We’ve been studying Colossians 3:18-21 together. Today we are focusing on the role of a husband in marriage from verse 19.
|Husbands, love your wives and do not be embittered against them. Colossians 3:19 (NASB)|
It’s a love all women desire.
This kind of love …
This kind of love is sacrificial. When a husband loves his wife in this way he puts the desires of his wife above his own. Ephesians 5:25 says he is to love her as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her. This love goes to the ends of the earth and is even willing to die for her.
This kind of love is unconditional. It is agape love, the highest description of love in the Greek language. It transcends circumstance and emotion. It is a choice to love no matter what.
This kind of love is provisional. The husband seeks to provide for his wife and family out of deep and abiding love.
This kind of love is tender. Ephesians 5:28-29 instructs husbands to love their wives as their own bodies. He nourishes her and cherishes her, just as Christ does the church.
Ladies, who wouldn’t want to be loved like this?
You see, headship doesn’t demand authority, it is earned by love. It is the husbands responsibility to create in her a loving trust that leads to submission.
Back in the garden …
Let’s think about what happened in the garden from Adam’s perspective. Adam listened to his wife instead of listening to his God. He gave up the authority of headship. And he even blamed Eve! He no longer was her protector, instead he pointed the finger directly at her. Imagine what might have been different had Adam taken leadership and told Eve not to eat the fruit as God had commanded?
Be understanding …
|You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honour as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered. ~ 1 Peter 3:7 (NASB)|
Husbands are to live with their wives in an understanding way. In other words, they are encouraged to get their PhD on their wives!
You may notice the text referred to the woman as someone weaker. The idea here is not inferior, but more precious. And what do you do with a delicate and valuable object? You protect it and handle it with care.
Notice as well the equality of men and women communicated in this verse. She is a fellow heir of the grace of life, created in the image of God – completely equal in worth and value.
This kind of love is not possible apart from the Holy Spirit, just as biblical submission for the wife is not possible without the Spirit of God.
Why are these roles so critical in marriage?
Why is unconditional, sacrificial, selfless love toward the wife and biblical submission toward the husband so important in marriage?
Because … marriage is a picture – an earthly picture of a heavenly reality.
A man is to his wife as Christ is to the church. As a husband, he becomes a picture of Jesus to the rest of the world. And the woman is to her husband as the church is to Christ. As a wife, she becomes a picture of the church to a watching world.
There is so much brokeness and hurt in marriages and families today. Seeking a biblical marriage is the answer. People ought to see something different in Christian marriages. That difference is Christ.
God’s design is good. And we can expect to be blessed when we follow His plan for marriage. It’s when we step outside His design that we get frustrated and feel unfulfilled and things don’t go well.
God’s design for marriage is good. Do you believe it?