Sunday, October 21, 2012

Life Shape Family Growth and Discipleship Week 7 - Extended Family & Friends


According to the scriptures, (Matthew 18:17), the local Church is the highest authority on earth. However:

God ordained the family before He ordained the Church.

That which is good for the family is good for the Church and that which is harmful to the family is harmful for the Church. (Family First Principle)

The Family First Principle: “I make my family my first priority and I make Jesus the first priority of my family.”

Today we are going to relegate the discussion about family to the Bible teaches is best for the “immediate family”. For the sake of today’s teaching allow me to define the “immediate family” and lay some foundation for the “immediate family structure”.

The Immediate Family: Husband/Dad; Wife/Mom; Children

The Immediate Family Structure:
·        God invented family – He holds the patent – only He can define
·        The Original/Traditional Family
o   1 Man marries 1 Woman – (Monogamous Covenant)
o   Joined by God – Undivided by man
o   Replentishing the earth with offspring
o   Nurturing & Admonition until the Children are ready to
·        Leave and Cleave
o   Become extended family
o   Begin their immediate family
o   Continue to Honor and Respect Parents/In-Laws

Memory Verse: Matthew 19:5  For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.

One common family problem is lack of respect of Family Boundaries
·        Either by an immediate or extended family member or a friend
·        Creates/Allows/Supports dysfunction within the family structure

How do we know if extended family members or personal friends are detrimental to the immediate family?

Un-Left Family & Too Close Friends       
1.   When they don’t respect or support the immediate family

1 Samuel 18:3  Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.

David had a best friend named Jonathan. And even though David and Jonathan had a covenant friendship which, according to David’s account, (2 Samuel 1:26), surpassed the love of women, nonetheless David would not allow himself to come between Jonathan and Jonathan’s father, King Saul.

2.   When they begin to divide the immediate family

Proverbs 27:17  As iron sharpens iron, So a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.

Love does not divide family – Love respects family boundaries, is a blessing to family and makes friends better, not worse.

1 Corinthians 15:33  Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good manners.”

3.   When the Spouse or Parent says they are too close

Ephesians 6
1  Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.
2  "Honor your father and mother," which is the first commandment with promise:
3  "that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth."
4  And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.