Summary: Part of a series dealing with male females roles.
A Great Mystery
With some of the other Scriptures being given to me, I realized that I could go into the Power of Holy Women Part 95. Since Luther had 95 theses I figured one set of that amount is enough. The titles may be changed, but we are going to continue for a couple of more weeks on women themes.
Genesis was the first mention of the husband and wife roles and man as head. Proverbs showed us the liberty of a woman within that kind of role and the power and influence she had.
It was brought up that the New Testament teaches something different. I disagree. The passages we are looking at now are the definitive instructions not only on family life, but also workplace relationships. We will still see order and a chain of command, if you will, in all of these relationships.
Paul has to be the champion of writing long sentences. I start in verse 17 because verse 21 that introduces submission is the final thought of the sentence starting in verse 17.
17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.
The topic is the will of the Lord and wisdom. He then goes on to list examples of that will. They are four; be filled with the spirit, make melody in your heart, give thanks and submit one to another. To not understand that these are part of being in God’s will is to be unwise. This is another way of Paul giving his, "Brethren, I would not have you ignorant" exhortations.
18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
We have no problems saying Amen the fact that being drunk with alcohol is not very profitable. We long for the filling of the Spirit. Being totally controlled by the Holy Spirit like the drunk is controlled by booze is really our ultimate goal as a Christian. Then and only then can we truly be walking like Christ because our sinful natures are under submission to the Spirit and He will not lead us into a path that Christ would not take nor lead us to act in any way contrary to the nature of God. On this point, we raise our hands and sing Glory!
19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;
We have no problem with the second. We know that it is uplifting to the soul to sing scripture and inspirational songs. We listen to our CDs and radios and sing along finding strength in the truths we sing. At least we find that in the songs that do contain truth and not just stuff that can sell in both the Christian and Secular market.
It is somewhat ironic that Baptists who were once against singing in the church now have a great percentage of the hymnal and music market. The premises were that women are to be silent in the church. Men can’t carry a tune in a basket and it says that we are to make melody in our hearts and not in our mouths. The last one sounds a bit like an M&M commercial. Most of us would not agree with their analysis and would fight to our CD for our music. So, Paul has made two points we agree on.
20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
Point three we also would have no problem with at least in theory. We are not always as grateful as we should be and definitely not thankful. We know we need to work on it so we have no problem with being thankful as part of God’s will for us.
Ah, but point four, there is the rub as Shakespeare might have put it. This submission stuff for Americans that have their rights and won’t have them denied pretty well chaps our hides.
21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
5293 hupotasso (hoop-ot-as’-so); from 5259 and 5021; to subordinate; reflexively, to obey: KJV-- be under obedience (obedient), put under, subdue unto, (be, make) subject (to, unto), be (put) in subjection (to, under), submit self unto.
Some theologians teach that verse 21 actually teaches a mutual submission or a mutual respect concept. I submit unto you and you submit unto me. It really is a military type term and conveys the idea of submitting to the appropriate authority or chain of command and giving the respect due the position. The following verses use the same word and there is no such mutual submission concept being taught in any of them. There is no precedence for any such teaching.