We’re on the seventh message in our Marriage & Family Series. The title of this morning’s sermon is, “Understanding Submission – Part II”
Each week I want to begin by reviewing the foundation we established for this series as I think it’s important to keep these things in mind…
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.
- PART V: REMEMBER LISTENING IS NOT ENOUGH.
- PART VI: EMBRACE THE STRUGGLE (PART VII) BECAUSE OF WHAT IT PRODUCES.
I’d also like to briefly review what we learned about submission from last Sunday’s sermon:
SUBMISSION IS NOT…
LESSON 2: AMERICAN.
LESSON 3: ONLY FOR WIVES.
LESSON 4: DONE KICKING AND SCREAMING.
LESSON 5: A MATTER OF SUPERIORITY.
Now I want to tell you I received some criticism of last Sunday’s sermon. The criticisms were that I was too easy on wives…and believe it or not the
criticisms were from wives! It wouldn’t be a big deal if they were from husbands, but wives were criticizing me! I got permission to share a couple of the
criticisms w/ you:
My sister-in-law Molly asked Katie,
“Why is Scott taking it so easy on the women after coming down so hard on the guys? I came into church all geared up and ready to get convicted,
and all I hear is, ‘Husbands, it’s okay to submit to your wives sometimes too.'”
- Rachel Dye told Katie, “What’s up with your husband? What is this baby steps for wives?” When I talked to Rachel about it she said, “Bring it. Bring the heat. I can take it. I’m ready for it.”
So last Sunday’s sermon was supposed to be an introduction to submission, and how all of us are called to submit in various ways. But this sermon will be
more directed to wives…and I’ll be doing my best to bring the heat!
One of the obvious and very legitimate questions people have about submission is:
- How far do you go w/ submission?
- Are there times wives shouldn’t submit?
We’re going to begin w/ a lesson that hopefully answers this…
LESSON 6: SUBMISSION DOESN’T MEAN SUBMITTING TO: (PART I) OTHER MEN.
I told you last week that every time wives are discussed in the NT, there’s a corresponding command for them to submit to their husbands. You can’t find
any verse in the NT discussing wives that doesn’t also include a command for them to submit to their husbands. That’s very significant:
· That means God doesn’t see wives’ relationships to their husbands separate from their submission to their husbands.
· A wife’s relationship to her husband is completely related to and contingent on her submission to her husband.
· Basically, a wife can’t BE a godly wife if she doesn’t submit to her husband.
But as clear as the Bible is about wives submitting to their husbands, it’s equally clear that wives are only expected to submit to THEIR husbands. Every
verse that commands wives to submit, contains the words own husbands:
Wives, submit to YOUR OWN HUSBANDS.
- Eph 5:24 So let wives be [subject] to THEIR OWN HUSBANDS.
Wives, submit to YOUR OWN HUSBANDS.
- 1 Pet 3:1 Wives…be submissive to YOUR OWN HUSBANDS.
commands wives to be obedient to THEIR HUSBANDS.
So while it’s true God commands wives to submit to their husbands, it’s equally true He doesn’t command wives to submit to husbands or men, plural
Here are a few simple truths:
- Wives are commanded to submit to their husbands.
· Wives should see themselves as under their husband’s authority.
· But wives should not see themselves as submissive to other men.
· Wives should not see themselves under the authority of other men.
· Even in the church it’s not really that wives are under the authority of the leadership of the church, it’s that wives are under the authority of their
husbands and their husbands are under the authority of the church.
Consider Gen 2:18 when God discussed creating women: the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” It says MAKE HIM A HELPER instead of saying, “make men helpers” or “make all men helpers.”
Generally this manifests itself in two ways, and I’ll use myself as an example:
· When I want help in my life, I look to my wife, or I look to the men God has put in my life.
- But I don’t look to other men’s wives.
I wouldn’t want another man telling my wife what to do. I wouldn’t want another man avoiding me to go to my wife. If a man wanted to address another woman
in the church and if it was of a serious nature:
- If she’s unmarried he should go to her father.
- And if she’s married he should go to her husband.
