Families in the Family of God

January, February, March 2006

Want to learn more about Families in the Family of God? Use these Bible Studies for personal devotion, group Bible studies, or teaching a church class. Below are links to the lessons in this 12-part series.

Lesson 1: A Family of Families (Genesis 2, Matthew 19, 1 Corinthians 17, Romans 1)
A Christian faces all sorts of struggles. Most are internal fights with temptation. Some are fights against the growing evil in society. All(as we learned last quarter)are battles against spiritual forces of evil. One struggle that crosses these lines is the struggle for the family. It takes work to play our proper role in our own family. The nature of the protected family in society is currently under attack. Our lesson this quarter is all about the family. This week we start by considering the Bible's definition of the family. Let's jump in!

Lesson 2: God's Word on Family Living (Exodus 17, 20 and the Proverbs)
Have you noticed how important "people skills" are to having a good life? It is easy to tell the people who just radiate personality, who seem to get along with everyone. Some call the ability to get along well with others, the ability to say just the right thing, "emotional intelligence." When I was growing, up my brother taught me a great deal about having an attractive personality and being a good leader. Emotional intelligence is very important for marriage, and it is important for raising children. The Bible not only gives us the basic principles for the family, it also has a great deal to teach us about family emotional intelligence. Let's jump right into our study!

Lesson 3: Restoration (Genesis 3)
What impact did sin have upon God's original plan for marriage? Did it change God's plan for the relationship between husband and wife? If so, did Jesus' death on the cross bring us back to the original plan? We are going to review some things we have studied about marriage and then look at how sin affected the relationship between Adam and Eve. Let's dive into our study!

Lesson 4: Living With Lambs (Psalms 127, Deuteronomy 6, Ezekiel 18)
How do we view children? Do we look upon them as blessings or an expensive nuisance? Before my wife and I had any children, she jokingly told some young parents we were going to have a baby. The reaction of the other couple was most interesting. They seemed to take glee in the fact that we now were entering the same swamp as they were in - we were going to have to face the challenges of raising children! Their reaction did not encourage us to become parents. Let's plunge into our study and see what the Bible says about the blessings and challenges of having children!

Lesson 5: Disciples Making Disciples (Joshua 4, Matt. 28, Genesis 37)
Jesus calls each of us in Matthew 28:18-20 to make disciples of "all nations." Would this include making disciples of our children? Of course it would! Last week we discussed what the Bible teaches about the blessings and challenges of having children. This week we turn to the topic of "discipling" our children - teaching them to love and obey God. Let's jump into our study!

Lesson 6: Wise Words for Families (Proverbs 5, 15, 21, 31 and Ephesians 5:28)
The Bible is filled with all sorts of practical advice. Last week we studied Biblical advice about how to teach our children about God. This week we move on to advice for grown children in their marriage. Having a good family requires a good relationship between husband and wife. Our lesson this week starts with advice for those who are married. After studying those potential problems, we consider how some of these problems can be avoided by being alert when dating. Let's dive into our study!

Lesson 7: The Royal Love Song (Song of Solomon 1 & 8)
Recently, I saw a book title in which the author seemed to add the word "sex" just to help it sell better. When a read a little note about the book, it admitted this. Well, this lesson is sort of about sex, so let's hope more people are encouraged to read it! Does the Bible talk about sex and romantic love? You bet! Why? Let's plunge into our study and find out!

Lesson 8: Keys to Family Unity (Ephesians 2, Matthew 5 & 22, 1 John 3, Hebrews 13)
I'm reading an interesting book that presents a new theory on how our brain functions. The book suggests that our brain handles the input for sight, touch, sound, and smell in much the same way. Most scientists (including the writer of my book)seem unable to grasp the obvious - that this points to a Master Designer with a master design. Master designs are also found in the spiritual world. If God's creation is a series of repeating patterns, why should we be surprised that God uses overarching patterns or theories of life (laws)to guide our day to day life. Let's charge into our study of the Bible and explore these laws!

Lesson 9: Homes of Peace and Healing (Proverbs 12 & 29, Ephesians 4, Matthew 5)
How do we have a happy home? Sometimes it is not easy, sometimes the members of the home make things difficult. But, like everything else, God gives us directions for making our homes better places to live. Let's jump into the Bible and find out how to improve our family life!

Lesson 10: Families of Faith (1 Kings 11)
What impact does the popular culture have on your faith? On your decisions about what is right and wrong? If you lined up your favorite television program with the standards of the Bible, how close would they be? Over the years, I have proposed about a simple but painful test: compare the amount of time you spend each week watching television with the amount of time spent studying the Bible. If you spend more time with the television, it will have the larger influence on you. Cultural influences have been with us for a very long time, so let's jump into our lesson and study their effect on families of the past!

Lesson 11: What Have They Seen In Your House? (Isaiah 38 & 39, Deuteronomy 6)
Many years ago I was invited to have dinner with one of my clients whose religious freedom I was defending. He had a large number of children and dinner was remarkably quiet compared to dinner at home with my two children. His children did not fight, indeed, they did not even talk to each other. When I asked about this, my client said they had a rule that at dinner the children did not speak unless spoken to. I went home and did some soul searching about whether I was deficient in my parenting skills. To this day I am not sure. I would like to find out how this client's children turned out when they grew up. The client's home arrested my attention. How does your home appear to others? Is it a witness for your Christian values? Or, is it a witness to your selfishness? Let's dive into our study on that topic!

Lesson 12: Turning Hearts in the End Time (1 Kings 18, Matthew 17)
This week I saw the story of a couple who, with the passage of time, saw the romance drain out of their marriage. The wife was then diagnosed with a brain aneurism. Knowing they had very limited time left together, the couple rekindled the original excitement of their marriage. It took a tragedy to make the couple focus on what was important. Our study this week is about God focusing our attention on what is important, especially as we consider the time of His Second Coming. Let's dive into our study!

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