Understanding Marriage Biblically (student outline)

II. God’s Design for Husbands

I. The Husband’s Role: Loving, Considerate, Courageous and Servant Leadership

  1. Loving Leadership: Ephesians 5:25-33

A husband’s love for his wife means joyful self-sacrifice empowered by the Holy Spirit that has as its aim the eternal good of his bride for the glory of his God.

  • Eph 5:28 33 – 3 times = 1 command

1. We Need to Love our wife by cherishing her.

  • Eph. 5:29
  • I Thess 2:7
  • I Pet 3:7b

2. We Need to Love our Wife by nourishing her.

  • Eph. 5:29
  • Gen 47:11 12
  • I Tim 5:8

3. We Need to Love Our Wife Selflessly

*John Macarthur – “A husband is not commanded to love his wife because of what his wife is or is not. He is commanded to love her because it is God’s will for him to do so. It is certainly intended for her husband to admire and be attracted by his wife’s beauty, winsomeness, kindness, gentleness, or any other positive quality of virtue. But though such things bring great blessing and enjoyment, they are not the bond of marriage. If every appealing characteristic and every virtue of his wife disappears, a husband is still under just as great an obligation to love her. If anything, he is under greater obligation, because her need for the healing and restorative power of his selfless love is greater. That is the kind of love every Christian husband is to have for his wife.” (John MacArthur, The Macarthur New Testament Commentary, Ephesians, Chicago, Moody Press, 1986, p. 297

To love another person requires us to pursue their well-being and benefit, even at cost to ourselves. Love requires more than giving to our spouse, it requires giving of ourselves to our spouse!

B. Considerate Leadership (Being a Learner): 1 Peter 3:7

Do you know these things about your wife?

1. Her gifts and abilities

2. Her likes and dislikes
3. What are her greatest fears and concerns about the present and future

4. What are her strengths and weaknesses

5. What makes her happy, brings greatest joy to her heart

6. What encourages and discourages her

7. What are her greatest desires and aspirations

8. What tends to annoy and frustrate her most

9. How she wants you to help her

10. How she wants you to show love to her

11. How she would like him to change

12. What she enjoys doing and what she doesn’t enjoy doing

13. What gifts or presents are most meaningful to her

14. What does she likes to talk about

15. What is the best way to encourage her

16. What she would like to do that presently she is not able to do

17. What are her greatest spiritual strengths and weaknesses

18. What she thinks about the way you treat her and how she would like you to treat her differently

19. What she would like to have that presently she doesn’t have

20. In what ways would she like to grow spiritually

21. What has she done or not done in the past that brings the greatest sense of sorrow or guilt to her?

22. What is she doing or not doing in the present that bring the greatest sense of guilt to her?

23. If she could change anything about herself in any way, what would it be?

24. If she could change anything about her relationship with him, what would it be?

25. As she thinks of her life, what brings her the greatest sense of accomplishment

C. Courageous Leadership: 1 Corinthians 16:13 “Act like men, be strong.”

Joshua 1:7, “be strong and courageous,” -- Build your leadership upon the Word of God!

Cowardice, passivity, and laziness are enemies to the husband!

D. Servant Leadership: Matthew 20:25-28

  • Luke 22:26-27
  • e.g. Jesus in John 13

II. The Wife’s Role: Cultivating Submission and Inner Beauty

A. Genesis 2:18 – A Helper and Assistant

God created the woman to assist and to help her husband in this life. The Hebrew word for helper (‘ezer) means “to aid.” God had put Adam in the garden with a task or job to perform, and Eve was to be his helper, or to assist him in the work that he had been given to do. Adam was called to work for God and Eve was called to work for God by assisting her husband!

B. Ephesians 5 – Submissive and Respectful

A wife being submissive to her husband means joyful honoring of her husband’s will and position, empowered by the Holy Spirit, that has as its aim the eternal fruitfulness of her husband for the glory of God. She wants to help show the world what the relationship between Christ and His Church is really like. It means she longs to help her husband make much of Christ, not much of herself. She prays for her marriage to honor Christ and His kingdom, not her own.

Submission -- ‘hupotasso’ is a military term which means “to line up underneath.”

Philippians 2:3-8 -- To submit means giving control over to someone else and letting them make decisions rather than insisting on your own rights. Submission also means complying with and obeying the decisions made by those in authority over us.

C. 1 Peter 3:1-6: The Surprising Power of Submission

1. The Role of the Wife (3:1)

2. The Reason for Submission (3:1-2)

3. The Real Definition of Beauty (3:3-4)

Peter mentions two qualities of a truly beautiful woman – a woman whose beauty doesn’t fade over time, but is ‘imperishable.’ A gentle and quiet spirit.

Gentleness – not insistent on one’s personal rights or upon getting one’s own way. Not pushy or selfishly assertive, but considerate of the thoughts and feelings and needs of others. Gentleness is strength under control. Remember, gentleness is a fruit of the Spirit!

Quiet – she does not seek to attract attention to herself. She is not boisterous or noisy. In her heart, she is calm and at peace rather than being driven by the restlessness of always wanting to be noticed or approved.

4. The Reward of True Beauty (3:4)

1:19 – We were redeemed with precious blood!

2:4 – Jesus is precious in the sight of God!

5. The Role Model of Submission (3:5-6)