LESSON 6: SUBMISSION DOESN’T MEAN SUBMITTING TO: (PART II) ABUSE.
Wives are not expected to submit to their husbands if it means enduring abuse. John Piper said, “What women rightly long for is spiritual and moral initiative from a man, not spiritual and moral domination.”
This lesson is fairly straightforward, but I would still like to make a clarification about abuse…
I’ve heard some women discuss not submitting to their husbands, and their reasons had nothing to do w/ abuse.
· Sometimes it had to do w/ their husbands not treating them as well as they wanted…
- Sometimes it had to do w/ not getting what they wanted…
But there weren’t any examples of abuse.
When a wife:
- Doesn’t get to do all the things she wants to do.
- Go all the places she wants to go.
- Buy all the things she wants to buy.
- Spend her time the way she wants to spend all her time.
That’s not abuse.
Additionally, something could be sinful, and still not be abusive. For example…
God commands husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church. No husband does this perfectly, which means husbands are regularly sinning by not
loving their wives like Christ loved the church…BUT that doesn’t mean husbands are being abusive. Just b/c a husband doesn’t love his wife perfectly –
which no husband does – doesn’t mean he’s abusing his wife, and therefore it doesn’t mean his wife is excused from submitting.
You can see it like this:
- A wife isn’t expected to submit to abuse.
But a wife can’t say, “I’m not submitting to my husband b/c he sinned against me…b/c he doesn’t love me as Christ the loved church” b/c the
reality is husbands are regularly sinning against their wives and if that was cause for wives not to submit they would never be expected to submit.
The point is just like husbands can’t say, “I’m not going to love my wife b/c she doesn’t submit to me”, wives can’t say, “I’m not going to submit to my husband, b/c he doesn’t love me.”
Similarly you’ll hear some women say, “I would submit to my husband if he loved me as Christ loved the church.” Here’s the truth…
No you wouldn’t, and I know you wouldn’t b/c Christ loves you perfectly and you don’t perfectly submit to Him. In a later sermon we’ll look at Gen 3 and
see that it’s part of the curse for women to struggle w/ submission regardless of how their husbands treat them. Yes, husbands can make submitting easier –
and we’ll talk about that next week – but for now it’s worth mentioning that it’s part of the curse for wives to struggle submitting to their husbands
regardless of how they’re treated.
LESSON 6: SUBMISSION DOESN’T MEAN SUBMITTING TO: (PART III) SIN.
This means wives don’t have to submit if it means doing something sinful.
Now I want to be honest about this lesson…
Most of the situations I know of when wives haven’t wanted to submit to their husbands, it had nothing to do w/ sin. I’m not saying there aren’t legitimate
instances of husbands expecting their wives to sin, I’m just saying most of the times I’ve heard of wives not submitting to their husbands it had nothing
to do w/ sin.
The one situation I’ve witnessed that most closely resembles a wife feeling like she’s being forced to submit to sin is when she has a husband that’s not a
Christian, or is a pretty unspiritual one, and she wants to:
- Join a home fellowship…
- Attend Sunday School…
- Or sometimes even just go to church on Sunday…
But the husband doesn’t want to.
Here’s my encouragement…
Let your husband know how much you want to do these things. Ask him if he’ll please do these things for you and your family, but if he’s strongly opposed
for whatever reason, submit to him knowing God will reward you for your submission and He’ll hold your husband responsible for his poor spiritual
A similar question wives ask that relates to this lesson is, “Do I submit to an unbeliever? Am I expected to submit to my husband if he’s not a Christian?”
The answer is, yes, wives are commanded to submit to their husbands even if they’re unbelievers. We’re going to cover 1 Pet 3:1-7 in a
later sermon, but let me just share one of the verses w/ you: 1 Pet 3:1
Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, THAT EVEN IF SOME DO NOT OBEY THE WORD, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct
of their wives.
The words even if some do not obey the Word, refer to unbelieving men and even men hostile to the Word of God….yet wives are still
commanded to submit to them, in the hope their submission will win the unbelieving husband to Christ.
