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THEGIFTOFSUBMISSION:WHATITIS&ISNOT

Wives:BeinSubjectiontoYourHusbandsinEverything Ephesians5:2224
SpecialthankstoDorisBlackforherexcellentinsightsintothissubject.

Introduction A.MajorfoundationlessonofthefamilyserieshasalwaysbeenHonortheWoman. B.However,IconfesstoyouthatIthinkIhavebeentooonesidedandoverlysimplistic. Todayssocietyneedstodealjustasmuchwithattitudesofthewomentowardsmenas viceversa. 1.Many,evenChristianwomen,havebeensoinfluencedbyourculture,thatthey donothaveaclueastowhatameekandquietspirit,andbeinginsubjectionto yourhusbandsevenasyouareuntotheLordineverythinginvolves.(IPet.3:4,Eph. 5:2224) 2.Itspuzzlingtomebecausesubjectionisnotsubstantivelydifferentinmarriage thaninotherareas.Itisnotuniquetomarriage.Whydowehavesomuchtrouble graspingwhatitmeansinthemarriagerelationship? C.Oneofthereasonswhywehavetroublewiththissimpleconceptisbecausewehave beeninfectedbyourfeminist,politicallycorrectculturewhichhasthrownouttheBiblical pattern. 1.1970sAwomanwithoutamanislikeafishwithoutabicycle. 2.1993NOWAwomanneedsamanlikeafishneedsanet. 3.1990sBumperstickersAwomansplaceisincontrol. 4.PlaqueinmanyhomesThesentimentsexpressedbythemanofthehousearenot necessarilythoseofthemanagement. 5.Joke:IknowmywifesinsubjectionandshetoldmeIcouldsayso. D.THESIS:Thissimplelessontodaygetsattheheartofmanyrelationships,nottheleast beingourrelationshipwiththeLord.TheessenceofbeingaChristianisJesussstatement: Notmywillbutthinebedone.Lookatthreeareas: 1.WhatSUBMISSIONIS 2.WhatitISNOT 3.InterwoventhroughoutthediscussiongivesomePracticalGuidelines I.WHATSUBMISSIONIS: A.EdWheatThekeytoasuccessfulmarriageis:THEHUSBANDMUSTBE100% COMMITTEDTOLOVINGHISWIFEANDTHEWIFEMUSTBE100%COMMITTED TOBEINGSUBMISSIVE.Heexplainsthedynamicthisway: Asthehusbandloveshiswife,sheisgoingtobemoresubmissivetohim.Asthewife submitstoherhusband,hisloveforherwillsurelygrow.Whatkindofloveisahusband tobringtohiswife?Itisastrong,stable,mentalattitude,alwaysseekingnothingbutthe highestgoodfortheoneheloves.Itisaloveexpressedinwordandactionswhich motivatestheonebeinglovedtogiveofherselfinreturn. B.Whatdoesitmeanforawifetobeinsubmissiontoherhusband? 1.Thewordsubmitcomesfromamilitarytermwhichactuallymeanstodoan assignedjobinanassignedway.Aresponsiveandreceptivewife,thereforewillingly, demonstratesthatshesurrendersherfreedomforhislove,adoration,protection,and

