Dear Christian Parents,
In the beginning God created…the family! It was the family that God made to be the foundation of all of society. If God intended the family to be a foundational element of human life on earth, then shouldn’t we honor God’s design for the form and function of the family today?
The creation of the family began when God saw that it was not good for man to be alone. For this reason, God created woman to be “a helper suitable for him” (Genesis 2:18-24). The Lord then joined the man and woman in marriage and commanded them to “be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:27-28). These records in Genesis are not myths or allegories, but rather they were actual, historical events attested by Jesus in Matthew 19:4-6. Thus, the family, based upon a monogamous relationship of one husband and one wife with the procreation of children, is the first and foremost institution of human society. This basic element of God’s design has not been changed by God from the beginning.
Not only is the family the foundation of society, but it is also foundational to the practice of Christianity. It has been said that “the family that prays together stays together.” There is more truth to that statement than we may realize. This aspect of the Christian faith is often neglected in our time, and the church suffers for it as Christian parents fail to pass their faith in Christ to their own children.
When you choose to educate your own children at home, you embrace God’s design for family and faith. The Biblical pattern for the education of children shows that it was always God’s intentions for parents to teach their own children (Deuteronomy 6:4-9). (For more on the Biblical pattern of education, see the fourth letter in Dear Christian Parents: An Appeal for Homeschooling.) By teaching your own children, you follow God’s directions, educate your children with a Biblical worldview, give them the benefits of a fulltime family environment, and keep them from the ungodly influences that are common in formal schools. That is an excellent formula for cultivating faithfulness to God in your children.
Homeschooling helps ensure that your family and the generations to follow will continue the tradition of household faith. Throughout the ages, faith has generally been a family matter shared by entire households. Consider a few significant examples:
- The faith of Noah and his household led God to save them from the flood (Gen. 7:1; Heb. 11:7).
- Abraham was chosen by God because he shared his faith with his entire household (Genesis 17:23, 27; 18:19).
- Joshua declared the faith of his family, saying, “As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD” (Joshua 24:15).
It is evident in the New Testament that whole families were often converted to Christ together. Some of the blessed families who believed in Christ together where the households of Cornelius (Acts 10:2; 11:14), Lydia (Acts 16:15), the Philippian jailer (Acts 16:31-34), Crispus (Acts 18:8), Aristobulus (Romans 16:10), Narcissus (Romans 16:11), Stephanas (1 Corinthians 1:16; 16:15), and Priscilla and Aquilla (1 Corinthians 16:19). Not every member of every one of these households was necessarily faithful to the Lord, but in general this pattern proves that faith in Christ was and still is a family affair.
Don’t overlook the fact that the promise given to Abraham stated, “And in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Genesis 12:3). The seed of Abraham is Jesus Christ (Acts 3:25; Galatians 3:16), and the blessings of Christ will belong to your family when you all share in the faith of Abraham as children of God through faith in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:7, 26-29). Make sure your faith is a family affair by taking control of your children’s education and passing your faith on to them through godly teaching. “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Acts 16:31).
Regards in the Lord,
© 2011 Dear Christian Parents