Now even though 1 Pet 3:1 says wives win over their husbands without a word, I want to be clear about what this doesn’t
mean, and this brings us to Lesson 7…
LESSON 7: SUBMISSION DOESN’T MEAN HUSBANDS DON’T LISTEN TO THEIR WIVES.
We are going to look at Genesis 2 in a future sermon, but for now I want to remind you that God created women to provide men w/ helpers. Now I don’t want
to sound too simple, but that means wives are supposed to help their husbands. In my mind, the three greatest resources God has given husbands on this side
of heaven are:
1. The Word of God
2. The Holy Spirit, who interestingly is also called our Helper:
I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper.
The Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name.
c. John 16:7 It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you.
And the third great resource husbands have on this side of heaven is our wives. The husband who doesn’t listen to his wife is silencing one of the greatest
resources God has given him in his life.
I don’t want to rank these three and act like our wives are third behind the Word of God or the Holy Spirit for two reasons:
1. First, I believe God can use His Holy Spirit to speak to husbands through their wives. There have been many times when I thought God was speaking to me
through Katie. It could be times when He was:
a. Warning me.
b. Correcting me.
c. Encouraging me.
d. Directing me
e. Or giving me counsel
2. Second, God has used Katie to help me understand His Word better. There have been times Katie has shared Scripture w/ me or given me her thoughts on
verses and it’s help me understand them better. I’ve told you more times than I can count the invaluable resource Katie is to me as we go over my sermons.
If you want to think about a man who really should’ve listened to his wife – in some ways I see this as the most gracious example in Scripture of God using
a wife to reach her husband – that’s Pilate: Matt 27:19
While he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent to him, saying, “Have nothing to do with that just Man, for I have suffered many things today
in a dream because of Him.”
Is there another time a man had more reason to listen to his wife than when Pilate was about to turn the Son of God over to be crucified?
Now I want to give you an example of a time in my life when I believe God really used Katie to direct me and if I hadn’t listened to her I wouldn’t be
where I am today…literally: I wouldn’t be the pastor of WCC if it wasn’t for Katie.
Let me briefly give you some context for our lives at the time so you can understand the dynamic between us when this situation took place…
I was working at Grace Baptist. I really enjoyed my job. We were making enough money to live on and save w/o any concerns. My job wasn’t very stressful. I
enjoyed serving Pastor Joe. I loved the congregation. Basically, I would say I really enjoyed being at Grace Baptist. It was a wonderful season of life for
But Katie didn’t feel the same way. She said every week was a struggle for her:
· First, part of my ministry was being over the youth and she was convinced I wasn’t called to work w/ youth – and since she was my wife, she was very much
involved w/ the youth too and she didn’t enjoy it either. To be clear, it didn’t have to do w/ the youth themselves, so much as it felt like I was supposed
to be an activities director instead of a pastor. Unfortunately, the title “youth pastor” could usually be more appropriate called, “Entertainer.”
· Second, ne of the really interesting insights Katie had that I didn’t have at the time and only realized after coming here, was I had ideas for ministry
and/or pastoring a church that didn’t line up completely w/ Grace Baptist. In my mind, I thought I was pretty much on the same page, but after coming here
I realized how much more compatible I am w/ WCC.
· Third, Katie thought God had gifted me to preach, which I only did occasionally. Basically, Katie was really convinced I should be a senior pastor.
Pastor Joe said that too, so Katie had confirmation from him as well.
Now to briefly explain my relationship w/ Katie, 1 Pet 3:7 commands husbands to dwell w/ their wives w/ understanding or knowledge. That means we’re supposed to understand our wives and treat them or live w/ them according to the knowledge we have of them.
And Katie has told me that she feels very claustrophobic if I don’t let her share her thoughts and ideas w/ me even if they’re weeks…or months…or years…or
even decades away.
To help you understand the difference between us, my life generally looks like trying to make it through the next Sunday well. I count time by how many
days it is until Sunday arrives. When Sunday is over, the countdown begins again. I don’t think 8 days ahead, say nothing about 8 months or 8 years ahead.
