In Part 1, we defined family worship as “the occasion in which the members of a given family gather together in order to participate in special acts of worship, such as the singing of praise, the reading and hearing of Scripture, and the offering of prayer to God.” In this segment of our study, we’ll attempt to provide some biblical support for the practice of family worship.
We must acknowledge at the outset that there is no single proof text which explicitly commands family worship as I have defined it. J. A. Alexander seems to recognize this point as well.
There are some duties so plain, that they are rather assumed, than commanded, in the word of God; and the number of such is greater than might be supposed on a superficial examination. . . . We are not to wonder, therefore, if we find, even in the New Testament, no separate and explicit injunction to worship God in the family.1
Nevertheless, Alexander, and the Puritans before him, did not hesitate to represent family worship as a duty warranted by Scripture. To support their position, they usually draw inferences from several Old and New Testament passages that provide warrant for something like the practice of family worship. While I don’t expect any one of these passages to provide definitive support for family worship (as we’ve defined it above), I do hope that their cumulative implications will provide adequate grounds for the practice.
1. Noah and the family altar
Immediately after the animals and his family left the ark, we read in Genesis 8:20:
Then Noah built an altar to the LORD, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar (Gen. 8:20).
Altars and offerings were common features of Old Testament worship. We can trace their existence all the way back to the time of Adam and Eve, just subsequent to the fall. Because of sin, man had to approach God by means of an altar. Accordingly, we find Cain and Abel bringing to God offerings or tribute at an appointed time of worship (Gen. 4:3-5a). It should not surprise us, then, to find the righteous man, Noah, building an altar and offering sacrifice. This is what we would expect. And as commentators generally agree, Noah offered these sacrifices not merely for himself but on behalf of his entire family. In other words, as the head of his home, Noah was, as it were, something like the family priest. And so, we have here an early allusion to a special act of worship that took place within the context of a family unit.
2. Job, the family priest
In this passage, we’re told in more explicit terms that Job offered sacrifices on behalf of his family:
[Job’s] sons used to go and hold a feast in the house of each one on his day, and they would send and invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. When the days of feasting had completed their cycle, Job would send and consecrate them, rising up early in the morning and offering burnt offerings according to the number of them all; for Job said, “Perhaps my sons have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.” Thus Job did continually (Job 1:4-5).
Commenting on this passage, John Hartley observes:
[A] noble characteristic of Job portrayed in this picture is his fervent spiritual leadership as head of his family…. It is clear that Job took his role as the family’s priest very seriously, and this ritual of sacrifice was an expression of the entire family’s contrite attitude toward God. As priest of his family he interceded for each member lest any thought disrupt their relationship with God.2
As a “righteous man,” Job felt the obligation to act as a priest and to offer sacrifices on behalf of each of his children. The text indicates that his children were present—“Job would send and consecrate them.” And note that family worship for Job was not an occasional practice. The text underscores the regularity of Job’s family worship when it says, “Thus Job did continually” (v. 5).
At this point in redemptive history, there was no OT theocracy or NT church. The very first worshiping community was the family, and the very first “corporate worship” was family worship. This may be one reason why the Puritans often likened the family to a church. Richard Baxter said, “A Christian family … is a church … a society of Christians combined for the better worshipping and serving God.”3 William Perkins agreed, arguing, “These families wherein this service of God is performed are, as it were, little churches, yea even a kind of Paradise upon earth.”4 Describing his fellow Puritans, John Geree wrote, “His family he endeavored to make a Church, both in regard of persons and exercises, admitting none into it but such as feared God; and laboring that those that were born in it, might be born again to God.”5
Can it be said that our house is like a church? Do we labor to make our household like a society of believers? If the Bible compares the church to a family (1 Tim. 3:15), can we not compare (by way of analogy) the family to a church, a place where family members meet to worship the true God?
3. Abraham—“commanding his children”
Like Noah and Job, we find Abraham building altars and offering sacrifices unto the LORD (12:7; 13:4, 18). He was obviously a man who believed and worshipped the one true God. I do not believe it would be wrong for us to assume that Abraham’s made sure his family was present when such worship was offered. There are two passages that seem to teach that Abraham even demanded true worship from his household. The first of these passages is found in 17:23-27. Abraham has just received a divine command to circumcise himself and his entire household.
