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Summary: 1. It’s about respect. 2. It’s about right living. 3. It’s about reaching.

A Marriage Made in Heaven - Part 1: God’s Plan for Wives

1 Peter 3:1-7

Sermon by Rick Crandall

Grayson Baptist Church - Jan. 6, 2013

*Marriage is easy! -- No??? Getting married is easy. Being married can be extremely hard. Why? -- Lots of reasons:

-One is that we are extremely complicated creatures.

-And we are sinful creatures.

-There are powerful forces at work in our country trying to rip the fabric of our families apart.

-Our pervasive media consistently presents ungodly lifestyles as entertainment. (Two and a half minutes of “Two and a Half Men” will prove that to you.)

-On top of that, life has challenges that can hit us like a tidal wave.

*Marriage can be hard. But it can also be heavenly. The reason why is because the whole idea came from heaven. -- And we can have a heavenly marriage, if we follow God’s marriage plan. So let’s look into the God’s Word to see God’s plan for a marriage made in Heaven.

1. In this passage, Peter started by talking about wives, and part of God’s plan for wives is about respect.

*God’s plan for wives is about respect for their husbands. Peter stressed this truth starting in vs. 1, where he said, “Likewise you wives, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives.”

*Then in vs. 5&6, Peter said:

5. For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands,

6. as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.

*This is not a popular message in 21st Century America. And one good reason why is because women have historically been treated as second class citizens in our society. If you don’t believe me, then think about when women got the right to vote in this country. Do you know when it was? -- It was the same year that my daddy was born: 1920. That’s surprising isn’t it? (1)

*And when we look at some famous men in history, we can find a second class view of women. Tama Starr put together a book composed of put-downs of women through the ages. For example, Martin Luther was the leader of the Reformation and a hero of the faith, but in 1538 he said: “Eloquence in women should not be praised; it is more fitting for them to lisp and stammer.”

-In 1817, Napoleon said: “Nature intended women to be our slaves. What a mad idea to demand equality for women!”

-And in 1975, American playwright Henry Miller said: “I enjoy women as a breed, like a dog. I don’t mean that in a derogatory way.” (2)

*Also think about how many women have been sexually harassed on the job. Two women in my own family have been through that nonsense. And under these circumstances, it’s easy to see why some women are skeptical about this part of God’s Word.

*But Jesus Christ has done more to help the cause of women than anyone else in the history of the world. And women are generally treated far better in Christian nations than anywhere else in the world. Think about the brutality of the Taliban against women in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Plus know this: The Koran specifically allows husbands to beat their wives. (3)

*But in Ephesians 5, the Bible tells husbands to treat our wives as a precious treasure, and to love them just like Jesus loves the church. At the same time, God does tell wives to submit to your husband. Voluntarily choose to yield to him. As Jonathan McLeod points out: “It is not the husband’s job to make his wife submit.” (4)

*It is not our job to make our wives submit. The Lord wants wives to voluntarily put themselves under their husband’s authority. And the problem is that most people don’t like to submit. I had a huge problem with that when I was growing up. I didn’t want anybody telling me what to do! But God calls all Christians to submission. It’s not just for wives.

*In fact, submission is one of the main themes of this letter from Peter:

-In 1 Peter 2:13, “Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake. . .”

-In 1 Peter 2:18, “Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh.”

-In 1 Peter 3:1, “Wives, be submissive to your own husbands. . .”

-In 1 Peter 5:5, “Younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. . .”

-And also in 1 Peter 5:5, “All of you be submissive to one another. . .”

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