But Katie says even if there’s no chance of her ideas happening, it still means a lot to her for me to listen. So for me to dwell w/ Katie w/
understanding, it means listening to all her fun and exciting ideas.
Now for a while at Grace Baptist Katie had been talking to me about becoming a senior pastor, and I told her if she found a church looking for a senior
pastor and it looked like the kind of church we’d be compatible with and where we’d want to spend the rest of our lives and raise our family, then I’d take
As you can guess, it didn’t take Katie very long! THAT DAY she found an ad for a small church in Woodland, WA. I called and spoke to a guy named Jim
Donald. We ended up having a pretty lengthy conversation and when we got off the phone, you can guess Katie wanted to hear all about it.
I said, “Yeah, I talked to this guy Jim.”
She said, “Well? What did you think of him?”
I said, “Well…”
Actually I really liked Jim, I really liked what he said about the church, I really liked what they wanted in a pastor. I really like the church’s theology
Now I’m going to fast-forward a few months…
I’ve visited once, and there’s been a lot of communication w/ Jim, Dave and Gary…and just about everyone else in WA I could call who knew anything about
WCC. At this point, Katie REALLY, REALLY wanted me to take the job. But I was sort of struggling…
Now let me say the struggle had nothing to do w/ the church or the people. The church and the people were why I wanted to come, but there were a few issues
in my mind – and I have to briefly mention them so you understand why Katie was so important in this…
- I don’t like change.
- I like safety and security, which I had at Grace Baptist.
· Like I said, I really liked Pastor Joe, the church, the people, and most of what my job entailed.
· And everyone seemed to think things were going well at Grace Baptist:
o Pastor Joe thought things were going well.
o The congregation thought things were going well.
o Most difficult of all my parents thought things were going well, and they couldn’t believe that I’d think of leaving. They said,
“Things are so great. We love GBC. We love Pastor Joe. How could you want something better than this? How could you want to mess up everything good
that’s going on here?”
· As things progressed and it started to sink in that I might leave, I became really sad about leaving Pastor Joe and the people.
· Plus there was the wonderfully encouraging guarantee from Dave Zumstein that they’d only be able to support for me for 8 months if the church didn’t
Now I have to say looking back there was one thing that gave me the encouragement I needed…and that was Katie. I can truly say I’m the pastor of WCC b/c
God used my wife to get me here.
But w/ that said I want to tell you one more detail in this story, and I want to introduce a lesson to put it in perspective…
LESSON 8: SUBMISSION MEANS PUTTING YOUR HUSBAND IN A POSITION TO LEAD.
Even though Katie encouraged me to take the position here, when she could see I was really struggling, I remember very clearly we sat down in the living
room and she said,
“This has to be your decision. I want you to know no matter what you decide I will support you, but you need to decide. You have to make the decision.
I respect you. I respect your leadership. God will direct you. If you believe we should stay in Lemoore, we’ll stay here and I’ll support that. If you
believe we should go to WA, you know how I feel about that!”
She even said something like,
“If we go to WA and that ends up being a bad decision and it’s b/c of me that we went there I couldn’t live w/ that. The only way I can really feel
good about this decision is if I know you made it.”
I knew how hard it was for Katie to say this to me, b/c I knew how much she wanted to move to WA.
Now when Katie said the entire decision was on my shoulders, what do you think that did to me? It made me take it EVEN MORE seriously! In some ways it was
much easier for me when Katie talked to me about what she wanted, but the moment she told me I had to make the decision, I could feel the weight of the
responsibility. I knew I had to lead.
That’s when I contacted Jim and the pulpit committee and said, “I need to fast and pray.”
Now I want to share another story w/ you that I hope helps illustrates all this…
You all know wrestling is my favorite sport…and most importantly it’s God’s favorite sport:
- God wrestled w/ Jacob.
· It says we don’t wrestle against flesh and blood.
- God wrestles w/ sinners’ hearts.
Now the enemy of wrestling…is basketball. But there’s one thing basketball has going for it…and that’s the movie Hoosiers. Hoosiers is one of my favorite
sports movies along w/ Miracle. Considering one of my favorite movies could be about basketball tells you it must be good.
