A Father’s Role In Family Worship -- By: David Wegener

Journal: Journal for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood
Volume: JBMW 03:4 (Winter 1998)
Article: A Father’s Role In Family Worship
Author: David Wegener

A Father’s Role In Family Worship

David Wegener

A Review Of James W. Alexander’s Classic Work, Thoughts On Family Worship

Family worship has fallen on hard times. It is almost nonexistent in Christian homes today. But there are some signs that it is being recovered, and Alexander’s book can help encourage and show the way.

James W. Alexander was the eldest son of Archibald Alexander, the first professor of Princeton Theological Seminary. He attended both Princeton College and Princeton Seminary, later teaching at both institutions. His first love, however, was the pastorate, and he labored in churches in Virginia, New Jersey and New York until his death in 1859.

Alexander gives us several fundamental reasons for engaging in family worship.

Family Worship Is Essential For Christian Families

The husband has the duty of providing spiritual leadership for his wife. Since he is to love her as Christ loved the church, the husband must do all he can to prepare his wife for heaven (Eph. 5:23–27). He must teach her the Scriptures and pray with her, pointing her again and again to our risen Savior. Similarly, fathers have a duty to raise their children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord (Eph. 6:4). How will we do this unless we read and explain the Scriptures to our children and catechize these precious ones whom God has entrusted to our care? Regular family worship is the best way to obey these commands from God. This is not a duty we can abdicate to the church or Christian school; God will hold fathers accountable for how they have instructed their children.

Family Worship Will Have A Vast Influence For Our Spiritual Good

Nothing will spur a father toward godly, spiritual discipline in his own walk with Christ more than leading his family in worship. In order to teach his wife and children, he will have to study the Scriptures on his own. A godly woman will be encouraged and inspired as she sees her husband take responsibility and lead in family worship. This practice sets a tone of harmony and love in the household and is a source of strength when they go through affliction together. As they pray for each other their mutual love is strengthened. Reading and memorizing Scripture and the catechisms of the church results in incredible development of children, both spiritually and intellectually. What families regard as important is evidenced by the manner in which they spend their time. Therefore, regular family worship shows the children that their parents believe that Jesus Christ is central to all of life. This practice leaves a legacy that will benefit thousands in generations to come.

Family Worship Has Bee...
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