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Submission "as unto Christ".
A1 | Eph. 5: 22-24. Wives submit, as the church to Christ.
B1 | Eph. 5: 25-33. Husbands love, as Chris the church.
A2 | Eph. 6: 1-3. Children obey in the Lord.
B2 | Eph. 6: 4. Fathers train in nurture of the Lord.
A3 | Eph. 6: 5-8. Slaves obey, as unto the Christ.
B3 | Eph. 6: 9. Masters do the same, for Master in heaven.
A great deal of harmful discussion has revolved around the question, "Should the
bride say obey at the marriage service?" When Paul treats of the social fabric and its
inter-relation, he reserves the word "obey" to children and slaves, with their correlatives
"bring up" and "forbear threatening", using the higher word "submit" of the wife. This
word "submit" is wrongly translated "obedient to their own husbands" in Titus 2: 5. The
only passage where wives are said to obey is I Pet. 3: 6, which grows out of the
submission of verses 1-5. A wife who has submitted to the Divine arrangement will of
necessity "obey" when obedience is demanded, but it is the result of a willing compliance
with the Lord's will, a grateful seizing of the opportunity to typify the church's relation to
the Lord, a very different thing from that obedience of the child, which is "right", and
according to commandment.
The relation of wives and husbands.
"Wives submit . . . . . as the church unto Christ."
"Husbands love . . . . . as Christ the church."
It will be seen that we are upon higher ground than that of I Cor. 11: & 14: and
I Tim. 2: There the apostle goes back to
Nature and Creation.
"For man is not of the woman, but woman of the man, neither was man created for the
woman; but the woman for the man . . . . . . . Doth not even nature itself teach you" (I
Cor. 11: 1-16).
"Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to
speak; but they are commanded to be submissive, as also saith the law" (I Cor. 14: 34).
Creation and Sin.
"For Adam was first formed, then Eve, and Adam was not deceived, but the woman
being deceived has come to be in transgression" (I Tim. 2: 9-15).
The apostle had all these courses open before him to enforce his point, but he passes
them all by for the greater and higher motive used in Eph. 5: To the wife the apostle
says, "The husband is the head of the wife", but to the husband he says, "Love your