On Thursday nights at 8:30PST Katie and I are answering marriage questions on Facebook Live. If you have a question, be sure to send it to us. This past Thursday I answered the following: “What if my husband isn’t interested in the Bible?”
Below is the video. Here’s a breakdown of the content if you’d like to skip to a certain part:
- 0–14:15—I answered the above question
- 14:15–16:00—Katie shared briefly from Marriage God’s Way
- 16:00–28:15—I discussed Genesis 30:1-2, which contains instruction for husbands and wives
- 28:15–31.5 – Closing thoughts
Part I: 0–14:15 – “What if my husband isn’t interested in the Bible?”
Here’s the full question:
“My husband isn’t interested in the Bible. I’m becoming more interested in theology, but my husband feels like the topics that interest me don’t matter. He feels like a Christian is a Christian regardless. My question is, for a wife whose husband doesn’t agree with her theologically, what should I do? Should I just relax and let God work?”
Here are three suggestions:
- Pray! If your husband husband isn’t interested in the bible, you can’t make him be interested. Spiritual hunger and spiritual thirst is just that: spiritual. You can pray God gives him that hunger and thirst, but it’s not something you can give him.
- Encourage him! Be enthusiastic whenever he discusses Scripture. That will hopefully excite him about discussing it with you in the future.
- Ask him questions! Give him the opportunity to share. Keep your expectations low if he isn’t very studied. Do your best to prevent it from turning into an argument. That will only discourage him from talking about the Bible with you in the future.
Your husband isn’t interested in the bible, but maybe following these suggestions will change that!
One more thing to keep in mind…
Except for the biggest theological differences, God cares more about the peace in your marriage than He cares about your differences. 1 Corinthians 7 contains principles for marriage, and in verse 15 Paul says:
But if the unbeliever departs, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace.
We’re called to be at peace with others (Romans 12:18), but Paul specifically has marriage in mind in this verse. Peace is so important Paul says a believing spouse shouldn’t engage in conflict over an unbelieving spouse’s departure. Unbelievers are never won to Christ through heated conflict. It’s more important to be true to the Christian testimony of peace than attempt to keep an unbeliever in a marriage by arguing.
14:15–16:00—Katie shared briefly from Marriage God’s Way
Here’s the passage:
Chapter Fifteen – Winning Over Your Husband
If a wife wants her husband to read God’s Word more, pray more, or be a godlier man, rather than nagging him, she herself should read God’s Word more, pray more, and be a godlier woman. Wives should be encouraged by Jesus’s promise to send the Holy Spirit in John 16:8: “When [the Holy Spirit] has come, He will convict the world of sin.” Notice the emphasis is on the Holy Spirit doing the convicting. This includes husbands, unbelieving or otherwise! Wives are not supposed to take over the Holy Spirit’s role in their husbands’ lives. Wives should pray, and then trust the Holy Spirit to do the work Jesus promised He would do.
No husband can sit at home being unspiritual and lame while watching his spiritual wife without feeling ashamed. A husband might pretend that he is not convicted, and his wife might not be able to tell by looking at him that he feels convicted, but he does. In contrast, when a wife is unsubmissive, angry, and nagging, the husband does not see God through her and as a result avoids feeling convicted at all.
Then Katie briefly discussed not being the Holy Spirit in your husband’s life.
16:00–28:15 —I discussed Genesis 30:1–2, which contains a lesson for husbands and wives
Jacob had two wives, Rachel and Leah, which was part of the problem. In Scripture, polygamy is descriptive, but not prescriptive. Scripture is:
- Describing something that took place
- Not prescribing what we should do
There are no examples of polygamy being accompanied by peace and harmony. Every instance is characterized by turmoil and strife.
Chapter 30 begins after Leah gave birth to four sons: Reuben, Simeon, Levi and Judah. But Rachel hasn’t been able to have any children. There weren’t (and many women would say still aren’t) many things worse for a woman than not being able to have children. Rachel feels feels terrible, especially when considering her sister – who also happens to be her husband’s other wife – just had four sons.
Genesis 30:1 Now when Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister, and said to Jacob, “Give me children, or else I die!”
Here are three observations about Rachel’s behavior:
- Women are more emotional than men. Not having children was terrible, but talking about dying because of it is fairly melodramatic.
- Rachel held Jacob responsible. Was it really his fault she couldn’t have any children? Clearly not since he’d been able to have children with Leah. Rachel should’ve taken her petition to the Lord instead.
- Much of Rachel’s anger stemmed from Leah having children. This means her outburst was motivated by jealousy.
Here’s the application for wives:
- Do you hold your husband responsible for your suffering?
- When you’re upset do you get upset with him?
- If you’re having a bad day, are you going to make sure your husband – or the rest of your family – has a bad day too?
- Is jealousy of other women planting a root of bitterness in your heart?
Jacob had the opportunity to be a loving, understanding husband, but…
Genesis 30:2 And Jacob’s anger was aroused against Rachel, and he said, “Am I in the place of God, who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?”
Husbands are commanded to recognize their wives are the weaker vessel and dwell with them in an understanding way (1 Peter 3:7). Here’s what he could’ve said:
- How can I dwell with my wife with understanding, recognizing she’s the weaker vessel?
- It’s reasonable for her to be so upset, because her femininity is bound up in being able to have children. What can I do to encourage her?
- She’s giving in to the sin of covetousness. How can I help her overcome this weakness without being harsh?
- This is what I’ll say: “I am so sorry you haven’t been able to have any children. This must be really difficult. Let’s pray about this together.”
Instead, Jacob responded in anger and it pictures a common response from men. When wives are emotional it can be tempting for husbands to get angry in return, but this violates God’s command.
It’s worth noticing everything Jacob said was right. He’s not in control of whether Rachel had children. But he’s still wrong because of the way he responded. As husbands we can be right, but still be wrong when we’re unkind to our wives.
- Husbands not being their wives’ girlfriend
- The holiday special on Marriage God’s Way: $24.99 for two books and this includes shipping:
Send us your marriage questions and we’ll answer them Thursday nights at 8:30PST.