provision.Herresponsetohisloveshouldleadtoaneagernesstomeether husbandsneedsevenbeforeheasks. 2.ItisanattitudeofwillingadaptationtothatwhichGodisleadingher husbandtodo. 3.Submissivenessisthemostimportantgiftawifecangiveherhusband.We knowsubmissionhastobeagiftfromhertohimbecauseitiscontrarytoallnatural tendencies,justasagape(sacrificiallove)isagiftfromhimtoherthatisalsoagainst naturaltendencies.However,asbotharegiven,itreleasesasupernaturalflowof lovebetweenthehusbandandwife.Botharespeciallyblessedandmutually satisfiedasGodintended. C.AnymarriageproblemsamongChristianscanbeboileddowntospiritualproblems wherethehusbandand/orwifearenotfulfillingtheirGodgivenroles.Either: 1.Themanisnotproperlylovinghiswife,or... Illust.#1complaintwomenhaveaboutmenisthattheyareselfish 2.Thewifeisnotbeingsubmissivetoherhusband. Illust.#1complaintmenhaveaboutwomenisthattheynag 3.KEY!Bothneedtoconcentrateondoingtheirjobswellandnotmakeittheir jobstobeparentalandconstantlycomplainabouthowtheotherisnotdoing his/herjob. a.However,itisinordertogivethehusbandorwifefeedback. b.Itwillbackfirehowever,ifyoutrytoforcetheotherparty. c.Marriagepartnersneedtobeseriousaboutgivingthegiftsofloveand submissionasamatterofconscience.Thisempowersthemtodosoeven whenthefeelingisabsent.Itavoidsbitternessandresentment. D.WemustunderstandthedynamicsofamarriagethewayGoddesignedittothriveand prosperandnotviewanyoftheseinisolation. 1.WhenGodtellsonepartytodosomething,itisbecauseitfulfillssomeneedinthe otherperson.Itisnotonesided.Thereareinterrelationshipsthatneedtobe understood. 2.Eph5:2224Wives,beinsubjectionuntoyourhusbands,asuntotheLord.Forthe husbandistheheadofthewife,asChristalsoistheheadofthechurch,beinghimselfthe Saviorofthebody.ButasthechurchissubjecttoChrist,soletthewivesalsobetotheir husbandsineverything. a.Becareful.Itdoesnotsay:SubmitwhentheyactliketheLord. b.Wow!Letthewivesbesubjecttotheirhusbandsineverything.Thisisa tallorderwithnoloopholes. 1)SimilartochildrenobeyyourparentsintheLord.. 2)Aslongasparentsdonttelltheirchildrentosin,theyneedtodo whattheirparentssayandsubmitasJesusdidtoJosephandMary. 3)Womensay:WhatifIdontagree?OrwhatifIthinkheis makingaterriblemistake,orwhatifIknowbetter?Thetextisclear, Submittoyourhusbandineverything. 3.ItisgoodforeveryhusbandtomemorizeandfocusonEph5:25andforthewifeto

memorizeandfocusinonEph5:2224.Beinsubjectiontoyourhusbandasyouaretothe Lord...andtodosoasthechurchissubjecttoChristineverything. 4.Amansdeepestneedasamanistoberespected.(Whenawomansubmits,the manfeelsrespected.) a.Amanwhodoesnotfeeladmiredbyhiswifewillnotbehappyinthe marriageorfunctionathisfullpotential.ThatiswhythecommandofEph 5:33andthewifeseethatshereverenceherhusband. b.Def.Greek:Thewifeistorespect,admire,enjoy,fearorbeinaweof,deferto, revere,adore,bedevotedto,esteem,praise,anddeeplyloveherhusband.Thisis herjobandtheBibleindicatesshewillbepersonallybenefitedasshedoesit. c.Ifthewifedoesnottrustandrespectherhusband,itisdevastatingtohim andfinallytothemarriage. Ifamanswifeisabletolookatherhusbandwitheyesofreverence,hebecomesaking amongmen! 5.Ontheotherhand,thedeepestneedofawomanistofeellovedandcherished. Sheneedstobehonoredandgivenaspecialplaceofprivilegeandpreciousness.(Eph 5,IPeter3:7)Thatistheatmosphereinwhichsheblossomsandfunctionsbest. a.Ladies,isntittrueyoucanputupwithalotaslongasyouknowyouare lovedandfeellovedbyyourhusband?Isntiteasiertosubmittosomeoneyou knowlovesyou? b.Manymenhavesecondratewivesbecausetheytreattheminasecond ratemanner.Therefore,theynevergaintherealprincesstheywouldliketo bemarriedto. c.Inmanywaysthewifeisareflectionofherhusband. 6.ThatisWHYGodtellsthemantoloveandcherishhiswifeashisownbody.The wifeneedsit!!ThatiswhyGodtellsthewifetosubmittoherhusbandnothing makesamanfeelmorerespectedthanwhenhiswifeislovinglyandcheerfully submissivetohim.Hedesperatelyneedsthattofulfillhispotentialasaman!! 7.Gen2:TellsthemanheistoDepartfromhisfatherandmotherandcleavetohis wife... a.Why?Awomanneedstoknowsheisthe#1womaninhislife,aheadof hismother.SheisfirstplaceunderGod!! b.Thiscommandisgiveninordertofulfilladeepneedinthewoman,sothat themarriagewillbestrong. E.Whatissubmission?Tofullyunderstandthereasonsbehindit,gobacktoEden. 1.SomethinkEvesfirstsinwaseatingthefruitno,itwasthinkingshehada betterideathanGod.Therootofhersinwasthatshehadherreasonsforeatingand doingtheoppositeofwhatGodsaid. 2.Inmaritalconflict,amajorproblemisthatthewifethinkssheknowsbetterthan herhusband,(justliketheteensthinktheyknowbetterthantheirparents).Evenif thewifedoes,someonehastobeinapositiontomakethefinaldecisionsothereis notconstantconflict. Illust.AwifewasgiventoAdamashishelper.Insteadshetakesthelead, thinkssheknowsbetterthanGod,andcommitsthefirstsin.Oneofthe consequencesisthatsheisnottobetheleader.

