Four12 article image for 'Being Christ To Your Wife' about husbands loving their wives with a covenantal love

Being Christ to Your Wife

It is a very bitter thing for a husband to hear his wife speaking harshly to him. We can feel angry and resentful when we feel we are being dishonoured and underappreciated. You may begin to wonder, ‘How much of this can I take?’ How should we act in these fall-outs and, in some cases, extreme confrontations?

Christ’s Response to His Abusers

While presenting on the role of the husband in our recent Marriage Enrichment course, it dawned on me how much abuse Christ had to endure on the cross. He endured insults, slander and massive verbal and physical abuse. Think about how much he had to forgive while enduring this extensive abuse – and then think about Who He was! The Man above all men, the only true God, the Father above all fathers, the Husband above all husbands. Well, God tells us, ‘Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.’ (Eph 5:25)

Christ loved His bride while she hated and insulted Him.

How much did He have to love, how much did He have to forgive while enduring this severe disrespect? We represent Jesus in our marriages. We are asked to be like Him to our wives. Of course, this is a human impossibility! I would suggest that we have not put up with half as much as Christ had to put up with. Or, should we say, we have not had to endure anything like Christ had to endure with His ‘bride-in-the-making’ while being crucified by her. Christ loved His bride while she hated and insulted Him. For those of you who are Afrikaans speaking, ‘Hy het verskriklik deurgeloop’ (He suffered terribly).

Never ‘Enough’

Sorry guys, but I think we have to up our game. If Christ tells us to love our enemies (Matt 5:44), how much more should we not only put up with our wives verbal assault etc. but love them in it and through it, in order to bring them to the wholeness that God has for them. They are our covenant partners. In a covenant, we don’t only give 50 percent – we are supposed to give 100 percent.

Jesus never reaches His ‘enough’. He even let His bride kill Him because of her sinfulness.

I dare to say that when we have said, ‘Enough is enough!’, it is by no means enough when compared to Christ’s ‘enough’. Jesus never reaches His ‘enough’. He even let His bride kill Him because of her sinfulness.

 

The Covenantal Love Challenge

So we are challenged to readjust our heart muscles of love, realign our attitudes, and increase our forgiveness and patience. We are challenged to keep on keeping on in loving our wives into their godly wholeness. This is what Christ did when He was hanging on the cross for our restoration and our wholeness. (Eph 5:26-27)

Live Out The Word

In Ephesians 5:26 it says that Christ ‘cleansed her by the washing of water with the word’. For us men, the largest part of this washing is living out the words in 1 Cor 13 and Gal 5:22. This would wash our wives far better than only teaching her the word of God. I dare say that we say too much and do too little. Sorry, but please know that I do stand with you in missing the mark in this sometimes. So we’re in this together – one brother helping another brother.

Live By The Spirit

I mentioned the human impossibility of what God expects of us husbands. So how are we to do this human impossibility of loving and turning the other cheek and forgiving as Christ forgives? The part in Ephesians 5 where it speaks of wives and husbands is preceded by the verses discussing our ability to live by the Spirit’s power. (Eph 5:15-20)

Spend Time with Your Role Model

Paul gave us the answer in the how to do the impossible before He challenges us as husbands and wives to be the humanly impossible. The measure to which we draw near to Jesus, in a loving relationship with our Saviour, older Brother, Lord and Master, is the measure to which the impossibilities of being a really Christ-like husband becomes more probable and possible.

When I spend time with Christ in this way, suddenly my heart starts to soften. Suddenly I see my selfishness and self- justification. Suddenly I am convicted of my stubbornness and see more clearly my role as leader of my family. When I rub shoulders with the Lord of Lords and King of Kings, I become more like Him.

