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Did God Go Too Far?

“Please accept my deepest and most sincere apologies for using such offensive words.” The headline read: God Apologizes. Remorseful for using terms that offend contemporary sensibilities, God issued an apology for language found in His Word, the Bible. “Through my omniscience I knew that by the time the 21st Century rolled around my terminology would no longer be considered acceptable. Feel free to edit the eternal Word of God so that it aligns more closely with your current, advanced understanding.”  Of course, this is sarcasm, attempting to illustrate through the absurd. Yet, even for Christians who believe the Bible is without error, passages like this can make us feel uncomfortable.  The real question is: Have we gone too far or NOT far enough?

1 – Wives should submit to husbands as the church submits to Christ (Ephesians 5:22-24)

Submission is not subjection, subordination or subjugation.  It does not mean a woman is inferior intellectually, emotionally, or relationally.  It does not mean that a husband may do anything he wants to do with his wife. It is best to attempt to understand submission in light of Christ’s headship to the church.  Christ is the church’s source of strength and is it’s Savior. Paul sees the church’s joyful submission to Jesus as the One who has so sacrificed for her. Likewise, the Wife’s submission to her Husband is not to be an unthinking, unquestioning obedience to his rule, but rather a grateful acceptance of his care.

2 – Husbands should love their wives as Christ loves the church resulting in a threefold outcome.  (Ephesians 5:25-28)

Christian husbands do not love by simply providing food and a home. Christian husbands love  SO THAT 1) she might be sanctified, 2)  she might be presented without spot or wrinkle and 3)  she might be holy and without blemish.

Christian, when you function in the God designated role given to you, you are displaying what the gospel does in the church. Wives, when you submit to your husbands loving leadership, you are modeling how the church responds to her head. Husbands, when you sacrificially love your wife, you are modeling how Christ leads His bride, the church. For Christian people, this is a high and holy calling. This is a privilege.  Our motivation is that Christ and His body would be glorified, that the manifold wisdom of God might be on display!

I conclude with these applications: 1) Singles: Should I marry this person? By marrying this individual, can you reflect in your role God’s glory in the church? Are they a growing disciple of Jesus? If so, marry them. Women: is this man that you are dating submissive to God? If he will not submit to God, it will be extremely challenging to submit to his leadership. Men: are you basing your decision to love on strictly the physical? Can you pursue self-sacrificial love? Your call is to love as Christ loves, unconditionally. 2) Married Men: You will be a better leader if you willingly exercise submission in the context of the church. If you will intentionally and regularly submit to God’s work in your life, you will be a more thoughtful loving leader to your wife. 3) Married Women: when you struggle to submit, do it as to the Lord.  In doing so, not only are you reflecting the church’s submission to Christ, but your motivation becomes biblical.

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