How Husbands Ought to Love Their Wives – Part I – Ephesians 5.25-26

We’re in the second message of our Marriage and Family Series, and the title of the sermon is, “How Husbands Ought to Love Their Wives – Part I.”

Since we’re going to be talking about marriage and family for a number of weeks, I wanted to establish a good foundation for us. I’d like to ask you at the
beginning to make the decision to do a few things…

LESSON 1: AS WE BEGIN, MAKE THE DECISION TO:

(PART I) FOCUS ON YOUR WEAKNESSES MORE THAN YOUR SPOUSE’S…

The standard God sets for husbands and wives is very high. It’s so high that:

· If you’re a husband it’s easy to listen to what’s said to wives and start getting upset your wife isn’t more like God says wives should be.

· If you’re a wife, it’s easy to listen to what’s said to husbands and start getting upset your husband isn’t more like God says husbands should be.

When Katie and I were back in Lemoore our good friends Dave and Naida used to put on marriage evenings where they shared about marriage and they had me
teach from Eph 5. In the middle of one of those evenings while discussing husbands loving and cherishing their wives, one of the women stood up and
criticized her husband in front of the entire group.

After that I decided whenever I taught on marriage I would always remind people we’re trying to improve marriages, not arm people to go home and have
WWIII. So here are two encouragements to hopefully prevent that from happening…

First, focus on your weaknesses more than your spouse’s, b/c the reality is we all have plenty to work on w/o thinking about what our spouses need to work
on. If you start to feel frustrated toward your spouse, think about your own struggles.

LESSON 1: AS WE BEGIN, MAKE THE DECISION TO:

· (PART I) FOCUS ON YOUR WEAKNESSES MORE THAN YOUR SPOUSE’S (PART II) AND TURN YOUR FRUSTRATIONS INTO PRAYER.

Instead of focusing on what your spouse does wrong, and how you shouldn’t be treated the way you’re being treated, and how you deserve better, think:

· How can I help my spouse be a better husband or wife?

· Is there anything I can do that will make being married to me easier? And if you can’t think of anything, you’re not thinking hard enough!

One very simple recommendation I can give you is this…

Take any frustration you feel and turn it into prayer for your spouse. Every time you start to feel frustrated, pray for your spouse. Let me tell you what
most people do WAY more than they pray for their spouse:

  • Complain about their spouse.
  • Gossip about their spouse.
  • Yell at their spouse.
  • Threaten their spouse.
  • Ignore their spouse.

My suspicion is if we prayed for our spouses as much as we do these other things, our marriages would be much better.

—-

Now this begs the question,

“If teaching about husbands in front of wives could upset wives, and if teaching about wives in front of husbands could upset husbands, why didn’t we
split up the men and women and do this during Sunday School?”

I want you to know we did consider that and there are a three reasons we’re not doing it that way…

First, not everyone attends Sunday School and we think marriage and family is so important we wanted to reach the most number of people and that’s during
service.

Second, the instruction for husbands and wives is very intertwined. For example:

1. Eph 5:22 says Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. It’s much easier for wives to submit to husbands
that are loving, cherishing, godly spiritual leaders. So when we talk about wives submitting, we’ll also remind husbands how they can make submission
easier for their wives.

2. Second, Eph 5:25 says Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her.” And
it’s much easier for husbands to love wives that are lovable. So when we talk about husbands loving their wives, we’ll also address remind wives how they
can make it easier for their husbands to love them.

Third, Sunday School generally removes the young people and we wanted the young people here for two reasons…

First, this is a marriage and family series. So there will be instruction for children and parents and not just husbands and wives.

Second, the general approach taken by churches is to start teaching people about marriage when they’re married. For example, if a church has a marriage
series, it’s attended by married people. Does anyone see anything wrong w/ preparing people for marriage AFTER they’re married? I’m not blaming churches
for the problems w/in Christian marriages, but perhaps if we prepare our young people for marriage BEFORE they’re married, we can set them up for
healthier, godlier marriages later.

So throughout the series I’ll try to address the young people too.

If you’re single, the teaching on marriage should serve two very important purposes for you:

1. If you’re a young man when we talk about the instruction for husbands this should teach you what God wants you to grow up to be, and when we go over the
instruction for wives this should teach you what to look for in a wife.