Now there’s one part in Hoosiers that relates to all this…
Gene Hackman takes over as the new head coach of the basketball team. Nobody knows him, and b/c he does things differently than the previous coach nobody
likes him. Dennis Hopper is the town drunk everyone has written off, but he knows a lot about basketball and Gene Hackman wants to give him a chance –
something nobody has done for him – so he makes him the assistant coach. Of course this makes the town even more upset w/ Gene Hackman. But when Dennis
Hopper shows up to the first game, he’s clean-cut and sober, he has a nice suit on…but he looks terrified.
So Gene Hackman wants to give Dennis Hopper a chance. He wants to prove to the townspeople –
and probably more importantly he wants to prove to Dennis Hopper himself – that he’s valuable, that he can coach, that he can lead. But there’s one thing
standing between Dennis Hopper and that opportunity, and that’s Gene Hackman.
So w/ one of their most important games on the line, Gene Hackman intentionally gets himself kicked out of the game. As he’s leaving the game, he walks
over to Dennis Hopper and hands him the playbook. It shows Dennis Hopper’s face and he looks completely terrified. The entire team is looking at him to
lead them, but they don’t have any confidence in him; some of the players just put their heads down and look at the floor.
Dennis Hopper didn’t want to be in this position. He didn’t want to have to coach the team. He didn’t want to have to lead. But Gene Hackman removed
himself from leading and Dennis Hopper had no choice but to lead. Then he pulled himself together and came up w/ the game-winning play.
The point is, wives have to remove themselves from leading to put their husbands in a place where they have to lead. Submission puts your husband in a
position to lead.
Let me share an observation w/ you, and let me first say some of you might disagree w/ me, and that’s fine. Maybe this isn’t what you’ve observed and maybe
this isn’t what’s true of your marriage, but this is what I’ve seen somewhat frequently…
We all know submission gets criticized:
· Nobody criticizes husbands being commanded to love their wives
· But b/c of feminism, women’s lib, and people departing from God’s Word submission is criticized in the world and unfortunately it’s even criticized in
Since submission receives so much criticism, you’d think the biggest complaint you’d hear from women would be, “My husband wants me to submit and I hate it. I can’t handle this whole submission thing.” You’d think women would be coming in for counseling
every week complaining about their husbands expecting them to submit.
But that’s not the complaint I hear most often. The complaint I hear most often is actually the opposite: “My husband won’t lead.” I don’t hear
women complaining about having to submit. I hear women complaining about their husbands not leading.
Even right now there might be wives in here saying, “Yeah, I wish my husband would lead! I would love my husband to lead. I wish he would be more assertive and proactive.”
But I want to be honest w/ some of you ladies…
Your husband doesn’t lead b/c you don’t let him:
· You want him to lead, but you also want to keep your hands on the steering wheel.
· You want to sit behind him in the saddle, but you want to keep your hands on the reigns.
Or you want him to lead, but what you really mean is…
· You want him to lead the way you would lead.
- You want him to do what you want.
There are some husbands who don’t feel the weight of leadership on their shoulders, b/c their wives don’t let the weight of leadership rest on their
· You have wives that are too busy trying to lift the weight off their husbands’ shoulders and put it on their shoulders.
· You have wives trying to control their husbands, while constantly complaining that their husbands won’t lead.
· You have wives making the decisions, taking over for their husbands, then they sit back and say, “I’m so tired of not being able to count on my husband to do things.”
Ladies, if you want your husband to lead, then put yourself behind him and make him feel like he has to lead b/c you won’t. Let me say that one more time:
ladies, if you want your husband to lead, then put yourself behind him and make him feel like he has to lead b/c you won’t.
And when your husband starts to lead let me tell you what NOT to do:
· Don’t complain about the decisions he makes.
· Don’t get upset when he doesn’t do things the way you would do them.
· Don’t criticize him for not doing things the way you want them done.
· And most importantly, resist the temptation to take over.
In some marriages…
· It’s not that husbands won’t lead, it’s that husbands won’t lead the way their wives want.
