The old saying, “As the family goes, so goes the nation” is true now more than ever. While this phrase is important, Dr. Voddie Bauchman argues that “as the father goes, so goes the family.” Pastor Bauchman wrote this book to help teach men how to faithfully shepherd their families, and to call men to accountability for their God-given responsibilities in their home.
Family Shepherds is a very helpful book that was derived from material Pastor Bauchman taught at monthly meetings with the men at Grace Family Baptist Church where he Pastors. This book is designed to help any husband or father lead their families well, and will serve as an excellent resource for churches looking to equip men in their congregations.
In a society that continues to devalue men and tell them how unimportant they are, I appreciate Dr. Bauchman’s call in this book for men to be leaders in their home. In part one, Pastor Bauchman explains the need to equip family shepherds by emphasizing a biblical view of the family. The approach to this type of ministry Dr. Bauchman argues for are what he calls “a three-legged stool” of discipleship. The first stool is godly, mature men and women in the church; 2) godly, manly pastors and elders; and finally biblically functioning homes (Bauchman, 28).
In part two Dr. Bauchman focuses on family discipleship and evangelism and what it means for men to be priests and prophets in their home. Here he teaches on heralding the Gospel at home, catechism, Christian education and family worship. Part three explains the purpose, and primacy of marriage, and male headship in the home. Part four of the book focuses on training and discipline of children. In the final section of the book Dr. Bauchman teaches on lifestyle evaluation; how men are to count the cost of family discipleship by understanding church membership, how they use our time and their dual citizenship.
The greatest strength of this book is Pastor Bauchman firm commitment to the Word of God and the Gospel. The other aspect of this book that most readers will appreciate is how the author deals with objections to family oriented ministry. The author engages those who disagree with him in an agreeable way not to beat down his opponent, but to show them what the Scriptures teach. Speaking the Truth in love is sorely needed in the Church, and I could not help but note how good of a job Pastor Bauchman did in pointing his readers to the Word of God and the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. The final strength of this book is the chapter on “Heralding the Gospel at home” where Pastor Bauchman lays out what the Gospel is, and what the Gospel demands from men today.
Family Shepherds should be required reading for every Pastor and any church with any men or any desire to reach men with the Gospel. Reading this book challenged me to shepherd my wife better with the Gospel. Family Shepherds is big on the Gospel, but also applies its teaching by giving practical insight on how Christian men can lead their wives and children. I recommend every Pastor, every ministry leader and every man read Family Shepherds in order to learn how the Gospel should affect every area of your leadership in the home.
Author: Voddie Bauchman
Publisher: Crossway (2011)
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Crossway as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”