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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Are men responsible for their illegitimate children?

Yesterday, Monday, Maina and Mwalimu were talking about men's attitude towards their illegitimate children. Are these illegitimate children the responsibility of the biological father or the step father? Let's discuss.

My Human Opinion

As always topics involving innocent children should be discussed with uttermost sensitivity. Again, ultimately there is no wrong or correct answer. This should be looked at case by case. Nevertheless, my human opinion continues.

Mwalimu King'ang'i was of the opinion that the responsibility in terms of maintenance belongs to the step father but the children should know their roots.

If a man loves a woman and/or decides to marry her then he should take her and her bagg...children. In the case where he didn't know about her other children before hand then he has a good reason to not marry her. If they were already married before he knew then it gets tricky. If they were already married and then she gets a child with another man, it gets even trickier. Only divine intervention can rescue the situation. See below

Men are territorial and extremely jealous in such situations. But what ever the case, if he really loves the woman, then he should take care of her children as if they were his own. Else he should clearly state his stand and let the woman decide if she should stay.

About the roots issue, yes indeed the children should know their roots but at the right time. The 'right time' is debatable. The 'right person' is even more debatable. Should it be the step-father, the mother or the biological father to initiate the talk? We don't know.

My Bible Opinion

Let's talk about one man called Hosea. He was an Old Testament prophet who was given a very difficult mission by the Lord.
Hosea 1:1-3 
1 The word of the LORD that came to Hosea son of Beeri during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and during the reign of Jeroboam son of Jehoash king of Israel:
2 When the LORD began to speak through Hosea, the LORD said to him, "Go, take to yourself an adulterous wife and children of unfaithfulness, because the land is guilty of the vilest adultery in departing from the LORD."
3 So he married Gomer daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.
This first child was his. Then verses 6-9
 6 Gomer conceived again and gave birth to a daughter. Then the LORD said to Hosea, "Call her Lo-Ruhamah,  for I will no longer show love to the house of Israel, that I should at all forgive them. 7 Yet I will show love to the house of Judah; and I will save them—not by bow, sword or battle, or by horses and horsemen, but by the LORD their God."
 8 After she had weaned Lo-Ruhamah, Gomer had another son. 9 Then the LORD said, "Call him Lo-Ammi, for you are not my people, and I am not your God.
The next two children were not his but products of his wife's adultery. Hosea, being human, divorced his adulterous wife.
Hosea 2:4-5a
 4 I will not show my love to her children, because they are the children of adultery.
 5 Their mother has been unfaithful and has conceived them in disgrace...
This was to illustrate how God would punish his children for being unfaithful. However, the Lord told to Hosea love his adulterous wife and get her back. And Hosea had to buy her back from her other lovers (I told you only divine intervention can make a man do this)
Hosea 3:1-3
1 The LORD said to me, "Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another and is an adulteress. Love her as the LORD loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods and love the sacred raisin cakes."
2 So I bought her for fifteen shekels of silver and about a homer and a lethek of barley.
3 Then I told her, "You are to live with me many days; you must not be a prostitute or be intimate with any man, and I will live with you."
The cost, literally, of love I tell you.So Hosea took back his illegitimate children and would live with them and their mother on condition that she did not prostitute herself again.

(BTW, Hosea's marriage was used by God to show Israel's 'prostituting' themselves to other gods, and how He would buy them back to himself through Jesus Christ's sacrifice on Calvary because He loved them so much)

Finally, we shall close with words from Ephesians 6:1-4
 1Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2"Honor your father and mother"—which is the first commandment with a promise— 3"that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth." 4Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.
Fathers, if you do decide to take the illegitimate children as your own, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Children, obey both your biological and step parents in the Lord.

See you tomorrow.

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