· Or it’s not that husbands won’t lead, it’s that husbands won’t act as quickly as their wives want.
· Or it’s not that husbands won’t lead, it’s that wives think their husbands won’t do it, so they take over.
Ladies, your husband does not have to follow your timeline. You’re not in charge of him. You’re not his boss. He doesn’t need another mother…ONE IS PLENTY!
I can vouch for that J.
· Just b/c your husband hasn’t done things when you wanted them done doesn’t mean he wasn’t going to do them.
· And just b/c your husband hasn’t done things the way you wanted them done doesn’t mean he did something wrong. It just means he does things differently
I’ve heard women say, “I have to do it, b/c if I don’t do it it won’t get done.” I have a few responses to this…
First, how do you KNOW it won’t get done? Maybe if your husband knew you wouldn’t do it, he’d do it.
· Maybe your husband is used to you taking matters into your own hands and when he realizes you won’t do that he’ll step up!
· Yes, this might mean a few things falling through the cracks, but he’ll figure out, “Wow, she’s really not going to take over; she really expects me to lead. I better get on top of things!”
Second – and here’s the honest truth – maybe some things won’t get done. I’m not going to lie and tell you that if you let your husband lead, everything is
going to work out perfectly. The truth is:
- It probably will be messy…
- Some things probably won’t get done
· Some things probably will fall through the cracks.
· But regardless of how your husband leads and the job he does or fails to do:
o It’s still his job…
o It’s still his God-given role…
o The responsibility is still on his shoulders.
o God has not called wives to lead when their husbands don’t.
Helen Andelin said,
“Let [your husband] have full reign and do not stand back with anxiety wondering if things will turn out all right. If he makes mistakes, gets into
difficulty, let him suffer the consequences. It is the only way he will learn to lead.”
I think we all know that in any area of life, in any arena of life, if people are given real leadership or authority, there has to be potential to
fail…it’s the only way people learn.
But there are some wives who never put their husbands in this position. They keep their hands on the steering wheel and not only do their husbands not have
to lead, they can’t lead even if they want to.
I’m telling you ladies: put your husband’s in the driver’s seat. Make them lead. Look to them. Let the burden of responsibility rest heavily on their
Now w/ that said, let me also say this…
Ladies, some of your husbands have had very little practice leading. They’re men who aren’t used to being in the driver’s seat:
· They might be all over the road at first.
· Or they might spend a lot of time sitting at the stop sign…WAY more time than you want him sitting there.
But you need to decide, “The driver’s seat is not mine. It belongs to my husband. I will let him drive.”
Last week I told you the Greek word for submit “is a military term meaning ‘to arrange [troop divisions] in a military fashion under the command of a leader.’”
Ladies, if you want your husbands to lead, arrange yourselves under your husbands’ leadership.
Picture this: a wife hands her husband the keys. She says, “I want you to drive.” She races to the other side of the car to get in the passenger
seat to make sure he doesn’t take it. She wants to make it as clear as possible that she wants him in the driver’s seat. But then he’s driving and she
- Turn here.
- Are you gonna get over?
- Aren’t you going too fast?
- Aren’t you going too slow?
- Why do you always choose this lane?
- Aren’t you gonna to stop?
- Haven’t you been stopped long enough?
- And the classic one, “Looks like we’re getting pretty low on gas.”
Or worse, maybe a wife tells her husband she wants him to drive but then she keeps her hands on the wheel. She keeps giving him orders. It’s more like a
driver’s ed class.
Now when we talked about men being godly leaders in their homes, I’m guessing that sounded really attractive to the wives. I’m guessing you want your
husbands to be like that. Then this is what I would say…
Put him in a position to be like that:
- Get behind him.
- Encourage him.
- Support him.
- Submit to him.
Ladies, when you decide this is not your God-given role to lead, and you put the leadership role squarely on your husband’s shoulders, you will increase
the likelihood that he will:
- Cast vision for your family.
- Read the Word
- Seek God.
· Take his relationship w/ the Lord more seriously
But if he thinks it doesn’t really matter what he decides anyway, because…
- You’re not really going to support him…
· Or you’re going to fight w/ the decisions he makes…
Then don’t be surprised if he doesn’t take his role seriously.
