Marriage: Made in Heaven? Part 8 “Submission, the S-Word” + LINKUP

 

Marriage: Made in Heaven? Part 8 "Submission, the S-Word" - Submission, it's the "S-word" that raises our blood pressure and, sometimes, makes us wonder about God's idea of fairness. What is submission, anyway? Is it unfair to women? Is it unrealistic? Did men come up with the idea as a way to keep women down? Or is it really a biblical concept? If so, what should it look like?Submission, it’s the “S-word” that raises our blood pressure and, sometimes, makes us wonder about God’s idea of fairness. What is submission, anyway? Is it unfair to women? Is it unrealistic? Did men come up with the idea as a way to keep women down? Or is it really a biblical concept? If so, what should it look like?

Welcome to Mondays @ Soul Survival.

 

Marriage: Made in Heaven? “Submission: the S-Word”

 

Over the last few weeks we’ve talked about the key components of marriage that God laid out in Genesis 2.24: leaving, cleaving, and weaving. Last week I began talking about the wife’s role in a biblical marriage and today I want to go a little deeper on the subject of submission.

Epesians 5 says:

22 Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body. 24 But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.

We’re to submit to our husbands in everything with one exception. I talked about that and some of the common objections last week. I also discussed the fall and its effect on the relationship between husbands and wives, especially when it comes to submission.

After Adam and Eve sinned, God said to the woman …

“I will sharpen the pain of your pregnancy,
    and in pain you will give birth.
And you will desire to control your husband,
    but he will rule over you” (Gen. 3.16).

Our desire would be to control or rule over our husbands and their desire would be to maintain control.

As women the list of ways we try to take control in our marriages is not very flattering. Among them are words, anger, tears, put-downs, nagging, criticizing, withholding sex, and all kinds of manipulation. And the list of ways we justify taking control is just as bad:

“He’s not a believer.”

“What if he’s wrong?”

“This is not the first century!”

“Men wrote to Bible to keep women down!”

“I have more education.”

“I make more money, so I should decide how it’s spent.”

We might not, actually, say some of these things, but they are often in our hearts and minds.

As I said last week, we women use what we’re good at to take control, often our words (nagging, criticizing) and emotions (anger, tears, bad moods).

Men’s sinful responses aren’t any better. They, often, either withdraw (sometimes with another woman, sometimes by becoming passive and uninvolved) or attack (with their fists or by trying to rule with an iron hand.)

And it’s certainly true that passages like Ephesians 5.22-24 have been used in sinful, unbiblical ways to try to control women.

But we can’t throw out submission because it’s been abused or misunderstood any more than we can throw out other passages of Scripture because they’re hard to understand or obey.

14 Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless; 15 and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation—as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you, 16 as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures (2 Pet. 3.14-16).

 

So, what should submission look like?

 

You might be surprised. First, let’s talk about what it’s not.  Continue reading

“Only 2 Choices” March 5

 

Only 2 Choices - Life seems to be full of choices. Little choices. Big choices. In reality, there are only two choices ..." and our decisions often determine whether life goes well or whether life gets hard. Check out today's reading in Proverbs to find out more about those two choices.Life seems to be full of choices. Little choices. Big choices. In reality, there are only two choices …” and our decisions often determine whether life goes well or whether life gets hard. Check out today’s reading in Proverbs to find out more about those two choices.

 

Today’s Readings:
Numbers 7 & 8
Psalm 31.1-5
Proverbs 11.4-6
Mark 9.1-29

 

Only 2 Choices

 

Proverbs 11.4-6:

What guides your choices?

 

Verse 5 says, “The righteousness of the blameless will direct his way aright …”

Dollarphotoclub what would Jesus do

What guides you and your choices? Is it righteousness? And what exactly does that mean? A few years ago it was popular to wear jewelry that posed the question, “What would Jesus do?” The jewelry was a reminder to consider that question as we went through the events of life. But sadly, like so many things that become popular, we heard it so often it lost its impact. We shouldn’t let that happen.

 

What did Jesus do?

 

First, Jesus faced all the same temptations we face, but He never sinned in the process.

15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin (Heb. 5.15 NIV).

Second, Jesus came to not only be our sinless Savior, but, also, our perfect example.

1 Peter 2.21b (NIV), “… because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.”

In fact, God is using the “all things” talked about in Romans 8.28 to help us grow and become more like Him (Rom. 8.29).

So, what would Jesus do in that decision you’re trying to make? How would He handle that rude sales person or someone who sinned against you? How would He respond to that test or trial? To what (or Whom) would He run when stressed or angry or tired or hungry?

Jesus is the Word of God lived out in the flesh, so if we want to know what Jesus would do, we only need to go to His written Word.

Do we let doing right—righteousness—guide us in all things? Doing right is not what is good or right for us, but what’s right by God’s standard.

Proverbs 14.12 says, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.”

Let’s seek God’s help daily to let His righteousness—His Word—guide us.

In counseling we have a simple little saying, “Only two choices on the shelf … pleasing God or pleasing self.” Often doing what pleases Him is the harder decision. It may require going against the current of popular opinion. It almost always requires going against our own selfish desires. But Jesus said:

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from Me … and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matt. 11.29-30).

What starts out to be the harder decision gets easier with God’s help.

On the other hand, doing what seems right to us, is easy. It comes naturally. But  Continue reading