Submission...to what, and "everything"? (Eph. 5:24)

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by webdog, Aug 8, 2010.

  1. webdog

    webdog
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    My wife is reading the book The Excellent Wife by Martha Peace. When the topic of submission came up, she had a question in regards to a quote which states "In considering the scope of submission, "in everything (5:24) means in all areas of life such as finances, decorating the house, the length of her hair, what to have for supper, and discipline of the children. For example, consider the case of an unsubmissive wife who was furious at her husband because he did not like the antique sofa she had purchased and he told her to take it back. Since he was not asking her to sin, she should have graciously submitted. The point is, a wife must obey her husband unless he asks her to sin."

    The above bolded caught my attention. What does "in everything" truly mean, and submitting to what exactly? The author made it sound like if I click my fingers my wife is to obey my every command (not that I wouldn't like that :))

    Everything I have read has been VERY vague on what submission is in the context of the passage, and when applying hermeneutics in regards to the audience Paul had considering he also said a woman should cover her head and remain silent in the church, it becomes even more vague.
     
  2. Amy.G

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    Yes. She is to submit to her husband's authority, even involving the sofa. On the other hand, the husband is to love his wife as Christ loves the church. So if the husband had purchased the sofa and the wife hated it, he should return it as well because he is to give himself up for her.

    If both husband and wife submit to the authority of Christ, they will have a wonderful marriage. The problems come when one or both have not submitted themselves to God.
     
  3. Scarlett O.

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    ...............(nevermind)................
     
    #3 Scarlett O., Aug 8, 2010
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2010
  4. Gina B

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    Technically, yes, submission in everything, but the husband is required to love his wife, and love doesn't show itself by being a control freak.

    Why would she buy a sofa he hated in the first place anyhow? He would actually have a point if she went and made a major purchase like that and didn't think enough of him to see if he liked it first.

    If my husband commanded me to do things as if I were his slave and did nothing equally in return, I'd be tempted to start serving dog food dinners and put itching powder in his drawers.

    Soooo many poor men don't realize that when forced, women will resort to passive aggressive action in order to retain sanity when their husbands bully them and they feel trapped. I would highly suggest men don't do that...it will make your wife lose her love for you, or make her want to leave, or make you suffer inexplicable little life complications that you would be SO much happier without!
     
  5. Amy.G

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    Gina is right. When a husband becomes controlling, he is not loving his wife and it will cause her to resent him and even want to leave.

    That's what I meant when I said both have to submit to God or there will be serious problems.


    Submission is a voluntary thing. It doesn't mean the husband has the "right" to boss his wife around. She will gladly submit to a Godly husband who loves Christ more than her.
     
  6. webdog

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    Maybe I shouldn't have added the sofa part..that was not the emphasis of what I was after. Basically from reading this part of the book it sounds like the author is stating the wife should consult with her husband in hair color, dinner, what to wear, etc. It sounds more like a dictatorship relationship between two people than the two becoming "one flesh". If my wife makes meatloaf for dinner and I come home wanting pasta, she us just supposed to smile, say "yes dear" and obey? If she gets her hair highlighted at the salon and if I hoped it would be brown she is supposed to make it brown?

    I'm still looking to the hermeneutical approach to the passage as well. Why did Paul bring this up at Ephesus, and who was this in regards to? How did the culture of the day play into the passage? How would this have been taken by the audience of the day as opposed to today?
     
  7. rbell

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    I don't see where submission should require "consultation" regarding minutae.
     
  8. webdog

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    I don't either, but the author implies everything means just that. She never qualifies what "everything" entails stating the wife should gladly do anything and everything the husband desires ("The point is, a wife must obey her husband unless he asks her to sin."). I'm trying to discern what "everything" from verse 24 really means...
     
  9. freeatlast

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    I had to laugh a little because this is so sad. Today we live in a time when most people just cannot believe that the bible means what it says.
    If we would simply learn to accept the bible instead of trying to find ways around what it teaches we would be far better off. I want to recommend a book to everyone. It is about a woman who was a serious Christian and explains what real submission and dedication is to her husband by living that kind of life. It will not only blow your socks off but it will humble any heart who is really seeking understanding of Holiness.
    The book is called
    Gardening for the Master By J.F. Ward
    It is out of print but it can be found. Here is one place to find it.
    http://www.abebooks.com/servlet/SearchEntry?errorcode=1
     
    #9 freeatlast, Aug 9, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 9, 2010
  10. webdog

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    Thanks for not answering the question. I do believe what the Bible says, but apparently you must not know what hermeneutics is.
     
