Biblical Marriage In A Broken World, Part 5

[Editor's Note: This summer we at BtT are running some older but good posts. Look out for all new content in August. This post originally appeared on November 3, 2008.]

Portrait Of A Redeemed Husband

Having called a man to love his wife in Ephesians 5, God also instructs a man to “know” or “understand” his wife in 1 Peter 3:7. Moving into the area of practical theology, I want to raise and attempt to answer the question, “what does a marriage look like when a man has come to know his wife as God made her?” How can he love and bless her as he comes to more fully know and understand her? I believe a husband can be a blessing to his wife by loving her as Christ loved the Church and giving her specific gifts of love that speak to her heart as a woman. What do these gifts look like? I suggest seven.

1.Be a spiritual leader.

Be a godly man of courage, conviction, commitment, compassion, and character. Take the initiative in cultivating a spiritual environment for the family. Become a capable and competent student of God’s Word and live out before all a life founded on the Word of God. Lead your wife in becoming a woman of God, and take the lead in training the children in the things of the Lord (Psalm 1; Ephesians 5:23-27; 6:1-4).

2.Give her personal affirmation/appreciation.

Praise her for personal attributes and qualities. Praise her virtues as a wife, mother, and homemaker. Openly commend her, in the presence of others, as a marvelous mate, friend, lover, and companion. Help her feel that, to you, no one is more important in this world other than King Jesus. (Proverbs 31:28-29; Song of Solomon 4:1-7, 6:4-9, 7:1-9).

3.Show personal affection (romance).

Shower her with timely and generous displays of affection. Romance her in a language she understands! Tell her and show her how much you care for her with a steady flow of words, cards, flowers, gifts and common courtesies. Remember, affection is the environment in which sexual union is enjoyed and a wonderful marriage developed (Song of Solomon 6:10, 13; Ephesians 5:28-29, 33).

4.Initiate intimate conversation.

Talk with her at the feeling level (heart to heart). Listen to her thoughts (i.e., her heart) about the events of her day with sensitivity, interest, and concern. Such conversations with her convey a desire to understand her not change her (Song of Solomon 2:8-14, 8:13-14; 1 Peter 3:7).

5.Always be honest and open.

Look into her eyes and, in love, always be truthful (Ephesians 4:15). Explain your plans and actions clearly and completely because you are responsible for her and the children. Lead her to trust you and feel secure with you (Proverbs 15:22-23).

6.Provide home support and stability.

Take hold of the responsibility to house, feed, and clothe the family. Provide and protect, and do not feel sorry for yourself when things get tough. Look for concrete ways to improve home life. Raise the marriage and family to a safe and more fulfilling level. Remember, the husband/father is the security hub of the family (2 Timothy 5:8).

7.Demonstrate family commitment.

After the Lord Jesus, put your wife and family first. Commit time and energy to spiritual, moral and intellectual development of the children. For example, pray with them (especially at night by the bedside), read to them, engage in sports with them and take them on other outings. Do not play the fools’ game of working long hours, trying to get ahead, while your children and spouse languish in neglect (Ephesians 6:4; Colossians 3:19-20).

Marriage and family are good gifts from a great God. They must be treated with tender care. Our Lord has provided a blueprint for us to follow. When we do, we will find the joys and blessings he intended from the beginning when he put a man and woman together in this holy covenant.

Book Notice: Introduction to Global Missions

Global missionsIf you’ve got any interest at all in global missions, you’ll want to make sure you purchase and read Introduction to Global Missions, by Zane Pratt, David Sills, and Jeff Walters.[1] The authors have significant and extended experience in missions and in higher education. The book distinguishes itself from many other introductory texts because it is concise, lucidly written, and theologically-driven.

The book’s 13 chapters are divided into four main sections: Biblical and Theological Foundations for Global Missions (chs. 2-4), Historical Foundations for Global Missions (chs. 5-6), Culture and Global Missions (chs. 7-8), and The Practice of Global Missions (chs. 9-13). The first section introduces the reader to the biblical and theological foundations of mission. The second section recounts the historical spread of the gospel. Section three focuses on key 21st century anthropological and cultural issues significant to missiology. Finally, section four discusses the practice of mission dealing with topics like church planting, discipleship, and the local church on mission.

The book is written from a distinctly evangelical perspective. Each author roots himself in biblical authority. The biblical and theological section is, well, very biblical and theological. The historical section not only traces the history of missions but also gives warnings about when and how missions have gotten “off track.” Significantly, the cultural and anthropological section is thoroughly conversant with the social sciences and yet treats Scripture as its supreme norm. Finally, the practical section offers the reader a treatment of strategies and practices which are shaped by Scripture.

Introduction to Global Missions is an excellent introductory treatment of global missions. It is designed to be the perfect volume for a one-semester course on global mission providing the reader with a comprehensive and contemporary survey of missiology. This is well written book that is very accessible, serving perfectly as course material for a college or seminary. Highly recommended. So pick it up here.

 

[1] Zane Pratt, M. David Sills, and Jeff K. Walters, Introduction to Global Missions (Nashville: B&H, 2014).

J.D. Greear on Idolatry

Every Thursday afternoon at Between the Times we highlight the writing of Southeastern alum, J.D. Greear, Pastor of The Summit Church in Raleigh-Durahm, North Carolina. This week J.D. offers 5 insights into the reality of idolatry in today’s culture.

Here’s an excerpt from the post:

“Most modern people don’t quite get the Bible’s obsession with idolatry. We think of idolatry as an ancient problem for backwards people who bowed down to statues, not a relevant one for sophisticated folks like us. But we aren’t beyond idolatry. We simply dress it up in different clothes.”

Read the full article here.