One reason husbands don’t lead is they don’t want to try to compete w/ their wives. It’s not worth the conflict and energy for them. There are some men who
don’t even think of leading, b/c they know the battle it will be w/ their wives.
And the reason it’s a battle w/ their wives, is simply this: their wives don’t agree w/ them. One of the main reasons there’s conflict in marriage, is
wives don’t agree w/ their husbands…and this brings us to our last lesson…
LESSON 9: SUBMISSION MEANS SUBMITTING TO YOUR HUSBAND WHEN YOU DON’T AGREE WITH HIM.
One of the most common things I’ve heard from women who didn’t want to submit to their husbands is something like, “I would submit to my husband if I agreed w/ him.”
The problem is submission is in place for when you DON’T agree w/ your husband. If you agreed w/ your husband, you wouldn’t need to submit to him.
Picture this: a husband and wife have discussed things together, presented their ideas, tried to come to an agreement…but they can’t.
At this point, what do they do? How do they decide? How do they move forward?
- Do they flip a coin?
- Do they do paper-rock-scissors?
God has decided for the marriage and family to move forward, the husband will make the decision.
The wife needs to know two things that are really important:
1. First, if the husband is wrong, he will be held responsible; that’s on his shoulders.
2. Second, she will only be held responsible w/ whether she supported her husband. Her responsibility ends at submitting, not at making sure the right
decision is made.
Now I have heard people opposed to submission say, “We will talk about it until we reach an agreement!”
Anyone who’s been married for more than a week knows there are certain decisions you could discuss endlessly and you won’t come to an agreement. That’s
where submission comes in. God has determined for the benefit of the marriage that when a stalemate has been reached, the man will make the decision so the
marriage and the family can move forward.
Now, I need to make two important disclaimers…
First, even though I said when you’ve discussed things together, my wife said, “This is not permission to nag your husband and exasperate him with countless variations of the same thing said in different ways.” Katie said,
“Ladies, don’t go home and say, ‘Pastor Scott said you’re supposed to hear me out and I’ve only been telling you my thoughts for two hours. In my mind,
we have not reached a stalemate yet!”
Second, there might be situations where discussing things at length isn’t possible; perhaps time doesn’t permit. In those situations, wives are expected to
submit to their husbands even if they don’t agree.
Ladies, let me give you a final encouragement: submission is not supporting the idea, it’s supporting the man behind it. Let me say that one more time:
submission is not supporting the idea, it’s supporting the man behind it. The fact is if you supported the idea, you wouldn’t have to submit to it.
Wayne Mack said,
“Submission means a wife sees herself as part of her husband’s team. She has ideas, opinions, desires, requests, and insights, and she lovingly makes
them known. But she knows that in any good team someone has to make the final decision. She knows the team members must support the team leader, his
plans and decisions, or no progress will be made and confusion and frustration will result. Fifty-fifty marriages [where the husband leads half the
time and the wife leads half the time] are an impossibility. They do not work. They cannot work. In marriage someone has to be the final decision
maker, and God has ordained that this should be the husband.”
Now ladies, I know it’s as tough for wives to submit, as it is for husbands to lead spiritually. When we discussed husbands, we had a number of men up
front for you to pray with, and this morning we have a number of ladies up front who would love the opportunity to pray with you, and pray for your
marriage, that God would help you be a biblically submissive wife.
LET’S REVIEW THESE LESSONS:
LESSON 6: SUBMISSION DOESN’T MEAN SUBMITTING TO: (PART I) OTHER MEN (PART II) ABUSE (PART III) SIN.
LESSON 7: SUBMISSION DOESN’T MEAN HUSBANDS DON’T LISTEN TO THEIR WIVES.
LESSON 8: SUBMISSION MEANS PUTTING YOUR HUSBAND IN A POSITION TO LEAD.
LESSON 9: SUBMISSION MEANS SUBMITTING TO YOUR HUSBAND WHEN YOU DON’T AGREE WITH HIM.