3.Thisseemsstrangeatfirst.ITim2:1114tellsusthatAdamsinnedknowingly, willingly,whileEvewasdeceivedandconvincedherselfthatwhatshewasdoingwas okay.Isntthatworse? a.AdamsfirstwillfulsinwastoeatsimplybecauseEveaskedhimto.His secondsinwastoblamehiswifeandnottakeresponsibilityforhis actions. b.Inmaritalconflicttoday,menstillfrequentlystrugglewithshiftingblame ontothewife. c.WhydidGodmakemantheheadofthehouse?Itwasnotsomuchareward asaresponsibilitythatwouldforcehimtogrowupandnotshiftblame. 1)Godissaying:Thebuckstopshere,buddy!Nomoreblamingthewife. 2)Whenawomanrebelsagainstherhusbandandputsherfootdown,she giveshimanouttoavoidresponsibility.Shebecomesmorehismother thanhisadultlover. 4.DoesthatmeanIhavetodoeverythinghetellsme?Yes,aslongasitisnotsinful. II.WHATSUBMISSIONISNOT: A.Itisnotbeingadoormatormindlessservant. 1.Awomanhastherightofappeal. a.EsthercameintotheKingandriskedherlifetoaskthatthekingreconsidera decisionhehadmadebaseduponsomeinformationsheneededtosharewith him. b.Shewasrespectfulandhelistenedandsavedtheday.Butitwassimplya request,notademandorwillfuldefiance.GodmovedtheKingshearttolisten. 2.Ladies,youhaveanobligationtospeakthetruthandpointoutsininEph4:15. a.Ifhetellsyoutosin,toengageinalustfuldanceinpublic,likeVashti,refuse. Youmightrespectfullysay:IsubmittoyoubecausethatiswhatmyLordtells metodo.However,inthiscaseyouareaskingmetocontradictmyconscience andviolateHishigherlaw.Icantdothat.(InessencesheissayingtheLord pullsrankonahusband). b.Whatifheisdoingsomethingsinful?Tellhimwhyyoufeelitissinfuland howdeeplyoffendedyouareandconcernedabouthim. 1)Afteryouhaveclearlyexpressedwhyyouthinksomethingiswrong, praythatGodwilltouchhisheartandhaunthimwiththetruthofwhat youhavesaid. 2)Dontbecomelikeadrippingfaucet. 3)YoucanandshouldconfronttyrannyinloveasdidJesus. 4)ThepatternofMatt.18:15appliestofellowChristiansandis appropriatelyappliedbetweenandhusbandandwifewhoarealso brotherandsister. 5)IfthereisphysicalabuseoroneisfearfulforonessafetyRUN!Early Christianswerenotmasochists;theyfledtheRomanauthoritieswho persecutedthem.However,itisnotgroundsfordivorceandthegoalis reconciliation.(ICor.7:5)

3.Ladies,youhaveanobligationtogiveyourhusbandyourbestthinking.(A husbandisafoolwhodoesntsolicitcounsel). a.Trueonenesscomesfromsharingyourmind,yourbody,yoursoul,andyour emotions. b.Donotgivehimapieceofyourmindbutyourbestthinking.Otherwiseyou arecheatingthehusbandofimportantinsightheneedsfromhiswife.(IPeter3:7) c.However,afteryouhave: 1)Determinedthatsinisnotinvolved... 2)Givenhimyourbestthinkinginagooddiscussion... 3)Exercisedtherightofappeal,asdidEsther... Iftheanswerisstillnotwhatyouprefer...submit. d.NotbecauseIsayso,butbecauseEph5:2224saysso. 1)Notbecauseyourhusbandisalwaysright,butbecauseGodsaysso. 2)Notbecauseyourhusbandissmarterorsuperior,butbecauseofRom 13:15. 3)Godmademantheheadofthehouse.Hewhorebelsagainstoneof GodsauthoritiesisrebellingagainstGod! a.Yourenotjusttellingyourhusbandno.YouaretellingGodno! Thatisopendefiance! b.GoingheadtoheadwithGodisaveryseriousthingtodo.(Heb. 12:29) B.ItisnotteachingawomantotrustinherhusbandbuttotrustGodasheworksthroughlines ofauthority.Someobject:HowcanGodcommandmetosubmitwhenHedoesntknowmy husband? 1.Somewomenhavegoodhusbands,othersdont. a.GodsetthisupbecauseHeknewHewouldbedirectlyinvolvedthroughHis linesofauthority. b.EvenJesussubmittedtolinesofauthority.HesaidoverandoveragainNot mywillbutthinebedone. 1)HestoodbeforePilateandwaspassive.Jn19:11DontyouknowIhave thepoweroflifeanddeathoveryou?Jesussaid,Youwouldhavenopowerifitwasnot giventoyoufromabove. 2)Youmaythinkyouaretheboss.Youarenot!Godistheboss. 3)Thesamethingistruewithyourhusbands,ladies.UltimatelyGodisin control. 2.HowdoesthisworkinthelivesofChristianwomentoday?

