Summary: This is a sermon written to preach in a wedding. It lists the responsibilities of each marriage partner.


1. I remember when my dad bought his first VCR.

2. He didn’t know anything about how it worked, but he spent hours reading the instruction manual, learning every detail of how to use it properly.

3. Wouldn’t it be great if other things in life came with directions, like: friendships, kids, job hunting, or even marriage?

4. Of course you know that I am going to say that they do have directions, the Bible.

5. And in the few short verses I am going to read to you, the Apostle Paul gives instructions for having a long, healthy, and fulfilling marriage.

"Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them." (Colossians 3:17-19)

I. Wives are encouraged to subject themselves to their husband. (Col. 3:18)

A. Do not misunderstand this: It does not mean that she is less important or inferior.

B. It is telling wives to be followers so that the husband can assume his proper role of leadership in the home.

C. Think of a basketball team: The coach must spend hours scouting, preparing offensive and defensive strategies, finding out the strengths and weaknesses of his own players, and making a game plan in order to take his players to a game, but unless the players submit to his leadership, they will not win. Neither the coach nor the players can be done without, but neither is more or less important than the other- they are a team. And such is the case with marriage.

D. Submission is another word for reverence, loyalty, and devotion.

II. Husbands are encouraged to love their wives. (Col. 3:19)

A. This is not a sentimental feeling, but an action.

B. It means acting out love by not being harsh, bitter, or unkind in word or deed.

C. It means being patient, grateful, generous, helpful, and self-sacrificing.

D. In Ephesians, Paul reminds husbands to demonstrate the same kind of love for their wives that Jesus showed to the Church when he gave up his very own life for her.

E. If husbands are to be successful leaders in the home, they must learn how to love.


1. Both of these encouragements are given as a way for a marriage to be a living testimony of God’s love.

2. These highlight that marriage is a matter of responsibilities and obligations to others rather than a matter of one’s own rights and privileges.

3. As you go on from here and build your marriage together, do not forget to check regularly with the instruction manual.

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