You Are One Flesh, So Be One Flesh

In Mark 10:7-9 we find a familiar passage that is often read at weddings.  In that passage Christ states “For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; and they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. what therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.”

When a husband and wife come together in marriage – this new relationship takes precedent over all other earthly relationships.  Before they were married their greatest earthly relationship was with their parents and now it is with each other.

There are three important concepts about this unity in marriage that Christ talks about:

“And they twain SHALL be one flesh”

 “so then they ARE no more twain, but one flesh”

“What therefore God hath joined together, let NOT man put asunder.”

Biblically speaking in marriage, a husband and wife are one flesh from the moment of their marriage covenant, yet they are to be becoming one flesh more and more the longer they are married and they are not to stop being one flesh as long as they both live.

In a way, this concept of being one flesh in marriage mirrors our salvation.  From the moment, we are saved we receive Christ’s righteousness and are declared justified by God.  But the Bible tells us “If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:25) exhorting us to progressive sanctification.  In essence the Bible is telling us “You are holy, so be holy”.  In the same way, the Bible tells couples in marriage “You are one flesh, so be one flesh”.

5 Steps to Becoming One Flesh in Marriage

Step 1 – A husband and wife are to have sexual relations on a regular basis

“3 Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. 4 The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.”

I Corinthians 7:3-4 (KJV)

The act of marriage or the consummation of marriage is sexual union.  This is the most literal meaning of the Biblical phrase “one flesh”.  Sex is to occur regularly in marriage.  An interesting biological fact of sex is that it releases two bonding hormones (oxytocin and vasopressin) which God designed to draw a couple closer together.

On this subject of sexual relations in marriage Christian and non-Christian counselors are usually in fully agreement.  The regularity of sexual relations is the first indicator of how healthy a relationship is. While it is possible to have regular sexual relations but still have disunity in a marriage – it is impossible to have full unity in a marriage without regular relations.

Step 2 – A husband is to know his wife

“Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.”

I Peter 3:7 (KJV)

For husbands this is the first step in cultivating oneness with their wife. A husband cannot love his wife as God intended without knowing her and this involves him talking with her and spending time with her.  God thought it was so important for a man to get to know his wife that in the law he gave to Moses for Israel he gave this rule for newlywed couples:

“When a man hath taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war, neither shall he be charged with any business: but he shall be free at home one year, and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken.”

Deuteronomy 24:5 (KJV)

God literally forbade men from going off to war or going away on business trips for the first year of their marriage.  Couples literally had a one year honey moon in Israel!

So, this leads us to another question – why does a husband need to know his wife? The answer is found for us in the last part of I Peter 3:7 “that your prayers be not hindered.” What God is basically saying is “Husbands if you do not hear the concerns, needs and requests of your wife God will not hear your concerns, needs and requests”.

God wants all authorities whether they be Kings, governors, parents, masters, or employers to hear the concerns, needs and requests of those under them. This does not mean that a husband must give his wife whatever she wants or makes the decisions the way she wants him to.  Sometimes God answers our prayers with a “yes”, sometimes he answers them with a “no” and sometimes he answers them with a “wait”. It is the same with a man and his wife.

When a man hears the concerns and requests of his wife and truly knows how she thinks, even if he does not act as she would like after hearing her this helps to build unity in the marriage.

Also, when a husband knows his wife he knows her passions and her interests.  As long as those her interests do not conflict with her primary duties as a wife, mother and keeper of the home he should encourage her in these things.  For example, maybe his wife likes to paint or to sing in church. Maybe she has desire to write for a woman’s blog, maybe she likes to write poetry.  Perhaps she has a desire to run in home daycare.  None of these things would automatically contradict with her primary duties as a wife, mother and keeper of the home.

However if a woman has a passion to be a mega news giant superstar and wants her husband to stay at home and take care of the home and kids(like Fox News star Meghan Kelly for example) her passions and ambitions are at direct odds with the role for which God designed her.  This is by definition an example of selfish ambition on the part of a woman.

See “I wanted a wife and so did she – Ex-husband of Megyn Kelly speaks out about his marriage to the FOX News star” for more on this feminist superstar.

Step 3 – A wife is to learn how her husband thinks

“And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”

1 Corinthians 14:35 (KJV)

Not only in spiritual matters, but in all matters of life a wife is to learn how her husband thinks and what makes him tick. A wife knowing how her husband thinks is critical to building the unity God desires for marriage between a man and his wife.

Step 4 – A wife is to submit to her husband

“22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.”

Ephesians 5:22-24 (KJV)

The inevitable result of a woman getting to know how her husband thinks is that she will discover ways that he thinks that she disagrees with.  Now a woman has two choices when she realizes these differences.  One is to try and correct or change her husband’s thinking and the other is to submit.  God calls women to do the latter and submit even when they disagree with their husbands.  As long as a husband does not directly ask his wife to sin she must submit to him everything.

A wife should offer her advice in a kind way, not in a contentious way

“She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.”

Proverbs 31:26 (KJV)

In the previous step, we discussed that in order to maintain the unity in marriage that God desires for couples to have a wife must submit to her husband especially when she disagrees with him. But this does not mean that wives are forbidden from sharing any wisdom they have with their husbands.

