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Journal of Applied Christian Leadership
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Family Leadership: Legacies from the Abrahamic Family

Jasmine Fraser & Lea Danihelova

The thought of family conjures various emotions. To have a family implies love; a sense of belonging and well-being, as mutual reciprocity nurtures the development of its members (Galvin et al., 2012; Newman,1999). In the traditional sense, the family consists of husband, wife and child/children, but over time, the image of the family has changed (Balswick & Balswick, 2007). The emergence of various types of family is altering the structure of the family, but the needs of its members remain constant (Hicks, 2002; Newman, 1999; Prokos & Keene, 2010). The family is considered one of the strongest relational bonds shared among humans; it is hardly likely one can exist without some input or influence from a family of origin. Yet the family is more than a unit that interrelates and shares responsibility for the development of its individual members. 

The family, classified as an institution, is the nucleus of civilization and to a great extent shapes society (Koenig & Bayer 1981; MacArthur, 2013; Martinson, 1970; Newman, 1999). Tracing its origin, we see stories or images of families throughout the pages of the Bible. We read about the patriarchal family lineage—Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah, David,and Jesus and His family. Images of “God as parent to the children of Israel; Christ as groom in relation to the church as bride; and the Holy Spirit’s indwelling empowering brothers and sisters in the Lord” (Balswick & Balswick, 2007, p. 20) illustrate the importance of family in God’s eyes. 

Family implies relationship and community (Gallagher, 2012). In the postmodern world . . . read more


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The Journal of Applied Christian Leadership is a vital journal that should be in the library of every Christian organization, university, or seminary. The Journal is published twice a year by the Christian Leadership Center of Andrews University. Subscription requests can be sent to the Journal of Applied Christian Leadership or established online. To learn more about the Journal click here.

The Journal of Applied Christian Leadership is published by the Christian Leadership Center in cooperation with the Leadership Department at Andrews University.

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