Saturday, October 23, 2010

Knowing God - Ephesians 5:25

(fp)

Husbands, love your wives,
just as Christ loved the church
and gave himself up for her
Ephesians 5:25
 
In the modern church, it is hip to bash the Apostle Paul. In fact, apostle-bashing has been "hip" for a couple of decades. To use a phrase from back-in-the-day, Paul needs to be branded "a male chauvenist pig." Why? Because in the verse before this, he said, "wives should submit to their husbands."
 
Taken out of context, any verse can paint just about anyone in any way we want to. Even God can be painted in an unflattering light if we fail to hear the whole story.
 
But here's the context ... I can imagine people shaking their heads in agreement when Paul said, "wives should submit to their husband." In Bible-times, it was still a patriarchial society, and of course "wives should submit to their husband."
 
But then Paul dropped the bomb! "Husbands, [should] love your wives, just as Christ loved the church." What?!!! He "gave himself up for her"! Honoring your husband is a whole lot less demanding than God's call to husbands: "Die for her!" Indeed, "die to yourself."
 
The full weight of this statement is on the men ... not the woman. And if men were dying to themselves and living totally, passionately, gracefully for their families, then I think most wives would gladly give themselves back to this.
 
But this discussion is not politically correct. And in fact, this is one of the threads people -- even people in the church -- are pulling on to unravel the authority of the scripture. The logic goes like this: "If we are free to doubt the logic of this passage of Paul's, then we're free to doubt the logic of other passages."
 
Don't buy into it.
 
God's way is the best way.
 
Read the context. Find the gift! It's always there.
 
In Christ's Love,
a guy who loves his wife
-------------------------------------
Submitting isn't easy.  Sometimes I say to someone, "My husband would rather I not ____."  But is how I show love and respect to him.

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Speak gently. carefully. thoughtfully. graciously. humbly.

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