It is observable, That the Apostle Paul writing to the Colossians, chapters 3 and 4, after he had exhorted them, To let the word of Christ dwell in them richly, in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another, in Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in their hearts to the Lord, Col. 3.16. Which most commodiously can be performed by families, as such: And after he had further exhorted them, verse, 17. That whatsoever they did in word or deed, to do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him. Which also can be performed publicly by families together: He cometh in the following verses, and in the beginning of the next chapter, to press upon them the mutual duties which all of them as members of a family, owe each to other: to teach us, That in order of the right performance of the fore-mentioned Christian duties, each in their family relations, must mind the special duties, required of them, in reference to other; whereby also he signifieth, that the duties of mutual instruction of singing and of thanksgiving, were to be performed by them, particularly in families. And moreover after mentioning of duties of all the family-relations, he closeth that purpose, chap. 4.2,3. Thus continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving; withal praying also for us. Thereby clearly manifesting, that as he would have had the forementioned duties, Col. 3.16,17. performed by families, as such, and not only by each particular person in their particular station; so in order to the right performance of all the mutual duties, in their family-relations, he presseth them to prayer, and to continuing and watching in the same: and this he presseth upon all the fore-mentioned family-members, husband and wife, parents, and children, masters & servants; and thus manifestly presseth prayer upon them, as a family. So the same Apostle, writing to the Ephesians, after he had pressed upon them the duties required in their family-relations, he in end, Eph. 6.18. urgeth them to mind the duty of Prayer, saying, praying always with all prayer and supplication in the spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance. Which must include family-prayer, which is one way and manner of praying; and who must pray always, at all times and seasons, must not neglect family-seasons and times, this being especially accommodated unto the performance of family-duties; and a special mean and help thereunto; as also unto family wrestling against the wiles of the devil, who knoweth how to carry on his wicked designs, by family-disorders, family-scandal, and the like.
~ John Brown of Wamphray