The leadership role that God has ordained for your marriage is NOT an excuse to “rule with an iron fist”. God has not called us to be domineering, but rather he has called us to love our wife like Christ loved the church. I challenge you to lead your wife by serving her and embrace the true scriptural meaning of biblical manhood.

A Challenge to Husbands

“Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her,” Ephesians 5:25 ESV

Perhaps the most cowardly man, that calls himself a follower of Christ, is the one who takes advantage of the leadership role that God has ordained for his marriage. What exactly do I mean? The man that leads his marriage with an iron fist is not actually leading, but rather he is a bully while at the same time a chicken.

Headship Equals Service

In the previous verses, we learn that the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church. (Ephesians 5:23). In God’s creative order, He ordained that the man of the marriage is to lead, and He gave the male the role of headship.

The headship role of the husband does not mean that he now has the right to “rule with an iron fist”. The husband does not assert his dominance over his wife for the sake of showing his power. Biblical manhood as a husband consists of serving your wife.

Consider the words of Ephesians 5:25: “Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.”

If we are commanded to love our wife in this manner, then Christian service to your spouse should be manifested. The leadership role of the man equals serving your wife. The husband has been called to lead their wife by loving her, providing for her, and serving her.

Our Model, Christ Jesus

As husbands, we have been given a tremendous responsibility. That responsibility includes loving our wife like Christ loved the church. Although this task may seem daunting, (especially since Christ died for the Church), we have been given a perfect model of biblical manhood by Christ Himself.

Although we are imperfect beings, we have a perfect man to model our marriage after. Although we have all fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23), we serve a model who was tempted in every way, yet without sin (Hebrews 4:15). Marriage may be difficult but as a husband, we have a perfect model, namely Jesus Christ.

Husbands, it’s Time to Man Up!

When you read this subheading, you might be thinking about raising your fists. Whenever someone tells you to “man up” you probably think that someone is taking a shot at your masculinity. If you are using your headship position as an excuse for verbal, mental, or physical abuse, I am questioning your masculinity. “Manning Up” according to the world may mean showing how strong, cool, or rich you are.

But “Manning Up” according to the Bible is completely opposite to the world’s standard of a strong man. “Manning Up” according to the Bible consists of submitting to Christ and therefore leading your wife in Christian service. Biblical manhood, according to Holy Scripture, consists of providing for your family and leading your family.

Husbands, I encourage you to MAN UP and stop making crude jokes about your wife. Man up, and treat your woman with respect. How awful would it be if Jesus would have called the church, his bride, a bunch of Hussies? [Although I prefer not to use such language, this word is inserted as an example to ungodliness].

Praise Jesus that He died for his bride, and praise Jesus that He is coming back for his bride. It’s time to drop the crude talk about your wife. It’s time to serve your wife. It’s time to love your wife like Christ loved the Church. Quite simply, it’s time to man up!

Devotion Written By

<a href="" target="_self">Austin McCormick</a>

Austin McCormick

Senior Pastor of Sheppard Baptist Church, Husband to Rachel, Graduate of Spurgeon College (BA, Biblical Studies), CBTS Student (MA, Theological Studies) Host of Covenant Podcast.

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