Then Abraham took Ishmael his son, and all the servants who were born in his house and all who were bought with his money, every male among the men of Abraham’s household, and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin in the very same day, as God had said to him. Now Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. And Ishmael his son was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. In the very same day Abraham was circumcised, and Ishmael his son. All the men of his household, who were born in the house or bought with money from a foreigner, were circumcised with him (Gen. 17:23-27).
Here we have the very beginnings of a community of people who worship the one true God. All males who would be identified with that community and who would worship with that community had to be circumcised. Like animal sacrifices, circumcision became an essential element of OT religious life. What I’d like to point out for our purposes is that this religious rite took place within the context of a family household. And Abraham, as the head of that household, took the responsibility to insure that his entire household (more precisely, all the males) participated in this religious act of obedience.
I grant that circumcision was a unique, once-for-all ordinance, like baptism. Certainly, I am not suggesting that fathers start administering circumcision or baptism or the Lord’s Supper in their homes. The point that I do want to underscore is simply this: Abraham as the head of his household insured that the true religion was practiced, at least outwardly, in his home. And I don’t believe it would be wrong to apply this principle to the practice of family worship. One of the ways we insure that true religion is practiced in our home is by calling the entire family together to worship God.
Consider the comment found in the side margin of the Geneva Bible. The Geneva Bible was an annotated English version that was translated in Geneva during the Reformation, and it was widely used by the English Puritans because of its Calvinistic notes. The marginal note on our passage reads as follows: “Masters in their houses ought to be as preachers to their families, that from the highest to the lowest they may obey the will of God.” Obviously, the editor saw some connection between this passage and family worship.
Lest we think he goes too far in drawing that application, let’s turn to the second passage, which is located in the next chapter, 18:16-19:
Then the men rose up from there, and looked down toward Sodom; and Abraham was walking with them to send them off. The LORD said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do, since Abraham will surely become a great and mighty nation, and in him all the nations of the earth will be blessed? For I have chosen him, so that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring upon Abraham what He has spoken about him” (Gen. 18:16-19).
God did not choose Abraham so that he alone would worship and serve the Lord. God chose Abraham so that Abraham would lead his entire household into the worship and service of the one true God. Abraham’s election resulted in a God-given stewardship, which entailed the following:
- Abraham would need to know the “ways of the Lord,” and he would need to consistently walk in those ways.
- Abraham would need to teach his household about “the ways of the Lord.” In the context, “the ways of the Lord” would include his merciful, yet just dealings with Sodom and Gomorrah.
- Abraham would also teach his household about the promises of the Lord—that the Lord brings blessing upon those who obey him.
- Abraham would not merely inform, but would also “command” his household—he would apply revealed to truth to their conscience.
Father, why has God chosen you? You believe in the doctrine of election, don’t you? You believe that God chose you from before the foundation of the world to be His child. Do you realize that He chose you for another reason as well? Do you realize that your election in grace implies a God-given stewardship? God has chosen you so that you might instruct and exhort your children and your household to “keep the ways of the Lord.”
4. To the heads-of-households in Israel
There are a number of passages in the book of Deuteronomy that give parents, especially fathers, the responsibility to teach their children the ways of God. We will confine ourselves to the primary passage in 6:4-9. Verse 4 begins with an imperative: “Hear, O Israel.” That’s not a command to passively allow the sound waves to vibrate the ear drums. That’s a command to believe! Moses is calling upon the Israelites to hear and to believe and to confess the following truth: “Yahweh our God, Yahweh is one [the idea is, ‘Yahweh is the only one’].” This great truth was to be the very heart of the Israelite’s faith. And how would their commitment to the one true God manifest itself in their lives? Note the next verse: “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might” (v. 5). In Galatians 5:16, Paul tells us that genuine faith works through love. Where did Paul get that idea? He got if from Moses. “Hear, O Israel! Confess Yahweh to be your God, and let your faith manifest itself in whole-hearted devotion to Him.”
