You Want Me To Love My Wife?

30 seconds ago I was working on a different post. Then I got a slap in the face when I went to the home page of BibleGateway.com to look for a verse for that other post. Today’s verse:

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her” (Eph. 5:25)

It’s simplicity and poignancy stunned me.

Now, I don’t think I’ve been particularly guilty of not loving my wife, at least not in recent memory (though she might need to confirm that). Nonetheless, the first four words of this verse pack a potent punch that cannot, and must not, be ignored. It’s a simple command to Love Your Wives. If I were a pastor I would walk to the podium and say “HUSBANDS! LOVE. YOUR. WIVES.” and then leave. Because what else needs to be said? It doesn’t say “Husbands, hassle your wives.” or “Husbands, abuse, ignore, neglect, betray, lie to, yell at, and annoy your wives.” It also does not say “Husbands, love yourselves.” or “Husbands, love someone else’s wife.”

Paul uses four simple words to convey what is, in my lowly opinion, one of the most profound and influential commands in the Bible. It’s a fundamental building block not only for the family, but for the church. And when the family and the church are healthy and grounded in the love of Christ (the metaphorical groom), the world that surrounds us stands will become healthier as a result.

The verses following clarify the command a bit more as Paul continues to describe both wives and the body of Christ using each to describe the other. He paints a picture of the church, and essentially the wife, as being cared for by Christ so that she may be washed in the Word – having a radiant presence, and exsiting without stain, wrinkle, blemish, or blame. And while all of this remains up to the husband to ensure, it is done by obeying one simple task. Love. Your. Wife.

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  • http://rybomedia.com Ryan

    I once had a youth pastor use this verse to describe the gender issue in marriage. Many young females were getting upset by the fact that the males are to be the leaders in the houeshold. The young males in the church seemed a little too content with this (when, in actuality, it’s a little scary) and would brag that they were the more important gender.

    Anyway, my youth pastor made the point that, if husbands should love their wives as Christ loved the church, then husbands will want to love, respect and listen to their wives. Jesus was a man, a son, and a leader. He loved the church, while leading them too. Yes, husbands lead – but marriage is a union.

    Anyway, hope that made sense – great post, keep it up!

  • Dan Brandon

    Another part that goes hand in hand with “husbands love your wives” is “wives submit to your husbands”. Too many times women are beaten down in spirit because men have used this to make their wives cave in to their needs and wants under the “submission” idea. It has also contributed to women getting tired of it and lashing out at their husbands. What we as men fail to understand is that this word submit means to “come under the care and protection of “. Sort of puts the “work effort ” and responsibility on the other foot doesn’t it? Which of course is where it should have been in the first place.