In today’s society, we define families in many different ways. We have single-parent families, same-sex parent families, and father-mother families. And all of these families are acceptable in this world. Some of us were primarily raised in a single-parent home and even though mistakes or sin was committed, with God’s help, we turned out fine. No family is perfect. Just as no one is perfect. We bring all of our issues, problems, and concerns to the table and usually take it out on the people who are closest to us. Families weren’t designed to hurt one another, but to love and comfort one another. For Genesis 13:8 says, “So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herdsmen and mine, for we are brothers.”
Even though we all come from different types of families, how does the bible define a family? The basic biblical family consists of one man, one woman (his wife), and their children (biological or adopted). Genesis 1:27-28 says, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it…” And in Genesis 2:24, the bible says, “For this reason, a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife and they will become one flesh.” So this scripture clearly states what God’s definition of a family is. The extended family may consist of grandparents, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins. And all of these people can create strong family bonds.
The man of the household is ultimately in charge and responsible for his family. His job is to provide for the family, by working and doing what’s necessary to protect them. He should be a Christian first and vow to follow God and his commands. For 1 Timothy 5:8 says, “If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” They are also responsible to their children by teaching and training them about God. So that they can lead good and productive lives. Fathers should not discourage their children or talk down to them. (Colossians 3:21) Also Colossians 3:19 says, “Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.” Even though husbands and wives disagree and fight, this scripture tells us to love one another and not be cruel or hurtful, because love should never hurt.
The woman of the household should be the nurturer and caretaker of the family. Women were designed to be the man’s helper and to have children. It’s not uncommon for a woman to take over the household and be in charge in today’s society. We have risen to the top of the ladder in our jobs and in some cases make more money than our spouses. I’m not saying that a woman shouldn’t be successful, but we have to remember that a Christian family consists of the man being in charge of the household as God commands. For Ephesians 5:22-24 says, “Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.“ Also, husbands who are non-believers that may be married to wives who are believers may change their beliefs by observing their wives’ Christian actions or behaviors. (1 Peter 3:1-2) Husbands and wives are also to remain together for a lifetime because God hates divorce. (Malachi 2:16) Women are also to teach and train their children in the Lord. For children are rewards from God. (Psalm 127:3) And children are to obey their parents by honoring them, so they may also live long and prosperous lives. (Ephesians 6:1-3)
The Bible gives us clear definitions of what a Christian family should be. The family should make a commitment to God for their lifetime and maintain the roles that have been given and explained. Marriage was not created by man, but by God. And if we make sure to always put God first in our households, then we will have peace and harmony in our lives for years to come. “For me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
Wanda Ball is a wife, mother, public speaker of “1 Minute With Wanda” and has been writing about God and spirituality for over 20 years. Wanda also specializes in Christian poetry and children’s books and believes and teaches that regardless of a person’s background or their mistakes of the past, God has a place for them. She currently resides in Chino, California.