Sunday, February 5, 2012

Does Respect Equal Submission?

It is the husband's duty to love his wife as Christ loved the church.  It is the wife's duty to submit to her husband in everything....These are very tough commands.

I read many marriage books in the first 23 years of my marriage when we had a lousy marriage.  I wanted to be a good wife so badly, but for some reason I missed what that missing ingredient was...

Most marriage books teach the women to respect their husbands.  That is a good thing, but I don't think it has nearly the power that submission has in changing a marriage.

I was talking about this with my sister.  I was telling her how most books teach on respecting your husband or becoming best friends with him, etc. instead of submission.  Her comment to me was, "When you submit to your husband, he wants to become your friend."  Exactly!

God used the word submission for a reason.  It means unresistingly or humbly obedient.  It is a much more active word than respect.  The Bible does exhort women to respect their husbands once, but it exhorts women to submit and obey several times.

So on top of respecting your husband, start really submitting to him.  No, it isn't easy.  It takes God's Spirit working in you to be able to submit to him.  You won't like his decisions all the time.  You won't like what he asks you to do all the time.  {And as long as they aren't contrary to God's Word and he isn't physically abusing you, you are commanded to obey him.} 

This draws a man to his wife.  Some say it will cause abuse.  From my experience, it is exactly the opposite.  It causes a man to love her more and protect her more fiercely.  God KNOWS what He is talking about.  He made us and wants the best for us.  Submission can even win a husband without a word.  Oh, the mysterious ways of God.  I love them.  They work.  They are good.

 For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands.  Thus Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear.
II Peter 3:5