Prophet, Priest, King - the image of Christ in the Home
And God said unto Jacob, Arise, go up to Bethel, and dwell there: and make there an altar unto God, that appeared unto thee when thou fleddest from the face of Esau thy brother. Then Jacob said unto his household, and to all that were with him, Put away the strange gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments: And let us arise, and go up to Bethel; and I will make there an altar unto God, who answered me in the day of my distress, and was with me in the way which I went. Genesis 35:1-3
This passage contains an excellet pattern for all families:
(1) God’s Commission to Jacob (v.1) Go to Bethel and make an altar (a place of worship and recognition of God’s grace.
(2) Jacob’s charge to His family (v 2, 3) Put away your strange gods, clean yourselves, and change your clothing. Jacob here is assuming the role of “prophet, priest, and king.” He is prophetic as he instructs his family of the mind of God; teaching them their duty before God. He is priestly in his own household in making an altar before the Lord and in pouring the drink offering and oil upon it. (v. 14) He is acting a the “king” or governor over his own household which consist of commanding them to put away strange gods, to be clean, and to change their garments. (v. 4) They gave him their strange gods, and ear-rings and he demolished them or hid them – putting them out of their sight.
God calls upon the heads of households to make their home a place of worship and a place which honors God. He is to speak prophetically in to his household, meaning he is to speak and make clear the Word of God to his family. He is to function as a priest, leading the family in worship before the Lord, and he is to act as a “ruler” in the home, taking authority over “strange gods” that might be brought into the home, thereby causing the presence of God to flee. He is to insure that his home is “clean” before the Lord and that those things which dishonor God and invite the powers of the demonic in are to be “commanded” away, or never permitted entry.
If this view of the role of parents (and in particular husbands and fathers) is offensive to you, then be prepared to live under the constant assault and influence of the powers of hell – for if you will not rule your home — hell will gladly do it for you.