2. Likewise if you’re a young lady when we talk about the instruction for wives this should teach you what God wants you to grow up to be, and when we go
over the instruction for husbands this should teach you what to look for in a husband.

LESSON 1: AS WE BEGIN, MAKE THE DECISION TO:

· (PART I) FOCUS ON YOUR WEAKNESSES MORE THAN YOUR SPOUSE’S (PART II) AND TURN YOUR FRUSTRATIONS INTO PRAYER.

· (PART III) TRUST THE HOLY SPIRIT TO WORK…

As we go through these verses over the next few Sundays, we’re going to see the call God has on husbands and wives is very high. It’s so high you might
almost start to feel overwhelmed or hopeless.

If I had to choose one word that I believe summarizes what it feels like when thinking about being the husbands and wives the Bible commands us to be, it’s
the word: intimidating.

· If you’re a husband, it is intimidating to think of being to your wife what Christ is to the church and if you’re not intimidated by it, you don’t really
understand what’s expected of you.

· If you’re a wife it’s intimidating to think of submitting to your husband as though you’re submitting to the Lord.

So here’s what I don’t want anyone saying during these sermons:

  • “I can’t do this.”
  • “He can’t do this.”
  • “She can’t do this.”
  • “We can’t do this.”

IF you had to do this by yourselves, then those would be appropriate responses, b/c really w/o the Holy Spirit’s help we couldn’t do this ourselves. So at
the very beginning let me give you some encouragement:

  • If you’ve embraced the Gospel…
  • If you’re a believer…
  • If you’ve surrendered your life to the Lord…
  • If you’re regenerated and brought to life spiritually…

You’re filled w/ the Holy Spirit. You’re not alone. You don’t have to do this by yourself. The Holy Spirit will enable you to do what God wants you to do.
God won’t expect you to do anything that He won’t also equip you to do. He’s given us His Spirit to help us be the husbands and fathers and wives and
mothers and children He wants us to be.

We’re going to begin w/ Eph 5. If you’re familiar w/ this chapter you know the first half is all about “Living in the Spirit.” The 2nd half is
the famous marriage passage. It’s fitting to be arranged this way, b/c if there’s any area of the Christian life where the Holy Spirit’s help is necessary,
it’s marriage.

Look at Eph 5:18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; BUT BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT. Everything flows
from this command. The Greek would actually be better understood as: “keep on being filled” or “stay filled w/ the Spirit
” b/c Paul is talking about something he wants to be ongoing in our lives as believers.

Alcohol has the potential to influence people. When people are driving drunk, we say they’re driving under the influence. So just like wine has the potential to influence, so does the Holy Spirit have the potential to influence, and we need the Holy Spirit to influence our
marriages.

Please listen to this. These are promises from God’s Word. This is what God wants you to know and believe:

  • 2 Cor 9:8

    God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for
    every good work.

  • Phil 2:13
    It is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.
  • Heb 13:20 May the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead
    (that means if God can do that, listen to what else He can do)…21 Make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ.

Sometimes we have to wonder what God wants. Prosperity preachers try to convince people God wants nothing more than for them to be happy and healthy.
Here’s what I can tell you God ACTUALLY wants though: He wants you to have a joyful, loving marriage. God is for your marriage, and He wants it to be
wonderful and I can tell you that for two reasons:

1. First, marriage is a gift. It’s a blessing God’s given us that’s meant to be enjoyable.

2. Second, marriage is a reflection of Christ and the Church. Does God want Christ and the church to have a wonderful relationship? Does God want the world
to look and see Christian marriages that wonderfully represent Christ’s relationship w/ the church?

So I can say this w/ full confidence: God is for your marriage. He wants it strong and loving, and His Spirit indwells us for that happen.

When I was working on my Masters in Education, I remember one notorious class I took. The amount of work in the syllabus was outrageous. It was way more
work than any other class I’d taken. The woman who taught the class understood just how much work it was, b/c when she passed out the syllabus she warned
us about the workload. Before she let us look at the syllabus in detail she said, “You need to know I’m going to help you do all this. You’re not in this alone. We’re going to do this together.” I remember when she said that I
immediately felt better.

Sometimes I feel like that’s what God would say to us:

“Yes, the standard I’ve set is very high. Yes, my expectations are very serious. But I’m going to help you do this. We’re going to do this together.”

