Touchy subject? Yeah, it might be a hard subject for a number of reasons. You may come to this post having had a controlling background, a distrust of men or leadership roles. You may come from the mentality that modern America would say about women’s rights or how submission is a suppression of women. There are a number of different reasons why this subject could be a little squeamish. But I had such a longing and desire that as believers in a God who has made man and woman equal (Galatians 3:26-28) and who created each other to compliment each other, this post will enable to you be blessed by the word submission. Let us not get caught in how the enemy would want to twist the beauty out of this word.
First of all, the relationship between and a man and a woman is not submission’s primary context in the Bible. By definition, “submission” is the act of yielding to someone else’s authority. In order to submit in the first place means you need to have your own, self reliant, self sustaining nature to begin with. And it was not men who asked for our submission first – it was God. God, in the garden of Eden set boundaries for Adam and Eve, asked them to yield to His authority and “submit” to Him by not eating the fruit. If God had forced Adam and Eve and never given them an option to obey it would have been called “Subjection”. They would have no choice in the matter! And that’s the beauty of submission. God Almighty gives us a choice to follow Him. Do you realize what that means? He doesn’t just want our obedience. He wants our LOVE. Love is not possible if it is not freely given. Devotion to another cannot be forced. It is an offering that is earned through respect, honor and trust.
If you are a believer reading this, you’ve already learned submission by repenting from your sin, giving up your rights to your life and presenting your very self to the God who made you. This is the foundation of your life. Your relationship with God is NOT forced. And if it was… I would examine your relationship with Him. He offers Himself and all of His life to us freely, not forcibly, because in doing so we are able to follow the first and second commandments. He desires us to #1 – love Him with all our hearts, and #2 -to love one another (Matthew 22:35-40). Jesus turned the tables upside-down (in many ways) when He came to fulfill the Law so that we could follow in love through grace (Ephesians 2:8). This kind of submission is based in the deepest, most intimate love relationship. You have given Him your life, and so HE gives you all of His (Eph 1).
In the same way, we partake in marriage “Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.” (Ephesians 5:24). In the same way, we partake in the body of Christ. “Submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ” Ephesians 5:21. These examples of being part of a marriage and being part of a church are easily done wrong. They are easily manipulated by sinful people. But sinful people do not reflect our God or the work of salvation He has done in your heart! Brothers and sisters, I implore you. Do NOT let your experience of sin redefine what God created to be what causes your salvation to be beautiful. Not only will this twisted view of submission affect the way you see men. It will also affect the way you submit to a loving spirit-led church. It will affect the way you submit in love to church members who are different than you. It will most importantly affect the way you submit to our loving, most gracious God who humbled HIMSELF to win your heart. He did not force you to follow Him. Submission could be one of the most beautiful, romantic and awe-striking pieces of your Christian life. It is something SO different than the world’s definition of women’s freedom. It is also what will show them how Christianity is like no other religion. Because it is based in a choice of love and devotion which started through our God making Himself nothing for us (Philippians 2:5-9) in order to win us.
As a Christian married woman it is truly a JOY to submit to my husband. Not a task or a burden. I have the ability to show off the gospel of love that is true in my soul by submitting to my husband. This literally means that I am not some housewife who has no opinion or place of discipleship in our home. This means my role of letting Alex be the head of the home is showing off my FIRST love. Because the love of my life is not Alex my husband – It’s Jesus! More than anything else, I want the world to know MY precious Jesus.
In the same way – It is by our love and submission for the body of Christ that those who do not know our kind Lord will witness His nature. Do not let differences of view or petty arguments allow the beauty of the Gospel to be stifled because you are believing a lie about submission in the church. Your joy in the Lord is blasting the beauty of Christ when we respect, honor, love and care for each other in our weaknesses. It is a rarity in this world and it is our privilege. Not our perversion.
Brothers and sisters. Our lot is not one out of a forced subjection. No – we are free. Let us use that freedom to show the beauty of the gospel that Christ has won in our hearts through our lives, marriages and churches. Submission is a beautiful, beautiful thing and it is our joy to be owned and loved by Him.