“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.” Ephesians 5:25-27 (ESV)
Men, those of us who are married, have been given a sacred task! We are responsible for preparing our wives for eternity. Jesus said, in heaven there is no marrying, nor child bearing (Matthew 22:30). That is because there will only be one marriage, with one Groom and one bride. Jesus and His bride will be the only marriage in heaven. So, men, our wives have been given to us, by God, to help prepare them for their primary purpose. Paul wrote about the mystery of the church and how it correlates to the marriage between a man and a woman. No wonder the devil is to fixated on destroying and defiling marriage! Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Paul was given a glimpse into the mystery that had been hidden up to that point. He even called it “a profound mystery” (Ephesians 5:32)! He said that husbands are to love their wives as Christ loved the church, which meant, we are to sacrifice ourselves in order to put them above our wants and needs. We are to help nurture their faith, their love and their purity, so that they may be presented holy and without blemish. Just as Jesus is doing with His church, men, we are to do with our wives! We are to pray with them, and pray for them! We are to study the word with them and encourage them to dig into it on their own. We are to keep them pure and set apart, meaning we must cleanse our homes. We need to filter what we watch on TV, where we go and what we do, so that they are not defiled. Men, if you are watching movies with sex (even suggestively), or perversion, or even language that would not please Jesus, you are defiling your wife! Men, when you lust, you bring that into your home. Jesus said that if you even look at a woman and lust after her you have already committed adultery with her (Matthew 5:27-28). Let me just add, men, this is not simply an option, this is a command. To not do this is disobedience and therefore sin! James says for him who knows the right thing to do and doesn’t do it, sins (James 4:17).
Men, please ask God to forgive you for every place you have not loved your wife as He loved the church. Repent of bringing your lust, perversion and adultery into you home! Repent of not nurturing your wife’s faith, and her spiritual walk. Repent of not praying with and/or for her as you should be doing daily! Repent of not studying the Bible together and/or encouraging her to develop her own secret garden with Jesus. Ask God to help you prepare your wife for eternity!
Women, please forgive your husband for not doing these things in helping prepare you for eternity. Ask God to forgive you of any place you have grown to disrespect your husband as the spiritual head of your family (probably because he hasn’t been living up to that level). Repent of every place that you have not respected and/or submitted to your husband (Ephesians 5:22 & 33)! Pray that God would pour out a grace over your husband to step into that God-given place with joy and humility! Ask God to reset your marriage to be an example of what Jesus and His bride look like!
“Let us be glad and rejoice, and let us give honor to Him. For the time has come for the wedding feast of the Lamb, and His bride has prepared herself. She has been given the finest of pure white linen to wear. For the fine linen represents the good deeds of God’s holy people.” Revelation 19:7-8 (NLT)