Legend tells of an attractive young couple who boarded a train for the traditional honeymoon at Niagara Falls. That they were very much in love was apparent to all who saw them. Suddenly, the bride found herself hurling insults at her husband, and his rejoinders matched hers in bitterness and venom. Then she discovered a stranger sitting next to her whose presence had caused the transformation. “How did you get in here?” she gasped. “And who are you?” The stranger softly answered, “I’m Ten-years-from-now.”
Many marriages are under stresses that threaten to destroy them. The sweetness of the honeymoon has worn off, and the business of living has caused some abrasions. Paul understood these problems, and he spent much time admonishing husbands and wives. Here is his formula for a happy home and a lasting marriage.
There must be one leader in the home, and God ordained the man to be that. But the man has a spiritual obligation to deeply love his wife as his own body. Both are to cling to each other rather than side against each other with relatives. The admonition to love is so strong that Paul repeated it again and likened the husband-wife relationship to that of Christ and His church. In today’s prayer period, let us pray for a deeper love in our homes.
Out of respect for Christ, be courteously reverent to one another.
22-24 Wives, understand and support your husbands in ways that show your support for Christ. The husband provides leadership to his wife the way Christ does to his church, not by domineering but by cherishing. So just as the church submits to Christ as he exercises such leadership, wives should likewise submit to their husbands.
25-28 Husbands, go all out in your love for your wives, exactly as Christ did for the church—a love marked by giving, not getting. Christ’s love makes the church whole. His words evoke her beauty. Everything he does and says is designed to bring the best out of her, dressing her in dazzling white silk, radiant with holiness. And that is how husbands ought to love their wives. They’re really doing themselves a favor—since they’re already “one” in marriage.
29-33 No one abuses his own body, does he? No, he feeds and pampers it. That’s how Christ treats us, the church, since we are part of his body. And this is why a man leaves father and mother and cherishes his wife. No longer two, they become “one flesh.” This is a huge mystery, and I don’t pretend to understand it all. What is clearest to me is the way Christ treats the church. And this provides a good picture of how each husband is to treat his wife, loving himself in loving her, and how each wife is to honor her husband.
What do you think about this? Are you being treated well by your husband.? Do you feel honored by your wife?