July 24, 2011 – July 30, 2011
“One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity.” I Timothy 3:4.
Study Help: The Adventist Home, 211–228, 231–243.
“Never forget that you are to make the home bright and happy for yourselves and your children by cherishing the Saviour’s attributes. If you bring Christ into the home, you will know good from evil. You will be able to help your children to be trees of righteousness, bearing the fruit of the Spirit.” The Adventist Home, 17.
1 CHRIST AS OUR EXAMPLE
- How are we to live if we claim to be followers of Christ? I John 2:6. How can we do this? John 15:4, 5.
Note: “Our growth in grace, our joy, our usefulness—all depend upon our union with Christ. It is by communion with Him, daily, hourly—by abiding in Him—that we are to grow in grace. He is not only the Author, but the Finisher of our faith. It is Christ first and last and always. He is to be with us, not only at the beginning and the end of our course, but at every step of the way.” Steps to Christ, 69.
- What should we realize about His help in our varying circumstances? Hebrews 2:17, 18; 4:15, 16; II Corinthians 3:18.
Note: “Christ came to this world to show that by receiving power from on high, man can live an unsullied life. With unwearying patience and sympathetic helpfulness He met men in their necessities. By the gentle touch of grace He banished from the soul unrest and doubt, changing enmity to love, and unbelief to confidence.” The Ministry of Healing, 25.
2 HUSBAND AS THE HEAD
- Whom is the husband to represent to his family? Ephesians 5:25, 28, 29, 33.
Note: “Husbands should study the pattern and seek to know what is meant by the symbol presented in Ephesians, the relation Christ sustains to the church. The husband is to be as a Saviour in his family. Will he stand in his noble, God-given manhood, ever seeking to uplift his wife and children? Will he breathe about him a pure, sweet atmosphere?” The Adventist Home, 117.
- How is the husband to show Christ’s character in the home? Matthew 20:26, 27.
Note: “All members of the family center in the father. He is the lawmaker, illustrating in his own manly bearing the sterner virtues: energy, integrity, honesty, patience, courage, diligence, and practical usefulness. The father is in one sense the priest of the household. …
“To the man who is a husband and a father, I would say, Be sure that a pure, holy atmosphere surrounds your soul. … You are to learn daily of Christ. Never, never are you to show a tyrannical spirit in the home. The man who does this is working in partnership with satanic agencies. Bring your will into submission to the will of God. Do all in your power to make the life of your wife pleasant and happy. Take the word of God as the man of your counsel. In the home live out the teachings of the word. Then you will live them out in the church and will take them with you to your place of business.” The Adventist Home, 212–214.
- What Bible rule is necessary in order that the family can function in the best possible way? I Timothy 3:2. In what area must we be especially guarded?
Note: “Polygamy had become so widespread that it had ceased to be regarded as a sin, but it was no less a violation of the law of God, and was fatal to the sacredness and peace of the family relation.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 145.
“If those who profess to be the depositaries of God’s law become transgressors of its precepts, they separate themselves from God, and they will be unable to stand before their enemies.” Ibid., 457.
3 HOW SHALL HE LEAD?
- What characteristics are needed by men? Psalm 103:13; II Timothy 2:24; I Peter 3:7.
Note: “The Lord has constituted the husband the head of the wife to be her protector; he is the house-band of the family, binding the members together, even as Christ is the head of the church and the Saviour of the mystical body. Let every husband who claims to love God carefully study the requirements of God in his position. Christ’s authority is exercised in wisdom, in all kindness and gentleness; so let the husband exercise his power and imitate the great Head of the church.” The Adventist Home, 215.
“In life’s toilsome way let the husband and father ‘lead on softly,’ as the companion of his journey is able to endure. Amidst the world’s eager rush for wealth and power, let him learn to stay his steps, to comfort and support the one who is called to walk by his side.” Ibid., 218.
