What is a Christian marriage?
A man and a woman become one flesh by the bond of marriage (Math 19.5-6). Once married, the man is the husband and the woman, the wife. Marriage must be between one man and one woman (Gen 2.20-25). Marriage must not be between people of the same blood (Lev 18). The marriage bed must not be defiled (Mat 5.27-28). The marriage must not be dissolved except for sexual immorality or illegitimate marriages (Mat 5.32). The primary purpose of marriage is raising a family unto the glory of God.
Submission In Marriage
Does the husband submit to his wife?
Christians, both man and woman, must submit to one another (1 Peter 5.5) (mutual submission in marriage) . In the body of Christ, we are all brethren and we submit to Christ, the head.
In Christ, man and woman should submit to one another. In Christ, the man should submit to the woman even if they are married. The body of Christ (God’s family) is bigger than the body of the man (man’s family).
Due to the weakness of the human nature, emphasis must be made in the key areas of marriage:
… and let the wife respect her husband” (Ephesian 5.33).
The husband, because he is head, must be obeyed by the members of his household. The respect of obedience or submission is gained by one’s position, not by his deeds. Even bad husbands must be obeyed. A bad king must always be obeyed as king even if he is bad. In marriage, the wife submits to (obeys) the husband (Ephesians 5.22).
The husband, because he is the head, must love the members of his household. The elder serves the younger. He who is the greatest is the servant of all (Mathew 23.11). Respect can be obedience or admiration. Obedience is earned by one’s position, but admiration is earned by love (sacrificial and affectionate love). The man wins the admiration of his household by love.
Love In Marriage
Must the wife love her husband?
Christians are obligated to love one another (John 15.12) as Christ loved us. In Christ, man and woman should love one another. In Christ, the woman should love the man as Christ has loved us, even if they are married.
If we love and submit to one another, there will be no need for more laws. Love fulfills the law, even the laws of marriage. Love submits to and serves another. Love respects another. Love shows affection. Love is not selfish.
Due to the limited capacity of the human nature, emphasis must be laid in key areas: As for you, let each one love his wife as himself (Ephesians 5.33).
The man must love his wife as Christ loved the church and gave himself for her. It takes the sacrificial love of one person to keep a relationship from breaking. If there is crises in the relationship, the man should be the first to sacrifice himself to save that relationship and his home.
Love and Submission in the Body Of Christ
In the flesh, the woman is wired to receive love and the man is wired to receive respect. However, our bond in Christ is higher than all fleshly bonds and we should let ourselves to be ruled by the bond we have in Christ. The life of the spirit should prevail above the flesh.
A couple that obeys the law of Christ, will satisfy the law of marriage. Both submits to one another as commanded by Christ and both love one another as commanded by Christ. Humility and selflessness is the garment of all Christians whether man or woman. The wife will always feel loved and respected and the husband too will feel respected and loved. The law of Christ is meant to bring all men (whether man or woman) to the complete image of Christ.
The Lord Jesus submits to the Father in all things. The church submits to the Lord in all things. The brethren in church (both man and woman) submits to one another in all things. In marriage, the wife should be quicker to submit to the husband because he is the head of the body. The entire church should submit to earthly authorities in all matters that do not contradict the will of God.
The Heavenly Father loves the son; the son loves his bride (church), the church must love another as Christ has loved us. In marriage, the husband should be quicker to love to his wife. The entire church should love their unbelieving neighbors.
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