Husbands Love Your Wives

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Eph 5:25 – Husbands Love Your Wives

[Study Aired June 14, 2020]

Our study today is being given because it has been requested by more than one person. Today’s subject will be addressed to us men as husbands, and tomorrow night’s study will be addressed to all of our wives. We are admonished to ‘love our wives’ because we just naturally fail to do so, as we are told in:

Mal 2:11  Judah hath dealt treacherously, and an abomination is committed in Israel and in Jerusalem; for Judah hath profaned the holiness of the LORD which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god.
Mal 2:12  The LORD will cut off the man that doeth this, the master and the scholar, out of the tabernacles of Jacob, and him that offereth an offering unto the LORD of hosts.
Mal 2:13  And this have ye done again, covering the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping, and with crying out, insomuch that he regardeth not the offering any more, or receiveth it with good will at your hand.
Mal 2:14  Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the LORD hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant.
Mal 2:15  And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.
Mal 2:16  For the LORD, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away: for one covereth violence with his garment, saith the LORD of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously.
Mal 2:17  Ye have wearied the LORD with your words. Yet ye say, Wherein have we wearied him? When ye say, Every one that doeth evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and he delighteth in them; or, Where is the God of judgment?

It is foolish to even suggest that one sex is just naturally more righteous than the other when the scriptures teach clearly that “they… that… compare themselves among themselves are not wise [and that] all have sinned and come short of the glory of God”:

Rom 3:23  For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

2Co 10:12  For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

Lord willing, we will never make the mistake of the feminists of this world who actually believe that women are just naturally superior to men. Women certainly are different from men, but men do not have a corner on sin, rebellion, or disobedience to the words of the Lord. Indeed “…all have sinned and come short of the glory of God”.

One other point that must be made before we begin this study is that it is so critical that a couple “be of the same mind” – that mind being “the mind of Christ”, that marriage outside of the mind of Christ is forbidden if you are a single believer.

1Co 7:39  The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord.

Those with unbelieving spouses are given specific instructions on how to deal with that situation, but our talk today is addressed to husbands who are believers, with the understanding that a wife who has no use for scripture is an issue for another study.

Let’s begin our study by analyzing these first two verses:

Mal 2:11  Judah hath dealt treacherously, and an abomination is committed in Israel and in Jerusalem; for Judah hath profaned the holiness of the LORD which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god.
Mal 2:12  The LORD will cut off the man that doeth this, the master and the scholar, out of the tabernacles of Jacob, and him that offereth an offering unto the LORD of hosts.

Of course, these words apply to us all, but today we are going to concentrate on their application to us as husbands of our physical wives whose physical treatment given to them by us as physical husbands actually reflects our spiritual treatment of Christ.

Ephesians 5 is called ‘the marriage chapter’, and most of Ephesians 5 is directed to us as husbands because we as husbands ought to be leaders and the one in the marriage to set the proper example  for our wives to follow:

Eph 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Eph 5:26  That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Eph 5:27  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.
Eph 5:28  So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
Eph 5:29  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:
Eph 5:30  For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
Eph 5:31  For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
Eph 5:32  This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

Just for the record, no man has proper Godly love for his own wife unless he is being faithful to these words:

1Jn 5:2  By this we know that we love the children of God [including and especially our physical wives], when we love God, and keep his commandments.
1Jn 5:3  For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments [including Eph 5:28] are not grievous.

We will return to these verses of Ephesians 5, but here in Malachi 2 we are told that Judah, who is married to the Lord, stands accused of the “abomination… of… having married the daughter of a strange god.”

The Lord tells us He simply will not tolerate such abominable behavior and warns us that He will “cut off the man that does this. Inwardly we have all perpetrated this abomination by being joined to the great whore for so many years of our lives.

1Co 6:15  Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid.
1Co 6:16  What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.

