christine's bible study

The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever. Isa 40:8

ephesians 5:22-33, husbands and wives

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her.

Ephesians 5:25

Read Ephesians 5 at Bible Gateway.

This chapter is a mass of overlapping chiastic structures (please see the teaching tools of scripture if you are unfamiliar with chiastic structures)! These are from the section on husbands and wives:

Eph 5:22-24
1a) Eph 5:22, Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord;
1b) Eph 5:23a, For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church;
central axis) Eph 5:23b, He is the Savior of the body;
2b) Eph 5:24a, Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ;
2a) Eph 5:24b, So let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.

God’s ways work … wives are to submit to their husbands just as the body submits to the head. Listen, this isn’t denigrating to wives … men and women have different strengths and God is wise enough to encourage each one to operate in their best strength. If we were to continue the body comparison, (speaking generically) the husband is the brain (head) of the family while the wife is the heart (body). The family, to be whole and healthy, needs both the head and the heart. The body cannot live without the brain or the heart.

Eph 5:25-28
1a) Eph 5:25, Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her;
1b) Eph 5:26, That He might sanctify + cleanse her with the washing of water by the word;
central axis) Eph 5:27a, That He might present her to Himself a glorious church;
2b) Eph 5:27b, Not having spot or wrinkle, but that she should be holy + without blemish;
2a) Eph 5:28, Husbands ought to love their wives as their bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself.

Christ has earned the right to be head of the church, for He gave Himself for the church. Love is the foundation stone of leadership, authority, and willing submission, in other words. The authority of the head is given to him to bless those under him, not to be blessed. He uses his authority to serve, to build up, to preserve others.

Eph 5:28-33a
1a) Eph 5:28, Husbands ought to love their wives as their bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself;
1b) Eph 5:29, no one hates his flesh, but nourishes + cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church;
1c) Eph 3:30, For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones;
central axis) Eph 5:31, “A man shall leave his father + mother and be joined to his wife,”
2c) Eph 5:31b, The two shall become one flesh;
2b) Eph 5:32, This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church;
2a) Eph 5:33a, Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself.

The Lord God first created man, then separated woman from him, and then joined them together again in marriage. Paul is teaching us that this mystery concerns Christ and the church. Marriage, in other words, is one of the living parables with which God has filled the universe, to teach us about Himself. It blows my mind that Christ nourishes and cherishes me, and us, as He does His own person. He left His Father in order to woo and win us … and one day (soon) the marriage supper of the Lamb will come …

Eph 5:22-33
1a) Eph 5:22-24, Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord;
1b) Eph 5:25a, Husbands, love your wives;
1c) Eph 5:25b-27, As Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her;
1d) Eph 5:28-29, Husbands ought to love their wives as their bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself;
central axis) Eph 5:29b-30, As the Lord does the church/ we are of His body, of His flesh + bones;
2d) Eph 5:31, A man shall leave his father + mother/ be joined to his wife + two shall become one flesh;
2c) Eph 5:32, This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church;
2b) Eph 5:33a, Let each one of you so love his own wife as himself;
2a) Eph 5:33b, Let the wife see that she respects her husband.

What to do, husbands, if your wife is not respecting you? What to do, wives, if your husband is not loving you? This is our admonition before Him … regardless of what others do or don’t do. We follow Christ, not disobedient husbands or wives. Obey God out of love, and let Him take care of errant spouses. But do not use an errant spouse as an excuse to disregard the teaching of Scripture. ♥

ephesians index of studies
ephesians 5, walking after God 2011 jun 29

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