But the attitude and method in which a woman shares her wisdom with her husband is very important. The Bible warns against wives being contentious with their husbands:

“It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.”

Proverbs 21:19 (KJV)

Even if the words of a wife to her husband are wise, if they are delivered in a contentious or angry manner to her husband they will lose their intended effect and will cause the unity in the marriage to decline rapidly.

Also, a woman should always understand the position from which she offers advice.  She is not her husband’s mother, his teacher or his authority. He is her authority and Biblically speaking his authority over her is even greater than that of her father’s.

A woman should view herself as a subject which gives counsel to her King and remember the Scriptures exhortation to wives to be “in subjection unto their own husbands”(I Peter 3:5).

Step 5 – A wife is to be her husband’s crown

“A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.”

Proverbs 12:4 (KJV)

The Bible tells us that a wife should be a crown to her husband.  What is a crown? A crown brings glory and honor to its recipient. So, what the Bible is saying is that a wife by being her husband’s crown is one who should bring him glory and honor.  She is to be his greatest cheerleader and supporter. The unfortunate truth is that many wives today are more of a dunce cap than a crown to their husband.  Just as a wife being contentious with her husband breaks the unity of the marriage so too a wife failing to honor her husband for the man that he is will quickly break the unity of the marriage.

But there is another interesting aspect of a crown – especially that of a king. It was very common in ancient times that when a King conquered another land he would take the crown of the conquered King and put it on his head to show his ownership and authority over his newly conquered lands.

But what if a King liked the crown of another ruler and wanted to wear it more often but it did not fit his head well? Perhaps it was two small and would almost fall off his head or maybe it was too large for the diameter of his head and it would slide down in front of his face.  So, what would the King do? He would give the crown to his craftsman and have them resize the crown to fit his head perfectly.  Perhaps he would have them add some additional gems and take some gems away that he did not like.  The point is that the crown would be molded to the King’s liking and made to fit his head perfectly.

In the same way wives need to move beyond mere submission to their husbands in their quest to truly be one flesh with their husbands.

Wives need to mold themselves over time more and more to their husbands likes and dislikes and to his various positions on the issues of life.  They need to support and understand his passions whether it is his passion for his job, his ministries at church or his hobbies. This even more just mere submission – will bring the true unity that God desires to the marriage.

This does not mean that a wife may ever come to love everything her husband loves or hate everything her husband hates.  There are some passions he may have that she will never be able to bring herself to share.

But a wife should pray hard each and every day that God would help her to mold herself and fit herself so that in the same way a crown needs to fit the head of the King who wears it – so to a wife needs to fit herself to her husband.

Husbands Are to Praise Their Wives – When They Deserve It

Christian husbands, we are called to image God with our lives as men.  And in our marriages we are called to image God as a husband to our wives.  The latter half of Proverbs 31 gives us the example of a good and godly wife.  But it also in the end gives us an example of how a good and godly husband reacts to his wife’s righteous life.

He praises her.

The Bible is not talking about men praising women as the world would have us do today.  It is not about praising women for accomplishments outside the home in places God never meant them to be in.  It is not about praising women for acting like men.

It is about praising women for acting like women in the way God meant them to be.

Some today have the attitude that husbands should praise their wives simply for occupying the same space with them.  Women don’t have to do anything worthy of praise in their actions, they are simply worthy of praise for being women.   Such a concept of praise is not supported anywhere in the Bible.  And if a man praises his wife when her actions are un-praiseworthy he does her and himself a disservice as her head.

Some men are really good at the praising aspect with their wives, while lacking in the correction and discipline area with their wives.  For others, it is the opposite and it is all correction and discipline and absolutely no praise.  We as Christians husbands need to find that balance.

Husband, make a concerted effort to praise your wife when she cooks well, when you come home to a beautifully kept home, when she makes herself beautiful for you and also when she performs well sexually.  Also make sure you teach your children to compliment their mother as well.

Husbands Wash Your Dirty Wives

When we think of a woman being “dirty” outside the literal meaning we will usually think of a woman acting in a sexually inappropriate manner.    And while there certainly are whorish women who do act in whorish ways there is another type of dirtiness in women that has nothing to do with a woman acting whorish.

When a woman speaks disrespectfully to her husband or does not show proper deference to her husband, that is her acting in a dirty way toward her husband.   When a wife refuses to submit any part of her life to her husband’s spiritual leadership that is her acting in a dirty way.   Sometimes it may not be her actions, but it may in fact be her attitudes and beliefs that are dirty.

Christian husbands, to love your wife as Christ loves his church requires that you wash her spiritual spots, wrinkles and blemishes with the Word of God.  You are to wash her dirty attitudes, beliefs and actions with the Word of God.

You could liken this to how you might wash your car.  You look over that car and make sure every dirt spot and blemish are gone and that it shines so good you can see your reflection in it.  It is the same idea with your wife spiritually.  After you wash her, her views and behaviors should be a reflection of the things you have taught her from God’s Word.

