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Author Topic: Biblical submission-wives
Michael Harrison
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[wave3]
Posts: 3273 | From: Charlotte N.C. | Registered: Sep 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Kwistina
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22867-the second you mentioned the possibility, though, helped me recall a similar statement my father made. He never said "messiah complex", but that was what he meant! . . . and it's better left to him and God (which is incredibly difficult to do!! I have my own "submission" issues! God says "let me", and I say "but I wanna!!". Part of growing in grace, learning in love, and all that jazz!)
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quote:

I'm babbling. Sorry! I guess I just wish there was a better way for me to approach this. My brother in law honestly believes he is showing love towards his wife through his harsh and verbally abusive behavior! One of the many interpretations of love . . . and for him, sacrificial . . . it is so twisted

thanks again. You are a hope and inspiration. God speed on the work he has prepared for you! [/QB]

You're not babbling. This is a very difficult situation, and you obviously love your sister a great deal. Keep loving. Keep living and modeling the truth. Keep praying. Keep hoping. Keep leaning on Christ.

Oh, and by the way, that part about not being a "messiah" -- I can't take the credit for picking up on that. Nothng you said led me to that conclusion. I mentioned it because I know that trap first hand from both sides of it.

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Kwistina
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22867-thank you. You are right, and I am greatful both for your advice and your experiences, painful as they were.

My father and I have had a few deep discussions as a result of a few things that happened last summer. The end result being that I "withdraw" from the situation (which isn't that hard-I live four hours away!).

I did, for awhile, though, feel it was my duty to save her! you cued in on that one real quick! But my dad . . . thank the Lord he understands me! He will not allow me to sacrifice myself for the sake of circumstances I will never be able to influence or control.

It is he who is that of which you speak. The consistent example of Christ, the never-ending display of love and support . . . it is not as emotionally wearing on him as it is on me, because he accepts that my sister made a decision, and he accepts that there is little he can do to change the result of that decision. So, instead, he is there to support, uplift, edify, and advocate when he can . . .

I'm babbling. Sorry! I guess I just wish there was a better way for me to approach this. My brother in law honestly believes he is showing love towards his wife through his harsh and verbally abusive behavior! One of the many interpretations of love . . . and for him, sacrificial . . . it is so twisted

thanks again. You are a hope and inspiration. God speed on the work he has prepared for you!

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becauseHElives
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[wave3] 22867

I am replying in another thread as not to disrupt Kwistina's thread.

I hope to reply here soon, until then Kwistina pray and follow the Spirits leading and remember that suffer even when you are in the right is the example Yeshua left us to follow, love them that hate you, miss use you and say all types of hurtful things about you.

--------------------
Strive to enter in at the strait gate:for many, I say unto you will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. ( Luke 13:24 )

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quote:


Is there anything I can do but pray? This form of submission . . . is painful. Especially for me. She has changed so much in her attempts to keep the marriage from reaching volatile levels. More and more I hear his opinions coming from her lips when we talk-how I am "living in sin" by not raising a family, by having a job, by not taking his special spirit revealed advice. She was never like this, and every now and then she calls me, crying about how demeaned, belittled, and reduced she feels when she is reminded of her place in life.

How can this be love? Perhaps he hates himself. Maybe that is it. [/QB]

Hi Kwistina. First, let me say that your sister is in my prayers. I have some idea of what she is going through. Second, yes, pray for her fervently, but when you pray, be alert for how God may be calling you to be part of the answer to your prayers. When I was in a situation similar to your sister's, the main thing that kept me trapped was the belief that I "deserved" the kind of treatment I received -- that if I were a better wife, a better mother, a better person, he wouldn't have to be the way he was. I was getting dangerously close to suicide, honestly believing that my husband and children would be better off without me. That was 15 years ago.

What made the difference was having someone in my life who consistently, persistently, sacrificially modeled for me what Christ-like love looked like, someone who treated me as though I were truly a daughter of God, like I had intrinsic value, like I was a worthwhile human being, someone who insisted that I treat myself that way, and lovingly called me to task when I didn't.

