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November 25, 2020 7:05 am
On the last insight for living program. Chuck Swindoll gave the fifth chapter of Ephesians a surprising comparison. He said Paul's teaching on husbands and wives was like looking at an ancient map that illustrated uncharted territory here be dragons. In other words, be worn deep mysteries ahead well on this edition of insight for living. Chuck will wait into controversial territory will do so with confidence because the Bible is his guide.
Whether you're married, divorced, single or widowed. All of us can learn from this passage, Chuck titled today's message the most challenging of all relationship.
These are the most challenging of all relationships husband-wife parent-child employer employee challenging full of the possibility of conflict and full of emotions so these are these are charged with with difficult to give you couple or three statements, do that as I thought about these verses the entire section 6.
In an important context. The entire section 22 chapter 5 verse 22 through six verse 96 and a in a very important context. You know what the context is it's the filling of the spirit. Do you notice 18, 19 and 20. In chapter 5, and including verse 21 is all one sentence. There's no. Till the end of verse 21. It starts verse 18 runs on all all on to the very end on the subject of submission. It begins with be filled with the spirit. It's a command.
It describes what happens when you are filled. You speak to one another in songs and and you worship with one another.
You are grateful for what is occurring and you are submissive to one another, it closes in verse 21. That's context now leads me to my second statement all the relationships depend on the same concept submission. All of the relationships depend on that context. Verse 21 be subject to one another wives submission to their husbands and to his God-given role as their leader, their head husbands must apply submission in their love for honoring and supporting their wives and treating them with enormous respect. Children must understand submission or there will be a breakdown in obedience, we obey because we submit, we don't submit we don't obey every teenager every child. Everyone still living at home under the roof of parents needs to know what the verses. Verses 1 to 3 are saying fathers verse 40 need to know and apply submission or they will provoke their children to anger fathers we are given to demands and to perfectionism and to a critical spirit and we expect more of our children, then we should more often than not, and it takes the filling of the spirit which brings about a submissive. That teaches us how to how to lead them graciously firmly yes, but graciously humbly people who work for others. Verse five are obedient to their bosses because they have a submissive's. Third statement the truth of this section of Scripture has been missed and misapplied religious fanatics and fools have caused immense harm using this section of Scripture to teach an unbalanced position on submission and dominance. Domination is never, never, spirit filled leadership. It's sinful. It's overbearing. It is exacting and unfair abuse. That's not what the Scripture teaches.
Whoever teaches that twists the passage to make it say that so many urge you to do two very difficult things aside from concentrate which always expect you to do not ask you to do two things when I ask you to think biblically instead of culturally I'm going to ask you to reason theologically instead of humanistic like some of your saying but I'm going to ask you to think biblically before you let your culture tell you where to stand, stay right here in the text so that you are riveted to the word of God rather than your times you will be forever relevant, but I tell you ahead of time you will be terribly out of step and misunderstood. Face it. That's why Jesus said to his followers. The world will hate you. The world will hate you. Be careful when all people say only good about you.
All that means is your swimming with the stream you've lost your salt and light so I'm asking you to think biblically and I'm asking you please to reason from God's vantage point than man's vantage point.
This is one of the few places you're free to do that you always have your mind or you can do it internally where you must do it at times, but but this is one of the few places in public where you will be surrounded by people who want to do that to and I'm telling you it is hard work. It's getting harder.