But Moses doesn’t stop there. He continues to expand upon the idea of heart-felt devotion to God. Verse 6 begins, “These words ….” A commitment to God always entails a genuine commitment to His word. You can’t be devoted to God unless you’re also devoted to His word! And this devotion must not merely be outward: “These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.” God wants His word to have a place in our heart—not just in our heads, but in our hearts! He wants us to love the Bible. “I delight to do your will, O my God; Your law is within my heart” (Psa. 40:8). If we don’t love God’s word, then our profession of faith is meaningless. It does us no good to confess the God of the Bible if we do not love the Bible of the one true God.
Moses continues to expand upon this idea of whole-hearted devotion to God. Not only will we ourselves love God’s word, but we will labor to promote the same kind of devotion in our homes:
You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates (Deut. 6:7-9).
The Hebrew word translated “diligently” is used elsewhere to describe the repetitive action of sharpening a knife. Thus, some translate the passage, “You shall repeat them to your children.” Or “you shall impress them upon your children.” In any case, the idea of repetition is included. We are to bring God’s word before our children on a continual basis. Moreover, I don’t think we should limit the practice commanded in this passage to one set-time of formal instruction. As Peter Craigie remarks in his commentary, “The commandments were to be the subject of conversation both inside and outside the home, from the beginning of the day to the end of the day. In summary, the commandments were to permeate every sphere of the life of man.”6
In other words, I’m not to limit the religious instruction of my children to just 30 minutes a day. There is a sense in which I am to teach them all the time. On the other hand, this passage does not preclude such a set, formal time of instruction. Moses is not commanding us to do “either … or,” but “both … and.” Indeed, I have yet to find a good teacher who only teaches his pupils informally. Even the Lord Jesus Christ took blocks of time to sit down with His disciples and formally to teach them the meaning and application of God’s word (cf. Matt. 5:1ff). Consequently, we should teach our children God’s word both formally in family worship and also informally at all other situations of family life.
Fathers, we must do the same with our children. If we confess to believe in the one true God—if we truly love Him and His word with all our heart and soul, then we must manifest our faith and devotion by faithfully and repeatedly teaching His commandments to those He has entrusted to our care.
5. Joshua—“as for me and my house”
Having successfully led the people of Israel into the Promised Land, Joshua gathers them together and issues the following exhortation:
Now, therefore, fear the LORD and serve Him in sincerity and truth; and put away the gods which your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD (Josh. 24:14-15).
Joshua was firmly resolved: “As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” What kind of “service” did Joshua have in view? At the very least, I believe Joshua was determined to insure that he and the members of his household lived outwardly moral lives in conformity with the Ten Commandments. But I’m also convinced Joshua intended to do much more than merely raise an outwardly moral family. I say this because the Hebrew word translated “serve” (עבד) is often used for “religious worship.” Here are a few examples:
And [God] said [to Moses], “Certainly I will be with you, and this shall be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall worship [עבד] God at this mountain” (Exod. 3:12).
Then he called for Moses and Aaron at night and said, “Rise up, get out from among my people, both you and the sons of Israel; and go, worship [עבד] the LORD, as you have said (Exod. 12:31).
You shall fear only the LORD your God; and you shall worship [עבד] Him and swear by His name (Deut. 6:13).
With this religious connotation in mind, note again the context of our passage. Joshua commands God’s people and commits himself and his household to “serve” Jehovah, as opposed to “serving” the gods, which their fathers served beyond the Jordan and in Egypt (v. 14). The context suggests more than just a commitment to raise moral families that abide by the Ten Commandments. The context suggests a commitment to lead one’s family in the worship the one true God.
