Sunday, November 16, 2008

Submission: The Man And His Wife

Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.  For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives beto their own husbands in everything.  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her,  that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word,  that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.  So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself.  For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church.

The thought of submission to many people and their opinion of it is sometimes without complete understanding of what the Bible has to say about the subject. Insight and sensitivity of this subject is a must for all married couples. When men and women rightly divide the word of God they will have a better understanding of submission and the compliance of it. They will soon see that it is not a one sided submission. There is a mutual submission that a man and his wife owe each other. Here are three examples of mutual submission that I can think of: (1) The husband and his wife will want to bear each other's burdens, (2) They will resist putting themselves above each other, (3) and the most important of all is "They must be of a yielding, meek, and submissive spirit one to another."

 To be submissive means that a man and his wife should cooperate, work together as a team, voluntary with their mate, out of love and respect for God and your mate. I think submission should be a mutual, humble, cooperation with one another, working together for a common purpose. That purpose is striving to have a Godly marriage in Christ. Christ is the man's role model. Even though Jesus was God's Son and had all power to demand obedience and submission from all He still did not draw back or retreat from doing duties that were the primary duty of a servant. Even though He is the head of the church, just as the man is head of the house, He still washed the disciple's feet. If a husband is to be a Godly leader, he also is to be a servant leader just like Jesus was. His responsibility and role is to lead his wife by taking into consideration with thoughtfulness and kindness everything about her and helping her to succeed by using his position as head of the house.

 Just as Christ is not inferior or lower to the Father, but is second in the Trinity, so are wives equal to their own husbands. Yet in a marriage relationship a husband and wife have different roles just as The Father and Jesus have different roles in the God Head. A husband who realizes that his wife is his own flesh will treat her with love and care. Even so a wife must also realize that her husband is her own flesh and treat him with love and care. Marriage is a Holy Union, a living symbol, a precious relationship that needs tender self sacrificing care. Being subject (submitting) to another person is often a very misunderstood concept. It does not mean becoming a door mat. When we subject ourselves to God we become more willing to obey His command to submit to others. That is to subordinate our rights to others. In a marriage relationship both husband and wife are called to be subject one to another. Submission is rarely a problem in homes where both man and wife have a strong relationship with God and where each other has a deep concern for the happiness, good fortune, and contentment of the other.

A man should care for his wife like he cares for his own body and likewise with the woman; she should care for her husband the same way. The husband should make his wife's well being of primary importance. No wife needs to fear submitting to her husband who treats her in this way. The union of marriage brings two people together in such a way that little can affect one without also affecting the other. Submission can never be compulsory, required or demanded by one human being of another. It can only be given on the basis of trust. Biblical submission should not be separate from Biblical duty and responsibility. In (Ephesians Chapter 5) Paul talked more about the responsibility of the husband than he did of the wife being submissive. A husband and wife love for each other should be sincere, pure, and constant despite any imperfections and failures that they might be guilty of. My dad, who is the pastor of a independent Pentecostal Church once said from the pulpit as he preached, "Behind every successful man there is a woman."

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