Happy Heralds, Inc
LAYING FOUNDATIONS FOR A SUCCESSFUL
FAMILY LIFE (Ex. 2:1-10: Gen.12:1-8)
by Dr. Fred Wittman
I.B. Building Proper Relationships (continued)
Dysfunctional families are categorized by divorce, immorality, bitterness, envy, selfishness, strife, lack of communication, and lack of filial love. Functional families are more generally the result of persistent spiritual emphasis upon family altar with Scripture reading, discussion, prayer, singing, and obedient observation of what has been read and discussed. A good example of an Old Testament functional family is that Levite family into which Moses was born, fathered by Amram (Ex, 2:1-10 cf. 6:20).
If The Lord Jesus Christ were standing before you and offered to make you, your children, and your family successful, what would you do? To what extent will you go to provide such guidance for you family now in this life and perfect bliss in eternity?
In order to have a successfully functional family, certain foundations must be laid. The earlier after marriage that these are laid, the more likely successful the marriage will be. But even if your family is dysfunctional, having a successful family life is not hopeless. You can have a successful family life if you begin now to lay foundations which, should have been laid before marriage.
A. To God, The Father First (1 Cor. 11:1-3).
The first foundation is to establish proper relationships. Marriage is a relationship. So is the family. The Godhead is a Family. The local church is an extension of that Family. It is possible and necessary to be born into the family of The God in order to insure a spiritual and successful marriage preserved from dysfunction. The family of The God Head is a prototype of the human family. To understand how families properly function, one must study The Godhead and how The Three personalities relate. Then incorporate such relationships into our homes. There must be a proper relationship with God The Father first. This relationship with God The Father includes total obedience and maintaining fellowship with Him by means of a family altar. In addition to a relationship with God The Father, we must also have a relationship with His Son, and with The Holy Spirit. Only then can a couple be sure to have a proper, secure relationship preserved from dysfunction. The second relationship which must be established is with The Lord Jesus Christ, The Son.
B. To Christ, The Son (1 Col. 11:1-3).
Leo Tolstoy wrote: “All happy families are alike, but each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” Most homes today are on three shifts: the father is on night shift, the mother on day shift, and the children shift for themselves. No wonder there are so many dysfunctional families!
1. The Motive to establish a relationship with The Son of The God:
a. To effect a relationship with The Father (Jn. 14:6; 15:5);
b. To maintain a relationship with The Father (Jn. 15:10; 10:30; 14:23).
2. The Means - of securing this relationship with The Son of The God. There are seven aspects:
a. Repentance and persistent committed trust (faith) to The Lord Jesus Christ, The Light of men is required for this relationship to begin (Jn.1:49; Is.53:6; Mt. 7:13,l4; Lk. 24:46,47; Acts 20:21);
By focusing attention by means of The Holy Spirit through The Light, The Lord Jesus Christ reveals the actual sinful condition of the sinner and the means whereby he or she may be forgiven, namely by repentance and committed trust (faith) to Him.
b. Reconciliation through Christ, The Mediator is brought about the moment repentance and persistent trust (faith) is committed to The Lord Jesus Christ (1 Tim. 2:5,6; 2 Cor. 5:18; Rom. 5:10,11; Col. l:20,21);
c. Redemption through Christ, The Liberator becomes a reality to the one who repents and commits persistent trust (faith) to The Lord Jesus Christ (Gal. 3:13; 1 Pet. 1:18,19; Tit. 2:14; Col. 1:14);
d. Remission through The Lord Jesus Christ; The Lamb of God = forgiveness of sins (Jn. 1:29; Eph. 1:7; Rom. 3:24) and clearance of guilt (Heb. 9:14; 10:2; Mt. 6:14,15; Mk. 11:25,26);
e. Receiving the gift of Eternal Absolute Life is based upon the Resurrection of Christ; The Life ( Jn.11:25; Rom. 6:4,5);
f. Reckoning Christ to be The Lord of all is absolutely necessary for proof of one’s sincerity and that all the above aspects have been appropriated by faith (Rom. 6:6-11);
g. Reasoning that Christ is The Head of your house is another proof to be demonstrated (1 Cor. 11:3; Eph. 1:22; 4:15). A plaque in a lounge room (parlor) reads, “Christ is The Head of this house, the silent listener to every conversation . . .”
3. The Making of This Relationship To The Son.
You, the father, must avail yourself and your family of all that The Lord Jesus Christ is and did. You must see that you and your family understand all seven aspects of such a relationship. Urge upon them to make sure that they appropriate all seven aspects after you, the father have taken every one of them. When you see that an area is violated in the life of anyone in your family, you, the father, must tenderly deal with it. Your family’s relationship to The Lord Jesus Christ is vital to a spiritually functional family. You cannot demand! Neither can you expect others to observe what you do not maintain. You must lead by your example of reality, obedience, and love.
Review the seven steps of the means by which a relationship with Christ The Son and with The Father is established: Repentance and persistent committed trust (faith) to The Lord Jesus Christ, The Light of men; Reconciliation through Christ, The Mediator; Redemption through Christ, The Liberator; Remission through The Lord Jesus Christ; The Lamb of God; Receiving the gift of Eternal Absolute Life based upon the Resurrection of Christ; Reckoning Christ to be The Lord of all for proof of one’s sincerity and that by faith appropriation of all aspects has taken place; and Reasoning that Christ is The Head of your house.
Where do you lack in your relationship to The Lord Jesus Christ? Have all seven aspects been appropriated by you? Has not one aspect been overlooked or omitted? Or which of them are You lacking? [Name them!] You cannot realize aspect seven without the other six in place! And without step seven (i.e. The Lord Jesus Christ acknowledged to be your head), you cannot have a happy and successful (spiritually functional) family life. Because the main ingredient in a happy and successful spiritually functional family life is missing.
What will you do NOW to effect the proper relationship to The Lord Jesus Christ, the Son and thus with God, The Father?
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