Letters from Prison - Ephesians 5:22-33
After reading through this passage, tucked away within the seams of these verses are two questions. There’s so much controversy in all this. How can we bypass all of it and get right to the heart of the issue?
Question #1: The wife must set aside self-centeredness and come to terms with her calling and ask: “Do I love my husband enough to live for him?”
Question #2: And equally important, the husband must set aside self-centeredness and come to terms with his role and ask: “Do I love my wife enough to die for her?”
The wife is told to love her husband so much that she lives for him, but the husband is told to love his wife so much, he would die for her. The wife is given the analogy of the Savior’s life. But the husband is given the analogy of His death (help from Strike the Original Match, Charles R. Swindoll).
“Do I love my husband enough to live for him?”
As I examine these verses, I find that a wife’s primary responsibility is to know herself so well and to respect herself so much and walk with Jesus so closely, that she gives herself to her husband without hesitation. She chooses to honor and respect her husband as an overflow in her walk with Christ regardless of how much she’s being loved or neglected.
“Do I love my wife enough to die for her?”
I find that the primary responsibility of a husband is to love his Lord so deeply and to accept himself so completely, that he gives himself to his wife without conditions. He chooses to lead and love and serve his wife and family regardless of how much respect he is shown or isn’t shown.
Notice, the husband is not told to demand respect from his wife – that’s something you earn. And the wife is not told to demand love from her husband – that’s something you woo him to do.
Marriage is a primary focus and center of your life. If everything around you is weak, but your marriage is strong, it doesn’t matter about the rest of life. You move out into the world in strength. If everything around you is strong, but your marriage is weak, it doesn’t matter what’s out there. You move out into the world in weakness. Your marriage is the center of everything. It’s the vortex of your life. If you neglect it, you’ll struggle so much in so many other ways (Tim Keller).