Society’s standards for family—and even definitions—have changed rapidly in the past couple of generations, and especially in recent years. Traditional views of marriage, sex, gender, parenting are all in flux.
Where did the idea of family come from? What is family? What is its purpose? The answers can be found in God’s Word, the Holy Bible. God reveals knowledge basic and vital to know—knowledge otherwise inaccessible to man.
The origin of mankind is revealed in Genesis 1:26: “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness ….” This means we look like God (likeness)—and can develop the very character of God (image).
God created not just human beings—but also physical family. After making the man from the dust of the ground, He made a “help meet” for him—from his very flesh. God then created marriage by uniting Adam and Eve in matrimony. “And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Genesis 2:23-24). So God established the pattern for marriage. When of age, a man would leave his parents and marry a woman. Children would be born from their union, and the process of family would continue.
God created family, and the Genesis account shows how. In addition, God set the bounds of what a family is and gave laws that regulate its function (e.g. Exodus 20:12, 14; Ephesians 5:21-33). God is not only Creator, He is also Ruler and Educator. He alone has the authority to decide what a family is and how it functions. And His Word educates mankind on how to make family work beautifully!
This is the simple and straightforward truth of God. Yet society today, under the deceptive sway of Satan the devil (Revelation 12:9), seeks to destroy God’s creation by distorting and perverting marriage and family. Satan is the god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4). He knows what the God-ordained purpose of family is, and he violently hates it since he cannot attain it! But though people can attain it, few know that purpose!
So what is the purpose for which God created family? The astounding answer is only revealed by the great Creator God.
God is now undertaking the most stupendous creation of all—that of reproducing Himself! God is creating a family of God beings. And God created the physical family as an exact type of the God Family.
God the Father, from heaven, said of Jesus, “Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Jesus, praying, called God “Father”—Father and Son—a family relationship. The Church, at the resurrection to immortal spirit life, is to marry the resurrected and glorified Christ (Ephesians 5:25-28, 32). So this is a family relationship—Father, Son, Husband and wife. And the “wife” is to be composed of born children of God (Hebrews 2:6-10; Romans 8:16-17).
The fact that we live in physical families today helps us understand and prepare for our future in the God Family. The physical family is patterned after the God Family. This is why Satan hates family and seeks to destroy it! Satan wants to blind mankind to their incredible human potential. If people become confused about physical family, then the God Family also becomes confusing.
God is not the author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33). He has clear purposes for having created family, and for family to fulfill those purposes, we need to build it within the confines of the laws He set in motion.
Marriage and family are God-plane relationships! God wants us to understand family because God is a family! God is the supreme divine Family. His ultimate purpose is to reproduce Himself in mankind. The purpose of physical family is to help prepare mankind to enter into the very Family of God! That is why we must endeavor to conduct our families according to God’s laws. Family is a great blessing!
To understand much more on this inspiring and vital topic, read Why Marriage—Soon Obsolete?
and God Is a Family.