Practically speaking, what does that entail for those of us who are heads-of-households? First, it means that we require our entire household to attend the public means of grace. Joshua no doubt required his household to attend the “holy convocations” (Lev. 23:3), and we parents should not be afraid to require our children to attend church while they are under the roof of our home. Second, I agree with George Whitefield who preached a sermon on this text entitled, “The Great Duty of Family Religion.” In that sermon, Whitefield argues that heads-of-households are responsible to lead their family in worship.7 And since Whitefield used to read Matthew Henry’s commentary in preparation for preaching, it’s probably safe to assume that Mr. Henry influenced or confirmed his interpretation. Here’s what Matthew Henry has to say about this passage:
Joshua was a ruler, a judge in Israel, yet he did not make his necessary application to public affairs an excuse for the neglect of family religion. Those that have the charge of many families, as magistrates and ministers, must take special care of their own.8
As you can see, Matthew Henry applied this passage to family worship. And I think it’s safe to say that he was influenced by another man before him. He alludes to this in a biography he wrote about his father, Philip Henry.
Besides [praying in secret and praying with his wife], he made conscience, and made a business of family-worship, in all the parts of it; and in it he was uniform, steady, and constant, from the time that he was first called to the charge of a family, to his dying day; and, according to his own practice, he took all occasions to press it upon others. His doctrine . . . from Joshua 24:15, was,–that family-worship is family-duty. He would say, sometimes, if the worship of God be not in the house, write,–Lord, have mercy upon us, on the door; for there is a plague, a curse, in it….
How earnestly would Mr. Henry reason with people sometimes about this matter, and tell them what a blessing it would bring upon them and their houses, and all that they had! He that makes his house a little church shall find that God will make it a little sanctuary.9
Parents, wouldn’t you like your child to grow up like Matthew Henry? If not a commentator, at least a soul who loves and studies the word of God? If so, then I suggest that you make your house a little church, like Philip Henry. Determine that as for you and your house, you shall worship the Lord. And may God will make your home into a sanctuary!
6. David and Solomon: “My son, listen to your father and mother”
Let’s begin by turning to 2 Samuel 6:20. David and the Israelites have successfully relocated the Ark of the Covenant from Obed-edom’s house to Jerusalem. This has been a time of great celebration and rejoicing. We read in verses 14 and 15:
And David was dancing before the LORD with all his might, and David was wearing a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel were bringing up the ark of the LORD with shouting and the sound of the trumpet.
Once the ark was brought to its assigned place, David offered a burnt offering, a peace offering, and then, “he blessed the people in the name of the Lord.” (v. 18). Now it’s important for us to realize that David’s “blessing” was not just a casual “I wish you well.” Rather, this blessing, along with the offering of the sacrifices, was a formal religious function. In other words, David playing a role in leading God’s people in corporate worship.
With that in mind, look with me at the first phrase in verse 20: “But when David returned to bless his household….” The incident goes on to tell us of a conflict in David’s home. Yet, for our purposes, I want you to note that King David not only led corporate worship. David also led family worship. It was no mere “God bless you.” Rather, it was David playing the role of a priest in his home. We’re not told exactly how David led his household in worship. But if you’ll turn with me to Proverbs 4, we see something of what may have been involved in David’s family worship.
Hear, O sons, the instruction of a father, and give attention that you may gain understanding, for I give you sound teaching; do not abandon my instruction. When I was a son to my father, tender and the only son in the sight of my mother, then he taught me and said to me, “Let your heart hold fast my words; keep my commandments and live; acquire wisdom! Acquire understanding! Do not forget nor turn away from the words of my mouth.
As you know, these are the words of King Solomon, one of David’s son. They give us insight into the practice of David and Solomon. David taught Solomon, and now Solomon is teaching his sons the way of the Lord. While we cannot be sure that this instruction was always tied together with those set-times when David and Solomon performed the role of a priest in their home, we might conjecture the likelihood of such a connection based upon the regular practice of the priests (Deut. 33:8-10; Hos. 4:1-10).
Fathers, are we “blessing” our households? Do we fulfill the role of a family priest and instruct our household in the ways of the Lord? Listen to the words of Malachi 2:7: “For the lips of a priest should preserve knowledge, and men should seek instruction from his mouth; for he is the messenger of the LORD of hosts.” Are you such a messenger in your home?
