“Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives and do not be embittered against them. Children, be obedient to your parents in all things, for this is well-pleasing to the Lord. Fathers, do not exasperate your children, so that they will not lose heart.” – Colossians 3:18-21
Traditional family, blended family, single-parent family, adopted family, same-sex marriage family…What actually is the MODERN family, today? And can the modern family be a biblical family? Well, that depends.
No matter your family status – married, single, divorced, or simply, “it’s complicated” – we could all use help navigating these relationships. So, what does the Bible have to say on the subject of marriage and family? Is it even relevant today?
- It begins with the role of the husband – servant leadership. Servant leadership and serving one another is the foundation of a biblical family. Think about the leaders you have known. From CEO to soccer coach, often the most effective and successful leaders are servant leaders. These leaders are far more concerned about the success of those he or she is leading than about themselves. But, what does this have to do with a biblical family? In the Bible, husbands are called to be servant leaders, like Christ, who gave His life for the church – sacrificially leading. A husband can best do this by submitting to Christ.
- What about the woman – the wife? Wives are called to respect and follow the leadership of their husbands. So, biblical marriage is one man and one woman for life.
- Christian children are called to respect and obey their parents.
Do you see a key theme here?
Putting others’ needs before one’s own – serving one another and submitting to those in authority, which means husbands, wives, and children are all called to submit to Jesus first.
When Paul spoke about family in the First Century, His words were very counter-cultural. In a time when women and children were considered property and marriages were business arrangements, this idea was revolutionary.
Today, biblical teaching on family remains counter-cultural. In a “me-first” world, to serve others first is definitely going against the norm and the whole idea of biblical submission seems ludicrous.
Yet, what would your relationships look like if you began to set aside your agenda, your pride, and really serve one another? Whatever your “Modern Family” looks like, ask God to help you have a Christ-centered marriage and family. When families are Christ-centered, they will be biblical, as well.