Gender Specific Marriage Instructions

Why Are The Commands To Submit and Love in Marriage Gender Specific?

As I was teaching yesterday, someone asked me this question.

I gave an answer and the class continued.

I woke up this morning and the Holy Spirit in His usual way continued the conversation.

Here’s what I just learned. I’m so excited, I can’t sit still and I can’t wait to share.

When God created man, He gave both man and woman the mandate to dominate every other thing that He had created except each other-Genesis 1:26-28 shows this clearly.

However, at the fall of man in Genesis 3, things got altered a little bit.

God, in dishing out consequences for their actions said to the woman: ‘In pain will you bring forth children; your desire will be for your husband and He will rule over you.

This changed the dynamics of the marriage relationship.

The woman would always love her husband and he started to ‘rule’ her.

However, the original DNA of the woman has not been completely overriden. She somehow knows she was not created to be dominated, so she kicks back against the husbands ‘rulership’.

This rulership is fine by the man anyway because it works very nicely into the dominion mandate he was given at creation.

The rulership & Kickback mechanism is why God inspired Apostle Paul to make gender specific instructions for Christian marriages.

Submission is difficult for a woman who is kicking back from being ruled.

A man focused on ruling will not find it easy to love.

We need to be reminded about God’s original plan.

Mutual submission to each other that plays out in reverence/ submission on the part of the wife and unconditional love on the part of the husband!

I just learnt a serious lesson.

Who’s With Me?

Tobiloba

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‘Christian’ Love

Since the beginning of this year, God has been revolutionizing my understanding of love using just one scripture.

Since we’re in the season of valentines which we call the season of love, I figure I should share.

Warning: This is not going to be easy to do.

Read with me:My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.-John 15:12 NIV)

Now, Let’s get into the lessons.

First, Love is a command. If you are a Christian, Love is not an emotion or a choice,it is a command. If you will obey God, you will love.

That’s easy right?

Here’s the real work. ‘…as I have loved you’.

As a believer, how has Christ loved you?

Here’s a part of my list-extravagantly, unconditionally, completely, irrespective of me….

God command us to love like Him. That kind of love is not an emotion, it is a decision backed by corresponding actions irrespective of the recipients response or lack of response.

The world tells us that we should only give love when we receive it back. According to society,if he/she doesn’t love me,I will not love them. The love of the world is conditioned on performance.

That does not work in God’s kingdom. The kind of love you need to have is the ‘unconditional’ kind. The kind that moved Christ to the cross for you.

This kind of love will confront wrongdoing and chastise error without withholding forgiveness.

And before you say, ‘I am not Jesus’, the term Christian means ‘like Christ’.

The disciples who first bore the name did not give it to themselves, it was given to them by ordinary people who saw their actions.

How do you love today?

Is your love Christian or worldly?

You already know that I choose Christian love.

Who’s with me?
Tobiloba

Loving Your Wife God’s Way 3-The Final piece

This post has been long overdue. It’s been pending for over a year.

So that you can get the gist, find the first two parts of this and read

And ladies before you start gloating-especially if you are new to my blog, find the series on submission God’s way and please read it.

Okay guys, lets round this up.

If your relationship with your wife is supposed to be a replica of Christ’s relationship with the church, you are the representative of Christ in your home.

You cannot represent Christ to your wife if you do not know Him. No matter how much you try to love your wife outside of Christ, you will fail.

Therefore your love for your wife is not dependent on her submission to you, its should be a fruit of Christ in you.

Now,that said, if you are to be to your wife what Christ is to the church, one of your responsibilities is to be the priest of your home.

The ‘prayer warrior’ title in your home does not belong to your wife, it belongs to you. This is not to say that a woman should not pray, I am clearly stating that contrary to popular belief and opinions, it is not the woman’s job.

What you sow into your wife is what you harvest and since the harvest always outweighs the seed, check the seeds you’re sowing.

Hold on to the ultimate husband -Jesus as you continue to love your wife God’s way.

Thanks to all who followed this series. I pray you learn something you can use.

I know I’ll be back to use these things soon.

Who’s with me?
Tobiloba

IS LOVE ENOUGH?

I don’t know about you but over the years I’ve heard the phrase ‘love is not enough to keep a marriage’ – even from pastors, and I’ve honestly come to believe it.

Until last night.

I was in one of my very argumentative moods with the Holy Spirit and we were talking relationships and marriage-again, and in supporting one of my arguments, I said: ‘But God, Love is not enough to keep a marriage’.

And then as usual God stopped me cold in my tracks with His response: You mean I’m not enough to keep a marriage?

I stop cold. Then the Holy Spirit goes on and reminds me of a scripture I’ve known since I was a child:

Read with me: The person who refuses to love does not know the first thing about love because God is love- 1 John 4:8(MSG).

Of course the punch line was ‘God is love’.

The lesson continued: If you say love is not enough to keep a marriage, then you are saying I’m not enough to keep a marriage.

All other kinds of love- romantic love especially are needed, but not enough to keep a marriage. The kind of love I’ve given you and called you to give – the God kind of love is however all you need to make a marriage work.

Romantic love will not keep a marriage but the God kind of love will. End of lesson.

Question :(God ): Is Love enough to keep a marriage?

