“Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.”
Today marriages fail at a rate of one out of every two. Every other marriage ends in divorce. Why is this? When people who are immature in their persons get into deep water with their marriage, they ditch the ship – divorce. That is like having prefrontal brain surgery when you have a headache. Some people do not have the maturity to face their problems. Their judgments are weak because their spiritual judgment is immature.
We covered six verses for the wife. We have one verse for the husband, but Peter crams this one verse with content for the husband.
Most husbands go into marriage with little idea of how to meet his wife’s essential needs. That is why most of us make a mess of it. We usually establish homes like the one in which we grew up.
With verse 7 we begin the role of the husband in marriage. This is an entirely different role than that of the wife. His role is different because her nature is different.
The role of the husband in North America has changed dramatically changed in the last ½ century. After World War II psychologists discovered that 2 ½ million men were rejected from the services for neurotic and psychotic purposes. People began to look for the culprit. What is responsible for all this neurosis? Eureka! They found the culprit – It was mom! Psychologists called it “momism.” Apron Strings were nothing more than umbilical cords of emotion for these boys. They could not take the discipline of the army. They could not take the rigors of military service. They fell apart under the duress of boot camp.
A few years later another theory came on the scene. This theory postulated that it was not an over-protective mother but the detached mother who was the problem. This mother did not care sufficiently or relate to her son properly. The pendulum swung to the other side.
Then someone had the audacity to suggest that it was the father who was the problem. He does not have time for his boys. Margaret Mead came up with the idea that husbands must become involved in the PTA and the Little League. Her theory postulated that we need to domesticate the male. With this, males almost lost their male identities.
Psychologists keep swinging the pendulum of theories. They develop a trend, then a counter-trend to the role of the male. The Bible is very clear about the male’s role in marriage.
God has a role for the husband in marriage.
Some husbands criticize everything their wives do. They love to keep their wives off balance by constant criticism. They are insecure in themselves, so they bolster themselves by minimizing their wives. Their wives’ clothes are too bright or too dull. Something must be amiss. She cannot be right; otherwise they could not keep her off balance. They dole out money to their wives when their attitudes are right.
Other men pout and sulk if they do not get their way. They bury themselves in golf or television and cease to communicate. They give their wives the “silent treatment.” They do not assume responsibility as the head of the home.