Yes, even when confronted with issues that need to be addressed. Issues like:

  1. Motherhood in a childless marriage or living in blessed singleness
  1. Even godly families in the Bible experienced the same struggle
  • Abraham & Sarah
  • Isaac & Rebekah
  • Jacob & Rachel
  • Elkanah & Hannah
  • Zechariah & Elizabeth
  1. It’s not bad to long for your own children, BUT it’s not everything. God is.

1 After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.”
2 But Abram said, “Lord God, what will You give me, seeing I go childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” 3 Then Abram said, “Look, You have given me no offspring; indeed one born in my house is my heir!”
Genesis 15:1~3

1 そののち主が幻の中でアブラムに現れ、こう語りかけました。「アブラムよ、心配することはない。わたしがあなたを守り、大いに祝福しよう。」
2-3 「ああ神様、私に息子がないのはご存じでしょう。どんなに祝福していただいても、子どもがいなければ、全財産は一族のだれかほかの者が相続することになるのです。」
創世記 15:1-3 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

  1. It means you have more opportunities to serve God with undivided time and attention

St. Paul

7 For I wish that all men were even as I myself. But each one has his own gift from God, one in this manner and another in that.
35 And this I say for your own profit, not that I may put a leash on you, but for what is proper, and that you may serve the Lord without distraction.
1 Corinthians 7:7 & 35

7 私の願いは、だれもが私のように、結婚しないでもやっていけることです。しかし、それは人それぞれです。神様は、ある人には、夫となり妻となる恵みを与え、ほかの人には、独身のまま幸福に過ごす恵みを与えておられます。
35 私がこう言うのも、あなたがたのためを思うからであって、結婚させまいとしているのではありません。私が願うのは、あなたがたが、主から思いをそらすようなことをできるだけ避けて、主のために役立つことをすることなのです。
コリント人への手紙Ⅰ 7:7 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

  1. When a mother goes astray: Growing up in a less ideal family
  1. Our common image of a mother is one of caring, gentleness, nurturing.

“But we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children.”
1 Thessalonians 2:7


Mom’s cooking, sacrifices, etc.

William Thackery wrote: “Mother is the name of God in the lips and hearts of little children.”

  1. But, if it’s not your experience and all that you remember is one that left a scar, physically or emotionally; much like the imagery used of Israel as a nation…

2 “Bring charges against your mother, bring charges; For she is not My wife, nor am I her Husband! Let her put away her harlotries from her sight, And her adulteries from between her breasts;
5 For their mother has played the harlot; She who conceived them has behaved shamefully. For she said, ‘I will go after my lovers, Who give me my bread and my water, My wool and my linen, My oil and my drink.’
Hosea 2:2 & 5

2 あなたたちの母親を責めよ。彼女はほかの男の妻になったからだ。わたしはもう彼女の夫ではない。姦淫をやめ、ほかの男たちに身を任せないよう、彼女に懇願するがいい。
5 それというのも、その母親が姦淫したからだ。彼女は『ほかの男たちを追いかけよう。食べ物、飲み物、着物のために身を売ろう』と言って、恥ずかしいことをした。
ホセア書 2:2 & 5 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

  1. Forgive
  2. Share the gospel of salvation
  3. Live your life in such a way that pleases God – you can’t change the past; you can’t change the person, but you can do something with your own life.
    神様を喜ばせるような人生を生きる- 過去を変えれない、人を変えれない、しかし、自分の人生に何かができる


We see that motherhood should be considered God’s glorious, given duty to all who would be revered as Mothers. Let’s affirm our own mothers and all the mothers in the house today by saying:

An Affirmation from John Killinger’s, Lost in Wonder, Love, and Praise.
I believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of the loving God, who was born of the promise to a virgin named Mary.
I believe in the love Mary gave her son, that caused her to follow him in his ministry and stand by his cross as he died.
I believe in the love of all mothers, and its importance in the lives of the children, they bear. It is stronger than steel, softer than down, and more resilient than a green sapling on the hillside. It closes wounds, melts disappointments, and enables the weakest child to stand tall and straight in the fields of adversity.
I believe that this love, even at its best, is only a shadow of the love of God, a dark reflection of all that we can expect of him, both in this life and the next.
And I believe that one of the most beautiful sights in the world is a mother who lets this greater love flow through her to her child, blessing the world with the tenderness of her touch and the tears of her joy.