Fathers | Husbands | Mothers | Wives | Children
Recognizing my own continuing need for improvement in this area, I sought the various scriptures that speak of the role of husbands in scripture. I have learned that having a loving and scriptural husband-wife relationship is probably the single most influential factor in raising righteous children. It is for the sake of the children that I share these things.
Woman - A Gift to be Cherished
From the beginning, Yahweh knew that it was not good that the man should be alone:
Genesis 2:18 And Yahweh Elohim said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
With that, He created a beautiful and wonderful gift and brought her to Adam:
Genesis 2:21 And Yahweh Elohim caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; 22 And the rib, which Yahweh Elohim had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. 23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. 24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
If we men can just grasp the great gift that we have been given, it will go a long way toward understanding how Yahweh desires us to relate to our wives. It doesn't take the average man much time to understand and appreciate the wonderful, beautiful characteristics that Yahweh has created woman with. Truly, He created woman to be beautiful on the inside as well as on the outside.
Proverbs 18:22 Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of Yahweh.
If we find a wife, we have obtained favor from Yahweh. We have been blessed with a gift from above. We need to appreciate the gift Yahweh gave us. To not appreciate is to not be thankful to Yahweh. Notice that nothing yet is spoken of a perfect wife without fault. The fact that we have a wife is a blessing in and of itself. Yahweh's desire is that we enjoy our wives and be blessed with what He has given:
Ecclesiastes 9:9 Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity, which he hath given thee under the sun, all the days of thy vanity: for that is thy portion in this life, and in thy labour which thou takest under the sun.
Proverbs 5:18 Let thy fountain be blessed: and rejoice with the wife of thy youth.
In the Torah/Word of Yahweh, we see Yahweh's desire for this:
Deuteronomy 24:5 When a man hath taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war, neither shall he be charged with any business: but he shall be free at home one year, and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken.
It is our duty to 'cheer up' our wives and rejoice with the blessing Yahweh has given. We need to not take this duty lightly, but realize that to fail in this area is to sin against Yahweh. It is Yahweh's will for us to rejoice and live joyfully with the woman Yahweh has given us.
An area often neglected, we are expected to give honor to our wives. Too often, a man's wife is the object of dishonor in the form of jokes, loud public rebukes and complaint sessions between men and men. It is time that we give our wives the honor that they should receive:
1 Peter 3:7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.
We need to acknowledge that while our wives are the weaker vessel, we are heirs together with them of the grace of life. Weaker doesn't mean spiritually weaker, but like a thin glass, more easily damaged. Thus, we must dwell with them with understanding, and be sensitive to their glorious sensitivity. They need that sensitivity to care for baby, and a family.
Interestingly, the duty to honor our wives is somehow tied into the effectiveness of our prayers. This is not a new concept at all, it is also found in the book of Malachi:
Malachi 2:13 And this have ye done again, covering the altar of Yahweh with tears, with weeping, and with crying out, insomuch that he regardeth not the offering any more, or receiveth it with good will at your hand. 14 Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because Yahweh hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant. 15 And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a righteous seed (Heb. Seed of Elohim). Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth. 16 For Yahweh, the Elohim of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away: for one covereth violence with his garment, saith Yahweh of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously.
So, we see that if we will not honor and deal kindly with the wife Yahweh has given us, Yahweh will not receive our offerings. Prayer is also considered to be an offering:
Psalm 141:2 Let my prayer be set forth before thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.
Proverbs 15:8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to Yahweh: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.
Revelation 8:3 And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. 4 And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before Elohim out of the angel's hand.
Perhaps we don't realize all that goes on in the spiritual realm, but as mentioned in the "Fathers, turn your hearts" study, Malachi also declares that Yahweh cannot endure the treacherous dealings and neglecting of our wives.
Isaiah 1:13 Bring no more futile sacrifices; Incense is an abomination to Me. The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies -- I cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting.14 Your New Moons and your appointed feasts My soul hates; They are a trouble to Me, I am weary of bearing them. 15 When you spread out your hands, I will hide My eyes from you; Even though you make many prayers, I will not hear. Your hands are full of blood. 16 "Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes. Cease to do evil, 17 Learn to do good; Seek justice, Rebuke the oppressor; Defend the fatherless, Plead for the widow.
Perhaps our wives aren't widows, but is it so, spiritually? We see the great concern that Yahweh has for the well being of our wives. He wants to be sure that they are honored and taken care of. We should share that concern fully.
