The importance of family structure

“Honor your father and mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which the Lord your God gives you.” (Exodus 20:12)

As the Apostle Paul made clear in Ephesians, that commandment contains a promise to children, encouraging them to obey their parents. When I read it again last week, something else became clear. God is also saying that He will allow the Israelites to live in the promised land as long as they respect the family structure He has ordained. While on the elliptical last week, I read something in Touchstone that confirms that additional truth.

“We agree with (Edmund) Burke that the foundation of the political order is the unalterable biological condition of human experience, particularly the mutual relationship of the two sexes and the proper, coherent structure of the family as the source of order and the living channel of tradition. These are the source, not only of fundamental moral responsibilities, but also of those profound emotional sentiments without which it is impossible to call a society ‘human.’ No political entity can long survive, we are persuaded, that ignores, scoffs at, or attempts to alter the human sentiments that bind husband and wife to one another, and parents and children together. The very idea of patriotism, to say nothing of the myriad political responsibilities of human beings in society, begins with the natural affections that bind a family together.”

In other words, society falls apart when the family structure is diminished.

The importance of acknowledging and honoring the family structure as ordained by God is further supported by another new understanding of Scripture I came to last week.

I have long thought the thrice repeated command, “You are not to boil a kid in the milk of its mother” made little sense. Now I believe it was given to make certain that we never demean the relationship between parent and child. And to make certain we never do, God wants it recognized even in the animals He has given us to eat.

God Bless, Rick

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