Rose M. Kreider and Jason M. Fields
Yesterday we celebrated our six year anniversary. Both of our parents have been married only to eachother and both have been married around 30 years. And our grandparents have all had long marriages. We certainly have all had our struggles over the years... but all in all we are very blessed through our marriage and families.
If you look at the current statistics it would seem that marriage is no longer a sacred bond. It is increasingly treated carelessly instead of carefully. But God intended marriage to be a model of Christ's relationship with the church. Here is a great article I found online about God's plan for marriage.
By Douglas Cowan, Psy.D.
These verses of Scripture from St. Paul are commonly used in Christian marriage ceremonies. They speak of the relationship between Christ and the Church in terms of the relationship between a husband and his wife. As beautiful as they are, they are also very misunderstood and misinterpreted. Look closely and see their wisdom for your marriage.
In Eph 5:21 to 33 Paul writes,
"Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church- for we are members of his body.
For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This is a profound mystery, but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband."
There are four important points here:
First, Christ loves us so much that He wants to marry us.
He calls us His Bride, and He uses marriage as a picture of His relationship to the Church, and to each of us as his followers.
Second, there is the "S" word. Submission.
Submission does not imply INFERIORITY. God made Eve out of the side of Adam, to be bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh - his equal - his companion. To say that submission somehow implies inferiority is to say that Jesus, when he submitted to the Father, was somehow inferior to the Father.
Submission does not imply inferiority in any way. It is a voluntary reliance on another. In fact, the Apostle Paul says that we are all to submit to each other. Wives to submits to husbands, husbands to wives, both to Christ.
Third, husbands are to be the leaders of the family.
The Pastors in the home. And men are to love their wives as Christ loves the church, and even died for it.
And finally, just as Jesus is preparing his bride, the Church, for the day when she will be presented in Heaven without spot or wrinkle, so husbands, as leader, are to prepare your wives to stand before God one day. Always remember that leadership in the home is primarily a spiritual responsibility.
May God richly bless your marriage.