Owing to the Service last Sunday being in the Exeter Road Hall the sermon was not recorded. For those who are interested below is the text of the sermon that Mus preached sadly no pictures attached.
T: Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her
A: Husbands love, wives submit
I’ve got some very good news for everyone. Jesus loves you.
Jesus loves you so much that he gave up his life so that you could live forever.
Jesus’ love is huge!
Its so high you can’t get over it, so low you can’t get under it, so wide you can’t get around it.
If you believe in Jesus, then you are part of his church. Jesus loves his church – he died to save her.
This is the best news.
This morning we are going to hear from a bit of the bible that teaches us how Jesus’ love is the pattern for marriage.
What is marriage? Yeah, Marriage is a gift from God. When God joins 1 man and 1 woman together for life. God wants marriages to remind us of Jesus loving the church. He wants the husband to love his wife like Jesus loves the church, and the wife to love her husband like the church loves Jesus.
That’s how God wants marriages to be.
He wants them to be a real life sketch that teaches the world how Jesus loves his church. A picture that reminds of how Jesus loves his church and the church loves Jesus:
<Show sketch of loving husband and submissive wife>
We’re going to meet some wives and husbands, and we’ll see which ones are most like what God wants.
So first, bring in the wives:
<show picture of squashed wife>
Squashy Sheila doesn’t give her thoughts to her husband when they have to make an important choice. She doesn’t think what she says could be worth anything, so she just keeps quiet.
<show picture of bossy wife>
Princess Prunella is the boss in her marriage.
She orders her husband around and is always telling him what to do.
When he doesn’t listen, she shouts at him until he does.
<show picture of submissive wife>
Submissive Sandra respects her husband. She lets him be the leader, and enjoys letting him take care of her. Sometimes Sheila’s husband makes the wrong decision, and she lets him know she thinks he is wrong and wants to help him see why, she prays for God to show him, but she stands by him and lets him decide.
Who do we think is most like what the bible teaches? …….. Yes its Submissive Sandra
Let’s read what the Bible says about how wives should love their husbands in Eph Ch 5 v22:
- Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.
Submissive Sheila is most like what God wants. Does anyone know what the word submit means?
In football the players submit to the manager. God wants wives to submit to their husbands.
This means he wants them to Let him be the leader.
<Mus calls Sylvie to the front>
When a man and a woman jive dance, the man decides which moves to do and the woman goes with that move, she submits to him and everyone has a fun time dancing.
This is what happens. ( Sylvia and Mus Dance )
But if the wife is a squashy Sheila and doesn’t dance… Or if the wife is a Princess Prunella and tries to lead… ( Sylvia and Mus Dance but it is a mess)
This is the way God has made marriages to work. They work best and everyone is happiest when the wife submits to her husband.
And the bible tells us why… Marriages work best when the wife submits because marriages are made to show us How Jesus treats his church and how the church treats Jesus.
For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Saviour. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
The Church (God’s people who follow Jesus) The Church submits to Christ.
If you part of his church That’s how we act towards Jesus. We let him be the Lord, we surrender to him, we let him save us. So God made the husband the head the wife so that the wives can submit to them and show the world how the Church acts towards Jesus.
But what about the husbands:
<show picture of “Lordy” husband>
Lordy Leeroy believes men are better than women. He rules his wife by bossing her around.
He bullies her into serving him and doing what he wants. He is the boss, but his wife is miserable.
<show picture of doormat husband>
Dennis has given up trying to be the leader. He doesn’t give any direction to his marriage, he doesn’t have a plan. He doesn’t ask for God’s help to love his wife so that she will respect him, he just does what she says even if he doesn’t think it’s a good idea.
<show picture of loving husband>
Loving Leonard knows that God has made him the head of his wife. He knows that Jesus is the head of him. He uses the role God has given him to take care of his wife. He makes sure she is cared for just the way he’d like to be treated.
Which husband is most like what God wants?……It’s Loving Lenny.
Let’s read what the Bible says to husbands: Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
Christ Jesus loved the church. His love is a strong love that means he would die for his church. Which is what he did. People turn away from God and deserve to die and be punished forever and never be with God. But Jesus loves his church so much that he took the punishment we deserve for our sins,
On the cross he died instead of us Now we can have eternal life with him. Those who believe in Jesus have been made clean by his death and will live with him in heaven forever.
26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
This is how Jesus loved the church. This is how God wants husbands to love their wives.