  11. Scarlett O.

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    When I read the original post last night, I found it terrible sad myself. Only I wasn't laughing.

    According to this author, Martha Peace, this hypothetical woman was in a state of rebellion against her husband because she felt angry that he dismissed her work and told her to do it over. She called her unsubmissive because she was "angry".

    Since when is submission a cold and unemotional blind passivity? Since when is Biblical submission robotic compliance? What this woman is talking about is not a wife - she is talking about Rosie the Robot Maid, from the Jetsons.

    This hypothetical wife can't frustrated when her husband - who doesn't help her do any of this - feels entitled to tell her to do it over?

    I'm frustrated just reading about it. And it's hypothetical people for heaven's sake.

    I've got to get off this thread.

     
  12. menageriekeeper

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    Take a deep breath Scarlett. It'll be okay.

    Well, I can't help with hermunitics, but, I have to agree with the others. Submission doesn't equal slavery. However,

    Does your wife really not think about your tastes when she cooks supper? Do you not love her enough to eat meatloaf tonight and she you enough to cook pasta the next?

    Really, these are the sorts of things spouses do for each other just because they love each other.

    Now, if you were to come home slamming around the kitchen because you don't like meatloaf (which she prob wouldn't have cooked if she'd known), well then who has the attitude problem? Who isn't loving his wife like Christ loves the church? Who broke the link in the relationship? (whose head is in danger of contact with a rolling pin? :D )

    See a lot of these books for "women" fail to mention how the Bible expects the men to behave. The book your wife is reading sounds like a canidate for the round file for just this reason.
     
  13. Amy.G

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    Exactly. Husbands, if you don't love your wife but instead act like a dictator, don't expect submission. Expect rebellion.
     
  14. Robert Snow

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    If the husband is controlling, does this give the wife the right to not be in submission?
     
  15. Amy.G

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    Well that's kind of like the question "did you stop beating your wife?". The husband does not have the right to control his wife.
     
  16. webdog

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    Ok. I think it's interesting that what is translated "everything" in the greek is the same word for "all" (pas). This might shed some light that it does not in fact mean every single minute detail like hair color, choice for dinner, etc.
     
  17. Robert Snow

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    No trick question. A man is responsible to love his wife regardless of whether or not she is submissive. I believe the opposite is also true. It is a wife's responsibility to be submissive regardless of whether or not he is loving her like he should. Each of us is responsible to do what God requires. I believe if we do this God will take care of the rest.
     
  18. menageriekeeper

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    And I believe this is unrealistic. We women can't expect God to do what we can do for ourselves. I am right here, the butt end of of my husband's (hypothetical) bad attitude; I AM being his helpmeet when I confront him with his sin and it is NOT unsubmissive of me to do so. Unfortunately, many of these books on "submission" make it a sin for a woman to even question her husband, much less to diagree adamantly when the husband is failing plainly to fulfill the scriptural plan for his life.

    Webdog, I have a friend who's husband rarely demands that she do anything, but when she got ahold of a book by Martha Pierce, he took out of her hands and threw it in the trash. He told her he wanted a wife with a brain and the ability to make decisions on her own and that book was in complete opposition to that goal.
     
  19. thegospelgeek

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    Webdog,
    I think it might be better to ask what it means to be submissive rather than what "everything" means. Like you said, everything is the same as "all". BUt what does it means to be submissive? Does it mean to accept abuse? Does it mean to blindly obey or to obey as best one can? I've never really thought about it. Wifes are to submit to their husbands. Husbands are to submit to God. Doe we submit in the fashion that we expect our wives to? Good thread webdog. I'll have to give it some thought. Just remember that we are also instucted to submit to one another. Are all of you OK with me keeping my hair brown?

    GO BROWNS!
     
  20. Robert Snow

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    You need to look up the definition of "submission."

    To "confront" him is anything but submission.
     

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