• spiritual leadership in the home

Spiritual Leadership In The Home Is A Man’s Responsibility

Spiritual leadership in the home is a man’s responsibility. I recognize that there are many women in our world who have had to provide spiritual leadership to their family.  I honor, respect, and thank God for all of the Godly women who serve the Lord. This article in no way is intended to diminish their love and prayers.  It is my hope In this article I will show you that God’s plan is for men to step into spiritual leadership.  As the man in my family, I have an important obligation toward my family.  I am the one responsible to God. I have a moral obligation before God to lead my family in spiritual matters.

Let’s go back to the book of beginnings remembering that God does nothing by accident. It is very clear that Adam was created first.  God did this with intentionality. Genesis 2:7 “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.”  Someone said, considering that the first man was created out of dirt, you really can’t expect much out of men.  That is bible humor not bible truth.  Society has let men off the hook too easily.  God is going to hold every man accountable.  The Lord God formed the man first.  Interestingly enough, even though Adam was created from dirt, God expected a lot from him.

Adam is given the command to both work and to obey God in Genesis 2:15. ““Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.  And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

 Two things immediately jump out of that verse.  The first thing is that God gave Adam a job before he gave Adam a wife.  Adam was tending the garden before God ever gave him a wife.  It doesn’t matter, ladies, how good looking he is, or how sweet he can talk, or how nice his dance moves are, or how dedicated he is to the gym.  If he doesn’t have a job, he isn’t ready for a wife. Most men readily step into this arena are wonderful providers.  But providing for your family’s physical needs does not meet all of God’s requirements.  Spiritual leadership in the home is also necessary.

Secondly, God gave Adam a command to obey. God didn’t command Eve in regard to what they should and should not eat.  He told that to Adam. Some would say, Well, he probably did later.  He might of, but you can’t add to scripture what isn’t there.  I am not saying that Eve was not also responsible for her actions.  Obviously, she was because God judged her as well.  But it is apparent that Adam was more responsible because once the fruit was eaten.  God came looking for Adam! Spiritual leadership in the home was Adam’s responsibility.

Notice whose name he calls in Genesis 3:19 “Then the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?”  He didn’t call for Eve.  No! he called the one he had given the responsibility to.

What I am saying is that men have the God given spiritual responsibility to lead their families in a godly way.

Many men have no idea what spiritual leadership in the home looks like.  Many men have never had this modeled for them.   Basically, a spiritual leader sets the tone within the family.  On Sunday morning he tells his family that they are going to church.  His children see him reading the Word of God and spending time in prayer.  Spiritual leadership in the home is modeled at church when a man raises his hand to God in worship, kneels at the altar to pray, and participates in ministry.  The spiritual climate of the home is set when a man decides to put God first in his finances by tithing and giving to missions.

Spiritual leadership in the home is seen when a man says we are going to change the channel because this movie isn’t appropriate.  It is seen when the dad makes sure that the kids are given a biblical education and instruction. It is the man’s responsibility to show his family what servant leadership is all about. That means that sometimes the man needs to pick up the vacuum do the dishes and do it all with joy because he wants his family to be a spiritual family.  It is the man’s responsibility to honor his wife verbally and other ways.

If there is spiritual leadership in the home, a wife never needs to worry about her husband embarrassing her for a moral indiscretion, and the kids feel safe and secure because dad has made a commitment to the family to be there for them.

Some men may ask, is this really that important? Let’s look a little deeper into the Genesis account. God even gave Adam responsibility for Eve.  Let’s follow what happened in Genesis. God creates the animals, and what does God do?  He brings to Adam the birds of the heaven and animals of the field, and whatever the man called them that was its name.  That indicates his authority.  In the Old Testament you see, the ability to name something or someone shows your authority.  Adam here has authority over all of the beasts.  He calls them and names them.

Then of course, as you know the rest of the story, Adam falls asleep. God chooses to create femininity out of masculinity. God takes a rib and He creates the woman, and you’ll notice that He looks to the man now and He says, “What are you going to call her? You also have authority here,” and it is Adam who says in Genesis 2:23  

“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.”

God says, “Okay, that’s what you call her. That’s what she shall be.” In other words, God gave Adam ultimate responsibility. Men and women are equal in value.  The woman’s role is going to be incredibly important. She is going to be a suitable helpmeet for him, but in the order of authority she is to work with him and he has ultimate responsibility for her before God.

When a man exhibits spiritual leadership in the home, the whole climate changes.

I don’t know of any Christian woman who doesn’t desire for her husband to a man of integrity who models that for her children and grandchildren. It is time for men to man up and be what God called them to be!  It is time for men to lead in prayer. It is time for men to know the word.

At times, as a pastor, I have had some women who resisted this kind of teaching. One of the reasons is because people confuse ability with roles. This teaching does not say that women are inferior. The Word doesn’t say that.  Women are not inferior to men.  Women go to college, they can excel in academic studies, they can lead companies, they can govern in politics. and they have leadership, we’re not arguing with that. I am not arguing about a woman’s intelligence or abilities.  What I am saying loud and clear is that men have a powerful spiritual responsibility to lead their family in spiritual things.  The reason why families are in such horrendous shape is because men have not stepped up to the plate and been what they should have been.

Doesn’t the Word say that wives are supposed to submit to their husbands? Yes, it does. And this has been another area of confusion. That doesn’t mean that wives are a doormat. It certainly doesn’t mean that husbands and dads are little dictators trying to rule with fear and anger. Real spiritual leadership in the home wouldn’t act in such a way.  Can I give all the men here some advice? Don’t tell your wife: You have to submit to me because I am the husband!  I confess that I did that early on in our marriage.

It didn’t work then, it won’t work tomorrow.  In fact, nowhere in the Bible does it say that a man can demand submission from his wife.

Nowhere in the Bible does it say that, but it does have some very clear instructions to men.  It’s a full-time job actually.

1 Peter 3:7 NKJV  “Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.”

Ephesians 5:25 “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her,”

When there is that type of spiritual leadership in the home, all in the family will rejoice and life will be what God intended.  It is a woman’s job to submit to that kind of spiritual leadership.  The scripture tells women to respect their husbands and to give them honor.

In fact, the Bible talks about men also submitting to their wives.  Ephesians 5:21 says, “submitting to one another in the fear of God.”  It is a mutual kind of submission. It is the kind of submission where they are one together.  Many times, I have listened to my wife and submitted to her thoughts and ideas. I have come out ahead! Husbands, you are crazy if you do not communicate with your wives about important decisions that need to be made.  God has often led me through the wisdom of my wife Jureen in my life

While I have ultimate responsibility for her and the kids before God, she is a wise woman, who loves our family and has our best interest at heart.

So men, step up into the high calling God has given you. You are not “dirt”! You are a king and a priest! God has breathed into you the breath of life. You have Christ in you, the hope of glory. You have the abiding Holy Spirit with you at all times. You have the backing of God the Father.  What would happen if there was a revival of spiritual leadership in the home? I think our churches and even our culture would feel the impact.

So, let’s do it!

About the Author:

Bob Millsaps is a graduate of North Central Bible College in Minneapolis, Minnesota and the pastor of Fountain of Life Christian Center in Houston, Texas. He is happily married to his wife Jureen and they have three sons, and one grandaughter. Bob has served the Assemblies of God as a missionary, pastor, youth pastor, and evangelist. Bob currently resides in Katy, Texas

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