God’s Design for Marriage

As Resurrection Sunday draws near, I can’t stop thinking about how we, as Christian wives, are called to act differently than the rest of the world.  Christian marriage is a gift from our Father and He desires for us to experience a level of closeness with our husbands that He has with the church, His bridegroom. A way we can live in harmony with our husbands is by modeling and believing in Biblical submission. Trust me, mamas, I know this is a word that may strike a chord with many of us, but let’s look together at what God’s Word says about His incredible plan for marriage!

In Ephesians 5:21-33, Paul teaches on the relationship between wives and husbands, and it is beautiful. Truly. If you have time to read the entire chapter, please do. I want to highlight the first part, “Wives, be subject (be submissive and adapt yourselves) to your own husbands as [a service] to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife as Christ is the Head of the church, Himself the Savior of [His] body. As the church is subject to Christ, so let wives also be subject in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her,” 5:22-25 (AMP).

These verses are tough and seem unfair, but if we, first of all, start with verse 21, “Submit to one another, out of reverence for Christ,” we see that all people are called to submit to one another for the sake of Christ-husbands, wives, children, singles…Christ has paid the ultimate sacrifice to save us, and we love Him for it.  Therefore, we willingly submit to our brothers and sisters in the Lord out of that love.  We love and submit because Christ first loved us.

In the same way, in the married relationship, the beginning of the equation here is not submission, but love. A husband’s loving interaction with his wife will produce a willing submission to him. A wife’s loving interaction with her husband will produce tender leadership on his part. Submission doesn’t mean women become wimpy, doormat wives. Submission requires inner strength to obey God and willingly submit to one’s husband. It means finding fulfillment and esteem in the godly role of wife. If we all willingly and lovingly put others before ourselves, submission truly becomes a non-issue. Selflessness naturally changes our hearts.

Peter also teaches on this subject, “Wives, in the same way, be submissive to your husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words but by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of their lives…husbands, in the same way, be considerate as your live with your wives and treat them with respect…” 1 Peter 3:1-2, 7 (NIV). God has a plan for deep intimacy in husband-wife relationships. Each spouse has a part in fulfilling God’s plan, working together in an inseparable partnership. Submission is something that runs counter to our natural tendencies: however, it is an intrinsic part of the Christian life of servanthood, for both men and women. Wives are called to have a submissive spirit toward their husbands even as they do toward God. At the same time, husbands are to have a considerate spirit toward their wives and serve them even as Christ served the church, in service, and in humility.

Blessings and Love,


Rachel Jones
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