Home Is the Front Lines of Christian Living

Home Is the Front Lines of Christian Living

A middle-aged couple sat across from me in my office. They were pillars of our church, but their marriage had hit a rocky time. After some small talk, the real reason for their visit emerged.

He wanted me to change her. She wanted me to change him.

We looked at Matthew 7:3–5 together, and I asked if these verses might apply to their situation. Were both missing the plank in their own eyes while trying to remove the speck from the other’s?

The room grew quiet. They had never considered this verse applied to their marriage. Though they’d been Christians for many years, there was a disconnect between the Scriptures they heard on Sunday and their actions at home.

Like many others, this couple failed to grasp a principle taught throughout Scripture but often overlooked in seminaries and churches: The first place we live out the gospel is in our homes.

Home Is the Front Lines

My first field of service is my home. My wife and children are my nearest neighbors, and Jesus commands me to love my neighbor. Home is the first place I’m called to display the love of Christ. How I act there matters to God. The Bible’s qualifications for elders state this explicitly:

[An elder] must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? (1 Tim. 3:4–5)

For deacons, too:

The husband of one wife, managing their children and their own households well. (1 Tim. 3:12).

These qualities are not limited to “super saints,” but are intended for all God’s people. In his well-known “Farewell Sermon,” Jonathan Edwards linked home, church, and gospel: “Every Christian family ought to be as it were a little church, consecrated to Christ and wholly influenced and governed by his rules.”

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SOURCE: The Gospel Coalition