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Sin
Worship
Confusion
Trials
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Offence
Humility
Idols
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Evangelising
Obedient
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Healing
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Revelation
Conviction
Complacency
Recalibration
Guidance
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Volunteering
Taiwan Churches
Providence
New Testament Church
Pastor
Church Structure
Feminism
Apostolic Partnership
Vocations
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Christian Books
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Covenantal Love
Storms of Life
resilience
steadfastness
uncompromising
Four12 Conference
Accountability
Doctrine
Healing and Miracles
Money
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Youth
Death
Tribulations
Partner
Overcoming
Humbleness
Immorality
Prophets
Fornication
Planting A Church
Christian Leaders
Debt
The Word
Discipline
Condemnation
Bear Fruit
Complacent
Recalibrating
Teaching Kids
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Justice
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Doubt
Church Involvement
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Lying
Deception
Hell
Raising Children
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Ordained
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Breakthrough
Defending My Faith
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Teenagers
Four12 Churches
Training Pastors
Needy
Rastafarian
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Preaching
Authentic Community
Relationship with God
Faith and Works
New Christian
Creation
Reading
Worldviews
God's Love
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Faith
Holy Spirit
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Suffering
Brotherly Love
Eternity
Community
Wives
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Shepherd
New Believer
Greed
Immaturity
Raising Kids
Parenting
Poor
Bible
Ordinance
Unforgiveness
Refreshing
Defending The Gospel
Matrimony
Teenage Years
Four12 Church
Youth Leaders
Ireland
Redemption
Godly Leadership
Disciple
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False Teachers
Fatherly Love
Tongues
Goats
Fear God
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Sharing The Gospel
Restoration
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Malawi
Leading Youth
Surrender
Testimonies
Christ
Delegating
Servant
Social Gospel
Character of God
Worth
Gift of Tongues
Godly Elders
Big Churches
Salvations
Sacrificial Love
Baptism
Fear of God
Hospitality
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The Bible
Church Leaders
Hardship
Fellowship
Holy Living
Character of an Elder
Adultery
Rebelling
Signs and Wonders
Baptise
Infant Baptism
Power
Possessions
Study the Bible
Steward
Hatred
Hospitable
Spreading The Gospel
Relationships
Training Children
Health
Youth Training
Counting the Cost
Healing Equip
books
Raising Leaders
Shepherds
Contentment
God's Character
Affirmation
Judaism
Enlightenment
Building Deep
Prostitution
Godly Team
Breaking Bread
Festivals
Idolatry
Prayer and Fasting
Theology
Foundations
Heaven
Fellowship of Believers
Leading Church
Diversity
Church Accountability
Rebellion
Witchcraft
Baby Christian
Kassie du Plessis
Protector
Tithing
Envy
Quiet Times
Retaliation
Lessons
Spreading The Word
Cheating
Training Teenagers
Cancer
Youth Ministry
Following the Call
Four12 Equip
Eldership Training
Community Leading
Pastors
Rest
Sacrificial Serving
Sonship
Jewish
Reason
Selling Out
Prostitutes
honour
favour
Children
Forgiveness
Income
Prophetic
Tithes
Helper
Illness
Principles
Living for Christ
Government
Discipling
Sancti
Words of Knowledge
Babies
Prayer
Sexual Purity
Christmas
Jealousy
Meditation
Promises
Loss
The Cross
Persecution
Unfaithfulness
Sacrifice
Brazil
Prophetic Training
Healing Conference
Identity
Small Group
Biblical Pattern
Systematic Theology
False Gospel
Testimony Apostolic
Jews
Reasoning
Watering Down
Reaching Out
Christian Character
Generosity
Jesus
Purity
Trust
Helps
Mortality
Christian Family Values
Lukewarm
Home Group Leaders
Exhort
Sanctification
Dominionism
Beliefs
Praying
Celibacy
Fathers
Comparison
Training
Bible Study
Tests
Cross
Fear of Man
Find Forgiveness
Sacrificial Service
Brazil Churches
Prophetic Equip
Voice of God
Team
Home Group
Change
Servant Leadership
Apostolic Leaders
Authentic
Religions
Intellectual Pride
Ambition
Fruitfulness
God's Favour
Christian Living
Gentleness
Joy
Repentance
Unity
Loving People
Infirmity
Family Values
Righteousness
Leading
Exhortation
Self-Righteousness
Kingdom of God
Commands
Provision
Sex Before Marriage
Mothering
Women in Leadership
Halloween
Honesty
Testing
Crucifixion
Conversion
Guilt
Sacrificial Giving
Church Merger
Equipping
Saints
Leadership Team
Priesthood
Jehovah's Witnesses
