One of my favoriate passages in the NT is Ephesians 5.
I like it because it’s immensely practical, and yet theologically dense at the same time. The text has to do with living a holy life within a community of faith, as well as within the smallest community, a family.
Paul uses marriage as a picture of how Christ relates to the church, but in a secondary sense, it is a great passage to direct us about how marriage should work.
Husbands should be the “head” of the wife (Eph 5:23), taking the lead and being willing to face the consequences..
Husbands should “love” their wives, to the point of death (Eph 5:25). This should poke holes in any man’s desire to make “head” the equivalent of “overlord” – it’s not (cf. Matt 20:25, Mark 10:42, 2Cor 1:24).
As is always the case in the Bible, leadership is about setting aside your own personal rights and emptying yourself just as Jesus did (cf. Phil 2:1-11).
To be a good husband, you should ask yourself these kinds of questions
- Will I put my wife first in all that I do?
- Will I give my best time and energy to her?
- After Christ, is your wife the most important person or thing in your life?
- Will your wife know this by what I do?
- Will this be plain to those around us?”
- If not, why not? What can I do to show people I love and cherish my wife…
How to be a good husband? Die. Die to yourself, your desires, your dreams, your wants… and make new ones. As Eph 5 tells us, everyone naturally takes care of themselves, you need to take care of your wife with the same passion. It’s not about being fair and balanced with your family goals, it’s about putting her first… that’s what being a Biblical leader is about. It’s not a head-trip (literally) because you’re “in charge,” but it’s a privilege and a responsibility for you to ensure that your wife feels loved (because she is… by Christ, but also by you).