Summary: To discuss God’s direction for the family
God’s Plan for the Family
Primary Purpose: To discuss God’s orders for the family
Paul has talked for three and a half chapters about the importance of placing Christ first. Now Paul turns his attention to the family. In essence,
Paul is saying to us here that if I am placing Christ first, it will demonstrate itself in my home.
This seems to be the central part of Satan’s plan in destroying the gospel message: to attack the Christian home. Back in 1870’s there was one
divorce for every 34 marriages. By 1900, one in five marriages ended in divorce. Today, one out of every two marriages ends in divorce. The difference is non-existent between Christians and non-Christians.
What we should realize is that when Christ is on the throne of my life, every area of my life is under His authority. How I drive in traffic, how I
treat other people, my thought life, my speech and even my family is under His authority. God has a plan to give the family order and structure, but it is
often misunderstood and scorned by feminist and others who think Paul is diminishing the role of women. The Gospel doesn’t diminish, but it elevates
the importance of women and their place in the home.
We should remember the context of this scripture. Women in Paul’s day were thought of as property. They couldn’t eat with the men, they
weren’t allowed to go to public places by themselves, they couldn’t get a divorce any time they wanted. While the man could go as he pleased and divorce a woman for no reason at all. The gospel changed all that. You only have to look at Paul’s letters to see the many women who were mentioned as working with Paul and having churches meet in their homes. In Acts 12:12,after Peter is rescued from prison, he goes to the home of Mary the mother of John Mark. In Colossians 4:15, Paul mentions another woman who had a
house church. We have noticed before that Lydia played a key role in the church that started in Europe. Paul didn’t want women to be unclear about
what their role was in the New Testament family, so he spoke to them first.
I. Paul’s instruction to wives v.18- Paul tells the woman to submit to the leadership of her husband. Notice it doesn’t tell the man to make her submit.
This is to be done voluntary. To submit is not to make the woman less important. This is about the role each play in the home. The gospel states
that the husband is to be the leader in the home, not the sergeant. He’s not their to give orders and boss people around.
During the rehearsal of her wedding the bride was having a difficult time remembering all tht she was suppose to do. Her pastor took her aside
and told her to remember three things. He said, “First, when you enter the chuch, concentrate on the aisle and walk down it Then, halway down you’ll see the altar, concentrate on it and walk toward it. When you get to the altar, you’ll see your groom waiting for you. Concentrate on him. That’s all you have to do.
So, the bride did as her pastor suggested. She walked flawlessly down the aisle. People standing near her were a little unsettled however when they heard her repeating these words during the processional. “Aisle, alter, him. Aisle, altar , him. I’ll alter him all right.”
That’s a difficult way to go into a relationship. Thinking your going to fix or manipulate your spouse. Women don’t realize about the importance that each man has for the respect of his spouse.
II. Instructions for the Husband v.19- The stress in these two verses is upon the man. It says we are to love our wives like Christ loved the church. Some
men want to emphasize the submit part, but don’t want to think about the love part. I heard about one man who noticed that his wife was looking sad often
and there seemed to be no more joy in her life. He made a appointment for them to see a psychiatrist.
On the appointed day, they went to the psychiatrist’s office, sat down with him and began to talk. It wasn’t long before the doctor began to realize what was wrong. Without saying a word, he simply stood, walked over in front of the woman’s chair, signaled to her to stand, took her by the hands, looked at her in the eyes for a long time and then gave her a big, warm hug. You could see a noticeable change. The wife immediately relaxed, her whole face glowed. The doctor said, “See, that’s all she needs.” With that, the man said, “Okay, I’ll bring her in Tuesday and Thursday each week, but I