Father Figures: Jacob
Then Joseph sent and called his father Jacob and all his relatives to him, seventy-five people. So Jacob went down to Egypt.
We don’t often use the word patriarch in modern conversation, and it may be to our detriment because of its rich meaning. Patriarch is a biblical term, occurring four times in the New Testament. The Greek word behind patriarch is made of two words: patria (“lineage” or “family”) and archon (“ruler” or “leader”). Put them together and patriarch refers to the head of an extended family—like the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
Unlike modern families, ancient families in the biblical era often lived intergenerationally—there might be three or four generations of the extended family living in close proximity. And the patriarch had oversight over them all. When Jacob and his descendants left Canaan to go to Egypt in search of food, there were around seventy-plus people in all (Acts 7:14; see also Genesis 46:27). Regardless of the exact number, it was a large family. Today, whether living in proximity or not, grandfathers can exercise the role of patriarch over their extended family by offering love, encouragement, example, counsel, and provision to all their descendants.
The role of patriarch (and by extension, matriarch) was an honored role in Scripture—and should be today as well.
A father’s holy life is a rich legacy for his sons. Charles H. Spurgeon
Biblical Fatherhood: You Can Always Be A Great Dad | Patrick Morley