This study concerns another application of this indictment which is both inward and outward. As we continue to analyze the message in these verses of Malachi, we will be given some essential instructions for keeping our physical marriages intact and free from any abominable actions against our physical wives. In so doing we will be given the blessings of both the physical and the spiritual realms. We cannot be the spiritual bride of Christ while we are being unfaithful to our physical wives.

Christ made it abundantly clear that marital fidelity involves the spirit of our minds much more than just our physical actions. The two are inseparable because we are clearly told:

Mat 5:28  But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

This verse applies to our outward physical marriages as much as it applies within concerning our sins against Christ and His Father, and these verses here in Malachi will make that very clear:

Mal 2:13  And this have ye done again, covering the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping, and with crying out, insomuch that he regardeth not the offering any more, or receiveth it with good will at your hand.

The Lord is not accusing Judah of physical adultery here any more than Christ accused the scribes and Pharisees of physical adultery when they accused before Him the woman caught in physical adultery.

Joh 8:5  Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
Joh 8:6  This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.
Joh 8:7  So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
Joh 8:8  And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.
Joh 8:9  And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldesteven unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
Joh 8:9  And Jesus bending back up, and having seen no one but the woman, He said to her, Woman, where are those, the accusers of you? Did not one give judgment against you?
Joh 8:11  She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.

I am not giving this admonition today because anyone in our fellowship is physically cheating on his wife. I am hoping, however, that before this study is over, we husbands, myself included, will “be convicted by [our] own conscience” to be aware of how we have mistreated the ‘wife of [our] youth’.  We all know that “through Jesus Christ” we can do much better than what we have done in the past.

Php 4:13  I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

Now let’s continue here in Malachi 2, and I will repeat verse 13 to give verse 14 context:

Mal 2:13  And this have ye done again [dealt treacherously with our wives], covering the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping, and with crying out, insomuch that he regardeth not the offering any more, or receiveth it with good will at your hand.
Mal 2:14  Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the LORD hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant.

Physical adultery is not the only way to deal treacherously with our wives. A spirit of pride can drive the beast, which we are, to very coldly ignore the wife of our youth instead of humbling ourselves and seeking to talk about this evil spirit bound up in both sexes The Lord has sent that evil spirit to come between us and our wives to show us how carnal we husbands still are.

Speaking from personal, childish, carnal-babe-in-Christ experience, I would at one time have divorced my own faithful “wife of my youth” before I would have admitted that I had anything to do with our problems. She was at fault, and I was going to retain my integrity with my dying breath. I was Job personified, and at that time I had no clue why the Lord was treating a man who “loved God and eschewed evil” in the manner he was treating Job. I was, without realizing it, in such deep dark ignorance of my own self-righteousness that my self-righteousness reigned supreme. Had the Lord not been merciful and given my dear wife the humility to apologize for her little sins, which were nothing compared to my own self-righteousness, our marriage would not have survived.

Looking back over the first two years of our marriage it is a miracle the Lord kept us together. What strikes me looking back is how our worst conflicts as a couple were over the smallest matters. She would make a little insignificant decision without seeking my counsel, fail to be perfectly punctual, spend a little bit more on groceries than I thought prudent, fail to do exactly what I had asked… etc. etc.

Add to that dictatorial spirit, a totally unprovoked jealous spirit given me by the Lord, stemming from my own broken home as a 8-year-old third grader, and I must confess that I was indeed a treacherous husband whose works brought nothing to the table but condemnation and the certain need for the seven plagues of the wrath of God to wake me up from among the spiritually dead.

Now I want to share a personal experience which I pray will be used of the Lord to give you husbands some much-needed humility and wisdom. The one really memorable part of our various conflicts was the ‘making up’ when the Lord mercifully broke the ice and brought us back together. All married couples know exactly what I mean by that statement. Those memorable events in my case must be credited to my poor abused wife, because my own pride simply could not at that time be humbled. Any attempt at reconciliation from my wife was ignored day and night. I remember one time when not one word was exchanged between the two of us for three days. Such a spirit is in direct rebellion to this verse of scripture:

Eph 4:26  Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

According to the word of God, a couple especially should never let the sun go down upon their wrath with each other. ‘Making up’ is not only extremely enjoyable, it is also pleasing to the Lord for this reason:

1Co 7:1  Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.
1Co 7:2  Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.
1Co 7:3  Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.
1Co 7:4  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.
1Co 7:5  Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.

