Since God owns the family and not culture, He alone should define what it is and how it functions. God created the family for three reasons. First, God created the family to reflect His image. The Triune God is a family—Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Therefore, God wanted His uniqueness to be reflected in the definition of family. Second, God created the family for reproduction. He commanded man to be fruitful and multiply. God intended for the family to be the structure for reproducing His image through childbearing. Third, God created the family for ruling and instructed man to exercise dominion over the earth on His behalf. Families are supposed to be the basis of order in society. When families operate according to God’s standard, God works through them to exercise His rule in history.
When people abandon God’s perspective on the family, things in the family will disintegrate. This disintegration will be reflected in social conditions, including the redefinition of family, conflict, role reversals, and abandonment. The family is supposed to be the building block of society. If that building block collapses, then society is in trouble. Secular humanism—man’s perspective rather than God’s perspective—begins to dominate, leading to cultural idolatry. An idol is any person, place, thing, or thought that we look to as our source. People will look to the government or secular education to define family. Even personal identity will become confused if the Biblical definition of family is abandoned.
The family will be restored when we commit to fearing God, serving God and prioritizing the Word of God. To fear God is to take Him seriously and not casually. Serving God involves all the elements of the family, fulfilling their responsibilities and roles in His name and for His glory. Families need to prioritize studying God’s Word together. These three commitments will produce harmony in the home and the order in society we long to see. God is calling us to radically return to His definition of family.
- What are some examples from media of different kinds of families—great, terrible, “normal”, or odd?
- What are some common idols in our culture today?
Let’s Get Personal
- How has the culture affected your definition of family?
- What idols have infiltrated your life and your family’s lives?
- How have you succeeded or struggled with fearing God and taking Him seriously?
Take the Next Step
- What steps must you take to help your family operate according to God’s standards?
- How can you prioritize God’s Word for yourself and your family?
- Want to go deeper? Take time to look at the following passages: Joshua 24:14-15; Genesis 1:26-28; 2 Kings 18:21; Psalm 128:1-6; Malachi 2:14; Psalm 127:1-5; Deuteronomy 6:1-9; Exodus 20:5; Genesis 2:20-25; Matthew 15:4.
Renew Your Mind
“Now, therefore, fear the LORD and serve Him in sincerity and truth…”