Marriage is a physical union but also a divine institution—meaning God Almighty stands back of it.
Just as God has set offices in His Church for rulership and government (Ephesians 4:11), so He has set offices in the home. Most people are totally ignorant of this God-appointed chain of authority, hence they are unconsciously reaping the results of breaking those appointed laws.
The major responsibility of a woman in marriage is to submit to her husband’s loving leadership. “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22).
Submission is not something to be feared, but something to be enjoyed. Submission really is an attitude or frame of mind.
When a woman submits to her husband, she recognizes that, just as Christ was subject to God and the Church is subject to Christ, so a woman ought to be subject to her husband.
By this attitude and action, she is saying, I believe God has arranged the structure of marriage in harmony with the highest principles of the universe.
In submission, she is saying God has placed her husband above her, not to be superior to her, but to be her spiritual covering and protection. As a woman responds to her husband’s leadership and submitsto it, she enjoys protection and fulfillment in the position God designed for her to enjoy!
Through this divine law of marriage, God is able to reach deeply into the life of a woman and provide her with the fulfillment she needs.
However, it is one thing to believe the scriptural principle of submission and another to live it.
Let us look, therefore, at some keys of submission:
Key 1: The wife should transfer to the husband the responsibility of final decisions.
She has an obligation to provide him with the benefits of her perspective, yet always leaving the final decision to him. A wife should never nag at her husband. If she feels he is making a serious mistake, then she should take that to a higher office—God—or, when applicable, God’s ministry.
When a woman gives her opinion, she should strive to ensure emotion is not leading her. Proverbs 31:26 shows that the law of kindness needs to be in her words.
Key 2: The wife should give her husband due respect.
Any of us can focus on faults—we all have them. From time to time, strive to pay compliments, thanking him for his efforts in providing for you and the family.
Hardly anything is too big for a husband to achieve if he has his wife’s support, admiration and respect, and her backing his role with her own.
Key 3: The wife must use wisdom in handling family finances.
Study Proverbs 31:11, 16, 24. When money is in short supply—as indeed it can be from time to time—a wife’s attitude toward the problem is very important. Here is when your supporting role is so necessary. Ensure you do not enter the credit card trap—spending tomorrow’s money today—to “solve” the problem.
Key 4: The wife should ask herself, “Do I assume leadership that is not within my role?”
This can be a trap due to not fully understanding each other’s responsibilities. Ensure you encourage your husband’s leadership. Let him know you enjoy his masterful handling of the family affairs with love. Always endeavor to make your compliments sincere and heartfelt.
One of the most important ways to encourage your man to lead is to be a good follower.
Key 5: Be determined to obey God in your role.
Carefully study 1 Peter 3:1-6, 8. When you submit to your husband, you are in fact submitting to God!
Consider the fact that God, in placing your husband in the leadership position, had your total interests as well as your husband’s in mind.
A rebellious or resistant wife hinders God!
God is in final control; He will not allow any harm to come to you as you submit.
In Isaiah’s End-Time Vision , Gerald Flurry wrote: “When there are marital problems, generally both parties are to blame. The biggest problem the wives have is submitting to their husbands. I have been in the ministry over 30 years. In many marriage-counseling sessions, I have noticed that the wives are zealous and excel in numerous marital responsibilities. But many wives cause some serious problems in their marriages. The root cause with the women is usually their not submitting to their husbands as God commands. Their problem is with God’s marital government and the law on which it is based.”
The woman’s role is God-given. When a man and wife actively live their roles, they become one.
Live your role, and eat from the tree of life in your marriage. Think on these things.
From the Archives: “Tree of Life Marriage, Part Three” Philadelphia News, February 2007