In the IF Project original session on family, the statement is made:
“Family is a critical equipping unit in advancing His Kingdom. God positioned military families in a highly integrated and special culture. He positioned us among others with a common calling and sense of sacrifice. Military leaders have special opportunities to impact their culture by living openly and by serving as a family within the community. Inviting others to family events, assisting in community projects, serving as a family in ministry and service projects, enabling and encouraging others in their family lives all put the power of Christ into family outreach. All of those are also wonderful tools God uses for growth within the family members. Many OCF leaders, both staff and lay leaders, regard young family members as “force multipliers” in their outreach and ministry to others. They also find that serving others as a family results in growth within their own family members’ lives.”
A force multiplier in the military is an asset or resource that enhances the unit’s ability to accomplish its mission. For example, in a ground combat operation, additional firepower from air or artillery forces increases the unit’s capability to achieve overwhelming force at critical points in the battle.
Similarly, a family growing and living through faith in Christ, parents and children, can bear fruit for Christ often more effectively than just as single individuals.
Throughout the Bible, the Lord God uses families to build His community and kingdom. The family unit not only can be an example of faith, grace, love, forgiveness, and spirituality but also it can be a force for fellowship, encouragement, and discipleship.
Study the following biblical references and consider how they address the questions listed below. If using this outline with a Small Group, consider assigning different Scriptures to different individuals and relating them to one or more of the questions. Then scroll down the page to review our recommended resources for the topic of “Families as Force Multipliers” and consider how the various articles or podcasts provide further insights relating to this topic.
Note God’s intent in creating Biblical families.
- Genesis 1:26:26-31. Man and woman were to serve as His image, to be fruitful, to multiply, and to be about His work.
- Genesis 2:7-24. Husband and wife to complement each other in His kingdom
Note how God used post-creation families.
- Genesis 12:1-18 and 15:1-6. Abram was sent on mission to establish a vast nation of God’s people.
- Genesis 17:1-8. God used Abraham’s offspring to fulfill His promise.
- Joshua 24:14-15. Joshua resolved for his whole household to serve the Lord.
- Ruth 1:1:1-18. Through Ruth who sojourned with her mother-in-law, the human bloodline of Jesus was established. See also Matthew 1:1-18.
- Nehemiah 3:1-5. Family members were instrumental in rebuilding critical parts of the walls of Jerusalem.
- Acts 10:1-43. Cornelius, whose personal reputation and the reputation of his household was instrumental in Peter’s growth in ministry.1
- 1 Timothy 3:1-7. An overseer needed to have the testimony of sound family life.
- How do the promises of God and the actions of His people in the scriptures above apply to Biblical families today?
- What can parents do in leading their families to enable them to be fruitful beyond the nuclear family boundaries? See Deuteronomy 6:1-25 for God’s instructions to the Hebrews.
- What are some ways a family unit can witness in unique ways to neighbors and associates?
- How can children and teens assist parents in community, unit, and church missions? Be specific on actions or activities in which your family members can contribute.
- How can such service help develop children and teens in their growth as disciples of Christ?