So with all of that as a backdrop, I want you to turn to two Ephesians chapter 5 and look with me in verse 21 which is the concept in the context that is so pervasive be subject to one another in the fear of Christ be submissive to one another out of respect for Christ. We give you a statement that I want you never to forget the spirit filled believer is a submissive know tell me about your temperament. Please tell me about your scars don't go there. Please don't don't bring up a situation that no no is not go there member biblically theologically the spirit filled believer is a submissive person to the word be subject to those words that come from one Greek word who pulled possible. Like potential HUP OTA SS oh used in the New Testament to mean arranging and rank under to arrange in rank under is to hoop apostle when he applied militarily. If I am a lieutenant, I am in a subservient role to a captain, if I am a Lieut. JG in the Navy I am in a subservient role to a captain, if I am a Capt., I am in subservient role. I am hoop apostle to the admiral. If I am a Cpl. I am hoop apostle with the staff Sgt. got it. These are roles and out of respect for the rank, I salute, I submit, please look at the generality of verse 21 be subject to one another not talking about male-female not talking about wife husband not talking about children parent not talking about employee employer one another. The spirit filled believer. Verse 18 is a submissive person. What is that mean it means with one another in the rank of Christianity in the family of God.
We are not competing with each other. We are not out to get our own way. We do not pull rank on other people or seek a place of importance as man. We do not dominate over women as women we do not dominate men as teenagers, we are not impudent in our behavior, but respectful of our moms and dads we we we cooperate, we are we are not determined to put them in their place. We are willing to hear and to talk it through and in a submissive spirit to hear them out. We are not overbearing fathers or mothers who treat our children unfairly or embarrass them or fail to honor them. Just as we know that they will not fail to honor us as employees. We are submissive to our employers and as employers we have parts of submission around those who are in our company got it. I'm trying to make it so clear. Nobody can get out from under it and say, but if you knew where I don't go there the spirit filled believer is a submissive follower of Jesus, just as Jesus in coming to this earth as a very God submitted himself to the cross Philippians 2 says don't think more highly of yourself that you want to think, but that's Romans 12 don't think more highly than you want to think verse three but to think soberly, seriously, realistically, regardless of gender. When we are spirit filled, we model the life of Christ when that's true. Three things emerge dignity, equality and unity put them down, dignity, equality, unity in Christ size. There is no man or woman, child or parent as far as worth is concerned and roles. There are all of the above but in person. There is dignity, equality, unity, think biblically, not culturally think the reason theologically not human, mystically, that means my wife is as worthy as I in every way.
She and I are absolute equals before God. That means my son and I are on an equal plane before God with an eternal soul that means that young man is deserving of dignity. My dignity and respect and I am of his because I am in the same family. That's the way Christ conducted his life, or you're ready for verse 22 before you read it. Remember there is nothing inferior about the role of submission. It's Christ like wives who pulled taught so to your own husbands, as to the Lord has nothing to do with inferiority has everything to do with dignity and equality and unity in God's order. As he put together a plan for this earth. He has arranged certain rules to be an authority over other roles without for a moment taking away the dignity or worth of the individual goals roles must be sustained or there is anarchy, confusion, unhappiness, and a breakdown of the spiritual order number say something else here equality of worth is not identity of role you may be as worthy as your husband and you are but it doesn't mean you have the role of head he does husbands you may be as worthy as your wife in God's eyes, but it does not mean that your authority is to be tyrannical, which is the second subject I want to mention neither is authority a synonym for tyranny. If you are abusive of your wife. It is not right. It is sinful. If you are unfair in your leadership. It is not Christlike. It is sinful. If you take unfair advantage of your children and expect of them, something that God would not expect that is unfair and it is role and it is sinful. It is not authority, the wife who understands God's plan. Get this willingly places herself out of respect for Christ under the authority of her husband and she does so confident that God will honor that. Now when I say that I can read some of your minds. Some of you are rushing to an extreme situation where some husband demanded of his wife and it might've been you something that was not only displeasing to you but disobedient to your Lord stop stop don't go there because John RW Stott says this better than II want to make something very clear here and I quote from his book on Ephesians we have to be very careful not to overstate this biblical teaching on authority.
It does not mean that the authority of husband's parents and Masters is unlimited or that wives, children and workers are required to give unconditional obedience know the submission required is to God's authority delegated to human beings. If, therefore, this is extremely important.
If therefore they miss use their God-given authority by commanding what God forbids for forbidding what God commands that our duty is no longer conscientiously to submit but conscientiously to refuse to do so for to submit in such circumstances would be to disobey God.