The washing of your wife requires a combination of knowing her, listening to her, teaching her, correcting her and yes disciplining her.   The washing of your wife will sometimes require great sacrifice on your part as the washing of his wife required great sacrifice on the part of Christ.  Sometimes it means temporarily sacrificing the peace in your home to rebuke your wife.  It might mean sacrificing time you might have spent doing things that were more enjoyable.  But it is a sacrifice that is necessary on the part of every Christian husband.

1 Peter 3:7 Why Are a Husband’s Prayers Hindered?

After addressing the submission of wives to their husbands in 1 Peter 3:1-6 the Apostle turns his discussion toward husbands and the treatment of their wives in verse 7 when he states “Likewise, ye husbands”.  He then caps the commands toward husbands with a warning to them of what will happen if they do not treat their wives as he has just stated when he says “that your prayers be not hindered”.

Before we discuss how the Apostle Peter, writing under the inspiration of God, tells husbands to treat their wives, we must first address whose prayers are being hindered.

Whose Prayers Will be Hindered?

Mathew Henry in his famous commentary stated the following about verse 7 of 1 Peter 3:

“The reasons are, Because she is the weaker vessel by nature and constitution, and so ought to be defended: but then the wife is, in other and higher respects, equal to her husband; they are heirs together of the grace of life, of all the blessings of this life and another, and therefore should live peaceably and quietly one with another, and, if they do not, their prayers one with another and one for another will be hindered, so that often “you will not pray at all, or, if you do, you will pray with a discomposed ruffled mind, and so without success.”

The key phrase in Matthew Henry’s statement above is “if they do not, their prayers one with another and one for another will be hindered”.    The “they” and “their” he is referring to is both the husband and wife.

Matthew Henry was taking the position that this phrase “and as being heirs together of the grace of life” was addressing both the husband and wife and therefore the warning “that your prayers be not hindered” was addressed to both husbands and wives.

But this is where we must remind ourselves that no commentator, no matter how famous or respected, is inerrant in their interpretation or application of the Scriptures.

I have read writings of many of the great men of the reformation like Martin Luther, John Calvin and John Knox.  I loved reading the commentaries of Spurgeon as a young man.  But a realization I had to come to was, none of these men were more inerrant than any Christians before them or after them except for those men who spoke and wrote the very Word of God.  Only the Old Testament Prophets, Jesus Christ and his Apostles after him were inerrant in their writings and understanding of God’s will.

This blog is in essence an online commentary, not unlike that of Matthew Henry or Charles Spurgeon.  I could be wrong in my interpretation and applications of the Scriptures just as Matthew Henry or Charles Spurgeon could be wrong in theirs.   Each of us must look at the Scriptures, and with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, use our knowledge of the original language of the Scriptures as well the historical and grammatical context in which various passages are written to come to what we believe is the correct interpretation and application of the Scriptures.

Some have argued that Matthew Henry’s interpretation is correct because of the Greek word “hymōn” or “Humon” (transliterated) that is in the phrase “that your [Humon] prayers be not hindered”.    They argue that since humon is always used in a plural sense to speak to a group, that it is talking to both the husband and the wife.

While it true that humon is always speaking to a group, we must look to the context to know what group it is speaking to. In the same passage we are discussing, the apostle Peter begins his conversation on marriage by first speaking to wives in 1 Peter 3:1-2:

“Likewise, ye wives [gynaikes], be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; 2 While they behold your [humon] chaste conversation coupled with fear.”

The English word “wives”, is a translation of the Greek word used to address women in the plural sense which is “gynaikes”.  From the passage above, whose “chaste conversation couple with fear” is the Apostle addressing? It is clear from the context that it is that of the wives.

Peter uses the Greek word which refers to men in the plural sense “andres” to refer to husbands, when he writes the passage we are looking at:

“Likewise, ye husbands [andres], dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your [humon] prayers be not hindered.”

There is nothing in the language of 1 Peter 3:7 which would indicate the prayers being hindered are anyone other than that of a husband’s prayers in the same way that the chaste and fearful behavior of verse 2 is referring strictly to wives in reference to their husbands.

Therefore, we can rightly conclude that 1 Peter 3:7 in its entirety is speaking to husbands and not both husbands and wives.

So, Peter is saying that if husbands don’t do the things, he commanded them toward their wives, their prayers will be hindered.  Now let’s look at how husbands are commanded to treat their wives.

Three Things God Commands of Husbands Toward their Wives

“dwell [sunoikeo ] with them according to knowledge[Gnosis],”

Sunoikeo refers to domestic association, people living together but it also was commonly used as euphemism for sexual intercourse between a man and a woman.  And the Greek word gnosis means exactly what is translated as – knowledge.  It is to know about something or to know someone intimately depending on the context.    So, we can see the Apostle is saying “Husbands as you live together with your wives in this intimate and sexual relationship, do so according to knowledge”.  So, the question is what knowledge is he talking about?  Is it just a general knowledge of God and His Word? Is it also knowing your wife’s strengths and weaknesses and where she needs spiritual instruction? And could it also be knowing her fears, her concerns and her requests?  I will give the answer after we finish looking at the last two parts of this verse.