—-

Now w/ that said about the Holy Spirit helping us, let me add one more thing and this brings us to Part IV…

LESSON 1: AS WE BEGIN, MAKE THE DECISION TO:

· (PART I) FOCUS ON YOUR WEAKNESSES MORE THAN YOUR SPOUSE’S (PART II) AND TURN YOUR FRUSTRATIONS INTO PRAYER.

· (PART III) TRUST THE HOLY SPIRIT TO WORK (PART IV) WITH YOU.

The Holy Spirit will help us, but I want you to remember your involvement in the success of your marriage and family. I don’t want anyone sitting around
expecting the Holy Spirit to do everything. The Holy Spirit isn’t going to work in any marriages or families where the people aren’t willing to work
themselves. God isn’t going to supernaturally take control of our lives and fix everything. God’s sovereignty – or God’s power – works in conjunction w/
our free will.

Yes we trust the Holy Spirit to help us, but we need to recognize our parts too. I don’t want anyone missing out on what God wants to do b/c we’re being
lazy or selfish. There are a number of verses I could give you, but just listen to these few and the responsibility that’s put on our shoulders:


  • Rom 13:13-14 Let US walk properly…14 PUT ON the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.

    This is all about our responsibility.
  • Col 3:12-14
    PUT ON

    tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 [bear] with one another, and [forgive] one another…14 Put on
    love, which is the bond of perfection.

Now what does this like practically for the Holy Spirit to work w/ us?

· Normally you might point out that little thing that bothers you, but when the Holy Spirit convicts you to overlook something, you’re going to let it go.
Your husband is used to you being annoyed by things so when he sees you overlook something you normally wouldn’t before it’ll encourage him.

o When we were at the marriage retreat, Paul Tripp told a story of a wife who normally always told her husband to pull over and get gas when the light
turned on, but one time she decided not to say anything. When they got to the pump, the husband said, “I just want you to know I know it was really hard for you not to say anything and I appreciate it.” So if you normally get annoyed when the gas
light turns on, try to let that go J.

· Normally you just sit next to your wife, but when the Holy Spirit convicts you you’re going to sit down and hold her hand or put your arm around her.
She’s used to you not doing that so when sees your extra effort to be affectionate she’ll appreciate it.

· It looks like putting forth more effort to be a good listener. Maybe you don’t normally nod or verbally affirm what your spouse says, but now you’re
going to really try to look at your spouse or your children or your parents when they talk and pay attention to what they say.

· Parents, normally you let your children see how much they’re exasperating you, but now you’re going to make extra effort to be patient and stay calm.

· Children, normally you huff and puff and drag your feet when your parents ask you to do something, but now you’re going to try really hard to joyfully
obey when you’re asked…or better yet do what you’re supposed to so your parents don’t have to ask at all.

And the Holy Spirit is going to help you do all this.

Let me tie these last two points together: in Col 1:29 Paul says, To this end I labor (so he says he works; the NIVstrenuously struggle, ESV toil, struggling with all my energy) , according to [God’s] working which works mightily in me.

So Paul is working side-by-side w/ God to accomplish the work God wants accomplished, and you are working side-by-side w/ the Holy Spirit to accomplish the
work God wants accomplished in your marriage and family.

—–

Now before we start discussing the command for husbands, let’s review what we discussed last week, b/c it laid the foundation for this week…

LESSON 2:
AGAPAŌ IS:

  • PART I: UNCONDITIONAL (HOS 3).

· PART II: SACRIFICIAL (LUKE 10:30-37).

· PART III: GOD’S LOVE FOR US. (JOHN 3:16; ROM 5:8).

o John 3:16 God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life

o Rom 5:8 God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us

· PART IV: HUSBANDS’ LOVE FOR THEIR WIVES.

We spent over half of last Sunday’s sermon discussing
agapaō so we could understand what it means when it says husbands are to love their wives. Now w/ this understanding of agapaō , we’re finally ready to look at Eph 5:25…

25
Husbands, love
(that’s agapaō) your wives, just as Christ also loved (again agapaō) the church and gave Himself for her,

You notice the word
agapaō
is used twice in verse 25 to discuss two different relationships:

·
It discusses the way Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her.

·
And it commands husbands to love their wives that exact same way.

