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A Little Consideration

A Little Consideration

Words of Faith 2-6-2020

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2020

Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL

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1 Peter 3

      [7] Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.


         Okay.  Now to the husbands: Be considerate to your wife. 

         "Well... sure... of course... uh... what?" 

         Yeah, what does that mean, Peter? We know that love is not rude (1 Cor. 13:5).  The truth is we never set out to be rude.  But it can creep in slowly.  Familiarity breeds inconsideration.  We start out on our best behavior when we are courting, but later we lose the courtesy. 

          True, your wife should become your very best friend.  But don't treat her as one of the guys!  She is a precious gift to you. A lady!  The joy of courtship can last a lifetime.  Consideration in the daily and mundane things of life will enrich a marriage more than you can measure.

          But there is more here.  This phrase "be considerate" in Greek means literally "to have knowledge and understanding" of your wife.  Biblically, the primary job of a husband is to get to know his wife. Did you know that in ancient Israel, a bridegroom was given a year off from other obligations just to get to know his wife?  That was "Job One." 

         Husbands, this is your lifetime assignment: Get to know and understand her.  This is her deepest need.  This is intimacy.  Get to know her so that you can bless her, honor her, and encourage her to become all that God intended her to be.  Consideration is listening, hearing, and concerning yourself with her longings, desires, talents, visions, dreams, and hopes.

          Do you remember the actor, Ricardo Montalban?  He was the epitome of Latin elegance, charm and grace as he played many romantic roles in Hollywood, and later became popular as Mr. Roarke on the television series "Fantasy Island."  Because of his romantic image, Montalban was once asked to define what it was to be a "great lover."  He responded to say, "A great lover is not a man who has many romantic conquests, rather it is a man who learns to love one woman for a lifetime." That is real machismo. Consideration is getting to know her and understanding her needs across a lifetime. Montalban was married to his wife, Georgiana Young, for 63 years until they were parted by death.  

        What about this "weaker partner" stuff?  Today, Peter would be asked to rephrase his next sentence, but this is perfectly good:  "Treat them with respect as the weaker partner.”   "Weaker" here has no deep theological or spiritual meaning.  It doesn't refer to anything other than the general physical strength of a man, which usually is greater than a woman. Emotional or moral tenacity is not something we want to compare, guys.

        Physically, men are generally stronger than women.  Yes, we will think of exceptions.  And, no, men don't want to start bearing the babies. The point is that biology usually equips men with more physical power, but this should never translate into relational power. To the contrary, respect and honor are to be given to your wife.  Esteem is another translation.  

       Why is this?  Because where there is a fear of physical power or any other kind of power, love will not dwell. Where there are honor and respect, two people will grow. It is never, ever okay for a man to use physical power to have his way in the relationship.  Never, ever, ever. (Does that need further clarification?) 

       The reverse is true as well, even if it is less common. Actually, neither partner should exercise power over the other