Peter then moves on to tell men two ways in which they must give proper honor their wives.  The first way is mentioned below:

“giving honour unto the wife [gune], as unto the weaker [Asthenes] vessel [Skeuos],”

The Greek word Asthenes means “weak, infirm or feeble” and Skeuos literally refers to vessels like household utensils including bowls or pitchers.  Skeuos is a common euphemism for the human body in the New Testament and our souls are seen as indwelling our vessels.

What this means is that husbands are to give honor to their wives as is appropriate for their station as the weaker vessel. But why would we honor someone for being weaker?

The answer is found in 2 Corinthians 12:9:

“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

If we remember that God created men to image his attributes, including his strength, and woman to image mankind and our weakness and dependence upon God then this makes perfect sense.  In the same way that we should glory in our weakness and need of God’s strength, so too women should glory in their weakness and dependence upon man’s strength.  And thus, we as men should not demean women who demonstrate their need of our strength, but instead we honor women for doing this.

The honoring of the weaker vessel also means we honor women for fulfilling the complete role that God designed the weaker vessel to play.  In Proverbs 31:28 after showing all the wonderful ways in which the virtuous wife serves her husband, his children and his home the Bible tells us the following:

“Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.”

Now that we have covered the first way men are commanded to honor their wives, we can now move on to the second way men are commanded to honor their wives.

“and as being heirs together of the grace of life”

Wives are to be accorded the honor that is due to fellow believers and husbands should never forget that their wives are not only their wives, but sisters in Christ. In Romans 12:10 we read the following of how we are to treat our brethren in Christ:

“Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another”.

So, we see three things men are commanded to do toward their wives:

  1. Live with them in an intimate and sexual relationship according to knowledge.
  2. Honor them for the part in God’s master design that he has designed them to play as the weaker vessel.
  3. Honor them as fellow believers and sisters in Christ.

What knowledge do men need to have with their wives?

In 2 Peter 3:18 we read “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen”.  There is no doubt that first and foremost the goal of every Christian should be to grow in the knowledge of Christ and then apply that knowledge to everything we do in this life including how we conduct our marriages.

But 1 Peter 3:7 does not say “dwell with them according to the knowledge of God” or “dwell with them according to the knowledge of Christ”.  It simply says dwell with them according to knowledge. And since the treatment of wives by their husbands is the subject Peter is addressing it strongly suggests that knowledge is indeed a husband’s knowledge of his wife.

And this idea of a man needing to know his wife on a spiritual level is seen in Ephesians 5:25-27:

“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;  that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,  that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.”

How can a man wash his wife’s spiritual spots and wrinkles if he does not know his wife’s mind? Again, in Ephesians 5:28-29, we read the following of husbands toward their wives:

“So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church”

How can a man know his wife’s needs without knowing her mind? Without talking to her?

And finally, our greatest indicator of what “knowledge” husbands are supposed to have as they live with their wives is found in the warning given to husbands:

“that your prayers be not hindered”

In 1 Peter 5:7 the Bible tells us “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you”.  We are called to cast our cares, our concerns and our fears upon God because he cares for us.  Is that not a huge part of our prayers to God?

So as husbands if we want God to hear our cares and concerns why would we think we can do so while turning a deaf ear to our wife’s cares and concerns?

God Sometimes Will Not Hear Our Prayers and so Too Husbands Will Not Hear Their Wives

Now the principles I have just laid out from the Scriptures about men needing to hear their wife’s concerns in the same way that they want God to hear their concerns could certainly be abused.  In fact, it has been abused by the modern church today which has been infested with feminism.

If we remember that man images God in the life of his wife then we must also remember that God sometimes will not hear our prayers because of our sin.  In Isaiah 1:15, God says to his wife Israel, “And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood”.  Because Israel was in open sin against God, her husband, he hid himself from seeing her needs and he would not hear her requests.  In the same way, when a wife is acting in unrepentant sin against her husband, she cannot expect that he will hear her requests.

In James 4:3 we read “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts”.  So, when we ask God with wrong motives or ask with selfish ambition, he will not hear such requests and in the same way if a husband sees his wife asking for something with wrong motives or from a position of selfishness, he has every right to turn down such sinful requests.

Finally, in John 5:14 the Bible states “And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us”.   Just as husband should know his wife’s mind, so too a wife should know her husband’s mind.  And a wife should never ask her husband for something she knows goes against his will on a matter just as we should never pray to God for something we know goes against his will especially as recorded in the Bible.

Conclusion

1 Peter 3:7 is written to husbands, not husbands and wives.  The prayers that will be hindered are not the prayers of both the husband and wife, but of the husband alone.  God tells men they must dwell with their wives according to knowledge, honor them in their station as the weaker vessel, and honor them as fellow believers and sisters in Christ.  If a husband fails to do these three things, God will not hear his prayers.

When we look at God’s command of husbands in Ephesians 5:25-27 to wash their wife’s spiritual spots and wrinkles with the Word, we know that part of the knowledge Peter alludes to in 1 Peter 3:7 is of a man knowing his wife’s spiritual character.  He cannot wash what he does not know.