Threepracticalsteps: a.Whenadecisionisinthemaking,gooffandprayandplead yourcasetoGod.AskGodtomoveandworkinyourhusbands heartsothatthebestdecisionwillbemade. b.Thengotoyourhusbandandtellhimyouareprayingfor Godtogivehimwisdom.LethimrealizeheisGodsauthorityin thehome. c.Thentellhimthatyouwillsubmitandcheerfullygoalongwith thedecisionevenasyousubmittotheLord.Thatscareshim becausethenhehastofaceuptoresponsibilityandcantblame you.Itforceshimtogrowup!! 3.Whenyousubmittoyourhusband,youarenottrustinginyour husband,youaretrustinginGod.WhenyoudoHiswilland submityoucanbeconfidenttherewillbeablessinginitandthat Hiswillwillbedone. 4.Thisisdifficultbecausesubmittingtolinesofauthorityisnotinthe Americanspirit! a.Yourchildrenneedtoseehowyousubjecttolinesofauthority sotheywillhavemodeledbeforethemhowtohandlesimilar battlesofwillintheirlives! b.Youcanbeastrongwilledwomanandverypersuasive,yet whenthechipsaredown,youcanbesubmissive. C.ThisisnotvoidifyourhusbandisnotaChristian. 1.Godworksthroughlinesofauthority,eveniftheindividualsarenot godly. a.WhatifmyhusbandisnotaChristian?Heisstillyour husband.Itdoesntsay,Submittoyourhusbandaslongashe followsJesus,butSubmittoyourhusbandasyousubmittotheLord Jesus. b.ConsiderJn11:4952.Thehighpriestwasnotagodlyman, butappointedbytheRomansasapoliticalcrony.Nevertheless, GodusedHimtocarryoutHiswillandbringChristtothecross toatoneforthesinsofman. c.ConsiderhowJesusblastedthePhariseesashypocrites.YetHe said,BecausetheyoccupyMosessseat,dowhattheysay,butdo notdowhattheydo!!(Matt23:2) d.MoseswenttoPharaohandaskedpermissionforthechildren ofIsraeltogo.GodwasbehindHim,sowhydidheask permission?GodhadapurposethatheworkedthroughPharaoh.

(Ex7:45).ThewholeworldwouldknowthatHeisGodandthat HewouldexecutejudgmentsagainstEgypt.Theplaguesattacked theentirereligioussystemofEgypt. D.Itcannotbeforced. 1.Noonecanforceyoutobesubmissive,evenyourhusband. a.Illust.Hemightgrabyourarmandtwistituntilyouagreeto dowhathesayslikeleadingahorsetowaterbutyoucantmake himdrink.Whenyoustoptheforce,itisoverandusuallylacks cooperation. b.StephenCoveysays,Youcanhireamansbackandhis hands,buthehastovolunteerhisheadandheart,whichisthe enthusiasmandthecreativityyouneedforatrulyproductive employee.Thisisalsotrueinmarriage.Loveandsubmission aregiftsthateachonegivestotheother.Theycannotbeforcedor itdamagestherelationship! 2.Someonecanoppressyoubutnoonecanmakeyoubesubmissive becauseitcomesfromtheheart.Husbandsandwivesaretogivetheir heartstoeachotheruntildeath. a.Submissionismorethanjustgoingalong.Itismakingitwork sothatitissuccessfulevenifitissomethingyoudisagreeon. b.ItisnotrubbingitinlaterandsayingItoldyousowhenit turnsoutyourhusbandwasmistaken. c.Itisrealizingthatbeingtheheadofthehouseisnotalways easy,justasbeingsubmissiveisnotalwayseasyandhavinga compassionate,insteadofaresentfulspirit. CONCLUSION: A.Wehavelookedatwhatsubmissionis,whatitisnot,andgivensome practicalguidelines. B.MayweallhavethefaithtofollowGodspatternforthefamilyandnotthe worldlystandardsthatareallaroundus,butthatarefailingmiserably. C.WemustrealizethatwhenChristianshavemaritalproblems,itisan indicationofspiritualproblemsthatpointtodeeperissues.Maywehavethe couragetodealwiththemandnotignorethemsothatGodisglorifiedandwe allreceivetheblessingsGodintendedforHischildren.