The road was very, very difficult. As I grew in a sense of my own value to God, I began to oppose my husband's abusiveness. I drew boundaries. I withdrew from situations that felt abusive. I refused intimacy when it felt unloving. That enraged him all the more, and the abuse and manipulation intensified. During those days, I needed my friend as much as ever. I needed to hear God's truth over and over. I slid back into old ways many, many times, and if it weren't for my friend, I would never have come out.

Kwistina, It is possible that God may be calling to be that person for your sister. It will involve sacrifice, and there is no guarantee that she will respond. But you can be Christ to her through this. You will need prayer too -- much prayer -- because you will come under attack as well. And believe me, your willingness to suffer for your sister's well-being, your willingness to fight for her when the cost is high, will speak volumes to her about how precious she is, both to you and to God. In my experience, being loved in that way is the most powerful, healing force in the universe.

One word of caution. Make absolutely sure that there is no mistaking -- Jesus is her healer and savior, not you. It is very, very easy for a person in such a vulnerable position to mistake God's instrument for God Himself (not intellectually, but emotionally) and to cling to the one God is using in an idolatrous way. It is also easy for God's instrument to adopt a "Messiah Complex" and assume responsibilty that he/she is not meant to have. My friend, in addition to loving me with purity, persistence and strength, continually pointed me to Jesus. I was never allowed to mistake anyone but Jesus as my savior.

You and your sister will be in my prayers.

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Hi Dale,

We are in complete agreement that Jesus never sinned. However, it isn't sin, I don't believe, to disobey a lower law (Sabbath keeping) in order to obey a higher law (love). I'm not dimishing the Sabbath. It is an important law, and one every Christian should take seriously. But the law of love trumps it every time. In fact, the law of love (love God with your whole being, love people as yourself) trumps EVERY other law. Say you were driving along the road on the Sabbath and saw someone trapped in a wrecked car. Would it be a sin to work -- and work very hard -- to rescue that person? That's what Jesus did. He really did break the sabbath in order to express the higher law of love. THe pharisees who accused Jesus would have walked by and left the person in the car in order to stay "pure" by keeping the Sabbath. Jesus was clear that in that case, the sin was in honoring the Sabbath law rather than breaking it. There are bound to be times when we are put in a dilemma in which two "laws" or principles are in conflict. Discernment is required in such cases.

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becauseHElives
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quote:
22867

Jesus, when he was accused of disobeying Sabbath rules (which he actually did),

22867 please rethink your theology?

4. Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work. But the seventh day is the Sabbath in honour of the Lord thy God; on it thou shalt not do any work, neither thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.

Yeshua kept the “Law” perfectly, if He did not then there is no forgiveness of sin for any !!!!!

Husbands love your wives as Messiah Yeshua loved the Church, to the point of giving His own life!

Wives submit yourselves unto your husbands as unto the Lord!

These 2 statement are commands to the Body of Yeshua, not suggestions and are only spiritually understood and obeyed. The application may be different for me than you because each individual is working out their Salvation before Yahweh with fear and trembling.

Understanding any Law by the Spirit will bring life but trying to keep the letter of the Law will always bring death.

in Yeshua's Love,
Dale

--------------------
Strive to enter in at the strait gate:for many, I say unto you will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. ( Luke 13:24 )

Posts: 4578 | From: Southeast Texas | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Eden
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It was either Kwistina or 22867 who said something like the following, that the husband and wife are also in a covenant relationship, like Jesus is with the church, and if the husband, or the wife, does not perform his or her covenant side, the covenant is broken and is as if there is no longer a covenant.

Eden here:

I totally agree. We know that Christ submits Himself to God the Father but if the husband does not submit himself to Christ, then the chain of command is broken, and the wife would be foolish, nor should she be bound at that point, to submit to her husband AS IF he were hearing from God. At that point the woman's SURVIVAL becomes more important than the impenitent man's demands.

Even if a husband is a Christian believer, if this believing husband has a history of being abused he himself will likely be abusive, and then all too often the request by God that the wife submit herself to her husband if there is a matter of dispute, is all too often turned by an abusive husband as a license to verbally control and abuse the wife, since the wife CAME FROM MY RIB and not from the ground like the husband did.

