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Fitting in the Lord

Fitting in the Lord

Words of Faith 11-19-19

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2019

Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL

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Colossians 3

[18] Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. [19] Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.


      When it came to instruction regarding marriage and family, Paul was much briefer and more blunt in the Colossian letter than he was writing to the Ephesians.  It may even be the case that the Colossians had access to the Ephesians letter as a companion resource. 

      Wives are to submit to their husbands and husbands are to love their wives and not be harsh with them.  Now don’t panic.  To the Ephesians, Paul actually set the foundation for married life as mutual submission-- Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. But beyond that foundation, God sets specific requirements.

      The bottom line here is that there is no foundation for marriage that is not based on deep respect, sacrificial love, and mutual submission.  Marriage is, by definition, a covenant that calls us to "give in" to one another.  Marriage requires us to set aside our self-centered nature and give sacrificially to our partner.

       Paul was specific in addressing wives to submit to your husbands as to the Lord (Eph. 5:21-22) and calling husbands to love sacrificially.  In the Ephesian letter, Paul was more specific in calling the husbands to "love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the 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."

       To love anyone as Christ loved the church is a call to absolute sacrifice—from foot washing to feeding to substitutionary death.  The call of Christ is for wives to honor their husbands because this is the deepest need of a man.  The call of Christ is for husbands to love their wives sacrificially because her deepest need is security in love.  The model is to love as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her

     The goal of the wife is to honor her husband in a way that will allow him to become the leader that God designed him to be.  The goal of the husband is to love his wife sacrificially in a way that will give her security and help her to become the woman that God designed her to be. The man needs honor.  The woman needs to be cherished and protected in order to grow.

      The opposite of loving protection is harshness that results in bitterness.  A selfish man will look only to himself and cause his wife to become embittered toward him.  This is a dangerous formula.  

       In the Ephesian letter, Paul goes even further to instruct that husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.  After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church-- for we are members of his body (Ephesians 5:28-30).

       How are you doing in the area of marriage?  You don't have to be married to benefit from this teaching.  We desperately need to honor and pray for marriage as the most fundamental institution forming the fabric of society.


      Father God, teach us how to love.  Teach us how to be married and especially how to serve and count others as more important than ourselves.  Give me the grace to honor marriage.  In Jesus’ Name.


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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail, and our website, and our church app, excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.  

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