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A View of Patriarchy from 1622 – William Gouge on Headship in Marriage

Posted on Feb. 27, 2009

The biblical view of patriarchal leadership in marriage is supremely defined by the heart and behavior of Christ toward His church. William Gouge, the puritan writer says,

“The goodness which Christ doth for his church, He doth because He is the head thereof. O how happy a thing is it for the Church that it hath such a head! An head that doth not tyrannize over it, nor trample it under foot: an head that doth not pole, nor peel the church: but procureth peace and safety to it. When Naomi sought to make a mach betwixt Boaz and Ruth, that he might be her head, what saith she? Shall I not seek rest for thee that it may be well with thee? (Ruth 3:1). It is therefore the office of an head to be a Saviour, to procure rest and prosperity to the body whose head it is.

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Our God: A Temperate and Skillful Rider

Posted on Feb. 23, 2009

Calvin says that God is “like a temperate and skillful rider,” while “the devil has seized the saddle, like an ignorant and rash rider.”

He notes, “Augustine (in Psa 31 and 33) compares the human will to a horse preparing to start, and God and the devil to riders.

If God mounts, he, like a temperate and skillful rider, guides it calmly, urges it when too slow, reins it in when too fast, curbs its forwardness and over-action, checks its bad temper, and keeps it on the proper course; but if the devil has seized the saddle, like an ignorant and rash rider, he hurries it over broken ground, drives it into ditches, dashes it over precipices, spurs it into obstinacy or fury….”

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Children who spend time with their fathers have a higher IQ

Posted on Feb. 18, 2009

A recent study in the UK concluded that “children who spend large amounts of time with their fathers have higher IQs, according to a new study.”

“Strong fatherly involvement in their early life can also improve a child’s future career prospects, the research shows.”

“‘The data suggest that having a second adult involved during childhood produces benefits in terms of skills and abilities that endure throughout adult life.”

We do not need IQ tests, surveys, and research reports to know the importance of a father’s role in the life and developement of his children. The wisdom of God is illustrated in this news item… God calls fathers to teach their children, when you “sit in the house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down and when you rise up.” Deuteronomy 6:7

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Our Marriages and the marriages of our sons and daughters

Posted on Feb. 16, 2009

We just completed our first, “Our Marriages and the Marriages of our Sons and Daughters” conference where we gathered 25 couples to consider God’s beautiful design for marriage, define what makes for godly intimacy in marriage, how husbands and wives lovingly work for one another’s sanctification, and how to troubleshoot problems in marriage. We outlined how to identify potential spouses for our children, detailed how we encourage young men to ready themselves for marriage, and identified various ways to connect with others who may be potential marriage partners. Peter and Kelly Bradrick told their story and shared principles and lessons they learned while working toward marriage. We identified how to prepare sons and daughters for marriage and lay the foundation from the early years. We also spoke of how to conduct oneself while planning the wedding and how to become a godly in-law.

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That The Sweetest Harmony Would Reign in Marriage

Posted on Feb. 13, 2009

Here is John Calvin on the glory of a Christain marriage. He notes the support, help, companionship, assistance, harmony, friendship and peace that God has wrought in providing marriage for man and woman,

“Now, since God assigns the woman as a help to the man, he not only prescribes to wives the rule of their vocation to instruct them in their duty, but he also pronounces that marriage will really prove to men the best support of life. We may therefore conclude, that the order of nature implies that the woman should be the helper of the man. The vulgar proverb, indeed, is, that she is a necessary evil; but the voice of God is rather to be heard….”

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Charles Darwin – A Case Study in Preparing Children for Marriage

Posted on Feb. 12, 2009

Preparing children to marry is one of the most important parental tasks. It is obvious that Darwin had no conception of the
marks of a Christian marriage the year before he married. Instead of a stage for the self sacrificial love of Christ, he saw marriage as an intrusion into personal pleasure and satisfaction. Among his papers there is a checklist Darwin made to decide whether or not it was worth getting married. It is believed that he wrote this memorandum on marriage in 1838 the year before he married.

Here is a young man who was not mentored in doctrine of Christian marriage and therefore entered marriage totally unprepared,

“Reasons for not marrying: freedom to go where one liked; choice of Society & little of it. - Conversation of clever men at clubs - Not forced to visit relatives, & to bend in every trifle. - to have the expense & anxiety of children - perhaps quarrelling - Loss of time. - cannot read in the Evenings - fatness & idleness - Anxiety & responsibility - less money for books.”

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Charles Darwin, Out of Step with the Puritans on Marriage

Posted on Feb. 12, 2009

Here are some statements from various Puritans on marriage that show a sharp contrast between a Darwinian marriage and a Godly marriage.

Thomas Adams (1612-1653) “There is no such fountain of comfort on earth, as marriage”

Robert Cleaver, (1560-1640) “There can be no greater society or company, than is between a man and his wife.”

George Swinnock (1627-1673) “They are partners in the nearest degree imaginable”

Thomas Hooker (1586-1647) “The man whose heart is endeared to the woman he loves, he dreams of her in the night, hath her in his eye and apprehension when he awakes, he museth on here as he sits at table, walks with her when he travels and parlies with her in each place where he comes.”

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The Essence of Biblical Patriarchy

Posted on Feb. 11, 2009

At Hope Baptist, we are preaching through the Ten Commandments. This Sunday we will providentially consider the seventh command, “You shall not commit adultery” (Deuteronomy 5:18) This command will initiate a celebration of the wonderful commands of God for marriage. This command takes us into the deepest recesses of the heart of God’s love for men and women. He desires us to mirror His own nature in the loving unified relationships in the Godhead as well as His sacrificial love for the church that Christ demonstrates. This is the essence of Biblical patriarchy and it displays the truth that God’s commands for marriage are both a soothing breeze and a wall of protection for all those who would obey them…

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The Sway of Love - A Wife’s Influence on her Husband

Posted on Feb. 10, 2009

The blessings and opportunities of marriage are on my mind this week as I am preaching on the seventh commandment (“Thou shalt not commit adultery”) and joining with 25 couples in our home this weekend to consider, “Our Marriages and the Marriages of our Sons and Daughters.” Here is J.R. Miller writing on the amazing role of a wife as an influencer of her husband.

“Again let me say that no wife can over-estimate the influence she wields over her husband, or the measure in which his character, his career and his every destiny are laid in her hands for shaping. The sway which she holds over him is the sway of love, but it is mighty and resistless. If she retains her power, if she holds her place as queen of his life, she can do with him as she will. Even unconsciously to her herself, without any thought of her responsibility, she will exert over him an influence that will go far toward making or marring all his future.

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How Young Men Bless Their Sisters

Posted on Feb. 10, 2009

The opportunity that siblings have is a very special one that only lasts a few years. Here is another powerful quote from J.R. Miller explaining one of the most wonderful of these opportunities,

“A young man should be more polite to his own sister that to any other young woman under heaven; and a young woman should ever turn to her brother as the one nearest in all this world to her until a husband stands by her side. Brothers and sisters are each other’s natural keepers. They should shield each other. They should be an inspiration to each other in the direction of all noble thought and better life. They should be each other’s guardian angels in this world of danger and of false and fatal paths.”

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