Monday, February 16, 2015

The Most Destructive Force in the Home (Part 1)

Speaking in a couple of different churches in the recent past, I have felt burdened to share the following truth concerning marriage relationships and parent/child relationships. The sad commentary on our Christian homes today is that we have allowed a very destructive force to gain entrance and a foothold. Our homes today will not be devastated by a “grenade” from the outside (even though they are being launched), but by the “nuclear warhead” detonated within our own four walls. This is evidenced in the various types of behavioral problems found in Christian homes today. Some of these problems have plagued Christian homes for years, but not with as much widespread scope as in current days. We are seeing things happen in Christian homes that were uncommon years ago in non-Christian homes!

Now when it comes to the dynamics of the home (where individuals need to coexist and interact responsibly with one another), it is important to note that when you have a breakdown in behavioral family problems, it is because of a breakdown elsewhere. Noting the Scriptures, we can attribute the majority of these problems in the home to the breakdown in the fulfilling of biblical responsibilities of either the husband or wife (or both). The husband, as the head of the home, is to lead in a loving, Christ-like way. The wife is to submit to and reverence her husband (Ephesians 5:22-33, Colossians 3:18-19, I Peter 3:1-7). The question then becomes, “Why are Biblical responsibilities ignored?” Without making a blanket statement and hoping to avoid an abstract concept, it is apparent that the breakdown occurs primarily because of selfishness. In II Timothy 3:1-4, the Apostle Paul tells us that in the last days (indicative of our time), “men shall be lovers of their own selves” and “lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.” Philippians 2:21 also states: “For all seek their own…” Ephesians 2:2-3 describes selfishness as an integral part of our human nature: “we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind…” Paul admonishes the Corinthian believers, “that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves” (II Corinthians 5:14-15). A key concept that has been cemented into my thinking is that selfishness is the destroying element in Christian homes today! In fact, an interesting note is that all three passages that deal exclusively with the husband/wife relationship are preceded in context by admonitions against selfish living (Ephesians 5:1-20: Colossians 3:1-17; I Peter 2:1-25). Men, how is your relationship to your wife? Is there emotional tension? Does it seem like you are just existing together? Let me encourage you -- take a look at your demeanor and reactions toward your wife. Can you see any selfishness there? Do you love her as Christ loved the church? Or do you feel that she exists primarily to please you?

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