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4 Reasons Submission in Marriage Appears Controversial  

6 min read
The Bible says husbands will rule over their wives (Genesis 3: 16). However, we have gone out of context by making this statement a one-way activity. Remember, God expects both husband and wife to owe a responsibility to each other! 
The beauty of submission in marriage is evident in the looks

The beauty of submission in marriage is evident in the looks

God meant well for both men and women when He allowed us to live together as husband and wife. He pictured what life would look like decades ahead and felt we need to have companions. Submission in marriage has, however, raised eyebrows among many women.  

But why are women uncomfortable?  

What’s the cause of their divisive mind?  

Why are more women walking out of their marriages?  

I’m a diehard supporter of marriage for life and I don't intend to change my mind. But I need to point out a few concerns. In the course of my research, I have found four thorny issues affecting submission in marriage.  

Let’s begin by hearing what the Lord says. 

The Bible on Submission in Marriage 

In Ephesians 5: 21, it’s written, “submit yourselves to one another because of your reverence for Christ.” 

1 Corinthians 11: 3 tells us, “But I want you to understand that Christ is supreme over every man, the husband is supreme over his wife, and God is supreme over Christ.”  

Colossians 3: 18-19 says, “Wives, submit to your husbands, for that is what you should do as Christians. Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.” 

Do we realize the three scriptures all point to Christ?  

Can we capture the fact that the three scriptures speak to both husbands and wives?  

Do we also notice marriage is a give-and-take between the two consenting parties?  

Lastly, there is a hierarchy of command! 

The beauty of submission in marriage is evident in the looks
The beauty of submission in marriage is evident in the looks

Take the example of the human body. Each part of the body has a responsibility. The eyes cannot walk, and neither can the legs see! Hearing is for the ears while the mouth speaks. The body parts cannot shift roles! 

God also placed a hierarchy of command upon the body parts! 

The eyes see first, then the hands pick an item, or the legs move! They seem to coordinate well.  

So, what happens to the body that houses these parts?  

If one part of the body goes wrong, it misleads the rest! 

Submission in marriage is a product of the mind. Our subconscious mind acts according to what we feed it.  

Now, let’s see some of the detractors of submission in marriage.  

  1. Ego 
  1. Financial Stability 
  1. Comparison 
  1. Competition 

Where do we go wrong with Ego in Marriage? 

The ego is good. It builds our self-esteem and gives us a sense of belonging, mainly to our territory. "Territory" here means "where we have a say." The family is one such territory. Other places where we could have a voice above others are in the workplaces, though not important for now.  

So, how does ego interfere with submission in marriage? 

When we overdo anything, destruction has to follow! 

The Bible says husbands will rule over their wives (Genesis 3: 16). However, we have gone out of context by making this statement a one-way activity. Remember, God expects both husband and wife to owe a responsibility to each other! 

Husbands are the appointed heads of the family. But God did not appoint them to oppress, frustrate, humiliate, dominate, and silence their wives!  

God used the word LOVE.  

These examples I’ve given cannot sit on the same table with love! 

A controlled ego keeps the character in check. An uncontrolled ego invites pride and selfishness at the expense of the affected person. If this happens often, the weaker person begins to place one leg in the marriage and another outside the marriage.  

Then what happens? 

Submission in marriage fails to work out! 

The Ugly Side of Financial Stability 

Life without finances is like death. When God said money is the root cause of all evil, he did not mean we need to live in poverty! After all, He also said we’ve got to work to eat! What do we work for? Money of course! 

Financial freedom is the best thing that would happen to anyone. Imagine paying bills promptly and living without debt! Who doesn’t want to live in peace? 

Financial stability has, however, eaten into submission in marriage. Both husbands and wives have fallen into the trap and undermined their spouses! 

When God blesses the work of our hands, the evil one gets annoyed and places another hurdle ahead. We get lost in the blessings and forget to pray until we meet another difficulty! 

The devil is very cunning. We may not lose our finances, but he always wants to make sure we lose something.  

When finances meddle in our marriages
Money is both good and bad. We need to control it.

Feelings of the ability to stand on our own, especially for women begin to set in. They get coupled with actions that subvert submission in marriage. We begin to magnify small mistakes. It sometimes makes situations get out of hand and just like that, the evil one wins.  

Financial stability for husbands who have misused their egos sinks the marriage into a filthy pit. It becomes a double tragedy and could get unbearable for any wife.  

Effects of Comparing Marriage Notes 

A Christian marriage takes place between one man and one woman. Just like our fingerprints are different, each marriage is unique.  

My ways of submitting to my spouse could be totally different from yours! 

When we share marriage experiences, we need not expect to transform our spouses into what we expect them to be but rather what God expects of them. If anything, a wife and a husband need to blend to come up with a finished product that may be quite different from that of another marriage!  

Our journeys to a peaceful marriage differ!  

We take different roads to attain financial freedom! 

The values we impact on our children may be similar under the umbrella of Christianity. Even so, there must be things we want our kids to do in our own thought way! 

We can’t have everything that another couple has! 

When we compare our marriages, we only need to pick what works for us.  

In some cases, comparison misleads especially in young couples. It ends up causing tension. It’s better to avoid comparison completely if we are unable to use it in the right way.  

Marriage is sacred. Submission in marriage is God’s command.  

Couples or Competitors? 

Submission in marriage is only possible when we embrace our responsibilities and avoid encroaching where we haven’t been invited.  

Each of us has a personal life. Then we have one life as a couple. The way we look at things may not be similar due to our personalities.  

Submission in marriage requires each one of us to take our positions. A husband takes the lead role as the head of the family. It doesn’t mean his decisions are always correct! When he is wrong, we need to make corrections without making him feel he’s losing his ego! 

The way we present our corrections determines what happens next. Either he will drop his decision for ours, or he will proceed against our will.

Never tamper with emotional connection in marriage.
Support is the keyword.

Likewise, a wife deserves respect and appreciation for her suggestions no matter how small. Even if she’s just a praying wife, we need to honor that. Her proposals need to be discussed and turned down respectfully.  

When both parties feel their opinions must carry the day, something slips off their hands. Communication and trust get broken. And that's unhealthy competition!

How then would we expect anyone to submit while in pain?  

Let’s not run away from the fact that we are Christians and human at the same time! 

When Submission in Marriage Works 

Everything that involves the nuclear family’s present or future needs to be placed on a weighing scale. I mean, it needs to be discussed and a consensus reached.  

Whoever is not happy with the verdict finds it easier to accept and move on if their opinions got respected though not implemented. 

We all make mistakes. Let’s learn lessons from our failures. Blaming our spouses will only make matters worse.  

Marriage is a give and take. We need to treat our spouses the way we expect them to handle us.  

There is no specific blueprint for marriage. Different marriages do not handle similar situations in the same way.  

We need to be more cautious when good things come our way. For example, when we get a promotion at work! The enemy of marriage hides under the blessing and is likely to show up if not forcefully barred.  

Submission in marriage, when done well, makes matrimony a beautiful thing. Now, are you ready to make adjustments to accommodate your spouse? Let’s hear what you have to say in the comments.  

4 thoughts on “4 Reasons Submission in Marriage Appears Controversial  

  1. This is a great post… in depth, and I read through it all. There is many insights in there

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