These words were inspired by the holy spirit. These things happened to the church in Corinth as types of us, and they are written for our admonition upon whom the ends of the ages are come:

1Co 10:11  Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

We are not given the exact “things written unto [the apostle Paul]”, but we are given his ideal answer, as well as his practical answer, both of which make clear that “the things [they] wrote [to Paul] concerned sexual relations within the marriage union.

Paul had been gifted to remain celibate, and he makes that clear with these words… “It is good for a man not to touch a woman… [and] …For I would that all men were even as I myself…” However, Paul knew that the gift he had been given was not given to the average member of the Lord’s body. Therefore, he acknowledges… “But every man has his proper gift of God, one after this manner and another after that”. When the apostle Paul says “every man has his proper gift… he was well aware that most men and most women were never intended of their Maker to remain celibate. Now look at one of the reasons he gives for marriage within the body of Christ:

1Co 7:2  Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.

This verse is in complete accord with verse 5:

1Co 7:5  Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.

Many marriages have been destroyed by Satan tempting a couple for their “incontinency”. The intervening verses provide the solution:

1Co 7:3  Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.
1Co 7:4  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.

If we husbands fail to acknowledge the Truth of those words, and we withhold ourselves from our wives sexually, we are inviting certain disaster, and the adversary, Satan, is having us for his lunch:

Gen 3:14  And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:

This is how the word ‘belly’ is used in the New Testament:

Rom 16:17  Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.
Rom 16:18  For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.

The adversary thrives on divisions. He “goes… upon [his] belly”, meaning he does what pleases him, and what pleases him most is being an adversary to every word of God. When we refuse to talk it out with our wives, we are “going upon [our] belly”, just as Peter who insisted that Christ did not need to die on the cross. Christ had just told Peter how blessed he was to be learning from the holy spirit:

Mat 16:15  He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
Mat 16:16  And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.
Mat 16:17  And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.
Mat 16:18  And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
Mat 16:19  And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

Just like Peter we, too, can go so quickly from being taught of the holy spirit to being “of [our] father the devil” (Joh 8:44) and begin treating our wives with no respect at all. These are the Lord’s very next recorded words to this same ‘Simon Barjona’:

Mat 16:21  From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killedand be raised again the third day.
Mat 16:22  Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee.
Mat 16:23  But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.

‘Savoring the things that be of men” is another way of telling us that we are ‘going upon our belly and eating the cursed dust’ of the serpent’s lunch. In three short verses, Peter went from acknowledging Christ as the Son of God, to attempting to call the shots and attempting to be the head of the man he had just acknowledged as “the Christ the Son of the living God”. Peter could not get past the words ‘be killed’. In effect He could not hear the words, “…and be raised again the third day”. The words, “…be killed” made him lose all his respect for ‘the Christ, the Son of the living God’.

Yes, Peter is a physical male, but we are all spiritual females in our relationship to Christ. In spirit every one of us, male and female, are being presented as a chaste virgin to one Husband, Christ. How we treat our wives is a direct reflection of how we are treating Christ, who tells us:

Mat 25:40  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

Surely we should be considering our own spouse as more than “one of the least of these my brothers”. Yet it is expedient that the Lord must command us:

Eph 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Eph 5:26  That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Eph 5:27  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.
Eph 5:28  So ought men to love their wives as their own bodiesHe that loveth his wife loveth himself.
Eph 5:29  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:
Eph 5:30  For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
Eph 5:31  For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.

