"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it."
A husband is the “house-band,” the one who holds together and strengthens the home.1 The Greek word translated “husband” in the New Testament has two significant features that are important in light of today’s society. First, the “husband” is a male. Secondly, he is of age (see Thayer). He is old enough and responsible enough to care for the needs of his family.
“Love your wives,”
An easy to understand command from the Lord. “Love-agapao your wives.” “Do what’s best for her, in the light of eternity, regardless of the consequences.”2 Love her as the “weaker vessel.”3
“Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered” (1 Peter 3:7).
Love her with real, concrete deeds, not just empty words.
“My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth” (1 John 3:18).
A godly husband is lovingly devoted to his wife. In scripture, the husband and wife, that is the male and female relationship are the only possible one there is.
“Even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.”
Men, our only standard for loving our wives is Jesus Christ, and how He loved the Church.
“In Christian domestic life, Jesus Christ is at once the starting point and the goal of everything … We may even say that domestic life is the triumph of the Christian faith”4 (Monod).
We love our wives in the same way that Jesus, our self-sacrificing Savior, showed His love for us.
“And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savor” (Ephesians 5:2).
Men, can you see how Jesus’ love is unilateral? He loves, and keeps on loving, not waiting for His love to be returned. He loves even when His Church does not love back.
What a privilege it is to have a wife. Let’s love our wives in the way that Christ loves us!
1. See the Easton’s Bible Dictionary, the electronic version in eSword.
2. I believe I learned this definition of “Biblical love” from Dr. Bill Goode.
3. She is not weak, but she is to be treated with TLC, as though she were weak. Men if you think she is weak, try having a baby!
4. Monod, as quoted in the Cambridge Bible, the electronic version in eSword.