What Is A Family?
There is family, and there is the extended family. Both are important. Both are crucial for passing divine truth on to the next generation. Destroy the family, and the foundation of civilization has been destroyed, and without a foundation civil society will crumble.
However, it can't be a foundation built using wood, straw and hay. There must be a solid foundation, a foundation of truth and righteousness. The only source of those is Jesus Christ, God.
Jesus speaking in the Sermon on the Mount: "Therefore, everyone who hears these words of Mine, and acts on them, will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of Mine, and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and its collapse was great.” - Matthew 7:24-27
This is why there is such a heavy and sustained war on the family... a war with many fronts: easy divorce, living together instead of marriage, children born outside of marriage ("fathers" making babies with multiple women), sexual immorality, pornography, adultery, homosexuality, LGBT, gender identity... these all are attacks on the family, continually eating away the foundation God provided for all of civilization. The family is an image of God's love and care for His children, and it has been turned to wickedness that perverts and destroys the image of love.
God's plan is for men and women to marry and have a family... husband and a wife... male and female. Most families include children, following the Biblical command in Genesis 1:28:
Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth. - Genesis 1:28b
Fulfilling the above command can only be done by a man and a woman... a family. However, families may include grandparents, or other close relatives. A single mother or father raising children is a family, although one that is broken and that places a great burden on the single parent. And singleness resulting from divorce is not an option, except in very rare cases.
Jesus speaking in the Sermon on the Mount: “Now it was said, ‘Whoever sends his wife away is to give her a certificate of divorce’; but I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except for the reason of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. - Matthew 5:31-32
What Is The Biblical Role of the Family?
As with all of God's creation, the family has a purpose: it exists for reproduction and raising children. However, don't let a statement like this go by without asking, "What does 'raising children' mean?" It requires more than providing food, clothing and shelter... much more. The most important aspect of "raising children" is passing on truth and righteousness. It is not the responsibility of the church, nor the responsibility of the government (public schools), to teach your children. Education is the responsibility of the family. The family may home school, or they may use public schools as a way of partially fulfilling this responsibility, but it is still the family's responsibility to be sure the public school is teaching their children correctly. When this is not happening, there will be a decline in both spirituality and morality. We see that happening today.
Within the family the father and mother each have distinct roles:
The father is the head of the family and provides leadership. He is also the one who protects and provides for the family, as well as being the spiritual leader and teacher.
The mother is the one who nurtures and cares for the family with compassion. She is the intimate discipler and mentor.
Why Is The Family Important To God?
The family exists to pass on truth and righteousness to the next generation. Righteousness means obeying God, exalting Christ, and growing spiritually.
The family also exists to do the work of the Kingdom, and be a testimony to unbelievers. One of the main ways this is done through hospitality and service... helping others, and in particular helping other believers.
While we have opportunity, let’s do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. - Galatians 6:10
However, the family's main witness to the world is its testimony of Christ's life-changing power... showing that divorce, adultery, abuse, or anything that destroys a marriage is not an option.
Providing For Each Other
Another purpose of the family is to provide for each other.
If anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. - 1 Timothy 5:8
The purpose of the family is to:
- Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth.
- Pass divine truth to the next generation:
- Teach and live truth
- Hold others accountable for correctly teaching your children
- Pass on righteousness (obeying and exalting God)
- Show the God-given roles of men and women
- Provide for and protect others in the family
- Do the work of the Kingdom
- Be a living testimony to Christ's life-changing power
- Help and serve other Christians
Sound, Biblical families are the foundation of civilization. Without strong families, the word of God and righteousness is not passed to the next generation... and the result is the decay of civilization.
The disciples speaking to Jesus: "Now we know that You know all things, and have no need for anyone to question You; by this we believe that You came from God." - John 16:30
Nothing is hidden from Jesus. He sees all that is done in darkness. He sees your innermost thoughts and desires.
And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him to whom we must answer. - Hebrews 4:13
A Fairy Tale To Scare People?
Jesus' omniscience is not just a way to scare people. Jesus is God. He is the creator of time, space, matter and energy. Everything! We know a creator cannot be a part of His creation. That is a logical contradiction.
That means Jesus exists outside of time, and thus all time, past and future, is visible to Him. He exists outside of His creation, so everything inside His creation, including your thoughts, is visible to Him.
And knowing their thoughts Jesus said to them, “Any kingdom divided against itself is laid waste; and any city or house divided against itself will not stand." - Matthew 25:12
Jesus knows you. He knows your sin. Nothing is hidden. Judgment is coming.