From The Heart

Publish date: 12/04/2011

In like manner, you married women, be submissive to your own husbands [subordinate yourselves as being secondary to and dependent on them, and adapt yourselves to them], so that even if any do not obey the Word [of God], they may be won over not by discussion but by the [godly] lives of their wives, 2 When they observe the pure and modest way in which you conduct yourselves, together with your reverence [for your husband; you are to feel for him all that reverence includes: to respect, defer to, revere him — to honor, esteem, appreciate, prize, and, in the human sense, to adore him, that is, to admire, praise, be devoted to, deeply love, and enjoy your husband].  1 Peter 3:1-2 AMP

This passage starts off using the phrase, “In like manner…” or “Likewise…” referring to the instructions that precede this passage. The chapter before it, talks about having a respectful attitude toward authority. It also talks about doing the right thing because it’s right and also because we belong to Jesus. He is our example – we follow Him and do what He did! 1 Peter 2:15-16 AMP says, “For it is God’s will and intention that by doing right [your good and honest lives] should silence (muzzle, gag) the ignorant charges and ill-informed criticisms of foolish persons. 16 [Live] as free people, [yet] without employing your freedom as a pretext for wickedness; but [live at all times] as servants of God.”  

In chapter 3, wives are encouraged to follow Jesus by being submitted first to Jesus and secondly to their own husbands. You honor Jesus by honoring your husband as the head of the family.

When men get saved, they often bring their whole family into the Church, but when a woman gets saved, often she has to go back into a home where her husband is not serving the Lord…yet. This passage is wisdom on how you win your husband to Jesus! Peter reassures wives that they don’t have to only “preach” to their husband to win him, but husbands could be won rather by the way you love them, honor them and be the best wife you can be. One thing is sure – a man is highly unlikely to be won over by a nagging, whiny wife. No one likes to be told what to do or what to believe or ordered around. Love and a smile works far more effectively. No one can fight the love of God and win!

Whether your husband is saved or not – you are still “one flesh”! This oneness merges two people – husband and wife – in such a way that there is little that can affect one without affecting the other. Being “one” in marriage doesn’t mean that either of you lose your personality in the personality of the other person, it just means caring about your spouse as much as you care about yourself, learning to anticipate their needs and helping them to become the best they can be. God created men and He created women. He instituted marriage and He knows how we can have a wonderful marriage. He gives us His wisdom on what we can do to make our marriage great. Men and women are very different. If we can respect our differences and do what Father God tells us to do, then we will get the most out of our relationships. He tells men to love their wives and women to reverence their husbands. When you quit arguing and questioning His wisdom, and start just doing it, even if it doesn’t make sense to you – then you will be surprised at how effective His counsel is!  

A wife, who is pure and modest and who adapts herself to her husband and who reverences him, is sure to make a good impression on him. Men will respond way better to a woman who behaves like a lady than one who tries to behave like a man or who tries to dominate, or compete with him. If a wife is motivated by the God-kind of love in her heart and chooses to lovingly and unselfishly serve her husband, she is bound to get his attention and make a good impression. If you are an exemplary wife, your unsaved husband could – at the least – allow you to go to Church and serve God. At the best, he could end up going to church with you and giving his life to Jesus. The key here is to be a great wife because it’s right in God’s eyes to be a great wife – not just to manipulate your husband into going to church with you!

If your husband is already a Christian, then you are not off the hook! You can’t get lazy or behave badly or act like the world, just because your husband is already serving God! Being a good and a godly wife is just who you are, if you are a believer, no matter if your husband is saved or unsaved. Verse 2 says that you are to reverence your husband – to feel for your husband all that reverence includes. Reverencing your husband is not just an act – you have to feel it – you have to be sincere; you have to mean it.

Reverence means this: to respect, defer to, revere him, to honor, esteem, appreciate, prize, and, in the human sense, to adore him, that is, to admire, praise, be devoted to, deeply love, and enjoy your husband. Love is a decision – it is a choice – you choose to love and reverence your husband. You choose to honor your husband; you choose to esteem him, to appreciate him, to prize him and to adore him! You choose to admire him, to praise him, and to be devoted to him! You choose to deeply love and enjoy your husband! It is not just about what he does for you – it’s what you choose to think, feel, and do – that makes the difference. It is an activation of your faith. By faith you choose to do these things and treat your husband like this – trusting the Father to do His work in your husband. You would be amazed at how, when you make the choice to act in this way toward your husband, that he will react favorably toward you and before you know it, you will have the marriage your heart desires!