By releasing control that God never gave us as wives, we are free. We no longer struggle to take what is not ours. We are free to experience God’s best – a Bible paradox.
Daughters of Sarah Bible Study session 6 (1 Peter 2:10-16).
We Are Victorious
“Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy” (2:10). We are part of the people of God and partakers of his mercy just as our husbands are.
“Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul” (2:11). Because of the wonderful calling we have, we are urged to live above our sinful desires.
I hate submission to my husband! I would like to take charge of my home and my life and tell my husband he can like it or lump it! That is sinful desire warring against my soul! I abstain from that. I have a higher calling. I am chosen for obedience to my worthy God!
“But you don’t know my husband!” you exclaim. Is your husband pagan (non-Christian) in reality or in action? Here is God’s desire for you:
“Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right” (2:12-14).
I’ll be honest, ladies. I could never submit to my husband for my husband’s sake. Much as I love him, I couldn’t submit out of love and respect for him. I am too independent. I’ve got my own ideas of how to run the show. But for my Lord’s sake? My Lord who chose the cross for me and became my Savior? For him my armor of resistance melts. “For the Lord’s sake” I choose to submit to every authority instituted among mankind — including authority in the home.
“For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men” (2:15).
Our own words often provoke our husbands to “ignorant and foolish talk.” If we are always fighting against our husbands, the Bible addresses us: “Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife” (Proverbs 25:24). Again, the Bible says, “A quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping on a rainy day (Proverbs 27:15).
Ouch! Are you a quarrelsome wife? Are you constantly nagging?
The Bible does not have anything to say about a quarrelsome husband — only a quarrelsome wife. There is a good reason for this. Our husbands are correct in seeking to take control of our homes. Now, if they are lost, they may not be aware that this leadership is their God-given position. But they still instinctively seek control.
When we are quarrelsome with what God has given to them and not to us, we are the ones in rebellion against God. But when we choose obedience to our God and allow him to mold our hearts into the Proverbs 31 woman, our value will be far more than rubies: “A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies” (Proverbs 31:10).
We Are Free
When we present ourselves as this woman, offering the rubies of a Godly wife to our husbands, they no longer have to clamor for what is rightfully theirs. We gladly give it in God’s love. We exchange our quarrelsome nature for treasures far above rubies. We present this treasure as a gift to our God and he gives us the grace to humble ourselves and present it to our husbands as well.
“Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God” (2:16). Only when we submit our willful nature to the loving control of our God are we really free to be all God made us to be. We are afraid to submit to our husbands. We hold onto what we perceive to be our “rights,” and in so doing we are keeping ourselves imprisoned in a household of bitterness and rebellion. We live in misery. We are constantly going against the grain.
We need to confess our willfulness to God and allow him to free us to experience his peace, joy, love, and hope in our homes. No matter what our circumstances, God wants to provide something better than what our quarrelsomeness can provide for us. He wants to make us free!
The Bible is full of paradoxes. Here is one: By giving up the control that God never gave us as wives to start with, we make ourselves free. We no longer have to struggle to get that which is not ours. We are free to experience God’s best for us!
Forgive us, Lord, for our rebellion against the authority you have set in our home. Thank you that you have a better plan for us. Thank you for giving us victory through Christ who sets us free. Amen.
Questions for Discussion
- Why are we, by nature, rebellious against the authority God set in our homes?
- Why does the Bible speak against quarrelsome wives but not quarrelsome husbands?
- If our husbands are quarrelsome with us, what does God’s Word teach us to do?
- How does holding onto our own rights keep us from being free?
- How can we find victory and freedom through submission to Christ?
Scripture taken from New International Version unless otherwise noted