Thankfully, woman came from man's rib only that one time, and after that all the men came from the woman.

May God help us to love each other,
Eden

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Kwistina
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Really, though, if we are asked to submit to our spouses as the church submits to Christ, would he ask us to do something sinful? Would he ask us to do something we felt was sinful?

I do not believe so. In that sense, even with an unbeleieving husband as with lonlesol, standing your ground is standing up within the context of submission. "As the church submits to Christ". The church would not do what it felt was morally wrong. Therefore, if you honestly believe that smoking/drinking are sinful, then going against your husband is not, I feel, a violation of submission when he believes the opposite.

My heart goes out to all women with this experience. The Lord grieves as we do, even more so. It is hard to say this knowing how easily he could make the situation dissappear. That, I suppose, is one of the many challenges of faith.

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Kwistina
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I have a feeling everyone whose posted so far is a woman!! A very real threat, this.

We all have our own opinions on the matter. My main frustration is that my brother in law, a very good example, while not physically abusive, is in many cases verbally so. I can't get past his interpretation of love. "love your wife as you love yourself". He comes from a harsh background. For him, to love himself is to be in daily penance (it would seem). Exercise often, keep the house sparkling in spite of six children, ensure that he never slips up. These are a select few examples of his love towards himself (in his own words, more or less!!). So, this is how he treats his wife: he expects her to exercise daily (and "if she actually did" she would be skinny, right? The fruits of your labor? uh huh), the house must be perfect in spite of their six kids, and, of course, the special additive "since you were made for me (not the other way around) you must meet my needs (after all, isn't that a form of self love? self-gratification within biblical standards?)".

I can't get past that part. Not for myself (I would never marry a slave driver-God willing!), but for my sister. And he treats me much the same as the "weaker sex".

My belief is that love involves self-sacrifice. He twists that "yes, you sacrifice your desire to sleep in and not exercise . . . by exercising and getting up early . . . you sacrifice your desire not to do dishes whether or not you are exhausted by six childre . . . "

Is there anything I can do but pray? This form of submission . . . is painful. Especially for me. She has changed so much in her attempts to keep the marriage from reaching volatile levels. More and more I hear his opinions coming from her lips when we talk-how I am "living in sin" by not raising a family, by having a job, by not taking his special spirit revealed advice. She was never like this, and every now and then she calls me, crying about how demeaned, belittled, and reduced she feels when she is reminded of her place in life.

How can this be love? Perhaps he hates himself. Maybe that is it.

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quote:
Originally posted by lonlesol:

Do Christian wives have to submit to their unbelieving husbands that see no wrong-doing at allowing their minor children to have sex, drink alcool, or do any other form of sinful things that can be very harmful to their children???...

Lonesol, I believe your question is sincere, and my response is no reflection on you, but on the horrendous way this passage from God's very word has been twisted to mean something that is so opposed to the character of God. Honestly, it moves me to tears of grief that this question can even be asked. And that it can be asked, and is asked so often, is a horrible reflection on the way Scripture has been used over the centuries, not to liberate people to freedom in Christ, but to keep certain people in bondage. Sometimes these kinds of arguments make me think of the time Jesus told the Pharisees, "You tithe your mint and dill, but neglect the weighter things of the law. You strain out the gnat and swallow the camel."

God loves these precious children so much! Jesus Himself said, "If anyone who causes one of these little ones to stumble, it would be better for him/her to have a millstone tied around his/her neck and be thrown into the sea."

Is it right for a mother, someone who has been entrusted with the care and nurture of precious souls, to passively stand by while the children's father causes them to stumble? DOesn't that mean that the mother is also, by her passivity causing them to stumble? AHHHHHHH!!!! The evil of it!!!! Mothers! Protect your children! Raise them in the nurture and admonition of the Lord! If your husband provokes them to evil, then rescue them from his presence. There is no charge you are given more sacred than caring for the eternal well-being of your children. DO IT!!!!

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As I posted in a previous thread, the whole idea of submission is set in the context of a relationship between two people bound together in the covenant relationship called marriage. So often, it is presented as a one-sided thing. Marriage is a two-way, not a one-way covenant. In other words, there are responsibilities on both sides, and if they are not honored, the covenant relationship ceases to be.

