Today's passage from the Bible In a Year Reading Plan
is Judges 17-18, Psalm 83, John 15
Today's scripture focus
is Ephesians 5:22-24
English Standard Version (ESV)
Wives and Husbands
22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
So, I get the controversial one :)
Accompanying John MacArthur sermon: God's Pattern for Wives Part 1
and Part 2
, The Willful Submission of a Christian Wife
Accompanying David Legge sermon: The Christian Wife
Both Legge and MacArthur tie this passage in to yesterday's passage.
MacArthur: we draw our attention to chapter 5 verse 18 because here is the foundation. “Be filled with the Spirit.” Be being kept with the Holy Spirit. We’ve already talked about that. We know what that means, it means to be under the control of the Holy Spirit, to be moved along by the Holy Spirit. It’s not a glass-filled, because that’s a static kind of filling. It’s a sail filled because that’s in motion and that’s this kind of filling. Be born along, moved along, carried along by the Holy Spirit. That is essential to Christian living.
And then we see what Spirit-filled people do. They speak to one another in Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs. In other words, they worship. Spirit-filled people worship. Verse 20, they give thanks. Their lives are marked by thankfulness.
And then in verse 21, and this is what triggers the rest of the section, they submit…they submit. You could break these things down - singing is a personal expression of joy for what’s going on in one’s own life by the working of the Holy Spirit, “saying thanks” is directed at God and “submitting” is directed at others....
“Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind, regard one another as more important than yourselves. Do not merely look out for your own personal interest, but also for the interest of others.” That is the soul of submission. It is humility. It is being unselfish, having no conceit but with humility of mind, considering others as more important than yourselves. Not looking out for your own interests, but the interests of others. That is a spiritual grace that is produced by the Holy Spirit. If there is any fellowship of the Spirit, any real fellowship of the Spirit, this then will appear. And—by the way—the greatest illustration of this is Christ Himself. You are to have this attitude of humble submission in yourselves, verse 5, which was also in Christ Jesus who although He existed in the form of God didn’t regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, held onto, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a slave and being made in the likeness of man, found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on the cross.”...
a Spirit-filled person will be humbly submissive....
It is this submissive attitude that makes a marriage work. I don’t have any question about the fact that I’m supposed to be the head of Patricia, my wife. She doesn’t have any restraints placed upon her by that, that in and of itself are abusive or harsh, because I understand that while I have authority over her given to me from God, I am also commanded to be submissive to her in every area of her needs. Sometimes when people say to me, “What’s the key to a good marriage? What’s the key to a marriage full of joy and blessing?” And I’ll tell you what it is in a very simple sentence. And this is my objective in dealing with the wife that I adore; it is simply this, “Whatever will bring her joy and be to her benefit, I will submit to do, happily, because all I want is her joy and spiritual benefit.” It’s that simple.
We are all to live in an attitude of submission towards each other.
Then, Paul goes on to give examples of this submission. And the first example is of the wife being submissive to her husband (not to other men) as to the Lord, as it fits the created order of God.
The wife submits to her husband not in the sense that he’s a dictator, not in the sense that he’s domineering, not in the sense that he’s authoritarian, but in the sense that he is the protector, the provider, the preserver, the Savior. I’ll save you from want…the husband says. I’ll save you from need. I’ll save you from danger. I’ll save you from illness. I’ll save you from disaster. I’m here to be your rescuer, your protector, your preserver, your savior.
So the Apostle Paul is saying that the wife must recognize that in the husband’s capacity as head, he is closely united to her in one flesh and he is deeply concerned about her needs, her relationship to him is as a believer’s relationship to Christ. She views him as her spiritual guardian, her spiritual protector, her source of safety and blessing and provision.
To extend it even more, Jesus is our Savior because He sacrificed Himself for us, right? And a woman should look at her husband and see one who would make any sacrifice for her well-being. That is what women are looking for and that is what men must offer....
Now all of this goes back to the principle of chapter 5 verse 18 where we started, right? You say, “How can a husband be all that?” Be being…what?...filled with the Spirit. How can a wife be all that? By being filled with the Spirit. This is what overthrows the curse.
Monday's scripture focus
: Ephesians 5:25-33
Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage
passage: Judges 19-20
Sunday's passage: Judges 21
Monday's passage: Ruth 1-2, Psalm 84, John 16