Summary: Whenever you hear a sermon on Ephesians 5:22-33, what is the lesson on? The majority of the time, the sermon is on the roles of husbands and wives in marriage. But this is not the main point of the passage!

Whenever you hear a sermon on Ephesians 5:22-33, what is the lesson on? The majority of the time, the sermon is on the roles of husbands and wives in marriage. It is important that we examine this text to see these things, because this is one of the best texts to find out the roles of husbands and wives. But when we examine this text, I believe that we see that the roles of husbands and wives is an application of the main reason for the passage. We see the main point Paul is trying to make in verses 32-33:

"This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband" (Eph 5:32-33).

The main point of this text is to emphasize the relationship not between husbands and wives, but between Christ and His bride, the church. He uses the husband wife relationship within this text to show the relationship between Jesus and His people.


•Christ’s Selfless Love For His Bride – verses 25-27

-The bride's response-love

•Union/Oneness between Christ and His Bride – verses 28-31

-The bride's response-purity

•Christ’s Headship of His Bride – verses 22-24

-The bride's response-submission & obedience


The Greek word for agapaō (v)/agape (n) definition- Jesus Christ! A love that chooses to be devoted to the good and well-being of its recipients, whether they are deserving of it or not. It is not based on emotions. At times it goes against natural inclinations. His love wasn't given to the bride because she was worthy of it (Romans 5:6-8). Imagine going out of your way to try to get a woman who is your enemy to marry you! He truly went out of the way to win the heart of His bride. He loved His enemies, US!

He willingly, purposely, & sacrificially gave Himself for her! His love was selfless, a love of sacrifice:

What was He willing to do for His wife? He was willing to leave Heaven, become a bond-servant, and to die for us (Philippians 2).

Why did He give Himself? A purifying love. He is the savior of the body (v23) Jesus died for His bride so she could be cleansed and sanctified sanctify her and cleanse her. It was for her salvation, so she could be cleansed, sanctified, & perfected! He desires His bride to "come down the aisle" without spot; pure and white! Beautiful and glorious!


1 John 4:19 - we love Him because He first loved us.

Matthew 22:37 – Love w/ ALL our heart, soul, mind, and strength.

We must fully devote ourselves to obeying the husband. We must forsake all else, give our hearts to no other, being willing to sacrifice all for Him (Romans 12:1-2). We must show adoration to the one who loves us so much! Our hearts must belong to Him!


Just as there is oneness between a husband and wife, so also there is with Christ and His church. Jesus left His father in Heaven to come to this earth, and His mother here on earth when He died on the cross so He could be joined with His wife and become one with her. We are one with the Lord (John 17:22-23, 1 Corinthians 6:17). We were united with Him at baptism.

There is such a oneness between Jesus and His bride that if you show love/hatred to the bride, it is as though you are doing it to the Husband!

Matthew 25:34-40 – Jesus takes what is done to His bride personally. If you serve the least of His brethren, you do it for HIM. IF you do not serve the least of these, you do not serve HIM!

Acts 9:4 - "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?"

Also in this "oneness" that Christ has with His church brings with it the idea that He treats the church as His own body, providing what is needed for His body to be nourished and cared for. According to Ephesians 4:15-16, Jesus, the church’s head, provides for the body’s growth. He gives us as His people all that we need to make this happen. He cares for and cherishes the church that He is one Spirit with (1 Corinthians 6:17).


God is # 1 (no flirtation with the world- James 4:4 – spiritual adultery) We are in a union in which we must not unite ourselves with another. There is no neutrality. We cannot love two lovers. We must choose one or the other (1 John 2:15-17)

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