So, if submission is the wife's part of the covenant, what is the husband's? His is to, in Paul's words, "love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by teh washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish but holy and blameless. In this same way husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies" (Ephesians 5:25-28a).

Has there ever been a greater act of "submission" than Christ giving himself up for his Bride, the Church? What if husbands were to take that seriously? What sacrifice would be required on his part? What submitting to her well-being, even at great cost to himself? If this is true, then which party in a marriage is required to offer the deeper submission?

I think the command to love one another as Christ loved us supercedes any other command given, including the command that wives submit to their husbands. Christ Himself said that ALL other commandments are summed up in this one, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, and your neighbor as yourself." Is it love to submit to an act the promotes ungodliness? Absolutely not. There is a higher command at work here, and that is the one that needs to be honored. It is neither loving of oneself, nor of one's spouse to submit to ungodliness or to abuse.

I believe we diminish the whole idea of submission when we define it as obeying -- simply doing what you are told. Submission means to honor the other person above yourself. SOmetimes that means to just do what the other person wants when you want something else. But sometimes it requires much more courage, and indeed, much more love. Sometimes it requires standing for righteousness and opposing evil. SOmetimes it means intervening when you see a loved one going in a direction that leads away from, rather than toward Christ. Sometimes it means getting out of a situation that is destructive to both parties.

Jesus, when he was accused of disobeying Sabbath rules (which he actually did), did so because each time he was obeying a higher law -- the law of love. He did it to love people by healing them, or by providing food for the hungry. He said that the Sabbath was created for people, not people for the Sabbath, and the He is Lord of the Sabbath. The same could be said of other laws that are subordinate to the law of mutual love -- including the command that wives submit to husbands. He is the Lord of marriage as well as the Lord of the Sabbath.

I am a product of the 20th century, and modern enough to believe that since we no longer live in an overtly patriarchal society, the idea of submission is much more mutual than it was in the times when the Bible was written. That doesn't diminish it. It places it on a much, much higher plane. I believe that Paul's words to husbands 2000 years ago apply equally to wives -- and to all people in committed, intimate relationships as sisters and brothers in Christ. Didn't Jesus say that the greatest expression of love is to lay down our lives for our friends? That act is played out in different ways between husbands and wives, but it is nonetheless required of Christians in all our relationships. If we fulfilled that one command of Christ -- to love one anotehr as He has loved us -- the impact on the church and the world would be profound!

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Eden
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I'm inclined to think that in the areas of sanctification--if the husband is a Christian but is not doing much of anything about sanctification by reading the Word of God and is not listening to the counsel of the Holy Spirit--in those areas which are therefore NOT sanctified, I think the wife is NOT BOUND to be submissive to her husband in the areas that he is not sanctified.

Indeed, the wife will need to be careful and make her own decisions in those areas that her husband is not sacntified, including making a run for it is the verbal abuse and/or physical abuse goes on and on.

And I am here to testify that EVERYDAY VERBAL abuse can be just as lethal as EVERYDAY PHYSICAL abuse. They both leave serioud marks, the former on the psyche, and the latter on the psyche AND on the body.

IN the areas where the husband is not sanctified, I don't think the wife is bound by ANYTHING except to survive herself first and foremost.

with love,
Eden

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lonlesol
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Hello Kwistina...

I have a question of my own as well about wives submitting to their husbands...

Do Christian wives have to submit to their unbelieving husbands that see no wrong-doing at allowing their minor children to have sex, drink alcool, or do any other form of sinful things that can be very harmful to their children???...

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Kwistina
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"Wives, submit to your husbands as is fitting in the Lord (Colossions 3:18 NIV)"

"Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord (Eph 5:22 NIV)"

"Now as the church submits to Christ, so also the wives should submit to their husbands in everything (Eph 5:24 NIV)"

I have two questions: First, what is submission in this context, and second, while the scripture tells teh woman to submit "in everything", what exactly does that mean?

I realize "in everything" should be self explanatory, but what about acts that would be considered sexually deviant or humiliating? Should a wife go so far as to defame her self image, self concept, self respect-all for the name of submission?

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