Summary: How does the Lord's instruction through Paul demonstrate the dynamics of the relationship that husbands should have with their wives?
This coming Friday is Valentine’s day. Love, love, love; all we need is love! How many husbands plan on getting a present for their wife on Valentine’s Day? Visa Versa?
HOW DO YOU KNOW WHO TO MARRY?
You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like, if you
like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should
keep the chips and dip coming. - Alan, age 10
No person really decides before they grow up who they’re going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you get to find out later
who you’re stuck with. - Kirsten, age 10
“WHAT IS THE RIGHT AGE TO GET MARRIED?”
Twenty-three is the best age because you know the person FOREVER by then. - Camille, age 10
No age is good to get married at. You got to be a fool to get
married. - Freddie, age 6
“HOW CAN A STRANGER TELL IF TWO PEOPLE ARE MARRIED?”
You might have to guess, based on whether they seem to be yelling at the same kids. - Derrick, age 8
“WHAT DO YOU THINK YOUR MOM AND DAD HAVE IN COMMON?”
Both don’t want any more kids. - Lori, age 8
“IS IT BETTER TO BE SINGLE OR MARRIED?”
It’s better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need
someone to clean up after them. - Anita, age 9
“HOW WOULD YOU MAKE A MARRIAGE WORK?”
Tell your wife that she looks pretty even if she looks like a truck. - Ricky, age 10
Years ago when Pastor Karenlee and I were teaching a college age SS class we would often get asked, “Does God have just one particular person for you to marry in order to fulfill the marital plan for your life?”
And, that’s a good question, but, it is a question we will not be answering today. The Scripture we’ll be taking a look at today is instructing those who are already married and uses marriage as an example of the relationship between Christ and the church.
“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word,
“and to present her to Himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
“After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church - for we are members of His body.
“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”
“This is a profound mystery - but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”
“Husbands, love your wives ….”
This was an extraordinary statement in the first century AD.
This statement was written in a city that was filled with Greek philosophy and Roman influences in a pagan culture.
In the Greek/Roman culture a wife could have some influence but they were always secondary to the oldest male member of the family even if that male happened to be in a younger generation of the family
In the otherwise pagan and sometimes Jewish culture a wife was considered property. Breeding stock used to continue the family lineage. Somewhere above the standing of servants and slaves but not equal with men.
And, here comes Paul saying, “Husbands, love your wives ….”
Now, even back then a man could love his wife if he wanted to. It was not forbidden but it certainly was not expected or encouraged.
And again, here comes Paul saying, “Husbands, love your wives ….” But this time he goes even farther and says,
“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her ….”
Now, some of these Ephesian church members are Jews. They know Jewish history and they’ve seen some bad examples and some good examples.
Now Abraham was a righteous man in the sight of God because “his faith was counted to him as righteousness.” (Romans 4:9b)
But, there were a couple of times when Abraham kind of hid behind Sarah’s skirts, so to speak.
Genesis 12:12-13 says,
“When the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ Then they will kill me but will let you live. Say you are my sister, so that I will be treated well for your sake and my life will be spared because of you.”