When we look at God’s command of husbands in Ephesians 5:28-29 for them to love and care for the needs of their wife’s body and protect her as they would their own body then we also know that part of the knowledge Peter alludes to in 1 Peter 3:7 is a man knowing his wife’s requests for her physical needs.

In 1 Peter 3:5-6, which directly proceeds the passage we have been studying, the Apostle Peter writes “For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement”.   A woman, if she is following the example given to us by God of the women of old is to regard her husband as her lord.

The Greek word kurios translated as “lord” in 1 Peter 3:6 can also be translated as “master” as it is in Colossians 4:1 where the Bible states “Masters [Kurios], give unto your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master [Kurios] in heaven”.  In many ways 1 Peter 3:7 repeats this same concept of Colossians 4:1 with husbands toward their wives.   We as husbands must remember that just as we are a master to our wives, we also have a master in heaven who watches how we treat her.

This does not mean that if a man’s wife is divorcing him or other bad things are happening that it automatically means he is not living with his wife according to knowledge or not honoring her as the weaker vessel and as a fellow sister in Christ.  We must remember that wife’s can and do act in evil ways against their husbands just as Israel acted in evil ways against her husband who was God.  In Isaiah 1:15 God hid his eyes from Israel and closed his ears to her prayers because she was in sinful rebellion against him.

No wife can expect to have her husband’s ear while she stands in rebellion against him.

Also, God makes it clear in John 5:14 that we don’t get everything we request from him, but only what is in accordance with his will.  And this is no different with a husband and wife situation.   A husband hearing his wife’s requests and granting them are two very different things.  And once a woman knows her husband’s mind on something, she ought not to continue asking for that same thing knowing it goes against his will.

The Scriptures warn us in Proverbs 4:27 “Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil”.  And on this matter of the treatment of wives, like most other moral subjects, there is a far left and a far right position that are both wrong and the Bible stands in the middle of the two.

On the one hand, a man knowing his wife’s spiritual mindset, her cares and her concerns is not the same as him having to run all family decisions through his wife first.  Nothing in the Scriptures gives this requirement of men.  Marriage is not a partnership, but rather a patriarchy.  When the Scriptures refer to a man dwelling with his wife according to knowledge, it is in regard to him knowing her personal spiritual and physical needs, not him getting her vote on family decisions.

On the other hand, A man knowing his wife’s spiritual condition, knowing her mind, knowing what her physical needs are, hearing her cares and concerns, honoring her station as the weaker vessel and honoring her as a fellow sister is not him putting his wife on a pedestal.  It is him obeying the Word of God.  And if he does not obey the Word of God on these matters God will not hear his prayers.  This is the express teaching of 1 Peter 3:7.

If You Love Your Wife, You Will Discipline Her

We are told in Ephesians 5:25 that husbands are to love their wives “even as Christ also loved the church” and in Revelation 3:19 Christ after rebuking his churches says “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent”.  This shows us as Christian husbands that an indispensable part of us loving our wives as Christ loves his church is that we rebuke and discipline our wives.

A husband who will not rebuke or discipline his wife for sinful behavior is no better than a parent who will not rebuke and discipline their child for sinful behavior. 

And no, a husband disciplining his wife is not him treating his wife as a child, it is him treating his wife as a woman and women are under the authority of men in God’s order.   And no, God does not recognize the modern invention of the “adult” social class.  So, the notion we hear so often in churches that “he is an “adult” and responsible for himself before God and she is an “adult” and responsible for herself before God” is completely unbiblical.  The humanist invention of the “adult” social class is a perversion and attempt to give women the same rights, responsibilities and privileges as men, something God never did.

For more details on the how a husband can go about disciplining his wife in a way which follows Biblical principles for discipline see my article “7 Ways To Discipline Your Wife“.

Husbands If You Don’t Hear Your Wife, God Won’t Hear You

Christian husbands, God says you must know your wife, and not just in the sexual sense of the word.  You are also called to know her on a spiritual and emotional level.  This does not mean you have to become an emotional being like a woman, or “get more in touch with your feelings”.  It simply means talking to your wife and listening to her fears, her concerns and her requests in the same way you want God to listen to your fears, concerns and requests when you bring them to him.

Does listening to your wife mean you will always do what she wants? Of course not.   God listens to our prayers but he does not always grant our requests or do things in the way we would like him to do them.  Sometimes God corrects us and shows us later that what we were asking for was not right.  And sometimes after a husband listens to his wife, he may need to correct her thinking, just as God corrects our thinking through the Holy Spirit and through his Word.

And finally, husbands, remember that if you will not hear your wife’s fears, concerns and requests God will not hear yours.  So, if you sense that you are being shut out by God, perhaps you are doing the same thing to your wife.

Husbands You Are Called to be Your Wife’s Teacher

Christian husbands you need to teach your wife the Word of God.  It may not be a structured course style teaching and could simply be a part of everyday discussions.

