This weeks study delved into submission within the marriage context as well as what real beauty is and what kind of qualities that Peter said women should emulate. Those of us ladies who are doing the study and choose one thing that really spoke to us when we went through this weeks lesson and I think this time it was the submission part and what that actually looks like in a marriage today.
Submission is often misunderstood both in society and even in the church today, which is unfortunate, because even as Brothers and Sisters we should submit to one another. However, when it comes to submission in a marriage it’s more than likely equated with the man keeping the wife in a slave capacity, allows the wife to be abused, however that is not the way the Bible tells us submission is – that is what the world wants us to believe about submission.
The definition of submission from the Merriam Webster is:
The first definition isn’t particular to what I’m writing about so I’ll skip to definition #2 which is ” the condition of being submissive, humble, or compliant” and definition #3 is “an act of submitting to the authority or control of another”.
So re-read that again.
When we read God’s Word we know that we women are called to be pure, meek, mild, having a quiet spirit. This goes along with the definition of being humble and compliant. Does it say that we need to be door mats or a stomping ground for our husbands? No. Does this go for our husbands as well? Yes.
Feminists and others in the world would have us believe if we submit to our husbands that we are some how making ourselves lower than our husbands, that we are denigrating ourselves to some sub-human standard. This couldn’t be further from the truth, and I’ll get to that in a minute. When we took the vows of marriage, if it was a Christian marriage, they we promised to love and obey our husbands. I know, I know – some are thinking well if we’re supposed to be equal they need to obey us too. When we took those vows we willingly and knowingly put ourselves under the authority of our husbands.
Now, God tells our husbands that they are to do the same as Christ does to His church. Does Jesus abuse His church? No. Does He love it, protect it, cherish it? Yes. This is what the husband should be doing, Biblical submission does not excuse abuse of any kind, in fact there are grave repercussions that the Lord promises to the man who does abuse his power over women.
Okay back to the original idea for posting – what does submission look like in marriage (and for what it’s worth, I know it will more than likely look different for everyone). I have friends who love to wait on their husbands, if that is what God has worked out for that marriage, great but in my marriage and what I desire for my children submission would look like:
- The husband to be a true saved and Bible believing Christian who submits himself to the Lord and the authority of a Bible believing church.
- A wife who is a true saved and Bible believing Christian who submits herself to the Lord, her husband and the authority of a Bible believing church.
- The husband’s desire is to protect and cherish his wife as the precious commodity she is. If there is an argument, he fights fair, no name calling, no bringing up the past.
- The wife’s desire is to bring honor and glory first to the Lord through honoring and respecting her husband through listening to him and following through on things – he wants the dishes done before he gets home from work, get ’em done.
- When issues need discussed the husband and wife meet together and discuss the issue. Whoever has the issue presents it. “Honey I want to take the children to XYZ on ABC and we’ll need $$.” After presenting the issue the spouse calmly listens to the other “Well darling, I’m afraid I’d rather you stay home that day and focus on the studies with the children and clean the house up a bit. I will make arrangements for you and the children and maybe even take the day off work so we can go another time soon.” In this case the wife would calmly agree to the husband’s request and cheerfully stay home while her husband works to follow through on his promise. If the wife stomps her foot (or vice versa) and argues or still goes it’s a sign of a defiant heart and not a submissive one that God desires.
- The husband’s word is final. Now, I know there are some things that could change this, if he thinks a child should go to the dr for a minor cold I would present my case that it would be a waste of money and time or if the husband would ask the wife to do something that would jeopardize her life, her children’s life or cause her to commit a crime. I know there are some staunchly patriarchal types who would disagree with this under the claim that the wife is protected from God’s wrath since she’s following her husband’s will – I still believe God will hold us each accountable.
Am I the perfect submissive wife? Definitely not. I’m constantly being molded by the Potter’s Hands. I still sometimes defy my husband and try to justify it later. I also know that if my husband says no to something he is firmly believing that he is protecting the children and I. Sometimes I want my way, but I try not to yell anymore although you may still catch me rolling my eyes (see, I’ve got something to work on!)
**I am participating in the I Peter blog tour and I was provided a copy of the Inductive Bible Study in exchange for posting about my experiences with the study for nine weeks, no other compensation was given.