Life is made up of all sorts of roles. They come in all shapes and sizes. Some big and meaningful, while others not so big and trivial. However, there is one significant role that is considered to be the most important of them all. And no, it’s not the role of a president or king. It’s a role that has had more impact than any other role in history.

It’s the role of a dad.

God designed the dad to be a strong model of His love and protection. In the role of dad, he is to love and cherish the mother of his children and fulfill the responsibility of providing, correcting, and protecting his family.

There is so much that can be said about the role of dad. And so to boil it down, here are three primary roles the dad is wired by God to fulfill. They are: DEFENDER, ADMINISTRATOR, and DISCIPLINER.

DEFENDER—Built into each dad is the instinct to guard and protect his family. Any honorable man would lay down his life for his family. But the role of dad is much more than taking a bullet for his family. The presence of dad in the home instills security and provides a sense of safety. Dads are also called to work hard and provide for their families. In 1 Timothy 5:8, it reads, “But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” Thus, it is the role and responsibility of dads to look after their children, and to provide for their physical, emotional, and spiritual needs.

ADMINISTRATOR—Another key quality among dads is the ability to govern and direct his family. Joshua led his family with this statement: “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Josh. 24:15). The Bible says dads are to administer love to his children’s mother (Eph. 5:25), and to train up his family in the ways of the Lord (Deut. 6:7-9; 11:19; Eph. 6:4). Thus, God has called dads to be the spiritual head of the home.

DISCIPLINER—A final key responsibility in the role of dad is disciplining his children. The Bible makes plain that children are to obey their parents (Ex. 20:12). One way to train children to walk in obedience is by dads setting good examples (Tit. 2:2) and disciplining his children in love (Eph. 6:4; Col. 3:21). Solomon wisely said, “Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline drives it far from him” (Pro. 22:15). Thus, a dad’s discipline is not to be harsh, but is to teach, instruct, train, and admonish his children in the Word of God. In essence, the role of dad is to “nourish tenderly” his children and provide the proper tools and be the best example to develop them physically, mentally, spiritually, and socially.

As a dad, check out the words of wisdom and instruction Solomon bestowed on his family.

“My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart.” (Pro. 3:1)

“My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline and do not resent his rebuke.” (Pro. 3:11)

“Listen, my son, to a father’s instruction; pay attention and gain understanding.” (Pro. 4:1)

“My son, keep my words and store up my commands within you. Keep my commands and you will live; guard my teaching as the apple of your eye.” (Pro. 7:1-2)

“A wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish son grief to his mother.” (Pro. 10:1)

“A wise son heeds his father’s instruction, but a mocker does not listen to rebuke.” (Pro. 13:1)