You certainly should help to interpret and apply God’s Word as to your wife’s life as you hear sermons from your Pastor each week. And yes, if you have a difference of interpretation or application of the Bible with your Pastor, you should explain that difference to your wife in a way that still shows respect to your Pastor.

You should constantly be looking to apply God’s Word to every day situations your wife faces in her relationships with friends, family, your children and especially your marriage.   You should also be looking to apply God’s Word for your wife to things she reads in books or things she sees on television.

Whether We Live Therefore, or Die, We Are the Lord’s

Humanity has faced many pandemics over several thousand years of recorded history. The Plague of Justinian in 541 BC killed roughly half the western world’s population at that time. The Black Death was also estimated to have wiped out 50 million people, or half the population of Europe when it hit in the 14th century.

Putting the Corona Virus in Perspective

Now let’s contrast the Plague of Justinian, the Black Death and more recent viruses over the last century with the Corona Virus (COVID-19).

There have been about 35,000 cases of Ebola since 1976. It had a fatality rate of about 40 percent. The H1N1 virus has seen about 1.6 million cases since 2009 and it has a 17 percent fatality rate. To date, the Corona virus has about a 3 percent fatality rate.

However, the Corona virus is different from some of these other viruses we have seen over the last century because if is much more easily transmitted and stays active longer. It can literally be transmitted by someone with them just breathing a few feet away from you. It stays active on surfaces for many hours. So, because it can be so easily transmitted there will be a lot more people that get it.

Some estimates show 80 percent of the population in most areas of the world could be infected with the Corona virus. The world has roughly 8 billion people, and if 80 percent are infected with the Corona virus and 3 percent die from it that means roughly 200 million people world wide could die from this virus.

While that 200 million people are far greater than the number that died from the Black Death in Europe, if we look at it in proportion to the population it is far less of the population that will die.

And the vast majority of those 200 million deaths will most likely come from the elderly populations in most nations of the world as that is the group who can typically have the weakest immune systems.

And while 80 percent of the world might be infected with the virus, the vast majority will only experience mild symptoms. Johns Hopkins medical did an excellent comparison of the Corona Virus to common strains of flu that people are infected with each year. Below are some similarities between the flu and the Corona Virus:

Symptoms

Both cause fever, cough, body aches, fatigue; sometimes vomiting and diarrhea.

Can be mild or severe, even fatal in rare cases.

Can result in pneumonia.
Transmission

Both can be spread from person to person through droplets in the air from an infected person coughing, sneezing or talking.
Treatment

Neither virus is treatable with antibiotics, which only work on bacterial infections.

Both may be treated by addressing symptoms, such as reducing fever. Severe cases may require hospitalization and support such as mechanical ventilation.
Prevention

Both may be prevented by frequent, thorough hand washing, coughing into the crook of your elbow, staying home when sick and limiting contact with people who are infected.”

What About the World Wide Lock Down?

In the last week governors across the world and the United States, including the governor of the state I live in, ordered that all larger areas where people congregate be shut down for the next few weeks at least. That means no movie theaters, no eating at restaurants (take out only), no sporting events and no church services.

All of this is being done to make sure our medical facilities don’t get overrun and I think most people understand the rational behind the move.

But the fact remains that the vast majority of us will most likely get this just like the vast majority of us experience colds and flu bugs each year unless we have the flu vaccination (which I get for me and my family each year). So, we really are only trying to stave off the inevitable.

My son works as a help desk support person at a local hospital and so does his girlfriend. They already have people with the Corona virus. It is very likely my son could be infected with the virus and bring it home to me and my family. Am I saying we should not wash our hands or take sensible measures to try and not get infected? Of course not. We should certainly take all these appropriate measures. I am just saying despite taking these measures, there is still a highly likely chance we will get infected.

But let’s return to government measures to limit group gatherings. These next few weeks should be used to put standard triage procedures in place at all the nation’s hospitals to prioritize those who truly need medical assistance and those who should just stay home and weather this out.

We cannot have everyone who experiences a fever and coughing overwhelming our emergency rooms and doctors’ offices. Only those like the elderly, infants or others with compromised immune systems or severe symptoms should be going to hospitals. We need an education campaign to get everyone ready for this.

The message boils down to this:

“Yes, most of us will get sick. But for most of us it will be no different than a cold or flu bug. Please do not overwhelm doctors’ offices or hospitals if you are not experiencing severe symptoms.”

Now that we have placed the Corona Virus in its proper perspective in comparison to other pandemics, we will now look at this from a spiritual perspective.

We Have a Hope that Humanists and Others Don’t Have

Humanists believe they can rid the world of all crime, abuse, sickness, poverty and perhaps one day even death by teaching people to have faith in humanity and human ingenuity. But if we as Christians believe God’s Word, then we know that only God can rid these things from the world and one day he will. The Bible tells us these things will not be removed until God comes and makes the world anew after removing those who reject him and casting them into the lake of fire for all of eternity.

