Summary: As we’ve been going through Ephesians, we’ve seen how much Christ loved the church. Now, husbands are instructed to love their wives in this same kind of sacrificial way.
Husbands love your wives
Have a look at our society today. Is it functioning well? Are people kind and considerate to each other? Do people agree with each other?
The world is just emerging from a global financial crisis - or perhaps it isnt yet emerging we dont yet know. What brought on the financial crisis? Greed people borrowing to have things that they cant afford, and others willing to lend to get a short term profit. And because of that the whole world from New York to Timbuctoo, from China to Brazil, from Australia to Outer Mongolia, has suffered as a result.
Weve just had an election where one of the major issues was boat people - people risking their lives to flee from one country to another. There are millions of refugees around the world today.
And on a smaller scale, in the area of families we are seeing family breakdown. We are seeing kids born out of marriage, or born in marriage and then the marriage breaks down and then being brought up with only one parent or by people besides their parents. And I know this touches on many of us here today. And even in families where the parents are still together, there is often discord, fighting amongst the parents. Our basic building block of society the family - is not in a very good condition. Our world is certainly not trouble free, not perfect.
But on the other hand, it isnt in complete chaos. Or perhaps better said, not all of the world is in complete chaos all the time. In our country we do have law and order. Even our families, although there is a lot of brokenness, there are still many families that are together, and even though many children are being brought up with only parent, although it is harder, many of the children are brought up fine.
Why is this? Why is our world hovering between order and disorder? Between structure and chaos with both existing at the same time? Most of the world maintaining some sort of order most of the time, but always seeming to be on the brink of disorder and chaos?
The answer is this: God has set up the world with authority leadership structures in place so that there is order and not chaos. He gave us the institution of the family - a man and women, who have kids. He gave us government, leaders to rule over us, and provide order to society. He gave us each other, in relationship with each other. And in Genesis 1 and 2 we see that. God created the world. He created a man and a woman. He gave them the ability to have children. He created society, an ordered society, where the man and woman related to each other as God intended, and the man and woman related to God as God intended.
But then in Genesis 3 it all went pear shaped. The woman and then the man defied God, they disobeyed God, they cut off fellowship with God, they said, Get lost, God. And as a result of cutting off fellowship with God, they also distorted their relationship with each other, so we also say get lost to each other.
So why is the world today the way it is? Why do we have order and structure, but also chaos and disorder? It is because the order, the structure that God created is still there. Thats why we still have a semblance of order in society. But the reason it doesnt work too well, is that order and structure is based on relationship, relationship between us and God and between each other, and that relationship has gone wrong.
So now our society runs like an out of tune car, a badly out of tune car whose engine misses all the time. That barely works. And in some parts of the world, even here in Australia in some families, it has broken down completely.
We people caused the problem, but we cant fix it. And in the last several months, weve been looking at the book of Ephesians, which talks about Gods plan - and not just His plan, but Gods action to fix the problem. That action was in the sending of Jesus Christ His Son. And weve been looking at that. We looked at Ephesians 1:3-10, where we looked at the spiritual blessings we have in Christ. We looked at Ephesians 2, where we looked at how we were dead - spiritually dead and heading for a Christ-less eternity, but God through Christ brought us to life. That is those who believe and trust in Christ, and that this is through grace. That is it is a gift. In Ephesians 3 we looked at the mystery of the Gospel revealed. How through Christ, God has broken down the barriers that existed between us and each other, and that believers from all different backgrounds - Jews, Gentiles, Aussies, Africans, Asians - lawyers, doctors, chippies, sparkies, students, pensioners, the unemployed - White Aussies, Indigenous Aussies, Asian Aussies - all who believe in Christ, are brought together in Christ. In chapter 4 we looked at the unity we have in Christ, that we have in the church. The church, the wonderful new society, that is Gods society.