The principle is clear. We must submit right up to the point toward obedience to human authority would involve disobedience to God. At that point. Civil disobedience becomes our Christian duty. In order to submit to God, we have to refuse to submit to human beings as Peter put it to the Sanhedrin in acts 529. We must obey God rather than men. This is the exception. However, the general rule on which the New Testament insists is humble submission to God-given authority of the key in all of this ladies is in the end of verse 22.
Look, there wives who protest so your own husbands, as to the Lord. This is the manner of your submissive spirit. This has everything to do with attitude. If you will. This is a duty which you owe the Lord out of respect for him. When my Lord gives me instructions as a pastor to do certain things in my life. It may not come naturally and it may rake on my nature and it may not be easy, but out of respect for him. I do some chauvinists have miss interpreted this ending and said wives you want to treat your husbands as you treat your Lord, wait. Wouldn't that be idolatry, EE, isn't that what Moses meant when he said through God's leading. There will should be no other gods before you. My wife is not to worship me. I assure you she doesn't. My mom, my wife does not sit in reverence of me and pray to me, she does that. Only with her Lord. I would be most uncomfortable being in a role like that's not what as to the Lord mean it means. Out of respect for your Lord you fall in rank under the authority that he has established for the home you model that so that your sons and daughters will learn from the model that is about me tell you story when I was a little boy.
I forget how old I was. My mother and father had apparently had an argument. I never heard them argue in front of me but I I knew that they must've had an argument because I knew what my mother looked like when she was really ticked off.
She happened to be ironing and boy was she earning and I remember sitting there on the sofa, aggravating or and which was common and and she said just just don't talk to me right now is that if if if if I my own way. I just leave your daddy by member. That put a chill down my back and then she looked at me and she said I'm sorry Charles, she said unto I'm to honor your father and we had a disagreement and I don't agree but I know is right, but right now don't like you very much. I thought that's a great thing to hear not been there thousand times with my partner and she with me almost ruined our marriage for the first 10 years as I took to an extreme. This role of authority. I never forget when she said to me in the kitchen in New England.
She said I want you never ever to say again publicly that we are partners because we are not your know you're in a world like I don't even know and I am just a thing to you. I I said that's not true. Yes, it is nice know it is yes ADA. She won, and I finish doing the dishes. That night she went up to the bedroom on never forget this night I open the door and I walked in the 7 foot of the bed sheet is crying her eyes out and she said I made a vow and I won't break my but you are overbearing.
I can hardly stand to live with you right it began a journey that took about four years for us to hammer out not tell you it was really tough, really tough, were together because the two of us said you know we made a vow and obviously what were doing right now isn't working. It isn't right and you know what I found out when I understood my role and fulfilled it never had a problem with her fulfilling her's. Never ever ever amazing. Another moment of complete transparency from our Bible teacher, pastor and author Chuck Swindoll and I'm sure most of us were married can identify a few struggles of our own as we strive to live in harmony.
I would encourage you to stay with this because Chuck prepared a closing comment that's coming up in just a moment.
This is insight for living were just getting started in a conversation about the most challenging of all relationships because of the magnitude of this topic Chuck study of Ephesians 5 is taking extra time and were featuring the entire presentation over the course of six episodes to learn more about this ministry. Visit us email@example.com well in the United States. Thanksgiving is observed tomorrow and on Friday consumers around the world will go online to begin their Christmas shopping in earnest. So while you have some extra leisure time over the next few days.
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Thanks for hearing my heart today I so look forward to hearing from you soon. And here's how to respond to Chuck Swindoll right now give a donation. Colors listening in the United States dial 1-800-772-8888 or go online to insight.org and thank you so much for your generous support insight for living ministries continues his relation insight for living. The preceding message. The most challenging of all relationships part one was copyrighted in 2000 2001 and 2009 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2009 by Charles R. Swindoll. All rights are reserved worldwide.
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