Family was God’s idea. It is the perfect expression of the Heavenly Father’s heart. “God setteth the solitary in families” (Psalm 68:6). From the beginning He knew that it was not good for man to be alone (Genesis 2:18). And yet in our sin cursed world, even with the existence of physical families, there are so many abandoned, neglected, and lonely people.
One of the miracles of salvation is that through Christ we are placed into a new family – the greatest family in the world! Scripture refers to it as “the whole family in heaven and earth” (Ephesians 3:15). This family has never all met together at one time…but we will one day. In fact, there is going to be quite a family reunion at the Father’s house!
The local New Testament church is to be an extension of the Father’s family in each community. Members of a local church are not merely part of a civic group or man-made organization – we’re family! We have the same Father. We are brothers and sisters. We are going to spend eternity together.
You don’t walk away from family. You may leave a business or forget an acquaintance, but family? They are forever. Such a conviction would prevent many believers from lightly leaving a church. Family members stay when times get hard.
Family members take care of one another. It’s family! This is what Paul meant when he wrote, “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10).
Petty quarrels and needless competition are often put to death in the presence of the Father. Recently as I studied Paul’s personal words about two other preachers a wonderful truth struck me. He speaks in Philippians 2 about Timothy and Epaphroditus as co-laborers. But with both men he refers to them as family. Timothy is referred to as “son” (v. 22) and Epaphroditus is referred to as “my brother” (v. 25).
When we see other Christian workers what do we see? A competitor? God forbid! A co-worker? Much more! A fellow child of God.
We are not just fellow workers. We are not just friends. We are family. And the only goal every child should have is to please the Father.
They say that blood is thicker than water, and so it is. Our fellowship is based on blood – the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. And our family is the family of God.
In the Perfect Son’s family prayer for the rest of the children He prayed, “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that thou hast sent me” (John 17:21).
It’s family! Thank God you are in it…and may God help all of us to act like it. Those outside the family are watching.
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