FIRST PRINCIPLES: FAMILY
For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. – Genesis 2:24 & Matthew 19:5
As for you, be fruitful and increase in number; multiply on the earth and increase upon it. – Genesis 9:7
The family acts as the foundational sphere in society. Every other sphere flows from this first institution, this primary building block. The God ordained family brings new life. It encourages intimacy and the development of virtue. It teaches skills necessary for the functioning of the other spheres, such as communication and conflict resolution. It reminds us of heavenly realities such as the Trinity, the love of the Father, and the sacrifice of Christ.
Sadly, the joys and beauty of this sphere are missing from many of our homes today. Instead, fatherlessness, divorce, sexual sin, and abuse plague us. Fathers, mothers, grandparents, and children are all living in pain, struggling to overcome the mountains before them. But their brokenness does not remain in their homes; it extends to every other sphere of life and impacts all of society. Studies demonstrate that our jails are filled with fatherless children and that our poverty is sourced largely in single-parent households. When the family falls apart, so too does our community.
Rebuilding communities requires us to rebuild families. As citizen statesmen, we must first look to our own kin. We must restore our relationships, strengthen our marriages, build into our children, and provide for our elderly, infirm, or needy. Yet we cannot stop there. We must prayerfully consider how to aid other families as they rebuild (i.e. adopting a child, mentoring a father, or providing for a single mom). We must be intentional and persistent in our course of action, recognizing that the family’s influence ripples through every other sphere.
A man and a woman have an inherent moral freedom to marry, to procreate, and to direct and control the upbringing of their children.
The moral and legal underpinnings of the unalienable right of a man and woman to marry, procreate, and direct the upbringing of their children are embedded in deeply rooted divine, natural, and common law traditions. These timeless moral truths articulate inviolable, objective standards or reference points that all government actions must respect.
The following resources are provided for informational use only and are not necessarily endorsed by the Great Lakes Justice Center. They should always be examined against Scripture, our primary resource. If you would like to add resources to this list, please contact us.
Books, Articles, & Journals
- “The Political Science of Family Fragmentation“, Lynne Marie Kohm & Rachel K. Toberty
- “The Socialist Attack on the Family”, Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse
- What is Marriage? Man & Woman: A Defense, Sherif Girgis, Ryan T. Anderson, & Robert George
Ministries, Organizations & Events
- American Family Association
- Caribbean Centre for Family & Human Rights
- Family Life
- Family Research Council
- Focus on the Family
- National Organization for Marriage
- Ruth Institute
- World Congress of Families