These words are expedient because it is as natural as breathing to take our wives for granted and to disrespect the wife of our youth.

I remember fondly dating my wife and thinking at the time that I simply could never take her for granted. What a disappointment I was to myself and no doubt to her also. It was an embarrassingly short time before I was guilty of treating the wife of my youth treacherously and giving her a cold shoulder for the least infraction. Now when any of us as husbands gets upset with our wives, I want every one of you husbands to ask yourself, “Who is it that I am really upset with??” Answer that question within yourself in a manner which accords with the Word of God. With whom are we really upset when we are disappointed with our wives??

When we acknowledge that it is the Lord who is “working all things after the counsel of His own will, and that all things work together for good to them who love God and are the called according to His [own] purpose”, it becomes obvious and indisputable that it is the Lord Himself we are dealing with, even if our wife is a treacherous wife (Rom 8:28, Eph 1:11). “All things” means “all things”; the good and righteous, as well as the wicked and evil:

Pro 16:4  The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

Isa 45:7  I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

Amo 3:6  Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD hath not done it?

Now let’s look at the very next verse here in Amos 3:

Amo 3:7  Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.

What does that mean? The holy spirit goes on to tell us what that means, and it concludes with these words:

Amo 3:13  Hear ye, and testify in the house of Jacob, saith the Lord GOD, the God of hosts,
Amo 3:14  That in the day that I shall visit the transgressions of Israel upon him I will also visit the altars of Bethel: and the horns of the altar shall be cut off, and fall to the ground.
Amo 3:15  And I will smite the winter house with the summer house; and the houses of ivory shall perish, and the great houses shall have an end, saith the LORD.

What does all of this have to do with how we as husbands are dealing treacherously with our wives? It has everything in the world to do with how we treat our wives. Notice how similar these words to the Lord’s treacherous wife are to His words to us as treacherous husbands:

Mal 2:11  Judah hath dealt treacherously, and an abomination is committed in Israel and in Jerusalem; for Judah hath profaned the holiness of the LORD which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god.
Mal 2:12  The LORD will cut off the man that doeth this, the master and the scholar, out of the tabernacles of Jacob, and him that offereth an offering unto the LORD of hosts.
Mal 2:13  And this have ye done again, covering the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping, and with crying out, insomuch that he regardeth not the offering any more, or receiveth it with good will at your hand.
Mal 2:14  Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the LORD hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant.
Mal 2:15  And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.
Mal 2:16  For the LORD, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away: for one covereth violence with his garment, saith the LORD of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously.
Mal 2:17  Ye have wearied the LORD with your words. Yet ye say, Wherein have we wearied him? When ye say, Every one that doeth evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and he delighteth in them; or, Where is the God of judgment?

I look back on how merciless I was to the most wonderful wife in the world, and it is humiliating just to remember those days. I have been guilty of covering violence with my garments of self-righteousness, by treating others with more respect than my own wife. You will have done the same every time you disrespect your wife. Every time you uncover her nakedness before others by talking down to her, or about her, and giving her a cold shoulder in the daytime and turning your back on her in bed, you have dealt treacherously with your wife.

When the Lord does make our wives to be against us (Gen 3:20, the word ‘to’ should be ‘against’), it is for the very purpose  of demonstrating to us just how self-righteous we are and how we rob Him of His glory and disobey His words to us telling us:

Mal 2:11  Judah hath dealt treacherously, and an abomination is committed in Israel and in Jerusalem; for Judah hath profaned the holiness of the LORD which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god.
Mal 2:12  The LORD will cut off the man that doeth this, the master and the scholar, out of the tabernacles of Jacob, and him that offereth an offering unto the LORD of hosts.
Mal 2:13  And this have ye done again, covering the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping, and with crying out, insomuch that he regardeth not the offering any more, or receiveth it with good will at your hand.
Mal 2:14  Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the LORD hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant.

