Family Shepherds: Calling and Equipping Men to Lead Their Homes. Voddie Baucham is one of my favorite authors and speakers and if he is anything he is bold and unapologetic. That sort of candor is far too uncommon. Family Shepherds, not having read it yet, seems to be a natural follow-up to his other books like What He Must Be...If He Wants To Marry My Daughter and Family Driven Faith in calling the church back to a Bible centered view of the family rather than a culturally molded model.
You can watch a brief video of Voddie talking about why he wrote this book and why it is so important.
I am eagerly anticipating this book! Some people in the more "organic" spectrum of the church might get jittery at some of the things Baucham says when he starts talking about the unique role of fathers in the home. Any hint of male leadership or *gasp!* patriarchy makes some people break out in a cold sweat. I get that. I just disagree. Vehemently.
If we have organic, participatory, whatever terminology you use to describe the gathering of the church but have homes that are not as representative of the Biblical model and command as our church gatherings are, we will continue to have serious issues and confusion in the church. If our homes are not as Biblically ordered as our church gatherings we are being dangerously inconsistent. How we view families within the church is critical if we are to have a church that functions as a family. The parallels between the two are unmistakable and critical. This is again a matter of consistency. To say that Paul's example and admonition for a voluntary, functioning priesthood of all believers is normative for the church today but then to reject his teachings, often in the same chapter, on gender relationships and roles is not only inconsistent, it is disingenuous. I don't see simple, organic church models and family integrated gatherings with traditional gender roles being incompatible with one another. I rather see them as perfectly compatible and consistent interpretations and applications of Scripture.
I am sure that Family Shepherds will be purchased and loved by many in the Family Integrated Church segment of the church and by many families in the homeschooling wing. I hope it gets an audience beyond that because the questions and issues it raises are crucial in this day and age. I don't expect everyone to agree. Heck I haven't even read the book yet! I do hope that it will lead to more conversation that is focused on Scripture and the unique role of fathers in the family and the church.