The Christian FamilyA Little Church, a little Government and a little Society
The Christian Family is a little church, a little government and a little society. It shapes the foundation of the church, and of society itself. Future generations depend on the leadership found in the home, and the values they receive there.
The Family is a God-ordained institution, a spiritual and organic unity, that was established for the cultural mandate of 1) glorifying the Creator, and 2) subduing the earth. In this mandate (Genesis 2) the duties of the husband, wife, children, masters and servants are encompassed, and the Scriptures readily set forth a theology of domestical duties. Husbands, wives and children have specific, God-honoring duties to perform in their respective stations in the economy of God’s redemptive plan. Their goal as a family is to 1) honor God, 2) edify the church and 3) promote Christian values in their respective stations of society. All this stems from the moral and spiritual values enumerated in the home and functioning to honor Christ Jesus. In this regard was the Puritan conception of the family or household. Dr. William Perkins described the family as a “little church”, Dr. William Gouge called it the “seminary of the Church and commonwealth…” and Rev. Richard Baxter characterized the home as “a church… a society of Christians combined for the better worshipping and serving God.” Rev. Lewis Bayly taught that “what the preacher is in the pulpit, the same the Christian householder is in his house.” He was quoting Augustine. The family, then, is the most important institution in society paralleling the relationship of Christ and the Church. Thus, Paul, carried by the Holy Spirit, rightly demonstrates this in Ephesians 5:22-6:9 in the manner of the duty of the husband, of the wife, of the children, and of masters and salves in the household.
May this section of the website be for the edification of the family, and the respective duties of each hierarchical part of the family as ordained by God. Check out these works on reforming the family.
- The Daily Exercise of God’s Word – by John Knox
- The Word of God and Family Prayer – by Rev. Thomas Doolittle
- What God Is to Families – by Rev. Thomas Doolittle
- A Remedy for Decaying Religion – by Rev. Oliver Heywood
- A Sad But Instructive History – by Rev. William S. Plumer
- Directives for Avoiding Dissension in the Home – by Rev. Richard Baxter
- The Duties of Husband and Wife – by Dr. John Dod
- Family Duty – by John Bunyan
- Family Worship – by A.W. Pink
- Great Duty of Family Religion – by Rev. George Whitefield
- Meditations For Household Piety – by Rev. Lewis Bayly
- Motives for Family Worship – by Dr. J. Merle D’Aubigne
- On the Family and Grace – by Jonathan Edwards
- Seven Reasons Families Should Pray – by Rev. Thomas Doolittle
- The Duties of Christian Parents – by Rev. J. C. Ryle
- The Duties of Husbands and Wives – by Rev. Richard Steele
- The Father and Family Worship – by Rev. J.W. Alexander
- The Mutual Duties Of Husbands and Wives – by Rev. Richard Baxter
- The Nature, Warrant, and History of Family Worship – by Dr. J.W. Alexander
- The Practice Of Piety At Meals – by Rev. Lewis Bayly