I just finished this great, quick-read book. I highly recommend it to anyone reading this! It's readable by anyone - short, each chapter is only 4-5 pages, and it's quality stuff by many of my favorite authors: RC Sproul, RC Sproul, Jr., Edna Gerstner, Elisabeth Elliot, Judy Rogers, Doug and Nancy Wilson, Jim Jordan, Gary Ezzo, etc.
Here are some highlights:
Sproul, Jr.: "Christians have manned the barricades in defense of the nuclear family.... we joined the battle too late. If we in the church can keep husband and wife together, and give them a child or two, we think we're doing well. Only a few generations ago, such was not a family at all, but a poor and lonely band of an almost family. We looked at families in terms of several branches.... Now we are rootless." pg 3.
Sproul, Jr.: "The covenants of God, even what some call the covenant of works with Adam, are filled with grace. But... we must remember that He has every right to impose this covenant on us." pg 9.
Sproul, Jr.: "John Knox was persecuted and had to flee to Geneva. When he returned to Scotland, the first man he ordained was my direct ancestor, Robert C. Sproul." pg 11.
Sproul, Jr.: "The family exists to fulfill the dominion mandate first given to our Father Adam and Mother Eve [Gen 1:26-28].... Did God create Eve to alleviate Adam's loneliness? Did God create Eve as a sort of playmate for Adam? God created Eve to help Adam exercise dominion over creation.... Marriage is not first for the romance, passion, and intimacy, though it can serve all these. Marriage is about dominion." pg 15.
Beates: "I am haunted by the comments of James Alexander, who, nearly 150 years ago, wrote: 'Our church cannot compare [regarding domestic worship] with that of the seventeenth century. Along with the Sabbath observance, and the catechizing of children, Family-Worship has lost ground. There are many heads of families, communicants in our churches, and... some ruling elders and deacons, who maintain no stated daily service of God in their dwelling.'... Do you know any heads of families who faithfully conduct daily worship in the home?" pg 31-32.
Beates: "J.I. Packer (in A Quest for Godliness) wrote, 'The Puritan pastor, unlike his modern counterpart, did not scheme to reach the men through the women and children, but vice versa.' For the Puritans, he said, the husband was the family pastor." pg 33-34.
Elliot: "When speaking to a group of pastors' wives, I learned that 80% of them worked full time outside the home. I was shocked.... If we look carefully at the scriptural lists of womanly responsibilities (1 Tim 5:9-10 and Titus 2:3-5), we may ask wheter there is time to do those things that are clearly the will of God when we have set for ourselves so ambitious an agenda." pg 59.
Sproul Jr.: "Our current problem is certainly not overbearing parents who refuse to recognize a change in their authority after the leaving and cleaving. Our problem is parents who refuse to counsel and advise, not meddlesome curmudgeons who demand their own way. Our problem is not tyranny, but abdication.... We need young men who are not ashamed to ask for help... We need patriarchs, men who will at once recognize the sovereignty of households, yet be quick with wise counsel to those of us still learning." pg 85.
Wilson: "A visitor to our church commented on something that struck him as uncommon, or at least more rare than it should be. 'The men pray...' he said. Too often the picture of men at church is that of the hapless drone, maneuvered through the doors by a pious wife. He is not exactly spiritual, but he is docile, and that is reckoned to be close enough." pg 87.
Sorry to go on so long, you can tell I liked it, AND that it's not exactly mainstream stuff. I think it's on the mark though, to restore Biblical living in families, as men, women and children of God.
Posted by Steve at 2:15 PM