Realizing our Riches | Ephesians 5:21-24
21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. 22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
I want to start today with the reminder that being full of the Spirit is a precursor to submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of the Lord. Submission to one another is going to be extremely hard, if not impossible, if we are full self instead of The Spirit. Self looks out for self; self wants submission from others but not to anyone. That is why we must be full of The Spirit, remember this is Christ Spirit and He is willing to put other before self, even to lay down His very life for others. He is the extreme example of selflessness and submission to God and yes even His Bride, The Church. He submitted himself to our sorrow, our suffering, He bore our griefs, he has submitted himself to us in every way possible. That is why Paul uses Christ as the supreme example of what the home should look like. Husbands, we should love our wives as Christ also loved the Church and gave himself for it. Wives, you should submit to your husbands, just as everyone of Christ people has surrendered their will to Him. Our life as a Christian should be in total submission to Our Bridegroom Jesus. He is the head of the Church, and the arms and legs and fingers move where the Head tells them to. So, the greater responsibility is on the head. Just as the greater responsibility of our sin debt was placed on the Head of our Groom and the lighter responsibility of submission to His will(The Gospel) is place on His bride. So is the greater responsibility in the home laid on the husband as the head of the home and the lesser responsibility of submission is laid on the wife. Two verses deal with the responsibility of the wife and the remaining verses all the way to the end of the chapter deal with the responsibility of the husband. Men, the weight of the home rest on our shoulders, let us be the head and the example of Christ in our home. Your life ought to look like Christ, your wife is looking to you, let her see Christ. Your children are looking to you, let them see Christ. Your life ought to be typical of Jesus. When we read about the life of Joseph, David and other great OT characters we often see beautiful glimpses of Jesus in their stories. If your children or wife wrote a book about you, would anybody see glimpses of Jesus in your story? Your life is on display in the home, make sure that your actions are a gospel message.
Our verses today deal with the wife and that is what we want to deal with. "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. Now, as we said, this is going to take a spirit filled wife to do so. God's intention for women from the beginning has been for them to be a help, now this is considered old fashioned and archaic, but it is the Bible position. Now when sin came into the garden it disrupted the God given order and part of the women’s curse was that the man would "Rule over her." This ruling over her was a stricter more rigorous word used that the word used in Eves original intention, a Helpmeet. She was created as a help and not a servant, but through sin she became and little lower. Now these verses in Ephesians are somewhat of a reversal of the curse that was on Eve in the Garden. A Spirit filled husband and a Spirit filled wife can enjoy some of the Blessings of Eden even today. In Christ, the curse of sin has been lifted and Wives become help meets instead of hand maids, Husbands become loving heads of the home that steer the family down the paths of righteousness. As Adam and Eve had no shame before the fall, Man and wife have no shame in each other’s presence. We get to enjoy the reversal of the sins curse on the family, so long as we are filled with the Spirit. Wives can find a fulfillment of God's original plan for them. This not a one-sided submission; "Submitting yourselves one to another." But we submit one to the other without reversing the roles of Head and Heart. It has been said the Men are the head of the home and I would say that women are the heart of the home. The heart leading the head leads into an array of terrible mistakes, like eating the only fruit in the garden that shouldn't be eaten. We have seen people who are controlled by their emotion, instead of controlling their emotions, they are the most fickle, wavering people. Your emotions change with the wind and they are not to be a guide. On the other hand, could you imagine a life without emotion? Heads cannot live without hearts and hearts cannot live without heads. We need one another and we need to know the function of each. What would happen if we took the heart out of the chest and the brain out of the head and placed a heart in the head and a brain in the chest? We would have a monstrosity. But when the wife is in submission to the Husband and the Husband is loving the wife as Christ loved the Church, then we have a functioning working home. The heart is happy to follow the head because it has her best interest in mind. The head is happy to submit to the needs of the heart because without her He could not imagine life. Live a Spirit filled life, one controlled by The Spirit and these roles become easier to fulfill and you can enjoy a little slice of heaven on earth in your home. That has been my prayer for my home and the homes of my friends for years now. God, make our home a little slice of heaven on earth. Husband, the greater responsibility is on you. Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands and we can enjoy a bond that is typical of Christ and His Bride.
According to the Riches of His Grace!