In Revelation 21:1-4 we read the following:
“And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”
Revelation 21:1-4 (KJV)

The Bible tells us as Christians that if we allow it, suffering in this life can cause us to focus on the hope that is found only in God:
“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”
Romans 5:1-5 (KJV)

So yes – both Christians and non-Christians all over the world will most likely be infected with the Corona virus. Christians and non-Christians alike will die from this virus. So, what is the difference? The difference is that for humanists around the world, their hope and faith is in humanity. Our hope and faith is in God. All they have is this life in this world which they cling to so tightly, but we have a hope for a life beyond this world which they cannot understand.

Conclusion

Whenever natural catastrophes or pandemics happen this is God’s way of repeating to the world what he said in Deuteronomy 32:39:

“See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god with me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal: neither is there any that can deliver out of my hand.”

God is sovereign over all his creation, all living beings, all people whether they be Christian or non-Christian. And these times are a powerful demonstration of God’s sovereignty.

God has slowed down the world, if only for a time. He has focused our attention away from all the things that take us away from our homes and brought us back to a focus on the home and the family. And this is a wonderful thing that has come from an otherwise bad situation.

I pray that God will use this pandemic to bring many to Christ and also to strengthen the faith of us who are already his. For those of you are who are in Christ I leave you with this blessed hope:

“For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s.”

Romans 14:8 (KJV)

Men Should Exercise Control Over Themselves and Their Women

God said to Cain in Genesis 4:7 “sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him”.  He was telling Cain that his sin nature desired to control his actions and to make him do things which violated God’s will for his life.

In our modern society where humanism and feminism dominate the culture, the word “control” is often seen as swear word while “consent” is seen as a holy and sacred term.  Yet even humanists and feminists must engage in controlling actions when it suits the humanist agenda.  Just take a look at the censorship by all the major tech giants, as well as colleges and universities which are dominated by all the various forms of humanists including feminists, globalists, socialists and environmentalists.  They have no problem exercising control over what opinions may or may not be voiced on their platforms or in their classrooms or on their campuses.

Socialist humanists have no problem with governments controlling wealth distribution by engaging in theft of private property from upper and middle economic classes and redistributing that to lower economic classes.  Environmentalist humanists have no problem controlling what people eat, what cars they may drive or how much energy resources they may use.

The reality is that humanists don’t really have a problem with themselves exercising a great amount of control over all elements of society.   They just don’t want to submit to God’s order or control in their lives.

And this is why humanists utterly hate and consider evil the control which God called men to exercise over the lives of their wives in Genesis 3:16 when “Unto the woman he said… thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee”.

Genesis 3:16 uses the same language structure as God used when talking to Cain in Genesis 4:7 about sin trying to control him.  Sin attempts to control our actions.  The sin nature will attempt to get us to do the very opposite of whatever God commands.  If God says to do something, the sin nature will try and get us not to do that thing.  If God says not to do something, the sin nature will tell us to do that very thing.

And here is a very important truth that every Christian man must take to heart.

In the same way that God has ordained husbands as human instruments of sanctification in the lives of their wives, sin attempts to use wives as human instruments of temptation in the lives of their husbands.  We see this in the very first act of sin committed by Eve when she gave Adam the forbidden fruit.

Man was ordained by God to rule over woman from the very start of creation.  Man exercised his authority over woman when he named her just as he named all the animals God created before her.  And we know, contrary to Christian feminists’ claims, that man’s rulership over woman was part of God’s design to picture the relationship of himself to his people.  To call man’s sacred trust to rule over woman a result of sin is to call Christ’s rulership over the Church to which it is directly compared to in Ephesians 5:23-24 a result of sin as well.

But man’s rulership became that much more important after the fall.  Now his rulership or his control of his wife would be far more difficult.  This is what God was saying when he told Adam his wife’s desire would be to him.  He was not saying she would have some lovely desire just to be by his side as the Christian feminists so wrongly claim.  He was saying that sin would corrupt his design of the feminine nature causing women to act in opposite ways of which God designed them to act.  God designed the feminine nature to be submissive, dependent, cooperative and to seek be under the control and dominance of man.  But sin would corrupt the feminine nature making it rebellious, independent, contentious and it would ultimately drive women to seek to control and dominate their husbands.

Conclusion

Humanists of all stripes have no problem controlling what opinions people may voice as long as they are the ones doing the controlling.  Humanists have no problem controlling what people eat, what people can spend their money on, how much energy people can use, where people can live or how people can defend themselves.  Again, they have no problem with control, as long as they are the ones doing the controlling.

But humanists have a big problem, a colossal problem, with any one trying to exercise any control over the “personal” decisions of women.  Nope don’t go there.  If women want to have all kinds of sex with different men outside of marriage men better just shut their mouths and stop “slut-shaming” women. And if women want to murder their unborn babies in their wombs, often a result of their whoring around, no one can control that.  If wives want to commit adultery with other men there should be no negative consequences or shaming of such women.  If women don’t want to have sex with their husbands, men better not coerce them into having sex in any way otherwise that is “marital rape”.

But God calls men to exercise control over their own sin natures as well as well as the human instrument of temptation that sin often uses, which is a man’s wife.

The Weinstein Verdict Sets a Very Bad Precedent

As far back as 3500 years ago, the Bible required that there be corroborating evidence in the form of at least two witnesses before someone could be convicted of any crime (Deuteronomy 19:15-20). In other words, you could not just accuse someone of a crime, whatever that may be. The burden was on the accuser to present corroborating evidence of the crime.

