C.H. Spurgeon

Sinners, let me address you with words of life; Jesus wants nothing from you, nothing whatsoever, nothing done, nothing felt; he gives both work and feeling. Ragged, penniless, just as you are, lost, forsaken, desolate, with no good feelings, and no good hopes, still Jesus comes to you, and in these words of pity he addresses you, "Him that cometh unto me I will in no wise cast out."

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Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Submission to a Dictator

At a group I often visit, while we were discussing the qualifications of a deacon – namely ‘ruling one’s own house well’ - I keep seeing the word 'dictator' stating the husband should not be one. So, here is my question:

I believe most Christian Bible readers will agree that Christ and the church are the examples set for us concerning the husband and wife. I would also assume that we agree that Christ rules over the church, as the church is to be in full submission to Christ. [Ephesians 5:22-33]

I looked up the word 'dictator' - 'a person exercising absolute power, esp. a ruler who has absolute, unrestricted control in a government without hereditary succession.'

According to this definition, is Christ a 'dictator?' If so, and if the man is to be as Christ in the marriage relationship, what does that make him biblically? Is it not possible to be a 'dictator' (exercising absolute power) while also showing 'love, care, and thought for those following?' This does not mean one cannot listen to his wife's thoughts, but biblically (as Christ is to the church) the husband has the responsibility before God as to making the final decision in all matters. Even if he decides to let the wife make all decisions, he is responsible to God for such. For, would not Christ be yet responsible to God if He were to let the church do as it chooses?

Is it just that the word 'dictator' leaves a bad taste in our mouth, or do we just dislike the idea of one having 'absolute rule over us' kind of like when we rebel against the things of God in our own personal lives?

As one has said, Christ rules perfectly and the church still rebels against Him. It is not always the one ruling who is at fault, often it is us who wish to rebel against the rules.

In asking this question, it was said, ‘you cannot press the analogy completely in the relationships of Christ to the church and the husband to the wife.’ So, I ask, how ‘incompletely’ do we press it?

It has also been said, a husband ‘EARNS her submission by his leadership.' To me, this is like asking, 'Which comes first, the wife submitting or the husband loving?' I mean 1 Peter 3:1-6 speaks of 'ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives,' so it is possible for a wife to be married to one she may not really 'respect' as a leader of the home, but she is still called upon to submit to him. I believe the same is true to loving a wife that 'obeys not the word.'

Question: If a man must EARN his wife's submission, how does the wife EARN his love? Isn't this where we find ourselves in today's society. The husband will not love because his wife will not submit the way he believes she should, and the wife will not submit because her husband doesn't love her the way she believes he should? I do not find 'EARN' in the verses, I only find 'DO IT.'

Wives are commanded to ‘submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.’
Husbands are commanded to ‘love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.’

Quite possibility we spend too much time thinking ‘she isn’t worth loving’ and ‘he isn’t worth submitting to’ all the while failing to see that it is us rebelling against the very Word of God. For the wife is not commanded to submit if her husband loves her correctly, nor is the husband commanded to love his wife if she submits to him correctly, we are simply told to obey God which has told us to submit and love. No, we husbands and wives are not perfect, but does that really give us justification in disobeying God?


BEAST said...

Command, obedience, obeisance, dictatorships, servility, subservience.........where does it stop?

Try thinking liberty, free will, freedom of speech, democracy instead. These are things you will absolutely not find in that bible of yours.


Sean said...

Beast, democracy is the will of the majority imposed over the will of the minority. Democracy does not equal freedom, enable free will, or freedom of speech which is why those rights are specifically protected FROM the will of the majority.

Historically, most dictatorships have been atheist. The closest to a Christian dictatorship that I've seen is that of John Cavlin's Geneva and even he had to answer for his actions.

The book of Acts is entirely devoted to chronicalling the persecution of Christians for speaking freely. So is the book of Daniel, Isaiah, Exodus and so on.

The words of Indiana Jones father come to mind: "Perhaps you should try reading books instead of burning them."

BEAST said...

Most Dictatorships are Atheist? Lolz.

Sean probably is not a keen study of history: I can start of with the Catholic Church and its involvements in Crusades and the Witchhunts; the muslims and their terrible conquest of the middle east under the Prophet Muhammad; Turkey's ethnic cleansing the the Armenian Jews, the Christian barbaric hordes who sacked Rome, amongst many others.

Sure, Stalin was atheist, and so was Mao, but they murdered not because of atheism. They needed to sacrifice lives to consolidate power and national unity, not for atheism. Nor was atheism a valid reason for these murders.


John Bunyan

To be saved is to be preserved in the faith to the end. 'He that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.' (Mt. 24:13) Not that perseverance is an accident in Christianity, or a thing performed by human industry; they that are saved 'are kept by the power of God, through faith unto salvation.' (1 Pet. 1: 3-6) But perseverance is absolutely necessary to the complete saving of the soul…. He that goeth to sea with a purpose to arrive at Spain, cannot arrive there if he be drowned by the way; wherefore perseverance is absolutely necessary to the saving of the soul.