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The Bible instructs the wife to obey her husband as the Church does obey Christ. Equally so, scripture instructs the husband to love his wife just like how Christ loves the Church. The wife is to be obedient to the husband even as the Church is to Christ (Ephesians 5:22). It is figured that even as Christ is the head of the Church, so it is that the husband is the head of the wife and the family (Ephesians 5:23). And just as the Church is to be subject to Christ, so it should be that wives are to their husbands. To be noted; "...in everything" (Ephesians 5:24). By scripture instructing the wife to obey the husband and in everything, stands out to be critically examined. Does this imply that the wife by being obedient to the husband she should be a "yes" lady? I do not think so, but my taking is that it is how husband and wife relate and the approach used to communicate to each other. Sometimes simply how we communicate could either mean well, calm tempers or stir and provoke tempers. One would intend to communicate but in a way to seem to command. This is where it could be interpreted what the communication is intended for. Yet one could communicate with obedience. So if one sounds commanding and ordering, then there is hardly any obedience in such. For one can communicate but in an obedient way and to try to put things right rather than to want to position yourself where scripture doesn't place you. Human senses are very quick to read how people approach and communicate to us. As that, while the wife seeks to reign in her view, she must understand that what counts is the view taken by the husband who is the head of the family. Whether he makes the right decision or not is another topic altogether. For recall that the scripture has figured it in how Jesus is the head of the Church and thereby directing it is how the husband is to the wife. In essence, it is the husband directing the family not the other way round. Avoid to seem to challenge your husband. Yet, what does scripture mean by obedience. That is; what does obedience entail? Obedience entails the following; submission, trust, and respect. Submission This is the act or fact of accepting or yielding to a superior force or to the will of or to the authority of another person. On that, a wife ought to recognize the husband is the authority in the home. Trust This is the firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something. As a wife, somewhere in you, you should have the confidence that your husband is well suited to be the head of the family. You should try to do away with any doubts. Yet even when you have doubts, try to channel them well for harmony in the family. Respect This is a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements. For him being your husband, means as a well intentioned and intelligent lady, you must have identified the right person in your husband. On such grounds, he deserves your respect. How you deal with him should always be augmented with respect. On the other hand though, scripture commands the husband to love his wife as Christ loves the Church and offered Himself for it. For husbands aren't simply to assume obedience from their wives. To win the respect of your wife, you must play the role of a husband and play it well. As that, what does love entail? Love entails the following; provision, protection, and care. Provision This is the action of supplying something for use, or making something available to someone for use. For a husband to win obedience, he must endeavor to provide for his family. Obedience is to be earned. Protection. This is a person or thing that prevents someone or of something from suffering harm or injury. This is to be done by the husband jealously in every way possible. Care This is to look after and provide for the needs of someone. Husbands must do this with no reserve. For happiness comes with responsibility.
The overarching principle Jesus taught (e.g. Mat. 20:20-28) is that Christians are not to have authority over each other. 1 Peter 5:3 tells us not to “lord over”. Eph. 5:21 tells us to submit to each other, which is impossible if “submit” means to an authority. And since “God is no respecter of persons” (Rom. 2:11) and judges by the heart rather than the flesh (1 Sam. 16:7), we see that there cannot be any hierarchy between Christians, including/especially between Christian spouses. It should raise great concern when anyone teaches division by flesh in the Body of Christ, as if that Body has many heads (ref. 1 Cor. 12). Paul is not saying that wives should consider husbands to be their Lord, as that would be idolatry, since there is only one Lord and Master. Rather, in Christ there is not even male and female (Gal. 3:28), meaning no privilege, entitlement, or hierarchy among the saved. Spouses are partners. They should complement each other the way the left and right hands do. We have one Lord and Master, and marriage is no exception. Again, the key is Eph. 5:21: “submit” to each other. Whatever is to each other cannot be hierarchy or obedience. As for love, husbands are to look to how Christ loved the church: by self-sacrifice, by stooping down to the oppressed to lift them up. In that culture women were socially and economically disadvantaged. Today this is not the case in most western countries, so the command to love and support applies equally to men and women. We should focus on how to be good Christians rather than on the flesh.
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