Family: Marriage Wisdom, Proverbs 31

Proverbs 31

Listen, my son! Listen, son of my womb!
    Listen, my son, the answer to my prayers!
3 Do not spend your strength on women,
    your vigor on those who ruin kings.
4 It is not for kings, Lemuel—
    it is not for kings to drink wine,
    not for rulers to crave beer,
5 lest they drink and forget what has been decreed,
    and deprive all the oppressed of their rights.
6 Let beer be for those who are perishing,
    wine for those who are in anguish!
7 Let them drink and forget their poverty
    and remember their misery no more.
8 Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
    for the rights of all who are destitute.
9 Speak up and judge fairly;
    defend the rights of the poor and needy.
10 A wife of noble character who can find?
    She is worth far more than rubies.
11 Her husband has full confidence in her
    and lacks nothing of value.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
    all the days of her life.
13 She selects wool and flax
    and works with eager hands.
14 She is like the merchant ships,
    bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up while it is still night;
    she provides food for her family
    and portions for her female servants.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
    out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She sets about her work vigorously;
    her arms are strong for her tasks.
18 She sees that her trading is profitable,
    and her lamp does not go out at night.
19 In her hand she holds the distaff
    and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
20 She opens her arms to the poor
    and extends her hands to the needy.
21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
    for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
22 She makes coverings for her bed;
    she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is respected at the city gate,
    where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them,
    and supplies the merchants with sashes.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity;
    she can laugh at the days to come.
26 She speaks with wisdom,
    and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
27 She watches over the affairs of her household
    and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children arise and call her blessed;
    her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women do noble things,
    but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Honor her for all that her hands have done,
    and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

Family: Parents as Teachers #2, Hebrews 12:3-11

Hebrews 12:3-11

3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.4 In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. 5 And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says,

“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
    and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
6 because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
    and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”

7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? 8 If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. 9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. 11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

Family: Parents as Teachers #1, Proverbs 4:1-27

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Proverbs 4:1-27

 1Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction,
and be attentive, that you may ggain1 insight,
    2     for I give you good hprecepts;
do not forsake my teaching.
    3     When I was a son with my father,
itender, jthe only one in the sight of my mother,
    4     he ktaught me and said to me,
l“Let your heart hold fast my words;
mkeep my commandments, and live.
    5     nGet wisdom; get ginsight;
do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth.
    6     Do not forsake her, and she will keep you;
olove her, and she will guard you.
    7     pThe beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom,
and whatever you get, get ginsight.
    8     Prize her highly, and she will exalt you;
she will qhonor you rif you embrace her.
    9     She will place on your head sa graceful garland;
she will bestow on you a beautiful crown.”
    10     fHear, tmy son, and accept my words,
that uthe years of your life may be many.
    11     I have vtaught you the way of wisdom;
I have led you in the paths of uprightness.
    12     When you walk, wyour step will not be hampered,
and xif you run, you will not stumble.
    13     yKeep hold of instruction; do not let go;
guard her, for she is your zlife.
    14     aDo not enter the path of the wicked,
and do not walk in the way of the evil.
    15     Avoid it; do not go on it;
turn away from it and pass on.
    16     For they bcannot sleep unless they have done wrong;
they are robbed of sleep unless they have made someone stumble.
    17     For they eat the bread of wickedness
cand drink the wine of violence.
    18     But dthe path of the righteous is like ethe light of dawn,
which shines fbrighter and brighter until gfull day.
    19     hThe way of the wicked is like deep idarkness;
they do not know over what they jstumble.
    20     kMy son, be attentive to my words;
incline your ear to my sayings.
    21     lLet them not escape from your sight;
mkeep them within your heart.
    22     For they are nlife to those who find them,
and healing to all their2 flesh.
    23     Keep your heart with all vigilance,
for ofrom it flow pthe springs of life.
    24     Put away from you qcrooked speech,
and put rdevious talk far from you.
    25     sLet your eyes look directly forward,
and your gaze be straight before you.
    26     tPonder3 the path of your feet;
uthen all your ways will be sure.
    27     vDo not swerve to the right or to the left;
turn your foot away from evil.

Family: Singleness, 1 Corinthians 7:1-2,6-9,25-40


1 Corinthians 7:1-2,6-9,25-40

1Now for the matters you wrote about: “It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.” 2 But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband.

6 I say this as a concession, not as a command. 7 I wish that all of you were as I am. But each of you has your own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that. 8 Now to the unmarried[a] and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do. 9 But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

25 Now about virgins: I have no command from the Lord, but I give a judgment as one who by the Lord’s mercy is trustworthy. 26 Because of the present crisis, I think that it is good for a man to remain as he is. 27 Are you pledged to a woman? Do not seek to be released. Are you free from such a commitment? Do not look for a wife. 28 But if you do marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned. But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.29 What I mean, brothers and sisters, is that the time is short. From now on those who have wives should live as if they do not; 30 those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if it were not theirs to keep; 31 those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away. 32 I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord. 33 But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife— 34 and his interests are divided. An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband. 35 I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.36 If anyone is worried that he might not be acting honorably toward the virgin he is engaged to, and if his passions are too strong[b] and he feels he ought to marry, he should do as he wants. He is not sinning. They should get married. 37 But the man who has settled the matter in his own mind, who is under no compulsion but has control over his own will, and who has made up his mind not to marry the virgin—this man also does the right thing. 38 So then, he who marries the virgin does right, but he who does not marry her does better. 39 A woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives. But if her husband dies, she is free to marry anyone she wishes, but he must belong to the Lord. 40 In my judgment, she is happier if she stays as she is—and I think that I too have the Spirit of God.