Sunday, September 18, 2011

Husbands, Submit. Wives, Love.

May I propose a principle of marriage that I feel like a lot of people forget. It seems to me that the number one point emphasized in the marriage realm is, "Wives, submit to your husbands. Wives, follow man's lead."

But, what about the husband?

We put a lot of emphasis on Ephesians 5:22: "Wives, submit to your husbands." But, honestly, sometimes I feel like the men get off scott free. Maybe its just me, but sometimes I feel like people in the church are so hard core "women-need-to-submit" minded that they forget to look at the man's role in the home. Yes, women need to submit. But, if a marriage isn't going well, that is not the first thing people should assume isn't happening. It is natural for a woman to submit. God placed that in our nature. We want to be pursued and we want to be lead. Yes, often submitting requires humility and can be hard, but for the most part, woman want to and will submit if their husband is leading like he should.

So, now a little word about husbands.

Ephesians 5:25 "Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her."

Simply understood commandment. Summed into four words: "Husbands, love like Christ."

This should, undoubtedly, raise a really really BIG, important question. How did Christ love?  

Mark 10:44-45 "And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and give His life a ransom for many."

This verse should explain so much. This verse alleviates so much of the tension in Ephesians 5 when it says, "wives, submit." Who do you think has the harder job? I believe the men do. Really, its in women's nature to submit. God has created us to want leadership (though sometimes you may deny that). But it is in NO ONE'S nature to love unconditionally like Christ.

So why does everyone get on the wife's case to submit? Why is that the sermon always preached? Why is it that any time something happens, the church assumes the wife isn't submitting? Maybe, I am misinterpreting people, and I will be first to admit that I am, but someone please explain to me if and how I have this backwards.

The Bible says that we are equal, but yet I'm seeing a lot of women treated as lessers, even where I work. I'm not going to say that everyone is like this. I'm just seeing it more and more lately, and quite honestly, it's scary. It makes me nervous about being married one day. It makes me realize that when I marry I have to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that my husband sees me as his equal before the face of God and respects me and loves me and even SUBMITS to me.

Just like I must see him as my equal, respect him, submit to him and love him with the love of God, just like I expect Him to do for me. I guess, I'm just trying to balance the boat. Yes, wives have to submit. Yes, husbands have to love like Christ. BUT! Yes, wives have to love like Christ. Yes, husbands have to submit. 

I know that here is where it can get sticky. I believe that women must submit to men and that husbands are given authority over their wives and that it is biblical for a woman to let men make big decisions and stuff. But, that - just like anything - can be taken to an unhealthy level. If women can't do this and that, can't speak for themselves, can't make little decisions on their own, cannot spank their children or cannot handle a problem by themselves, then its at an unhealthy level. Just like if men were to serve their wives so much, that the wife never had to lift a finger...then its unhealthy.

So, all my intentions to hopefully settle some issues, really failed. But, if anyone has any opinions, I would love to hear them. I do not propose to know everything.


LunaPuma said...

I love this, Ashley! It's always a really good topic to discuss. I agree with you; it DOES seem as though women HAVE to be treated as lesser or else they aren't being "submissive". I think marriage is meant to be a teamwork type thing, not one ruling the other. Yes, men are supposed to be the head of the household, but they should be able to have EARNED that right and not abuse it. Women should still be able to have a say in matters and still be their own person, but they SHOULD respect their husband's wishes. Like I say, it's a teamwork thing. I mean, if you REALLY love each other, then respecting and listening to each other won't be a big deal.

Thanks for posting. Really makes you think!

Anonymous said...

I agree. Although, I have to go one step further as to say that even the men are losing their God given authority. It is Scriptural that we our the head of the household, and that we are leaders in church, but it seems to me that this has been lost as well. It is no longer men that are warriors in prayer. It is no longer men that provide and lead their family in God's Word. That has been lost in today's society. I don't think that women "submitting" means that they are lesser. A marriage is supposed to represent the Godhead. Separate, but equal, the way it was intended. Men need to seek God again, as do women. It's the only way to truly love and understand what God means when he wrote those verses.

Just my thoughts...

GREAT post, Ashes! =]

Vandy Doctor said...

I agree, Ashley! There should be a time for both sides to submit, hear opinions, and consider others' ways. It also just AGAIN goes over the issue of finding the right husband/wife..................

Daniel G said...

Society pretty much gets everything wrong, Were human, unfortunately that's not a good enough excuse though. And a husband is saposed to love his wife more than anything but God Himself, he's saposed to love her more than his own life, comfort, or safety, and if a husband is fulfilling that role a wife submItting to him is not loosing anything. Unfortunately very few men are that selfless. And I know It's imposible to live up the a standard of Christ, but it's what were called to do. And it's a very frightening calling, we are saposed to give up ourselves and lead our wife in the right way, honestly I would rather not have that responsibility, but it's what god has called us to. So yah sorry, this is kinda parallel to your topic, but still off topic, but it's what I was thinking about as I try to discover what it means to be a spiritual leader... Keep me in your prayers, this is a really awsome time for me, but it's also pretty scary. Thanks for posting it was great as always

Ashley said...

Wow guys! I LOVE the feed back! You guys have great thoughts on it too.

@Ryan: I love your comment! You worded that the way I wish I could have. :)

@The Guys: I'm really glad that you guys see the failings of a lot of men today. We have to start with understanding and recognizing the problem before we can do anything about it. I think you three boys are well on your way to being the different ones - I'm glad to know you all personally.