What if there’s no father in the home? What about homes with single mothers? If you’re a single mother, then you must do the best you can to assume this role (cf. Prov. 6:20- “do not forsake the law of your mother”). And you have two wonderful role-models in Scripture, the mother and grandmother of Timothy. According to the NT, Timothy was a useful servant in God’s kingdom who knew the Scriptures. He certainly did not get this way because of a godly father (Acts 16:1). But 2 Timothy 1:5 and 3:15 trace Timothy’s conversion and knowledge of Scripture to the teaching and influence of his mother, Eunice, and his grandmother, Lois. Therefore, single mothers, take heart! The absence of a father leading in family devotions does not have to mean the absence of the family altar. History bears witness to the fact that much profitable family worship has been conducted by godly mothers.
Perhaps someone might suggest that the family altar passed away with the OT priesthood and sacrifices. Perhaps someone might suggest that the father’s duty in the OT has now become the pastor’s duty in the NT?
7. Fathers, nourish your children with the Lord’s discipline and admonition
Directing an exhortation to Christian fathers, the apostle Paul writes,
Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up [literally, ‘nourish them’] in the discipline and instruction of the Lord (Eph. 6:4).
This passage is often quoted as support for corporeal discipline. While I believe the text supports the use of the rod in child-rearing, I don’t believe we should limit its scope to scolding and spanking. More broadly, this is a command directed to fathers to “shepherd” our children, as a pastor would shepherd the sheep. In fact, the Greek word translated “bring up” is used in the LXX to refer to a shepherd caring for his sheep (2 Sam. 12:3; Psa. 23:2). Thus, the apostle Paul is commanding fathers shepherd their children in the “discipline and instruction of the Lord.”
Certainly, that may and often does involve scoldings and spankings. But it’s much more than wielding the rod. It’s also teaching and preaching God’s Word to our children. In fact, the word translated “discipline” is the same word Paul uses in 2 Timothy 3:16 where he tells young Timothy, “All Scripture is inspired of God and is profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction [παιδεια] in righteousness.”
Thus, just as a pastor is to use the word of God to nourish and train God’s people, so too fathers are to use the Scripture to nourish and train their children. One of the best ways to teach and preach the Scriptures to our children is by establishing set-times of regular family worship. And I don’t think we should limit our family worship just to teaching God’s word. Let me remind you that Paul’s command to fathers in 6:4 is part of a larger command to be filled with the Spirit (5:18). And you’ll notice that Spirit-filled living also includes—verses 19 & 20—the singing of psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, and also the offering of thanksgiving to God in prayer.
This may raise a question in the minds of some. Few would question the propriety of a parent teaching God’s word to a child. Some, however, question the propriety of requiring children who are possibly unconverted to sing and pray in family worship. Is it right for us to demand our children to sing and pray to God, even if they are not converted? I believe the answer is ‘yes,’ for the following reasons:
First, God commanded the entire nation of Israel to sing and pray, knowing that many of them still had uncircumcised hearts. Of course, God also exhorted them to circumcise their hearts, i.e., to be converted (Deut. 10:16)!
Second, the Bible teaches us that giving of praise and thanksgiving is the duty of all mankind, not just believers (Pss. 148:7-13; 150:6).
Third, the Lord Jesus Christ does not rebuke but rather commends the praise of children when it is offered to him:
But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that He had done, and the children who were shouting in the temple, “Hosanna to the Son of David,” they became indignant and said to Him, “Do You hear what these children are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read, ‘OUT OF THE MOUTH OF INFANTS AND NURSING BABIES YOU HAVE PREPARED PRAISE FOR YOURSELF’?” (Matt. 21:15-16).
These passages support the propriety of children singing and praying to the Lord. Of course, our job as parents is not merely to insure that they sing and pray but to urge them to sing and pray from the heart.
8. Husbands, don’t let your prayers be hindered.
Having exhorted the wives with respect to their duties towards their husband (vv. 1-6), now Peter turns to the husbands:
You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered (1 Pet. 3:7).
One of the reasons why we husbands must relate properly to our wives is “so that [our] prayers will not be hindered.” The term translated “hindered” is a military word that refers to the setting up of a blockade. A poor relationship between a husband and wife sets up a road block to prayer. There are various ways to interpret this, depending on how we interpret the noun “prayer” and the pronoun “your.”
