Summary: How we treat not just our mothers but all the women in our lives has huge implications for the life of the body. We’ll examine a controversial passage to see how important it is to treat one another including the mothers, daughters, and sisters in our liv
Mother’s Day 2008
Who Is the Biggest Loser?
May 11, 2008
Who is the biggest loser? There is a show where people are challenged to lose weight and the one who loses the most weight is the winner. A clever play on this phrase.
On Mother’s Day, I want to think about this question in terms of how we treat one another. How we treat our mothers? How we honor our parents? Men, how we treat the ladies in our lives? Women, how we treat other women?
I was praying and meditating further on the sermon on pride. If you remember, towards the end I asserted that pride makes us blind. Pride keeps us from seeing and realizing when we are hurting others. It blinds us from the pain and suffering around us. Pride keeps us from admitting when we were wrong.
And as I was praying for direction for this day, God seem to be saying, “Ahh, remember what you said about pride.” “Yeah, Lord.” And it seems to me that this is a huge issue in culture today. How do we treat women? Sometimes we are blind to the pain we cause others by the things that we do and the words that we say. Sometimes we even refuse to admit when were wrong and we even use scripture to justify ourselves and justify our ill treatment of others. Who is the biggest loser?
One such passage is in Ephesians 5 starting at verse 21. But before we look at this and as you find this passage, a story.
A woman was trying to raise her daughter as a Christian. However, she was getting very little support from her husband who thought Christianity was ridiculous. In fact, he often tried to undermine her efforts.
One Sunday, the mother and her daughter were coming home from worship and the daughter was excited about learning about creation. Her mother went over the story with her and added some details that weren’t covered in junior church. God created Adam. Then God created Eve. And it was pretty exciting to think that God had done all this and that both of them were created by God in God’s image.
The daughter got home and with grand excitement told her father all that she learned. When she was finished, he said, “Honey, I know you are very excited about this but I need to tell that what the church is teaching is just a story. There may be some lessons to be learned about being a good person. But it is a story that is just not supported by science.” So he told her about evolution and how humans were descendents from apes. The little girls took it all in with a somber face and said that she understood. “I know that you are disappointed but it is better for you to learn the facts then to grow up believing a story is true.”
The little girl went to her mother and told her everything that her dad had told and said, “How could they both be true? Daddy says these are the facts.”
The mother replied, “Oh those are the facts all right. He was telling you about his side of the family.”
Let’s look at this important passage from Ephesians 5:21-33.
Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
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 his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, 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.
For many years, this passage has been used to show how women are inferior and men are superior. Women are to show deference to men in every way. But this is an inappropriate way to read this.