Establishment of the biblical foundation of family ministry states that it combines two great missions of the church, which are edification and evangelism. The latter method includes gradational aspects of the church’s relationship skills, which include unconditional acceptance, deliverance of the healing on the appropriate level, and challenging of the sinner to a higher level of living. In this respect, the church needs to perform the duties of the resource provider, should respond to all types of needs, and create spiritual family’s relationships with its parishioners to help them embody God’s eternal ideas. Marriage and family are these temporary institutions, which rank above God’s original creation of the Earth, and create eternal nature in His plan of salvation. For that purpose, the church’s task is to join with families and help new generations to be prepared for the forthcoming struggles.
Theological and Physical Sense of the Concept of Family
A man and a woman become essential building foundation of the society, and fulfill God’s plan for salvation through marriage and childbearing. Hereby, the Old Testament states that a man and a woman become a family with their children and no longer stay under the authority of the parents, even if their continue to live under the same household. A man and a woman would form “one-flesh” through marriage which becomes a temporary institution that embodies eternal ideas of God’s creation and salvation that could only be separated by death.
In the New Testaments the importance of the family in the process of salvation is described by the case of the entire household baptizing during conversion of one individual. This case resembles to the one described in the Old Testament of God’s convent with Abraham, which explains His relationships to His people. In this respect, the physical aspect of the concept correlates with the theological concepts, when family as temporal institution corresponds to the God’s plan for salvation, which is Creation-Redemption-Eternity. In this respect, the church’s role in the family ministry is to balance importance of the spiritual family connection with the blood family connection. The passages from Matthew 12:46-50 imply that the most important family connection in the Kingdom of Heaven is spiritual, thus obliging devoted Christians to nurture relationships with God through the faith family in the church, and involve themselves with the problems of others.
Importance of the Child-Bearing Function in the Marriage
God’s plan for creation and salvation implied for a man and a woman to “be fruitful and increase in number”, and spiritually nurture their children about God. Therefore, parents do not only give birth to and care for their children, but should reproduce appropriate role models, and bear responsibility for condemning child abandonment.
Furthermore, God warned Israel nations of their extermination, if their dear to sacrifice their children “as food to the idols”, justifying that these children are His creation, and are His blessing and gift to His people. In this respect, the church’s task is to teach its attendees about the natural giftedness of the body and soul that should be cherished and preserved.
One-Husband and One-Wife Pattern as a Foundation of Monogamous Marriage
Majority of the Bible scholars view basic form of the family created by God as a foundation with the highest priority to the husband-wife relationships. A monogamy marriage is seen as a normative under God’s regulation, which should resemble to the Christian’s love, devotion and faithfulness to God. The New Testament passages justify the sacredness and exclusivity of monogamy marriage with claiming that “he who joined to the Lord is one spirit”.
Furthermore, the Old Testament includes the stories of full range of human relationships difficulties, which were based on the polygamy marriage and comprised jealousy, favoritism and hatred to the firstborn children. In addition, God’s disdain in polygamy of some quintessential examples like Solomon’s case is shown in the consequences, when “his wives inclined his hear to follow other gods”, and his rule ended in the scandal and civil strife.
Divorce is seen as adultery in the New Testament, although fornication is considered as an exception that could not forbid marrying another through concession. In such instances the church has to perform the task of worthwhile ministry and create the atmosphere of the primary acceptance. In this respect, it should acknowledge alternative family forms and respond to life problems and crises. Furthermore, the ministers should draw higher standards of Christian ethics and morality for these, who committed sins.
Importance of Extended Keen Relationships in Family Ministry
The passages in Old Testament describe kinship-redeemer relationships that were based on the obligation to repurchase the possession of the brother that had grown poor and had to sell his belongings. This rule was mandatory, because of the establishment of the inheritance patterns that required a younger son to work for his brother in order to establish his own household. These relationships reproduce ethic and morality standards of the Christians that are based on the commitment of religious orientation and these Christians’ engagement in the other people’s struggles through servant and compassion ministry.
The brother-in-law marriage with the wife of the late brother that had no children was regulated as the righteous act for the purposes when the firstborn of the couple would “succeed to the name of his brother”, and subsequently would continue the stock of the dead. This type of marriage can be another justification of the unselfish brotherly love, which predetermines to “love your fellow as yourself” and excludes avenge and “violent anger” of the beloved, since “righteousness resulting from the faith”.
From the Theological and Biblical perspectives physical family conceives when an individual is born physically, and spiritual family occurs when an individual is adopted into God’s family. The physical family represented by the marriage, and spiritual family embodied with the religious congregation of ministry are bound by moral communication skills, devotion, religious orientation, and precise ability to deal with the family life crises. In such instances, the church becomes a source provider for redemption work of the Christ, in order to embody God’s plan for salvation. This plan is dependent on a man and a woman marrying for eternity and inviting children, who should be considered as blessing and gift of God.
Furthermore, the Bible passages consider the marriage and family as monogamous institution, which practices and displays Heaven Kingdom’s values, ethics and virtues. In addition, family life ministry principles acknowledge situations of the alternative family forms and practice the methods of edification and evangelism, in order to respond to all types of needs of its parishioners. These methods include unconditional acceptance and compassion, which is embodied by the deliverance of the healing on an appropriate level, and challenging the sinner to the higher level of living. In this respect, the church members should exercise the counterbalance between the physical and spiritual lives, in order not to sacrifice their family for the sake of God’s eternal ideas.