Love for his wife and respect for her husband is a mirror image of the understanding a couple has in their own personal walk with Christ. The greater the love and respect, the greater the personal understanding.
Ephesians 5:30-32, 30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. 31 "For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh." 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
People often forget the verse that tells us we are members of His body; if we died in Him we are made alive in Him, Colossians 2:20-3:3. Spiritually we are now one with Jesus which means 1/3 of our being (our spirit man) is already perfected. We will get a glorified body and a new sole when we get to heaven and are in the presence of God, but our spirits are now perfected in Christ Jesus. This means that whatever we do it will either strengthen our spirit or suppress it. Paul is reminding us how important our walk here on earth is and especially in the way we relate to our wives.
Verse 31 is a direct quotation from the word spoken in Genesis 2:24 regarding the first marriage. One interesting point here is, although we are under the New Covenant which is actually the final establishment of the original covenant made between God and Abrams’ Seed and no longer under Mosaic Law, the Old Covenant, there are two covenants which were established by God in the Old Testament that were not affected by either the Old or New Covenant: marriage and tithing. Today in the sick thinking of this world I have heard it said that since we are neither male nor female in Christ, the New Covenant gives us the grace to marry the same sex. That is possibly the stupidest thing I have ever heard. Yes we are under grace, but in recognizing such a precious gift we should all the more purpose to abstain from any sin as a reflection of our deep heartfelt gratitude toward God and the price Jesus paid for our sins. I believe today that there are homosexuals who believe in and call Jesus their Lord and Savior. According to John 3:16 and Romans 10:8-10, their spirit was made new and their debt paid, however, any “practiced” sin will keep a person from the full potential blessings from God and I personally question if that person is truly saved as to “practice” sin is the actual denial of Christ. There is grace for sins stumbled into and falling back into as we purpose to overcome them, but to “practice” sin not only keeps us in a limited understanding of who He is and who we are in Him, but gives the devil great authority over our initial confession unto salvation. You risk hardening your heart to the truth of the word of God. Sexual sin being the most harmful sin as the word says in 1 Corinthians 6:17-20, when a person commits sexual immorality they are sinning against their own body. (17 But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him. 18 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's). Paul is using the union between a husband and wife as a visual picture to show how Christians are joined to Christ Jesus and how Christ is joined to the church. When a person perverts the covenant of marriage, their understanding of their covenant with God and Jesus’ church is also perverted. One more point that is not real popular today is when two Christians decide to just live together out of marriage, they too are in the same boat as the homosexual in that they are “practicing” a sinful nature and therefore missing out on the fullness of their relationship with God through Christ Jesus, and increase the possibility of walking away from their salvation.
In verse 32 Paul is driving home the truth behind marriage in that it is truly more than just a husband and wife in their union; it is a picture of Christ and His church. As we purpose to understand our own personal roles in marriage we will have a deeper understanding of just how precious the body of Christ, the Church, is to Jesus and should be to us. Verse 32 is the summation, or key, to understanding how to live out Ephesians 5:22-33. Love is a command not a luxury of choice. Respect is also a command when you realize that any position of authority is from God and respect should be given providing that person in authority does not purpose to lead you into sin and away from your own relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Even if the person in authority is leading or demanding you to walk contrary to the word of God you still show respect, but are not bound to their authority as Jesus has bought the Christian with a great price, His life.
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