First, the noun “prayer” can refer either to the practice of prayer or to the answers to prayer. Thus, poor family relationships may set up a roadblock either to the answers of our prayers or to the practice of our prayers.
Second, the pronoun “your” is plural in the original and may refer either to husbands (plural) or to husbands and their wives (plural). If it is just a reference to husbands, then Peter is warning them that their own private prayers may be hindered if they do not maintain a right relationship with their wife. However, if the reference is to husbands and their wives, then Peter is warning that a poor relationship in the home may hinder the joint prayers of husband and wife. This interpretation certainly makes sense since we all know how difficult it can be to come together for prayer if we’re at odds with another person.
A number of good commentators agree. Let quote from three. Edmund Clowney, a late professor of Westminster Seminary, writes,
Probably Peter also has in view the joint prayers of the couple. Husband and wife are to pray together; their home becomes a temple where they together approach God in the worship of a holy priesthood, offering up spiritual sacrifices.10
Even better are the words of Albert Barnes:
It is fairly implied here that it was supposed there would be united or family prayer. The apostle is speaking of ‘dwelling with the wife,’ and of the right manner of treating her; and it is plainly supposed that united prayer would be one thing that would characterize their living together. He does not direct that there should be prayer. He seems to take it for granted that there would be; and it may be remarked, that where there is true religion in right exercise, there is prayer as a matter of course. The head of a family does not ask whether he must establish family worship; he does it as one of the spontaneous fruits of religion—as a thing concerning which no formal command is necessary. Prayer in the family, as everywhere else, is a privilege; and the true question to be asked on the subject is not whether a man must, but whether he may pray.11
Finally, John Brown offers these comments:
There seems in these words a direct reference to family prayers…. If family prayers are hindered, what hope of family prosperity, in the best sense of the words? And if conjugal duty is neglected, how can they but be hindered? They are in danger of being neglected or disturbed, or discontinued. Let, then, Christians husbands, and wives too, guard against everything which may hinder family prayer. Let their whole conduct toward each other look back and forward to the family altar.12
Do you see the point? Peter assumes that we practice family worship, and he assumes that we would never want anything to hinder such family worship. With that assumption in view, Peter is endeavoring to use our commitment to family worship, especially prayer, in order to motivate us to dwell properly with one another. Perhaps one of the reasons why so few husbands and wives in our day are committed to living in harmony together is because so few are committed to worshiping in harmony together. May it never be said that the prayers of our home have been hindered!
Husbands, our wives need us to lead them in prayer. Furthermore, our wives need us to teach them God’s Word. Remember Paul’s word to women in 1 Corinthians 14?
The women are to keep silent in the churches; for they are not permitted to speak, but are to subject themselves, just as the Law also says. If they desire to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home ….” (1 Cor. 14:34-35).
Obviously, Paul is assuming that the husbands are taking the time to teach their wives God’s word. Dear brothers are we doing that? If not, I believe the Word of God condemns us.
In summary, I think the overall teaching of Scripture supports the practice of some kind of formal family worship, which would include such things as the reading and teaching of Scripture, prayers, and praise. In our next installment (Part 3), we’ll consider some of the benefits of family worship, which will also (indirectly) support its practice. Finally, in Part 4, we’ll offer some guidelines for conducting family worship in a way that’s edifying and God-honoring.
- Thoughts on Family Worship, p. 9-10.
- The Book of Job in NICOT, pp. 69-70.
- Cited in Leland Ryken, Worldly Saints, p. 84.
- Ibid., 84-85.
- Cited in J. I. Packer, A Quest for Godliness, p. 270.
- Deuteronomy in NICOT, p. 170.
- Printed in The Godly Family: Essays on the Duties of Parents and Children, pp. 30-47.
- Commentary on the Whole Bible, 2:117.
- J. B. Williams, ed. The Lives of Philip and Matthew Henry, 1:72-73.
- The Message of First Peter, 135.
- Barnes Notes on the New Testament, 1417.
- Expository Discourses on First Peter, 2:235-36.