God’s first institution was marriage. Genesis 2:24 says, “For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.” God has always intended that the marriage bond would produce love and companionship between a man and his wife. The couple that solemnly observes their marriage vows will be the couple that will experience a great marriage. They know what it is like to experience a little bit of heaven in the home. There are three items mentioned in Ephesians 5:21-27 which will help husbands and wives keep their marriages vows and insure a happy marriage.
First, there is leadership. Ephesians 5:23 says, “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.” Christians are to be submissive to each other. This is a quality that comes from being filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18-21). As husbands and wives submit to the Lord, and then to each other, there will be harmony in the home. However, the husband is the leader of the family, but a good leader is not a dictator, but a thoughtful, considerate person. The husband is responsible for the spiritual well-being of the home. He has to make sure that all members of the family are directed in spiritual matters and that they grow spiritually. A good leader makes the final decisions, but consults those he is leading before making decisions. He must still consider the needs and desires of his wife and his children. That will mean doing things around the house, doing things she likes to do, and purchasing things (when feasible) that she and the children want.
Second, there is loyalty. Ephesians 5:22 says, “Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.” Verse 24 adds, “But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.” In order for husbands to be great leaders, they need great followers. A loyal wife, who is loyal first to her Lord, and then to her husband, will enhance the husband’s service for the Lord. The word “subject” is hupotasso and is mainly a military term which means “to rank under” and denotes submission, subjection, and obedience. The feminist proposal of “equal marriages” where both partners have equal say in the decisions of the family is contrary to the Bible.
Third, there is love. Ephesians 5:25 says, “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her.” The primary lover in the family is the husband. Most godly husbands who love their wives as Christ loved the church will not need to worry about having a submissive wife. The word for “love” is agapao which is the highest form of love. It is the kind of love that God showed for mankind in offering His Son (John 3:16). This particular kind of love can be commanded. Therefore, Paul’s command for husbands to love their wives is a valid one. The husband who says, “I just don’t love my wife anymore,” is one who is openly rebelling against God. Man will pay for his rebellion in the judgment (2 Corinthians 5:10).
The home can be this world’s greatest enjoyment. But it can also be your worst nightmare. God has instituted and legislated a source of great joy and satisfaction with the marriage bond. But it is up to a man and woman with regards to what they will make of it. Follow God’s word and make marriage a fountainhead of great blessing.