What comes to your mind when submission is mentioned? Do you receive it with joy or you feel intimidated? Humanly speaking there are times we feel like closing our ears when submission in marriage is being preached. Yes, it may be easy to submit in an atmosphere that is surrounded with love, but what happens when the man is not able to love as the Bible commands? I think you would agree with me that it takes the grace of God to submit willfully in such an instance. The irony is, submission according to the teaching of the Bible is not conditional, and it is not optional either. We are instructed to submit in all things.
Now this is what the scripture says inEph.5:21
“Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do 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 saviour. Now as the Church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything”.
Sounds unfair to some extent; isn’t it? How do you submit when the man does not love as the Bible instructs? The scripture in Eph.5:25 that,
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 the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
How sweet would it be if the man is able to love as stated above? But that is not always visible, sometimes the love grows cold and the man does not treat you as Christ treats the Church.. You would agree with me that submitting in such instances become difficult, Does that exonerate us if we fail to submit in such instances? By no means, God did not give us an option instead he requires total obedience. You are expected to submit when your husband calls you “honey” and when he yells at you.
So what is the way out, how can we submit to our husbands in all things wilfully as the Bible instructs, and not under compulsion? We can be able to do that if we keep these facts in mind:
submission is God’s Will
Submission in marriage is an instruction from God that we must follow. When I submit to my husband I am doing the Will of God. As a believer in Christ, I know that Christ loves me and I also love him, and the way I will demonstrate my love to him is through obedience to his word. Jesus said, if you love me, you will keep my commandment John 14:15. I cannot trade my obedience to him with my personal interest. So I submit to my husband not minding the prevailing situation for the sake of Jesus Christ. If we love Jesus we can also love our husbands, not because they please us always but because of the love of Jesus that joins us together.
To submit is God’s order for the family
We know that when the Bible refers to the husband as the head of the wife it does not mean the husband is superior to her. 1 Cor.11:-12 says,
“In the Lord, however, the woman is not independent of man, nor man independent of woman. For a woman came from man, so also man is born of woman. But everything came from God”.
And Gal.3:28b also says,
There is neither male nor female, for we are all one in Christ
So we know that we submit not because we are inferior to our husbands but because that is God’s order of leadership in the family. After all, we submit to our leaders in our various places of work. Sometimes we find ourselves as subordinates to leaders that are less educated or intelligent than us yet we submit to their authority in obedience to the policies of the organization. How much more do we need to obey God’s instruction?
Relationship between husband and wife is as between Christ and the Church
As a wife, you are expected to submit to your husband as the Church submits to Christ. The Church (which you and I are part of) submits to the lordship of Christ. Your husband has authority over you as Christ is the head of the Church; he has authority over the Church. Where your husband is not able to love us as Christ loved the Church, know that God requires us to follow that pattern. If we walk down the path God has laid for us and do what he says, God is able to fill us with his peace, that we may be able to submit willfully and enjoy life with our husbands.
God’s instructions are not grievous
The scripture in 1 John 5:2- 4b says,
“This is how we know that we love God the children of God by loving God and carrying out his commands. In fact, this is love for God; to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome; for everyone born of God overcomes the world”.
When God instructs us to a thing and we do it, it shows we love him. His intention is not to bug us but to teach us his ways so that we can enjoy life the way he designed it.
So when God instructs us to submit to our husbands in all things, and we do, it pleases him and he blesses us in return. God told us in His word that his thoughts toward us are thought of peace and not of evil, to give us a future and a hope. Jer.29:11.
Dear reader, when your feelings toward your husband begin to grow cold, and you feel like not submitting think about those facts and be strengthen.