I will speak to Husbands for a bit. This doesn’t mean that you should take your wife into a warzone so you can jump in front of a bullet for her. It does mean that you will give things up for your wife’s good.
You will spend your pleasure and comfort, to do her good. You will work hard for her, so you can lighten her load. It might look something like this – Maybe one night you are both tired and it is the end of a long week and there is an absolutely huge pile of dishes to be washed.
Your wife seems a little low and you know that she loves to sew/watch movies/go dancing/read/ insert hobby. But the thought of doing the dishes for her feels like death to you, You would love to veg out in front of the telly or go to the gym/pub/insert hobby
You remember that Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. And think… Jesus loved me by giving up his life for me and I’m so happy that he loves me… Now I’ll go through the death of washing the dishes to love my wife… tonight I’ll give up my hobby so she can enjoy hers – and I will be so happy because I get to be like my Lord Jesus, And my wife will be blessed with some fun time.
Paul in this letter, makes it even clearer for husbands – If you’re wondering how to love your wife like Christ loved the church:
28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church – 30 for we are members of his body.
Love your wife as yourself.
Do you feed yourself? Make sure your wife is fed. Do you think about how you want to relax and spend your free time? Think about what your wife would like to do to relax and plan something fun for her free time. Do you make sure you are spiritually healthy, that you read the bible and pray regularly, keeping your relationship with God good?
Make sure your wife is spiritually healthy, make sure she has time to spend with God in prayer, and is feeding on God’s word, make sure she has good friendships and relationships, that she knows she is cared for. If you can think of anything good you want for yourself, do that for her, this might seem like death at first, but it is the most fun, joyful way to live and is the way God wants marriages to reflect Christ and the church.
what if you are not married? Paul teaches us that submission is how all Christians should act towards each other.
Because Jesus is the Lord, Christians are to give up trying to boss each other.
Paul also says that Love is how all Christians are to treat each other V2
So we can all think about something good we like for ourselves and do that for our fellow brothers and sisters in love. So if for example… you would like someone to call you up to see how you are … call someone up to see how they are.
What if you are not married, but want to be? Well who seems like the best match from our wives and husbands? ……Yes Lenny and Sandra. If you are a woman who wants to be married, look for a loving Lenny, someone who isn’t “Lordy”, and someone who won’t be a door mat. Or if you are a man looking for a wife, look for a submissive Sandra someone who isn’t bossy, someone who won’t be squashed.
Now we’ve got to be honest and remember why Jesus had to die. It was because of our sin, because we do what God hates and we do what is evil. This includes being bad husbands and wives or just bad Christians. Sometimes husbands are rubbish and it won’t be easy for wives to submit.
Sometimes wives get it wrong and it won’t be easy to love them
But marriage is not about husbands and wives It is about Christ and the church
The bible says Verse 31
31 ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ 32 This is a profound mystery – but I am talking about Christ and the church.
The reason that marriage exists is because Jesus loves the Church That’s why people get married
Marriage is meant to be a picture of Christ and the church. Marriages work best when they show the picture of Christ and the church more clearly
So husbands look to Christ as your example And know that he is in you to help you give yourself up for your wife in love. He’s there to forgive us when we are “Lordy” or a doormat, he died so we can be forgiven.
Wives look to the church as your pattern. The church loves Jesus, we love to submit to him, we cry to him to save us and gladly let him be our lord. Wives submit to your husbands in this way, knowing that Jesus is in you giving you power to submit, Jesus submitted to his father, let his submission be in you, and when you are squashed or bossy, remember that Jesus died for you so you can be forgiven.
Those of us who are not married, help your married parents or friends to be a picture of Christ and the church. Pray that they will be a clearer picture. Help them see when they get it wrong.
There is so much to say and learn about marriage, and there are husbands and wives with a lot of wisdom and experience who us younger marrieds can ask and learn from over tea and coffee and in life in general.
Marriage can be a painful thing to talk and think about especially if we have been hurt in broken and bad marriages. Whenever someone mistreats you in your marriage, or outside of marriage, we can remember that Jesus never treats us like that. Marriage can be painful to talk about because we want to be married and aren’t. We mustn’t forget that marriage is only a picture of the deeper, more permanent relationship between Christ and the church – which all of us take part in.
If you are a Christian, you are joined to Jesus as part of his bride the church Jesus feeds and cares for us and laid down his life for us – what love is this! This is the reality which marriage is only a faint echo of which all Christians are caught up in. and on the final day we will be presented perfect before Jesus as his Holy, clean bride.
33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.