The Biblical Roles of a Wife
In today’s culture, the roles of husband and wife have been distorted. Husbands now stay home while their wives go to work and the women are left to be the leaders. Wives strive to be lead by their husbands, yet they push to be at the top in the business world and in their homes. Submission gets a bad rap because women believe it is a way of lowering themselves. I think the biggest problem with all of this is that no one is educated on what the roles of husband and wife are supposed to be. Thankfully though, God gave us the Bible so that we can know exactly what a marriage is supposed to look like.
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Submit to your Husband
Submission gets a bad rap in today’s society. When a wife is told to submit she refuses saying that she does not want to be lesser than her husband. But this is not what submission is.
1 Peter 3:1-5 says:
Likewise, ye wives, [be] in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;
While they behold your chaste conversation [coupled] with fear.
Whose adorning let it not be that outward [adorning] of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;
But [let it be] the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, [even the ornament] of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.
For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands…
The first thing this passage says is that if my husband is not a believer, he should be won to the Lord by my submission and chaste conversation. He should know that I will follow him as long as what he says is in the lines of the Bible. By my submission to my husband he will see the love of Christ coming through me and want what I have!
In this passage Peter is saying that submission means you have chaste conversation with your husband. There is no yelling and screaming and telling your husband you are right. This goes along with verse four. We must have a “meek and quiet spirit.” When you hear these words do you think of a woman saying “No! I will not!” or “I see where you are coming from, but I have some concerns. If you think this is the right thing to do though, I will follow.”
I have heard a few young Christian wives say that they are not going to submit to their husbands because “that’s just not right. I don’t need to be lower than my husband. I still have rights!!!”
First realize that by saying these things you are disobeying God and that is not something you want to do! By submitting you are not lowering yourself. You are not less important and you still have the same rights. I see submission as walking right beside your husband, not behind him. BUT you are not yelling and screaming and pulling him in the direction you want to go, you are following his gentle pull in the right direction.
When we do not submit to our husbands, we are disobeying God and not representing Christ and the Church. Just as Christ gave himself up for us, we need to give ourselves up to our husbands ways.
Ephesians 5:21-24 shows us God’s command for us to submit to our husbands.
Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
When you say that you WILL NOT submit you are telling God to his face that you will not do what he says and this is a very serious thing. This verse also shows that the very first thing we must do, before even thinking about submitting to our husbands, is submitting to is God. If we are not submitted to God it would be impossible for us to be able to submit to our husbands! Barbara Rainey in her book, Letters to my Daughters makes a good point about this subject: “Both men and women must respond and submit to His leading to become everything we were created to be. It is not accidental that the Bible refers to believers as the bride.”
Our marriage are supposed to reflect the relationship between Christ and the Church. Christ submitted Himself to God just as we are to submit to our husbands.
When God sent Jesus down to earth do you think Jesus said “Are you serious?! You are so dumb. This is a horrible mistake. I WILL NOT GO!”
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
Even before His death He says:
And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
Jesus was obedient, even unto death and followed the will of God even when it was hard.
Sometimes when I am struggling to make a decision and my husband and I are bickering over it, I realize I need to let him decide and I never regret it. Usually it relates to what to have for dinner or what movie to watch, but it’s in the small things that help me submit to the bigger decisions.
I will leave you with this quote by Barbara Rainey (this book is awesome by the way). She compares submission as dance between husband and wife:
“Part of our mistaken perception about submission is that it is all about what I have to give up – as if being the leader in the dance is inherently superior, while the follower is inherently inferior. But in fact, true biblical leadership elevates the woman in marriage to a place of importance and development she could not have achieved if she were leading or co-leading with her husband. Think of the couples who make the cut in dance competitions. Which one of the two has the more beautiful moves, the most impressive costumes, the preeminent position? It is the woman who is featured, who is lifted high by her partner, who become the star of the performance. But she achieves her glory by the long-practiced work of trusting and following her partner.”
Respect and Love Your Husband
I know it’s crazy…. but we’re supposed to love our husbands. To love our husbands we must submit and respect our husbands. You can’t do one without the other. By saying “no” to submitting you are saying “no” to respecting him too. And if you have no respect for your husband are you really submitting? How will he feel love from you if you never respect him? He won’t.
By loving our husbands we do this by respecting him and being his biggest fan.
Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.
– Ephesians 5:33
Be a Homemaker
Submitting, respecting, and loving your husband goes hand in hand with being a homemaker. You can’t be a homemaker if you do not submit, respect, and love your husband. It just doesn’t work!
That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
– Titus 2:4-5
What exactly is a homemaker? A woman who makes a home is a homemaker. Simple.
You don’t need to be a stay at home wife or mom to be a homemaker. If you are at a point in your life where you need to work, don’t feel bad! It’s gotta happen sometimes. Bills don’t stop when we do! Or maybe you are not even married yet. You are still a homemaker if you make your home a place of rest and are learning how to be a wife.
A homemaker is someone who makes her home a place where her family can run for safety and relax.
If your husband comes home to a filthy house with a bickering wife, do you think that is being very homemakey? No! Make your home peaceful. Clean the house, make dinner, love on your husband!
Being a homemaker also means you love and follow Christ. Christ is the foundation to any marriage and without him, your marriage will not work out.
Proverbs 31 is a perfect example of what a godly homemaker looks like. Here are a few things that makes her a good homemaker:
- She does her husband good – vs. 12
- She works hard with her hands – vs. 13, 19
- She works hard to bring home the best food for her family – vs. 14
- She is not lazy – vs. 15, 18, 27
- She thinks about big purchases before buying – vs. 16
- She cares for the poor – vs. 20
- She plans ahead – vs. 21
- She talks well of her husband – vs. 23
- She has her own business to help provide – vs. 24
- She speaks wisdom – vs. 26
- She fears the Lord – vs. 30
Are you following the Bible when it comes to being a wife? What are some things that you need to work on? If you know you are really struggling in an area, talk to your husband and let him help you solve your problem.