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Sunday, April 27, 2016 am                                            Others 2016 Index

 

OTHERS 2016
Our Example - 7
An Example Within Our Families

 

The past several weeks we have been discussing examples according to scripture.  The power of an example as we consider others cannot be overstated.  In many instances we have taken broad subjects and made specific application to how this affects our influence with others.  We have looked at various aspects of the life of a Christian.  Today we conclude this study of being an example by noticing our influence within the family.  This too is a specific application to a broad subject, but one sorely needed.

 I.                     Godly families an example to the world

a.       The family as God intended it to be –

                                                   i.      In scripture we find 3 institutions that God ordained – Government (Rom. 13:1), the church (Ephesians 3:10,11; 1:22-23, 1 Timothy 3:15, etc.) and the home (Genesis 2:24-25).   The home is the fundamental unit upon which both society (including its government) and the church depend.  Typically, as the home goes, so goes…

                                                 ii.      When God provided Eve for Adam it is because He said, “It is not good that man should be alone” (Gen. 2:18).   From that creation of woman from Adam’s side, the home was instituted.  Genesis 4:1-2 – records children being added to this home.  From that time, God’s intent was that a family consist of husband and wife, and if so blessed, with children.  Children NEED both parents – a man AND a woman fulfilling their roles! – and they need it without being confused!  
From the dawn of civilization this has been so.

b.       The traditional family is under attack in our society.  Those who advocate the need for a “traditional” family are often viewed negatively.  Abnormal relationships are treated as normal.   Anyone who dares to question or express concerns about ANY type relationship or family structure is branded as being old fashioned, narrow minded, intolerant or even ignorant by some.  Many of the role models we see are so ridiculous.  Hollywood is filled with scandal, infidelity, divorce, custody battles, immoral families, etc.   In many instances it is glorified or used for entertainment.   Do we really want to use a models – the Kardashians or the housewives of (wherever)?

c.        And as society changes, dysfunctional families and problems are abundant.    Cohabitation is more abundant than marriage.   Children are all but expected to engage in sexual relationships.   They are given “protection” without accountability.  
Children are confused about what their role is as they are witnessing and being introduced to all sorts of parenting and sibling situations that they their minds are too young to process with maturity, much less be forced to deal with.  Multitudes of children are raised by single parents, and some even outright abandoned (feeling like they are unwanted).  They are passed around in a system that is driven more my money than love for them.  Many are burdened with guilt as their parents fight and destroy each other.   Children are sometimes left for fend for themselves for hours on end so that their parents can make extra money for material wants.
AND Society KNOWS these things are a problem, but introducing the idea that God might be a solution is far from what they are willing to suggest. 
And again our media has contributed to this in many ways with portraying the dysfunctional and immoral as normal.

d.       Society desperately needs to see examples of intact godly families.   They need to see us acting like what the Bible describes as a family, and with JOYFULNESS! 
1 Peter 2:12 – again, honorable conduct among the Gentiles – God is glorified by what they observe.  We want to briefly examine some of the roles within the family.  Things we must set an example to world about. 

 II.                   Godly Families an example to one another

a.       Husband and Wives

                                                   i.      Marriage is a sacred union between, a man and a woman who have been rightly joined together before God, Genesis 2:23-24. 
A marriage is to be for life - cf. Matthew 19:8-9, Romans 7:2-3.  Divorce is condemned with one exception – fornication, and in that only the innocent party has right to remarry.

                                                 ii.      They are to be examples within the home – 1 Peter 3:1-2, Titus 2:3-5

                                                iii.      Being examples as husband and wife starts by fulfilling their roles! 
Both need to be Christians first (act like it)!

                                                iv.      The husband needs to be the head of the house
Eph. 5:23. He needs to lead in such a way, that his wife is willing to submit to Him.  
He FOLLOWS the example of Christ and His love for the church in this and sets an example of Christ for his family, including his children who are watching. 
He needs to love, cherish and care for her – Ephesians 5:25, 1 Peter 3:7.
He needs to be faithful to her – 1 Cor. 7:2-5, Romans 13:9 – do not commit adultery, Heb. 13:4.

                                                  v.      Wives are a gift from God.  Gen. 2:18 – she is a companion and helpmeet to her husband.   Created from his side (rather than his foot or head).  Proverbs 12:4 describes her as the crown of her husband.  Prov. 18:22 says, “He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the LORD.  They too need to be an example – 1 Peter 3:1-5
The wife loves her husband – Titus 2:4-5, and to respect him (Eph. 5:33).
She is to submit to her husband – Ephesians 5:22-24, 1 Peter 3:1.   
She needs to be faithful to him - Mark 10:11-12
She has domestic responsibilities – Titus 2:4-5
The virtuous wife, is portrayed as an example is described in Proverbs 31:10-31

                                                vi.      Be an example to your children
We have already noted the model of a family they are going to get from the world.  Let them learn what a healthy family is by observing your godly conduct! 
Children need to appreciate what it means when the Bible teaches that God is our Father by looking at your good example.    They need to see a father that loves his mother and mother that loves her husband, and BOTH submitting to God’s will in what they do.

b.       Parents and children

                                                   i.      Proper examples are desperately needed!

                                                 ii.      Fathers MUST be an example to their children! 
They need to provide for their children – 1 Tim. 5:8, 2 Corinthians 12:14, cf. Matthew 7:9-11
They need to love and care for them – Col. 3:21 tells us not to provoke our children.
He needs to discipline them with love – Prov. 13:24, “He who spares his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him promptly.

Prov. 19:18 – “chasten your son while there is hope, do not set his heart on destruction.
Hebrews 12:9-11 – God chastens us as a loving father does his children, for their good.
He teaches and trains his children – Ephesians 6:4

                                                iii.      Mothers must be an example
She loves her children – 1 Thess. 2:7 (this is natural, and when that love is not there, there is a concern)
She also teaches the children, just like the father does - 2 Tim. 1:5, 3:15
She provides a safe home environment for them -

                                                iv.      Children can be a proper influence to one another and to their parents
They are to honor and obey their parents – Ephesians 6:1-3, Colossians 3:20, Ex. 20:12, etc.
Under the Old Law, this was so serious that a rebellious child was to be stoned to death – (Exodus 21:15-17)
Proverbs 23:25 – they have a right to be glad and rejoice because of their children. 
Prov. 10:1 says, a foolish son is a grief to his mother.

Responsibilities extend beyond their years at home – 1 Timothy 5:4-8, 16
As examples:  Again parents manifest to the world God’s intent for how children are to be raised.   They need to see parents that are involved and there for the children.  They ALSO need to see parents who love God enough to instill His values within them.
Siblings can be examples to one another for good or bad.  If you love God, you will strive to be a good example. 

c.        NOTE: Not every family is ideal.  I realize this to be a fact.  Even in the Bible you find families that have to cope with tragedy.   (Incidentally, the Bible made provisions for a woman who lost her husband.)  Circumstances happen – tragedy and failures occur.   We have to adjust to these circumstances.   But how you respond can either make matters better or worse.

 

An intact, godly family can attract the attention of those who are struggling.  Therefore it is imperative that we remind ourselves of what our role is within the home and that we seek to live it to the best of our ability, AND in a way that brings glory to God.

If society is going to change for the better, it will happen one person at a time.  And that begins within our homes.  Think about it!   How is your home functioning?