This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. Ephesians 5:32-33
Read: Ephesians 5:21-33
Listen: Ephesians 5
The Apostle Paul radically redefines what marriage means to first-century Jesus-followers in Ephesus. Marriage in the Roman empire was “me first.” Husbands rule their households however they please. Genesis reveals that God created man and woman in his image and designed them to rule over creation together in partnership (Genesis 1:27-28). Returning to God’s design, Paul teaches marriage is about care, honor, love and respect for each other because of Jesus. Spouses are to live in ways that say “you first.”
We, too, need a radical re-envisioning of marriage. When we understand how full we are in Jesus, we move from seeking what we can get from a relationship to what we can give. The Gospel frees us to pursue the well-being of others above our own. We can use our words to build up rather than tear down. We can humbly ask what makes our spouse feel valued and what we may be doing that doesn’t make them feel valued. We can check in to see what we can do to improve our relationship. We can encourage our married family and friends to do the same.
Love can flourish when both husband and wife approach the relationship with a “you first” mentality. Husbands can love their wives and give themselves up for her as Christ did for the church. Likewise, wives can respect their husbands out of love for Christ. Together, we can lay down our desires and reflect the sacrificial love of Jesus in how we treat each other. Watch this video clip as Pastor Aaron Buer explains the cycles that can happen in a marriage and how to get into a healthy cycle.
IN YOUR CHAIR TIME TODAY
If you are married, ask God to help you love and respect each other out of the fullness of Christ’s love for you. If you are not married, pray for the flourishing of the marriages around you. Every marriage needs extra care and support at some point in time. We have trained marriage mentors and counselors available if you would like support in your marriage. Please get in touch with us at adabible.org/needhelp.
2023 SPIRITUAL PRACTICES
Join us all of 2023 developing a different spiritual practice each month. SPIRITUAL PRACTICES are intentional regular activities to deepen our relationship with God and mold us to be more like Jesus.
March is FASTING. Keep track of our spiritual practices at beyondtheweekend.org/spiritualpractices.
Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.