Now w/ our understanding of
agapaō
from last week, let’s see what this means about a husband’s love for his wife…

First, since
agapaō

is unconditional, husbands are commanded to love their wives unconditionally. You see this in the verse by the absence of the word “if.” It doesn’t
say, “Husbands, love your wives IF…” This means husbands are commanded to love their wives:

·
Even if they’re not submissive.

·
Even if they mistreat us.

·
Even if they don’t love us in return; we’re commanded to love our wives even if our love isn’t reciprocated.

This is exactly what Christ’s love is like for the church; it’s the standard set for us.


So if I’m ever upset w/ my wife – which happened one time like 5 years ago – I remind myself that God commands me to love her regardless of what she
has or hasn’t done.


Second, husbands are to love their wives w/ the same unreserved, selfless, sacrificial love Christ has for His church. Christ gave everything He had –
including His own life for the sake of the church – and that’s the standard of sacrifice husbands are to have for their wives.


This is why no husband can ever feel like he perfectly obeys this verse. When Christ is your standard no husband should ever feel like he’s arrived.

John MacArthur said,

“What higher motive could there be for the husband to love his wife? By loving her as Christ loved the church, he honors Christ in the most direct and
graphic way. He becomes the embodiment of Christ’s love to his own wife, a living example to the rest of his family, a channel of blessing to his
entire household, and a powerful testimony to a watching world.”

—-

Earlier I said the commands for husbands and wives are intertwined, which brings us to the next lesson…

LESSON 3: WIVES CAN MAKE LOVING THEM EASIER.

This isn’t meant to be an excuse for husbands. Husbands are still commanded to love their wives unconditionally, sacrificially, no matter what…but let me
ask a question…

Can wives make it easier for their husbands to love them like Christ loved the church? And can they make it harder for their husbands to love them?

Proverbs lists a number of verses about wives that even the most godly husbands would have trouble loving:

·
Pro 19:13b
The contentions of a wife are a continual dripping.

  • Pro 21:9 & 25:24
    Better to dwell in a corner of a housetop,


    Than in a house shared with a contentious woman.

·
Pro 21:19
Better to dwell in the wilderness,


Than with a contentious and angry woman.

·
Pro 27:15-16
A continual dripping on a very rainy day


And a contentious woman are alike;

16
Whoever restrains her restrains the wind,

And grasps oil with his right hand.


To be clear, husbands are commanded to love their wives unconditionally and sacrificially, BUT how much harder would it be to love a wife that’s like
these verses are describing and how much easier would it be to love the wife in Pro 31:11

The heart of her husband safely trusts her;


So he will have no lack of gain.

12
She does him good and not evil

All the days of her life.

—-

And don’t worry: when we go over submission, we’ll talk about how much easier it is for a wife to submit to a godly, loving husband.

So before we move on from this verse, let’s summarize it like this:

·

Husbands, we’re commanded God to love our wives unconditionally and sacrificially. The way Christ was willing to give Himself up for the church, we’re
commanded to be willing to give up ourselves for our wives like that.

·
Wives, you can make all this easier or harder for your husbands.

—-

Now I told you earlier that Eph 5:25 is THEE command God has for husbands, which begs the question,
“Why are there verses after this? If this is what God wants husbands to do, why doesn’t it just end here?”

The answer is verse 25 commands husbands what to do, but the following verses tell us what that looks like.

No man wants to be a bad husband, but sometimes husbands don’t know what it looks like to be good husband. These verses tell us.

This is important, b/c if you asked 100 people what it looks like for a husband to love his wife you’d probably get 100 different answers. Here are some of
the answers you might get, especially if you asked people in the world:

  • Buy your wife expensive jewelry.
  • Take your wife to fancy restaurants.
  • Bring your wife on exotic vacations.
  • Make sure your wife lives in an impressive home.
  • Give your wife whatever she wants.

Generally the world says loving your wife looks like materialism. So here’s a really important point I want to make to husbands:

· You can be a complete failure as a husband in the world’s eyes, while being a great husband in God’s eyes.

· You can also be a complete failure as a husband in God’s eyes while being a great husband in the world’s eyes.

We obviously want to be great husbands in God’s eyes, and this leaves us w/ good news and bad news…

· The good news is you don’t have to buy all these things for your wife to be a good husband in God’s eyes…although maybe that’s not good news for the
wives J.

· The bad news is buying your wife stuff is much easier than doing what God commands.

