This Sunday my pastor preached on Ephesians 5. He’s relatively new and has been going through Ephesians, so I’ve been looking forward to this sermon as Ephesians 5 is often a good litmus test of orthodoxy and liberalism. At first, he started out with verse 18, which was worrisome as I thought it would lead to that mutual submission nonsense, but nope, he preached standard doctrine: husbands love your wives, wives, submit to your husbands. It went much better than I expected.
He made the standard caveats for not submitting to abuse or sin, but otherwise he preached that women are to submit unreservedly to their husbands. He even made the point that “submitting” by manipulating your husband through sex or fighting is improper. In an almost manosphere-worthy aside, he even stated that the solution to the epidemic of men shirking responsibility to play video games, is not to remove leadership from men, but rather to foster male leadership in the household and to show young men the value of being leaders.
My one main complaint was that he took an overly apologetic tone and I don’t really like when people are apologetic about what the Bible says. But given that he stood firm in the truth, it’s not a big deal.
We often disparage those preachers who talk against Biblical truths in these matters. So, here’s some praise for the good ones. Thank you to all the pastors who teach Biblical truths, even those that may be uncomfortable in our fallen age.
And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband. (Ephesians 5:18-33, ESV)