“Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives.”
be submissive to your own husbands
God instituted divine institutions for order in society. The purpose of God’s arrangement of marriage is to give order in marriage so that marriage will not end in chaos.
Subordination does not imply inferiority. We can see the distinction between position and person in the roles of the Trinity (I Co 11:1,2). The Son in position is under the Father and the Spirit in position is under the Son. In their persons, the members of the Trinity are co-equal in essence. As in the case of the Trinity, so the wife is not less in her person but only under her husband in role. Therefore, a woman should never be dependent for her personhood upon her husband or any other person. Her submission is an issue of position, not person.
The role of submission is an issue of position, not person.
If we hold a high view of the integrity of Scripture, it is not possible that we can maintain a feminist perspective of the world. However, neither can we hold to distortions of the biblical viewpoint either. Distortions of what submission means are abundant.
The wife’s responsibility is to arrange her life under that of her husband for order in marriage. The husband is not to arrange his life under his wife. This convolutes his role as we cannot reverse the order of government so we cannot change the order of domestic responsibilities. As we cannot reverse the order of the boss in business, we cannot change the order of the roles of the husband and wife in marriage.
God put the man first, not in his person, not in his intellect, not in his total personality but only as far as arrangement for the order of the family. God has a divinely willed order for the husband and wife in marriage. The Christian wife is free from her husband by virtue of grace, but she is bound to her husband by virtue of love.
If the woman loves her husband, she will submit to his leadership in the home. If love does not exist, submission becomes servitude for the woman. Submission is more than sex for it encompasses all responses to love in all areas of life. This submission also is free from bitterness and anger. Such submission is not slavery but a voluntary expression of inner beauty.
Many of us enter marriage thinking that it is going to be free from a storm but only to find that it is a storm itself. The person of our love may be the obstacle to love itself. God never intended that marriage be a bastion from problems. It is not a place for lazy people but a place of sacrifice. Marriage is a place where the worst can come out or where we can display the best – two mature people who love each other. Marriage is a place where individuals can grow beyond their singleness.