If you look at verse 26 you can see what God says husbands ought to do if they love their wives…

26
that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word,

Verse 25 commands husbands to love their wives, and this verse tells us what it looks like for husbands to love their wives. This brings us to Lesson 4…

LESSON 4: HUSBANDS LOVE THEIR WIVES BY WASHING THEM WITH THE WORD.

Husbands are commanded to sanctify their wives. This verse clearly shows husbands at least partially responsible for their wives’ sanctification. Husbands
aren’t completely responsible for their wives’ sanctification, but this verse shows them having some part in it. If you want to be a husband that pleases
God, help your wife in her sanctification.

Christ wants a pure bride, so husbands are supposed to prepare pure wives. If I had to use two words to describe the love God wants husbands to have for
their wives, it would be the words purifying or sanctifying: husbands are commanded to have a purifying and sanctifying love for their wives.

And we’re told how this purifying and sanctifying takes place: through washing by the Word of God. The Word of God is what washes us and cleanses us:

  • John 15:3
    Jesus said to His bride the church, setting the example for husbands w/ our brides: “ You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.”
  • John 17:17
    Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.

There are a number of ways for husbands to wash their wives w/ the Word…and their families for that matter:

1. First, and most foundationally, take your family to church consistently:

a. It amazes me what some husbands will choose over church w/ their families.

b. It amazes me that some husbands don’t consider what they’re teaching their wives and children by inconsistent church attendance.

c. And it amazes me when husbands look back later with surprise that their wives and children are having problems spiritually, even though they’re the ones
who spent years teaching them THEE most basic and foundational practice of the Christian life – corporate worship – isn’t a priority.

2. Second, there are plenty of church activities – like Sunday School and home fellowships – that put you in a place to hear God’s Word and have it wash
over you and your family.

3. Third, you can play sermons or Christian stations or just listen to the Bible in your home or when you’re driving places.

4. Fourth, read the Word w/ your wife and children. This verse is looking to family Bible studies or devotional times together.

I’m not saying Christians can’t have televisions, but what brings your family together more? The television or the Word of God?

LESSON 5: HUSBANDS SET THE STANDARD FOR HOLINESS IN THE HOME.

Since men are responsible w/ helping sanctify their wives, men have to set the standard for holiness in their homes; it’s not the wives’ responsibility.

· This means women shouldn’t have to fight their husbands to have a holier home.

· This means husbands are responsible for what comes into the home and what influences the home.

  • Husbands this means you’re responsible with:

o What your family watches.

o What your family listens to.

o How your family talks or jokes.

o What company your family keeps.

o How your family dresses.

o How your family spends their time.

o What your family does recreationally.

· Maybe most importantly, this means the husband is responsible w/ the family’s involvement in the local church.

Now let me tell you something that’s very unfortunate….

This is an observation, so I can’t say it’s always true, and for some of you this might not be the case, but this is what I’ve generally seen…

· I don’t see husbands complain about their wives’ holiness, but I see wives complain about their husbands’ holiness.

· What I mean is while I hear wives complain about things their husbands watch, listen to or say, I don’t often hear men complain about things their wives
watch, listen to or say.

  • Similarly, I don’t often hear men say:

o My wife won’t go to church w/ me.

o My wife doesn’t want to join a home fellowship.

o My wife doesn’t want to pray or read the Bible w/ me.

o But I do hear wives say these things about their husbands.

This is terribly unfortunate, since husbands are supposed to be the spiritual leaders in the home setting the standard for holiness.

It’s terrible when women have to be the spiritual leaders in the homes wishing their husbands were more spiritual. It’s terrible, but it’s common.

—-

Now even though this is a command for husbands, this should really speak to wives too. Again, let me ask a question: can wives make their husbands’
spiritual leadership over the home easier, and can they make it harder?

Many husbands are terrified to pray in front of their wives, b/c they don’t think they’re going to sound like pastors or guys you hear on the radio.

So ladies, let me give you some encouragements and discouragements…

Here are the encouragements:

· Your husband might fumble every word he says when he prays or reads the bible, but you still praise him for being such a godly man and you recognize
you’re in the top whatever tiny percent of wives it is that have husbands that pray and read the Bible w/ them.

· Hold his hand when you pray in front of him thank God for giving you such a godly man.