Women In Ministry
Fruit of the Spirit
Womens Ministry
Messiah
Mind Idolatry
Megachurch
Biblical Paradox
Honouring God
Church Leadership
Church Life
Giving
Kindness
Revival
Water Baptism
Servant Heart
Living for Jesus
Covenantal Relationships
Division
Accusation
Flesh
Sexual Sin
Scripture
Customs
Provider
Living for God
Mothers
Female Leaders
Calling
Christian Fellowship
Backsliding
Easter
Witnessing
Infidelity
Biblical Culture
Merging Churches
Prophetic Equipping
Gift of Prophecy
Apostle
Priesthood of All Believers
Finance
Servanthood
Biblical Church
Praise
Atheism
Church History
Living the Gospel
Paradoxes in the Bible
Honouring People
Church Planting
Community Leaders
God the Father
Leaders
Salvation
Women
Afterlife
Protection
Dating
Decisions
Eldership
Fleshly Desires
Shame
Truth
Traditions
Works
Morality
Wisdom
Women Leaders
Ordaining Elders
Christian Community
Backslidden
Resurrection
Testimony
Masturbation
Communal Culture
Partnering Churches
Prophesy
New Churches
Five Fold Gift
Trinity
Tithe
Relationship
Employment
Thanksgiving
Atheists
Old Testament Prophet
Ambassadors
Truth in Tension
contradictions
Treasure Hunting
treasure
Deacons
Culture
Good News
Maturity
Self-Control
Word of Knowledge
Bitterness
Self-Pity
Courting
Forgiving
Anger
Freedom
Submission
Gifts of the Spirit
Get Baptised
Works and Faith
Morals
Gift of Wisdom
Females in Leadership
Ordaining
Defence
Commitment
Hearing God
Consequences
Receive Forgiveness
Leadership Training
Living Hope
Zimbabwe
Start a Church
Prophet
New Believers
Being Generous
Study Scripture
Jobs
Entitlement
Misotheists
New Testament Prophet
Work Values
Family
Devotion
Goodness
Men
Serving
Word of Wisdom
Brokenness
Sickness
Courtship
Friendship
Church Plant
Hope
Trusting
Gifts
Baptized
Fasting
Overcomer
Words of Wisdom
Leadership
Encounter
Repenting
Challenges
Listening
Caring for Children
Four12 Partners
Training Leaders
St Johns
Relief Fund
Building Church
Evangelist
Dreams
Communion
Being Accountable
Occupation
Rejection
Misotheism
The Case for Christ
Kingdom Priorities
Biblical Contradictions
Movement
Love
Discernment
Gospel
Mercy
Shepherding
Work
Caring
Suicide
Desires
Lies
Fathering
Vulnerability
Accountable
The Apostolic
Kids
Intercession
Singleness
Fear
lead
Life
Repent
Anxiety
Obey
Child Care
Four12 Partner
Volunteer
Taiwan Church
Israel
Healthy Church
Teacher
Multi-site Church
Perseverance
Loving Others
Profession
Social Media
Hopelessness
Lee Strobel
Kingdom Living
Refining Fire
God's Glory
Marriage
Discipleship
Grace
Ministry
Sin
Worship
Confusion
Trials
Husbands
Offence
Humility
Idols
Pride
Evangelising
Obedient
Christian Leadership
Singles
Healing
Direction
Revelation
Conviction
Complacency
Recalibration
Guidance
Transformation
Volunteering
Taiwan Churches
Providence
New Testament Church
Pastor
Church Structure
Feminism
Apostolic Partnership
Vocations
Distractions
Christian Books
Christian Movies
Covenantal Love
Storms of Life
resilience
steadfastness
uncompromising
Four12 Conference
Accountability
Doctrine
Healing and Miracles
Money
Social Justice
Youth
Death
Tribulations
Partner
Overcoming
Humbleness
Immorality
Prophets
Fornication
Planting A Church
Christian Leaders
Debt
The Word
Discipline
Condemnation
Bear Fruit
Complacent
Recalibrating
Teaching Kids
Partners Relief Fund
Apostolic Partnering
Netherlands
Marriage Training
Church
Apostolic Field
Administration
Racism
Church Partnering
Christian Values
Cosmological Argument
Christian Authors
Review
Husband
Isle of Man Conference
Apologetics
Elders
Heaven and Hell
Obedience
Spiritual Gifts
Caring for Others
Depression
Online Church
Spouse
Conflict
Meekness
Lust
Prophecy
The Gospel
Purgatory
Control
Finances
The Word of God
Modesty
Judgement
Bearing Fruit
Comfort
Divorce
Teaching Children
Four12 Partners Relief Fund
Pastors Training
The Poor
Letting Go
Values
Partnering
Heart of God
Justice
Church Partnership
Great Commission
Existence of God
Christian Literature
Old Testament
Romance
Apostles
Evangelism
Holiness
Partnership
Stewardship
Caring for People
Doubt
Church Involvement
Wife
Reconciliation
Overseers
Lying
Deception
Hell
Raising Children
Godliness
Miracles
Word of God
Ordained
Equality
Breakthrough
Defending My Faith
Covenant
Teenagers
Four12 Churches
Training Pastors
Needy
Rastafarian
Translations of the Bible
Preaching
Authentic Community
Relationship with God
Faith and Works
New Christian
Creation
Reading
Worldviews
God's Love
Apostolic
Faith
Holy Spirit
Pastoring
Suffering
Brotherly Love
Eternity
Community
Wives
Bishops
Shepherd
New Believer
Greed
Immaturity
Raising Kids
Parenting
Poor
Bible
Ordinance
Unforgiveness
Refreshing
Defending The Gospel
Matrimony
Teenage Years
Four12 Church
Youth Leaders
Ireland
Redemption
Godly Leadership
Disciple
Church Discipline
Church Health
False Teachers
Fatherly Love
Tongues
Goats
Fear God
Godly Love
Body of Christ

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