Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Husbands Love, Wives Respect

Jesus wants Christians to be people living counter-culturally. There are numerous examples of this in Scripture (Matthew 5:1-12, 38-42, 43-48, Philippians 1:21, etc.). Christians today always try to abstain from alcohol, drugs, and sex because they are all "of the world," but often forget about what is really counter-cultural: A holy, joyful marriage.

Culture is always unbalanced. During Jesus' time, equal rights was the issue. Nobody treated the women, the children, the poor, or the sick as equals. Jesus came and spent time with all those people... which shocked everyone. He was counter-cultural.

Today, culture is still unbalanced, but flipped the other way around. Our culture in America has been working hard to focus on the women, the children, the poor, and the sick. Because of the equal rights movements, we have been more conscious about those who have been neglected or at a disadvantage. However, now we must deal with the issue of biblical headship. Because our culture now tells us that everyone is equal (which is a good thing in most cases), we have a hard time wrapping our minds around the idea of biblical headship within a marriage.

We must realize that now, this is what is counter-cultural.

The books that I am reading for my biblical pre-marriage class, specifically Reforming Marriage (by Douglas Wilson), describe how biblical headship works itself out in a marriage covenant. If the husband fulfills his role to be the spiritual leader in the home, imitating Jesus in his relationship with his wife (Ephesians 5:22-33), then what godly wife wouldn't want to submit to this leadership? It has been God's clear design since the creation of Adam and Eve, which was the first marriage to be torn apart by sin. And still, thousands of years later, every single marriage battles with sin.

It is sin that allows us to doubt God's words in Scripture that the husband should lovingly lead his wife, and that she should respectfully submit to him. The Bible is our instruction manual on life, and yet we disregard it and wonder why our relationships fail.

I believe whole-heartedly that whenever I seek God through His Word and devote myself to Him first and foremost, then my relationship with my soon-to-be wife is more harmonious. She respects me and I treat her more lovely. This allows us to be much better examples of Christ's love for His church. It starts with me being responsible with the task that was given to me (Genesis 2:15), and it ends with my beautiful fiancee helping me (Genesis 2:18) as we work together to better the world in Jesus' name.

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. - 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NASB)