· Support your husband by helping round up the kids, so they know you’re one w/ him regarding devotional times.

· When he reads the bible w/ you, you become the most interested, attentive woman in history. Whatever he’s reading, it is your favorite passage of
Scripture and you’re hanging on every word he says. The joke is whatever I’m studying becomes my favorite passage of Scripture, well, when your husband is
reading the Bible that’s your favorite passage of Scripture.

Here are two discouragements…

First, this is tough, b/c I don’t want to discourage wives from asking their husbands questions or even disagreeing w/ them if they say something wrong,
but if your husband thinks he’s going to have to argue w/ you or debate w/ you every time you open the Bible together you’re going to have a husband who
doesn’t open the Bible w/ you. For every withdrawal you make during a devotional time, you need to make sure you make a number of deposits.

We were close w/ a couple in CA and the husband said whenever they read the bible together he felt like she was always challenging him, questioning him, so
finally he said he never wanted to read the bible w/ her again.

Second, do not under any circumstances ever compare your husband to another husband or some pastor or Bible teacher you’ve heard. This is you’re husband.
Don’t compare him to other men. Be thankful for him.

Teaching is called a gift in Scripture which means it’s something some men have and others don’t, but if you do or don’t have the gift of teaching you’re
not better or worse than other men.

Ladies, your husband might not have the gift of teaching, which means he’s probably already nervous about reading or praying with his family, so the last
thing he needs is to be discouraged by his wife.

Don’t expect a sermon or Billy Graham Crusade when you open the bible together. The power is in God’s Word and not in the husband’s teaching ability. If
your husband is reading the Bible and it’s going out and washing over the family it will do its work.

—-

When Katie and I got together, I really wanted to impress her and I remember one of our first Bible studies. I decided to show her the relationship between
three passages of Scripture: one in Isaiah, one in Kings and one in Chronicles. It was probably THEE most confusing Bible study ever taught. When we
finished three hours later, it didn’t make me look impressive, it just made me look weird.

A few hours later I happened to hear Katie on the phone with her friend Chelsea and she said, “I am so thankful to have met a man that will read the Bible w/ me.”

Wives: encourage your husbands. Be their biggest supporters.

—-

Children, you can support your fathers too:

· When your dad says it’s time to read the Bible together, don’t roll your eyes, moan-and-groan, complain, or huff-and-puff.

  • Pay attention.
  • Act interested.
  • Turn off your phones.

There’s nothing more encouraging than having your children contribute and pay attention, and there’s nothing more discouraging than feeling like your kids
are miserable.

—-

Let me ask you to picture something…

Imagine there’s a man who’s really feeling convicted about reading the Bible with his family. He knows he should, but he hasn’t been and he’s really
nervous about trying to for the first time. He doesn’t know how they’re going to respond. He’s got all these questions:

  • What if I don’t know what to say?
  • What if they ask me a question I can’t answer?
  • What if I don’t sound like that guy on the radio?

But he’s been summoning up all his courage while he’s been at work and he’s decided today is the day! When he gets home from work, he’s going to sit down
w/ his family for dinner and as soon as dinner is over he’s going to ask everyone to grab their bibles.

Fast forward a few hours. His heart is racing, and when everyone finishes eating he says, “Tonight, why don’t we do something different. Why don’t we all grab our Bibles and we’ll read a passage together?”

Now imagine his wife. She says:

  • Do we have to do this right now? I wanted to get the table picked up.
  • Is that the version of the Bible we’re going to use? Can we use this instead?
  • Is this the passage we’re going to read? Why did you pick this one? I don’t know if the kids are going to understand it.
  • Is that how you pronounce his name?
  • When I was listening to John MacArthur, that’s not what he said about this verse.
  • I don’t think that’s right.
  • Why don’t you go ask Pastor Doug.
  • I don’t think this is what Pastor Scott said our Bible studies should look like.
  • Wow, this first Bible study sure is long!

Imagine the kids say:

  • My favorite television show is about to start. Can we wait until that’s over?
  • I wanted to call so-and-so. Can I do that first?
  • This is boring.
  • I’m tired.
  • This is confusing.
  • Are we almost done? This is longer than Pastor Scott’s sermons.

Do you think that husband will ever want to read the Bible w/ his family again?