It is we who are treacherous husbands who “cover the altar  of the Lord with tears, with weeping, and with crying out” to the point that the Lord doesn’t even regard our crocodile tears or our hollow words because at this point He has sent to us the spirit of stubbornness and rebellion against the idea of having to submit to the fact that He is working all things, including our wives being against us (Gen 3:16), after the counsel of His own will, and that He has done so for the good of those who love Him and are the called according to His purpose. We put all our wife’s shortcomings upon her, and we leave God’s hand completely out of our thinking, and He will have no part of anyone denying that He makes all things for Himself, yes, even our own wickedness and the fact that it is He who has made our wives to be against us. He will have no part in us denying that it is He who “creates evil” and makes us and our wives to err from His ways and hardens our hearts from His fear:

Pro 16:4  The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

Isa 45:7  I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

Isa 63:17  O LORD, why hast thou made us to err from thy waysand hardened our heart from thy fear? Return for thy servants’ sake, the tribes of thine inheritance.

When we say we believe those words and still speak evil of and mistreat our wives, we are covering the altar of God with crocodile tears and fooling no one but ourselves. If we really believe that God Himself has made us to err from His ways and has hardened our hearts from His fear, then we will not act as if it is up to us or to our wives to change themselves.

It’s not the husband’s job to force his wife to change. We are all “His workmanship”, male or female, husband or wife (Ep 2:10). Christ sees what we will be and says “…yet she is [His] companion, and the wife of [His] Covenant”. Like our Lord we should seek to beautify our bride, always speak well of her and never uncover her nakedness before others.

Pro 10:12  Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins.

Pro 17:9  He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends.

Of all the people in the world to whom those two verses of scripture should apply, our wives should be first and foremost. Shame on us when we ever speak evil of our own flesh, our own wives.

The New Testament reaffirms this principle. Christ calls His wife “a glorious church”:

Eph 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Eph 5:26  That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Eph 5:27  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.

That is how we should present our wives before others. We should never, ever talk down to or about our wives. We should always seek to cover their nakedness, as the Lord covers our sins:

Jas 5:20  Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.

1Pe 4:8  And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves [especially husbands towards their wives]: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.

Why would the Lord accuse us as husbands of shedding crocodile tears over the way we have treated the wife of our youth? It is because we can hide nothing from Him even to this extent:

Pro 16:1  The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the LORD.

Now we can understand why King David said:

Psa 139:4  Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O LORD, you know it altogether.

What now should all of us who have wives get from knowing all this incredible knowledge? We should all repent of holding our wives responsible for their sins. Not one of us is responsible for anything in this life. We are accountable for nothing we do in this life, much less for what our spouse does in this life.

Yet the Lord can, and He will, cause every one of us to “give an accounting” for our deeds in our flesh:

Luk 16:2  And he called him, and said unto him, How is it that I hear this of thee? give an account of thy stewardship; for thou mayest be no longer steward.

2Co 5:10  For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.

1Pe 4:4  Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:
1Pe 4:5  Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.

An accountant “gives an account”, but an accountant is not accountable for the account he gives. So it is with us because “we are His workmanship” (Eph 2:10).

Eph 2:8  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9  Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Eph 2:10  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

If we truly believe that we are all what we are “not of ourselves… for we are His workmanship” then we will begin to stop condemning our wives for their sins, and start asking, “What is the Lord telling me about myself?”

I had a very Godly sister tell me just this week that she was on the verge of divorcing her husband when she prayed and asked the Lord to please change her husband and give him a love of the Truth. Then she said she realized her husband was just as much a work of the hand of the Lord as she was, and that she did not need a new husband as much as her husband needed a new wife.

Those words struck me as very profound, but it was only after we had finished our conversation that I realized why those words were so powerful to me. The reason was that it was exactly my own experience. After years of attempting to make my wife into what I wanted her to be, the Lord was merciful and actually brought me to see that what my wife needed was a new husband, a new repentant me who, Lord willing, will never again be a treacherous husband.

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