In the Closer Look, we have been looking at what God’s Word says about the family. We can be sure that this is a critical subject for our day. It does not take long to see that our culture is in a tailspin when it comes to the family. Divorce, premarital sex, adultery, selfishness and many other factors have contributed to the downfall of the family. The church, God’s people, are equally pulled down into the cultural norms of our day, as they relate to the family. This should not be! The church today looks at divorce, premarital sex and living together before marriage as norms rather than sins to be repented of. The church is to be that city on a hill, the salt, and light of the earth. How is that possible if we look no different than the world when it comes to the family? How can we reclaim the ground that we have lost? It is quite simple, yet equally quite daunting; we need to turn back to the Bible and look at it as the truth, as it is, and say, “We must order our lives by God’s design and not our own.” If we do this, we can rest assured that we can shine the light of the gospel into the lost world around us.
Fathers and mothers and husbands and wives are the building blocks of the home and all societies. God created with a purpose. God created men for a purpose and God created women for a purpose. If we lose this most basic truth, we lose so much. What the Bible makes clear is that both men and women were given roles and when those roles are defined and not blurred, we can see that God’s intended design is for our good. It is not a question of worth or equality, but of purpose. God created men and women and this gives them both worth and purpose (Gen. 1:31). However, God has given them different roles, but this has nothing to do with worth, but divine design. Men were created to provide and protect (Gen. 2:15). Women were created to nurture and cultivate (Gen. 2:20, 1 Tim 2:15). Neither of these roles is inferior to the other but divinely designed to bring glory to God. Paul in 1 Cor. 11:3 speaks of the order of the Godhead and order of the family. Just listen, “But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ.”Here we learn that order is part of God’s design and apart from order there is confusion.
Later in 1 Cor. 14:33, Paul speaks of God as a God of order. Here in this text, the Corinthian were abusing the gifts of the Holy Spirit and to correct them Paul states that God is not a part of the chaos, “for God is not a God of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.”This is true of the family as well. In Ephesians, we find this truth again. Paul calls the husband to be the head, and He calls the wife to be subject to her husband. Just to be clear, this is order and not a matter of equality. What has been lost in our culture today is this truth. I pray this will help us think clearly about God’s design for the family so that we can reclaim what has been lost in our culture.