1. There should be prayer and thanksgiving in the home, Eph. 6:18; Col. 4:2. To try to rear children without asking for wisdom from God is extremely unwise. There are too many problems that human wisdom can’t solve, Jas. 1:5.
2. There should be truthfulness, Eph. 4:25; Col. 3:9. Parents should absolutely never tell a child something that isn’t true. When they lose confidence in your word your influence with them is gone.
3. There should be honesty, 2 Cor. 8:21. A home can’t be Christian if debts are treated lightly. Faithful Christians avoid living too luxuriously regardless of their incomes, but Christians whose incomes will not support even modest luxuries simply make themselves content without them. They don’t go into debt beyond their ability to pay. Dishonesty can’t have a good influence on neighbors, children or business people and it will destroy one’s soul.
PURITY OF SPEECH AND ACTION.
4. There should be purity in conversation and deed, Phil. 4:8. Coarse, unclean talk will not be tolerated by Christian parents. Evil magazines and pictures will not be allowed. Suggestive jokes in radio programs, drinking scenes in T.V. will be banned. Programs that have them will not be allowed. That may seem to be a big job, but the pure religion of Christ and such things do not go together. “What fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hat light with darkness?” 2 Cor. 6:14.
5. There should be unselfishness, Phil. 2:3,4; Rom. 15:1-3. Each parent should desire the best for the other, though ordinarily “the weaker vessel” should accept the comfort offered by her husband, provided he offers it. Children should be taught not to maneuver things in an effort to get the best and most of every good thing.
6. There should be generosity, Gal. 6:9,10. Avarice should find no place in a Christian home. It is contrary to the religion of Christ. Neither should the selfish desire for luxury render it impossible for a family to assist needy people. Would you turn the Lord away from your door? Yet we are refusing to help Him if we spend all available income for our own gratification and provide nothing for the needy, Matt. 25: 31-46.
LOVE AND KINDNESS.
7. There should be love and kindness, Eph. 5:28,33; 6:1-4; Col. 3:18-21. True Christians will be kind in their home, will be courteous, will say, Please and Thank you when favors are desired or borrowed. There will not be wrangling, quarreling and strife.
8. There should be Bible reading and study, Deut. 6:4-7; Eph. 6:1-4.
9. There should be fidelity, Matt. 19:4-9; 5:27,28. Men and women should exercise care in their associations one with another. They should avoid being together too often or too much lest something slip upon them they do not expect or intend. Too much affection for another’s husband or wife breaks up the happiness of one’s own home and drives out every vestiage of Christ’s religion from the home.
A religion that one apparently practices before others but does not practice at home is not genuine. If Christ’s religion is practiced in the home by a person it will be practiced elsewhere by him: for if one holds his temper and controls his words and deeds at home where he feels secure, he will control himself before others who may not be so charitable. Surely if Christ’s religion should be practiced anywhere in this world, it should be at home. A life lived simply to impress others outside of the home is a hypocritical life. What is to be thought of one who is contentious and selfish at home but affable and generous with friends?