Answer: (me mumbling, after eating humble pie) : Yes

The God kind of love is all I need to make a marriage work because that kind of love is God Himself!

I need to renew my mind and cultivate the God kind of love!

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba

HOW DOES YOUR FAITH SHOW?

If you’re like me and you’ve been a Christian for any amount of time, you’ve probably heard so much about how you need to have faith.

We’ve been told so much about faith that most of us can quote scriptures about faith from memory.

There’s however been a scripture that people either choose to forget or interpret in any way they choose –and it just usually rubs me the wrong way.

The scripture reads: ‘Faith, if not accompanied by deeds is dead’-James 2:17

For those that conveniently choose to forget this verse, they preach the ‘we are saved by faith only gospel and say that we do not need ‘works’. For those on the other extreme, they pursue some funny things under the umbrella of’ works’ sometimes to the detriment of their faith  and quote the scripture above as backing.

I have therefore had this question, How do you show your faith through your works?

Any witnesses in the house?

Read on my dear friends.

And then recently, I saw something that completely revolutionized my thinking about the faith and works dilemma.

‘…..The only thing that counts is faith, expressing itself through love’- Galatians 5:6

The ‘works’ that should accompany my faith should be things that demonstrate love. No wonder the 1st Corinthians 13 love is an action word and not an emotion.

If my works fall short of the standard of love as encapsulated in 1st Corinthians 13, then I cannot put them under the works that are accompanying my faith.

Faith without works is useless

The kind of works that should accompany my faith are the things portrayed as the characteristics of love in scripture.

The word has revealed another area in my life that needs to change.

My works need to line up with the word.

Yours need to do the same.

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba.

THE MOST UNREAD OR MISUNDERSTOOD LOVE STORY

I don’t know about you but I love ‘love stories.’ I must have read hundreds of Mills &Boon titles by the time I left secondary school. (Any witnesses in the house?) lol.

When I gave my life to Christ, that love did not change so I became a sucker for love stories with Christian themes- The Francine Rivers, Karen Kingsbury and Lori wick and so on could not turn them out fast enough for my voracious reading appetite.

By the way, I have a thing for love notes and love letters too. I’m sure if I search my room well enough, I’ll still find some as old as 15 years ago. (Stop looking at me funny, I know some of you still have them too.) lol!

Why do we like love stories and keep love notes? We re-read them over and over and we can almost quote some of them verbatim with sheepish smiles on our faces.

Why am I going on and on about this? Well I want to tell my own very brief version of a popular love story and so I’m setting the scene .Here it goes:

There was once a woman who committed murder. According to the law, she was to be killed. Her execution date was set and she cooling her heels in prison awaiting the day.

On the day of her execution, the door to her cell opens and she is told she’s free to go. When she asks why, she is told another person has chosen to die in her place fulfilling the requirement of the law.

Who is this person and what does He want in return or hope to gain from taking my punishment?

I don’t know who he is the jailer answered. He only asks that I give you this book.

She takes the book from the jailer and opens it.

The first page read ‘I love you so much I couldn’t let you die. You don’t know me yet. That’s why I sent you this book. It contains all you need to know about me and more. I hope that in time you will come to love me back’.

It was unsigned.

The End.

What do you think the girl did with the book? More importantly, what do you do with yours?

The characters in the story represent you and I. The girl represents you and I,-we’ve committed sins for which death is the only punishment.

Jesus is the person who took your place so you wouldn’t die because He loves you too much.

Your Bible is the book-His love letter to you. Only when you study it can you begin to know  and understand His heart and His motives.

It is only when you understand the love story that you can begin to reciprocate the love.

Are you reading your love notes? Are you reading His love story?

Do you understand it?

Are you reciprocating the love?

I need to go back to my Love story.

I need to go back to my Bible.

Who’s with me?

Tobiloba

LOVE, NOT FEAR

It’s a very common occurrence to hear a single Christian girl say about her dream man – ‘He must fear God’.

I subscribed to that line of thought until a scripture I thought I understood struck me in a new light. Here it is: 16 We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love.

God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. 17 And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the Day of Judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world.

18 Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.[1]

I’ve found myself pondering this scripture and the more I ponder, the more amazed I get.

The one thing that God values above all things is Love because that’s who He is. Love is not what God does, It is who He is.

As a result, that’s how God wants us to live. He wants us to live in love, not in fear. Everything we do for God should be motivated out of our love for Him and not our fear of Him.

Fear and Love cannot co-exist. If you’re operating in fear, you cannot be operating in Love. If you’re truly operating in Love, fear should be out of the window.

Loving God is the access to heaven because it automatically means that we would have lived just like Jesus.

No wonder Jesus constantly admonished his disciples to love him.

Love will lead to wiling obedience while fear leads to compelled obedience.

Which one do you think God’s looking for?

Think about it, when you truly love someone, your sacrifices for them are joyful, spontaneous and you go out of your way to make them smile (to name a few of the things we do for love), Serving them is a joy not a duty. Doing anything out of fear has the exact opposite effect.

I know we’ve been thought that we need to fear God, but I’ve come to discover discover something different:

God wants your love and not your fear.

If you truly love God, you would not need to fear him.

My love for God needs to deepen!

Who’s with me!

Tobiloba

 


[1] I John 4:16-18 (NLT)