And about 250 years ago, Benjamin Franklin stated “That it is better 100 guilty Persons should escape than that one innocent Person should suffer, is a Maxim that has been long and generally approved.”
But in our post-feminist and humanist society, it is feelings, not facts and logic, which have become the basis for economic and social policies. And the justice system is no exception to this rule. Before the women’s rights movements got rid of protections in the 1980’s, corroborating evidence was required to prove a man raped or sexually assaulted a woman just as you would have to have corroborating evidence to convict a person of any other crime. In other words, prior to the 1980’s the burden of proof was on the accuser of sexual assault, not the one being accused as it had been for thousands of years.

But from the 1980s onward, in any case of a sex crime, the burden of proof was transferred from the accuser to the accused. The only protection left for those accused of sex crimes without corroborating evidence was that most juries would still not convict people for sex crimes without corroborating evidence even though the law no longer required it for a conviction. This is why in most cases prosecutors would decline to prosecute people without corroborating evidence.

The Weinstein Verdict has now broken this legal precedent and many other precedents. Two women accused Weinstein of rapes than occurred more than a decade ago. The defense proved from emails they consented to meeting with Weinstein to have sex with him many times after the supposed rapes occurred. They said they only did so to further their careers.

Weinstein was convicted on two counts of rape, with absolutely no corroborating evidence. The real sad truth is that Weinstein had already been convicted in the court of public opinion and no one on this jury had the courage to stand up to the MeToo mob who wanted their piece of Harvey’s flesh no matter what horrible legal precedent this would set.

There is a Silver Lining in the Weinstein Verdict

In September of 2019, an article on Forbes.com made the following observations about the negative consequences of the MeToo movement on women in the workforce:

The unintended consequences of #MeToo just seem to get worse and worse. Initially, there was evidence that men were shying away from one-on-one interactions with women at work, including mentoring, one-on-one work meetings and socializing. Now, new research reveals women may be less likely to be hired for jobs where they are required to interact with men…

Reluctance to hire women joins a long list of behaviors at work that have been negatively impacted by #MeToo. Research from LeanIn.org and SurveyMonkey last spring revealed that a whopping 60% of male managers were uncomfortable participating in common, job-related activities with women, such as mentoring, working alone together or socializing together. And the Pew Research Center found 51% of employees reported feeling that #MeToo made interactions with the opposite sex at work harder.”

Even the dating scene has taken a big hit thanks to the MeToo movement as an article from MarketWatch.com observed:

The #MeToo movement seems to be exacerbating daters’ anxieties about sexual assault and hookup culture,” she said. “In years past, young people were extremely excited about discussions surrounding sex, online dating, sexuality, etc., but now they’re worried about political correctness.”

Ella Whelan wrote an article for Spiked-online.com entitled “#MeToo has ruined the office romance” where she stated the following:

“Companies are responding to the sexual-harassment panic by banning alcohol from office parties and instituting policies on how long and how close personal interactions should be…

The truth that no one seems willing to admit is that many heterosexual women, even today, expect men to make the first move in a relationship… But in the post-#MeToo office, unless you send a memo to the guy you fancy, signed with your consent at the bottom, it is understandable that he wouldn’t want to make the first move for fear of being hauled before human resources.

So, let’s see. MeToo has made it harder for women to get hired, and for those women who already have jobs it has made it harder for them to get mentored by male coworkers and thus climb the corporate ladder. Metoo has also put a huge damper on office romances and on the hookup culture.

Sounds like a big win for those us who believe what the Bible says about women in 1 Timothy 5:14 that they should “marry, bear children, guide the house”. And also, anything that makes men have more fear about initiating sex outside of marriage is a good thing for society.

Conclusion

Could Harvey Weinstein have done exactly what these two women who accused of him of rape said? Yes. In fact, I think there is a good chance that he did. If Harvey Weinstein did indeed do these acts with these women and many others, he violated God’s law and God will hold him accountable one day at the judgement for all the wicked things he has done. But the same law of God which forbids fornication and forbids a man forcing himself sexually on a woman who is not his wife also requires corroborating evidence for any man to be convicted of such a crime. And that burden of proof was not met in this trial.

But the silver lining in MeToo’s corruption of our justice system is that it will be harder for women to get into the workforce and work their way up and it will help to discourage sex outside of marriage by keeping men cautious of being alone with women whom they are not married to.

And I am all for a man needing a document with a woman’s signed consent to have sex at the bottom of it and that document is a Marriage Certificate. Then he never has to worry about making a move on her again for the rest of his life! A man can freely do what the Bible not only allows husbands to do, but commands husbands to do and that is to “let her breasts satisfy thee at all times” (Proverbs 5:19) never “leaving the natural use of the woman” (Romans 1:27).

One final note to men in wake of this Weinstein verdict. If you follow the Pence and Graham rule and never allow yourself to be alone with a woman that is not your blood relative or your wife then you won’t have to worry about becoming the next Weinstein.