- How can we be sure that a father should nevertheless control his family? ITimothy 3:4, 5; I Samuel 3:13.
Note: “The children are to be taught that their capabilities were given them for the honor and glory of God. To this end they must learn the lesson of obedience; for only by lives of willing obedience can they render to God the service He requires. … Few parents begin early enough to teach their children to obey. … Wise parents will not say to their children, ‘Follow your own choice; go where you will, and do what you will’; but, ‘Listen to the instruction of the Lord.’ Wise rules and regulations must be made and enforced, that the beauty of the homelife may not be spoiled.” Reflecting Christ, 172.
- How do these principles correspond with the various functions within the church? I Timothy 4:12 (last part).
Note: “No man can bring into the church an influence that he does not exert in his home life and in his business relations.” Reflecting Christ, 179.
4 PUT ON KINDNESS
- Of what must fathers and all of us be careful in our relationships with both our blood and church families? Colossians 3:21.
Note: “Those who profess to be followers of Christ and are at the same time rough, unkind, and uncourteous in words and deportment have not learned of Jesus. A blustering, overbearing, faultfinding man is not a Christian; for to be a Christian is to be Christlike. The conduct of some professed Christians is so lacking in kindness and courtesy that their good is evil spoken of. Their sincerity may not be doubted; their uprightness may not be questioned, but sincerity and uprightness will not atone for a lack of kindness and courtesy. The Christian is to be sympathetic as well as true, pitiful and courteous as well as upright and honest.
“Any negligence of acts of politeness and tender regard on the part of brother for brother, any neglect of kind, encouraging words in the family circle, parents with children and children with parents, confirms habits which make the character unchristlike.” The Adventist Home, 427.
- Instead of provoking, what is a husband’s God-given responsibility? Ephesians 6:4.
Note: “If we would have our children practice kindness, courtesy, and love, we ourselves must set them the example. … No rude language should be indulged; no bitter words should be spoken. All may possess a cheerful countenance, a gentle voice, a courteous manner; and these are elements of power. … Your courtesy and self-control will have greater influence upon the characters of your children than mere words could have.” The Adventist Home, 421.
- What must be the role of men in the task of training the children in the home and in the church? Proverbs 1:7; 4:1; 13:1; 15:5.
Note: “The father’s duty to his children cannot be transferred to the mother. If she performs her own duty, she has burden enough to bear. … The father should not excuse himself from his part in the work of educating his children for life and immortality. He must share in the responsibility.” The Adventist Home, 216.
5 CHOOSING OUR PRIORITIES
- In today’s busy society, what should influence the daily decisions we make? Joshua 24:15.
Note: “The Christian’s first duty is in the home.” Reflecting Christ, 167.
“If you do only those things necessary to your temporal comfort and happiness, you will find time to read your Bible with prayerful interest and to perfect a Christian character.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 112.
- What should be kept in mind regarding the responsibility of providing food, clothing and shelter for our families? Matthew 6:33; Mark 4:19; Luke 21:34.
Note: “Souls are looking at you, fellow Christians, to see whether you are drunken with the cares of this life, or are preparing for the future, immortal life. They will watch to see what the influence of your life is, and whether you are true missionaries at home, training your children for heaven.” Reflecting Christ, 167.
“If you have given yourself to God, to do His work, you have no need to be anxious for tomorrow. … When we take into our hands the management of things with which we have to do, and depend upon our own wisdom for success, we are taking a burden which God has not given us, and are trying to bear it without His aid. We are taking upon ourselves the responsibility that belongs to God, and thus are really putting ourselves in His place.” Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, 100.
PERSONAL REVIEW QUESTIONS
1 Who should be the father’s example and guide? How do you learn from God?
2 Who is the husband to represent in the family?
3 Explain how the father is to rule in the home.
4 Whose principal responsibility is it to work for the spiritual development of the family?
5 In order to accomplish God’s plan, what must be your daily decision?
Copyright © 2002 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.