The marriage covenant (2)
“Husbands, love your wives.” Eph 5:25 NLT
We throw the word “love” around loosely, leaving it to be defined in many different ways. People say things like, “I love chocolate cake,” or “I love football,” or “I love that television show.” What they really mean is they “like” and “enjoy” these things. The Bible definition of love goes much deeper than what entertains and excites us, and what makes us feel emotionally attached to one another. To love someone is to pursue their well-being and make it a priority. Love’s first concern is always: “How does this action contribute to my partner’s well-being?” If it doesn’t—or if it does the opposite—then it isn’t love. The Bible says, “Husbands, love your wives just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her…In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but…cares for it” (vv. 25, 28-29 NLT). As a husband, you can learn two things from these Scriptures: (1) We are all innately selfish. So your greatest challenge will always be to put your wife’s interests ahead of your own, and be willing to sacrifice your own agenda to do it. (2) We must practice being sensitive. Think how sensitive you are to the aches and needs of your own body, and apply that same principle to caring for your wife. You say, “That’s a tall order!” Yes, and the God who commands you to do it will give you the grace to do it day by day. So draw on His grace!