The Bible says: “For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything.

For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault. In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. And we are members of his body.

As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.” This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one. So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” – Ephesians 5

Many men like to quote the Bible that says “wives…submit to your husbands”; but husbands don’t like to quote the other part of the teaching that says: “husbands love your wives.”

In another Bible verse we read: “Husbands, love your wives and never treat them harshly.” – Colossians 3:19

What some men do not realize is that God hates violence, whether it is between men, between women, or between a husband and a wife. It is a sin for a man to beat his wife and to treat her badly; it is a sin for a husband to beat his wife; the Lord does not like violence against women.

Dressed in violence

In Malachi 2:16 it reads: “”For I hate divorce!” says the LORD, the God of Israel. “To divorce your wife is to overwhelm her with cruelty,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. “So guard your heart; do not be unfaithful to your wife.””

“Therefore pride is their necklace; violence covers them as a garment.”

Men – you are not to be violent against anyone. The Bible says to love your wife and do not treat her with violence. But you say to yourself “she doesn’t listen to me”; well how about if God would be violent to you every time you did not listen to Him?

We are very good at putting down and acting out badly towards others, but we don’t like it if others treat us badly. We should not treat others badly, and we should not be harsh or cruel or violent towards our wives.

That includes in what we say

Here again we men are guilty before God. We have sinned against the Most High God in the way that we have spoken against our wives – not all of us; but all of us. Some men more than others; but we have all said things, those of us who are married, we have all said something inappropriate or evil towards our wives.

The Bible says:

“They sharpen their tongues like swords and aim their bitter words like arrows.”

“Arise, O LORD! Rescue me, my God! Slap all my enemies in the face! Shatter the teeth of the wicked!”

“I broke the jaws of godless oppressors and plucked their victims from their teeth.”

As husbands we cannot use our words are sharp, piercing swords to hurt our wives. We can say things that hurt our wives; and even though they may not do or behave in the way that we would want them to, this does not give us the right to speak harshly towards them.

Husbands love your wives and do not be cruel against them. This is the teaching of the Bible, and thus it is the teaching of our Lord. It doesn’t matter that your wife is not who you want her to be; it doesn’t matter that she didn’t listen to you the other day; it doesn’t matter that she said bad things about you – the Bible says “Husbands love your wives.”

Pray for them and work them with

I remember the story of a man who went to visit the ocean with his son. The two of them went to a place where there was a grassy cliff overlooking the ocean. The father held the sons hand to make sure that his son would not go to close to the edge because he did not want his son to fall into the ocean.

Suddenly the son broke away from the man, the little boy ran very close to the edge of the cliff – and the father was paralyzed with fear and didn’t say anything. The father thought to himself that if he yelled or got angry at his son, the son might do something stupid, or get scared, and then walk closer to the edge and a tragedy might happen.

So the father very calmly and in a gentle voice said: “I would really love to have some ice cream of get some candy. I know that there is a store close by where I can some.”

The boy heard this and then immediately came to the father and reached out his hand; and his father and the little boy walked off to the car to go and get some ice cream.

As husbands we are to treat our wives gently and calmly; we are not to yell at them; or says bad things about them in front of the children; and we are not to abuse them with our words or with our fists and hands. We are to love them like Christ loved the church.

Love your wives as Christ loved the church

Husbands are to love their wives as Christ loved the church; and what does that mean? One thing it means is that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. While we were yet sinners Jesus died for us. Jesus loves us and cares for us and is kind to us even though we have sinned against Him; so if our wives sin against us (which they shouldn’t but they do); then we should forgive them and be kind to them.

It’s not easy because we all want to be treated nicely and with respect, but we cannot deny that the Word of God, God Himself tells us “husband love your wives.”

So as a husband I encourage you, if you are a husband, to love your wife and be kind to her. Do not divorce just because she didn’t do things the way you wanted her to. Forgive her, pray for her, and love her.

The Bible says: “For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything.

For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault. In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. And we are members of his body.”

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© Somali Christian Ministries, 2014
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