Now picture this situation…

Same man. Same situation. Same nervousness all day. Finishes dinner, and tells everyone to get their Bibles:

  • His wife says, “Isn’t this great? What a wonderful daddy you have! He’s going to read the Bible with us.”
  • “Let’s go get our bibles.”
  • Don’t worry about the dishes we’ll take care of that later.”
    This statement alone will get the kids excited!
  • At the end of the Bible study, they pray and the wife says,

    “Lord I am so thankful to have such a godly man. Thank you that he will open the Bible with us. We are so blessed. Please help him lead our family.
    What a huge responsibility he has. You’ve called me to be his helper, please help me to help him.”

Imagine the kids:

  • They’re attentive.
  • They ask questions.
  • They follow along in their Bibles.

· At the end they thank their dad, b/c they realize how few children have fathers who will do this.

Let me be frank w/ the children here, whether you’re younger or older: if you have parents that read the Bible w/ you or pray w/ you, you really need to be
thankful. You have no idea the tremendous blessing you have and how rare it really is. Your response before the Lord parents should be thankfulness and
respect.

Here’s what I want you to see:

  • Fathers have a part.
  • Mothers have a part.
  • Children have a part.

Now w/ all this in mind, look at the back of your inserts…

HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENTS FOR THE WEEK AND OPTIONAL DISCUSSION QUESTIONS…

Homework Assignment # 1: Ephesians 5:22-27

· Husband asks wife: Do you feel like I love you like Christ loved the church? How could I do a better job in this area?

· Wife asks husband: In what ways do you feel like I am submissive? In what ways could I be more submissive?

Homework Assignment #2: Ephesians 5:28-33

· Husband asks wife: Based on verses 28 & 29 do you feel like I take care of you as well as I take care of myself? Based on verse 31 do you feel like
you’re the supreme relationship in my life, above my parents or anything else?

· Based on verse 33 wife asks husband: Do you feel like I respect you? How could I show you more respect?

Homework Assignment #3: Ephesians 6:1-4

· Parents ask children: In what ways do you see yourselves obeying us? In what ways could you be more obedient?

· Discuss as a family: Is there a difference between honoring and obeying?

· Fathers ask children: In what ways am I exasperating you (might need to explain this word) or provoking you to anger?

Possible suggestions:

1. There is no correct length of time.

2. Choose the same time each week to establish a routine; after dinner can work very well since everyone is seated at the table.

3. Make sure the television and/or cell phones are off and do not answer the house phone.

4. The father/husband should open in prayer.

5. Involve children by having them read verses.

6. Close by asking if there are any prayer requests. Then have the mother open in prayer, invite the children to pray if they feel led (don’t want prayer
to become something children have a negative attitude toward, which can happen if they’re forced to pray), and father closes in prayer.

This is our vision for WCC: we want to see families gathered together around God’s Word. Now Husbands, I know maybe some of you have never done this
before. There’s no sense dwelling on the past. We all have regrets about mistakes we’ve made, but we can’t do anything about that now except make the
appropriate changes.

I know this is intimidating stuff. So after service some of the leadership is going to be up front. If you want to come forward and receive some prayer,
see one of us. You can come by yourself or you can come w/ your wife or you can come w/ your family. We’d love the opportunity to pray for you to help you
lead your families!

Lesson 1:
As we begin, make the decision to:

· Part I: Focus on your weaknesses more than your spouse’s (Part II) and turn your frustrations into prayer (Eph 5:22, 25).

· Part III: Trust the Holy Spirit to work (Part IV) with you (Eph 5:18; 2 Cor 9:8; Phil 2:13; Heb 13:20-21Rom 13:13-14; Col 3:12-14, 1:29).

Lesson 2:
(Parts 1 through 3 are from last week) Agapaō is:

  • Part I: Unconditional (Hos 3).
  • Part II: Sacrificial (Luke 10:30-37).
  • Part III: God’s love for us (John 3:16, 15:13; Rom 5:8).
  • Part IV: Husbands’ love for their wives (Eph 5:25).

Lesson 3:
Wives can make loving them easier (Pro 19:13b, 21:9/25:24, 21:19, 27:15-16, Pro 31:11-12).

Lesson 4:
Husbands love their wives by washing them with the Word (Eph 5:26; John 15:3, 17:17).

Lesson 5:
Husbands set the standard for holiness in the home (Eph 5:26).

Author: Scott LaPierre