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Sermon Text: Ephesians 5:21-33 (KJV)
Introductory quote from MacArthur: “It is time for Christians to declare and live what the Bible has always declared and what the church has always taught until recent years: ‘God’s standard for marriage and the family produces meaning, happiness, blessedness, reward, and fulfillment—and it is the only standard that can produce those results.’”<note:John F. MacArthur, Jr., Ephesians, MacArthur New Testament Commentary (Chicago: Moody Press, 1986), 272.>
1. The Role of Believers: Servant Submission (to one another)
21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
Good insight from MacArthur: “Be subject is from hupotassō, originally a military term meaning to arrange or rank under. Spirit–filled Christians rank themselves under one another. The main idea is that of relinquishing one’s rights to another person.”<note:Ibid., 276.>
2. The Role of Wives: Supporting Submission
The biblical definition of submission, according to Piper, is: “is the divine calling of a wife to honor and affirm her husband’s leadership and help carry it through according to her gifts.”<note:John Piper, This Momentary Marriage: A Parable of Permanence (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2009), 80.>
22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.
23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.
24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
3. The Role of Husbands: Loving Leadership
The biblical definition of headship, according to Piper, is: “the divine calling of a husband to take primary responsibility for Christlike, servant leadership, protection, and provision in the home.”<note:Ibid.>
25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
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.
28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:
30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
4. The Arrangement of Marriage: Leaving and Cleaving
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.
5. The Analogy of Marriage: Christ and His Church
32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
6. The Application of Marriage: Divinely Designed
33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.
I was recently asked in a discussion board post in seminary on how I would give a discussion on singleness and sexual purity to a group of students at a secular university. Below is the text of my discussion board post (the only image in my Bible software that shows a college discussion is the one above with a female speaker, so please do not take the clip art image literally).
I would begin the discussion by stating that I am a born-again, Bible believing Christian, washed in the blood of Jesus Christ, and that I am single as well as sexually pure and a virgin (and I am 25 so I endured through my teenage years and through college and seminary because of the grace of God through Jesus Christ).
If one adheres to a fully biblical stance on marriage and remarriage interpreting the Bible literally, than remarriage is only permitted after the death of a spouse. Divorce is not permitted. Piper states it well when he said: “What God has joined, only God can separate.”<note:John Piper, This Momentary Marriage: A Parable of Permanence (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2009), 159.> Christ’s teaching in Mark 10 affirms this truth when Christ said:
Mark 10:8-9 (KJV)
8 And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh.
9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
Galatians 3:1–5:12—Controversy. Paul focuses on the Galatians’ experience in the law and grace controversy and argues from various positions for the case of grace. •Perverting of Galatians: they had been bewitched in this controversy. •Promises for Abraham: they were given not through the law but through faith which is the grace way. •Purpose of the law: the law’s purpose was to be a schoolmaster to point us to Christ. •Position of heir: this argument says the son, not the servant, is heir of the Master’s estate; the son represents grace, the servant the bondage of the law. •Practice of Galatians: because they had been bewitched, they observed many of things from the ceremonial law, and these observances were not compatible with the Gospel of grace. –Butler’s Daily Bible Reading
I had the privilege of sharing with some men at a church Bows and BBQ today.
The Apostle John’s words were my text:
“I am writing to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven for his name’s sake. I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one.” 1 John 2:12-14 ESV
Rejoice! We are forgiven because of Jesus. I don’t know what you’ve done, but you don’t know what I’ve done. I know the horrors of my heart and I know that Jesus has forgiven me. I don’t just know Jesus name. I know Him and He’s changed my life. But the question we all have to ask ourselves, is do we know Him. The eternal God I know! Another thing we must ask ourselves is does God’s Word abide in us? Does it take root when we hear it preached, catch something on the radio or talk about it with a friend. Do you want to be strong. The only way to overcome the evil one and the evils of our day is for God’s Word to take root in us, in our hearts and transform us. And it all starts with knowing that our sins are forgiven by Jesus.
While welcoming a new baby into the world can be an exciting new opportunity for couples, it can also add a sense of pressure and anticipation, especially for couples expecting their first baby. Below are some biblical counseling tidbits for couples expecting a newborn baby.
Mark 10:7-9 states: “For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.” (KJV) Marriage is a covenant relationship between each other and with God. Marriage is stronger than mere feelings or even circumstances. Marriage is rooted in a covenant made with each other and with God in the presence of God, and this is a beautiful picture of the union between the church and Christ.
What is marriage?
Marriage, as beautifully defined by Piper, is the covenant relationship between a man and a woman ultimately for the glory of God.<note:John Piper, This Momentary Marriage: A Parable of Permanence (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2009), 24.> Marriage was designed by our heavenly Father and Creator, God, who patterned the design of marriage after the beautiful covenant relationship between Christ and the church.<note:Ibid., 25.> The foundation of marriage stems from the Grace of God bestowed upon us who should therefore, extend this grace to our spouse.<note:Ibid., 43.>
There are few books that I recommend for all to read, but this list represents a formulation of a Christian worldview in essential areas. The first and foremost reading of any believer should be studying the Word of God. I have included books in this list only titles that I truly believe are important and have prayerfully selected. I have not included everything I have read. For a more complete list, for you readers, of what I have read follow me on Goodreads. Read more
Introduction: John MacArthur stated it best concerning the leadership of the church when he said: “The ministry, effectiveness, and testimony of any church is largely a reflection of its leaders.”<note:John F. MacArthur, Jr., Philippians, MacArthur New Testament Commentary (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 2001), 89.> This Bible study on Paul’s pastoral epistle, inspired by the Holy Spirit, to his younger spiritual brother in Christ, Timothy, overviews the qualifications of pastors in order to fulfill their duties in ministry service to the Lord. MacArthur again states it beautifully when he says: “Since godly leaders have always been the backbone of the church, it is essential that they be qualified.”<note:MacArthur, Philippians, 92.Ibid., 92.>