1 Timothy 5:3 Honour widows that are widows indeed.
Why is Yahweh so concerned about the widows? Is it only because their physical needs must be met? Are not the spiritual needs just as important, if not far more important? Considering all the scriptures where Yahweh is angry because the widows are neglected, woe to the fathers who neglect the spiritual needs of their wives! All the Sabbaths, calling of assemblies, feast days can be a burden to Him because He cannot endure the neglect. He cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting. Yahweh is VERY concerned about the well being of our wives, shouldn't we be? If, in Isaiah 1:13-17, Yahweh cannot endure the offerings, Feast Days and Sabbaths of those who are neglecting the physical needs of what used to be another man's wife (the widow), how much more so if we neglect the spiritual needs of our own wives? Consider:
1 Timothy 5:8 But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
Is it just the physical providing that Yahweh is concerned about? Surely, the spiritual is far more important. The first leads to physical death, the latter leads to spiritual death. So, are we worse than an unbeliever? Let it not be!
The Messiah and the Assembly
If we want to raise children of righteousness, we need to realize that our relationship with our wives is a mirror of how the Messiah and the assembly relate to one another:
Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Messiah also loved the assembly, and gave himself for it;
Yahushua loved the assembly so much, that He gave Himself for it. He gave His very life and was wounded, tortured and humiliated for the sake of the Assembly. We are to love our wives, even as the Messiah loved the Assembly. This is a tall order! The love that the Messiah has for the assembly is difficult to fathom:
Ephesians 3:14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Master Yahushua Messiah, 15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; 17 That Messiah may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19 And to know the love of Messiah, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of Elohim.
But this is our calling and duty, to love our wives in this way. But what if instead of the Messiah loving us, He was bitter toward us? We know it isn't this way, therefore let us not be this way toward our wives:
Colossians 3:19 Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them.
How does Messiah deal with us? We have a clear example of how we should deal with our wives. We know how gently, patiently and longsuffering He is with us. Though we aren't perfect, He still pours out his love and blessings on us. Yes, let's be this way with our wives!
Continuing in Ephesians 5:
26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious assembly, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
The Messiah's love sanctifies and cleanses the body. In the same way we cleanse, cherish and care for our own bodies, so should we love our wives. We should care for the needs of our wife in the same way we would care for the needs of our body. If we are hungry, we eat. If we are thirsty, we drink. If we are not clean, we cleanse ourselves. We need to have this level of care and concern for our wives. We should take care of the physical and spiritual needs of our wives in this same way. For she is, as Adam said:
Genesis 2:23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.
Continuing in Ephesians:
28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Master the assembly: 30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. 31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Messiah and the assembly. 33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.
With the husband and wife relationship being a picture of the Messiah's relationship to the body, let's remember that we demonstrate the Messiah's love for the body to our children with the way we treat our wives. If we want our daughters to grow up being submissive, humble and wonderful blessings to their future husbands, then we need to show them how wonderful it is to be submissive when a husband prefers, honors and respects his submissive and humble wife.
We have a real opportunity with our children, to show them the Messiah's love! We can show them His mercy, His care and His concern for us every day in our homes. After all, it is the Messiah's love for us that has compelled us to love Him:
1 John 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us. 20 If a man say, I love Elohim, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love Elohim whom he hath not seen?
But if we can demonstrate the Messiah's love to our children through our love for our wife, our children can truly understand the Messiah's love for us first and then proceed to love Him in return.
It is all part of following the Messiah's footsteps and walking as He walked! We could potentially teach the ways of Yahweh to our children a hundred times over and still not have them understand it because we really aren't demonstrating the Messiah's love for them in action and deed. This could potentially result in them forsaking Yahweh later in life! Oh how important it is for us to fulfill this commandment!
When scripture says that we love ourselves when we love our wives, it really means it. Let's discover why.
When we love and honor our wives as we should, it creates the best environment for our wives to fulfill their role as a submissive, faithful helper. Woman was created to be a "help" meet for man. The Hebrew word used for "help" is often used to describe how Yahweh is our divine helper. Yahweh knew that two is better than one:
Ecclesiastes 4:9 Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour.10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. 11 Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? 12 And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
With a man, a woman and Yahweh, we have a threefold cord that is not quickly broken. When we add our children, and then the assembly, we are invincible! How many husbands and wives (and indeed the entire family!) are prayer teams, praying together, uniting against the adversary? But we need oneness with Yahweh to accomplish anything. Yahushua prayed for this:
John 17:20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
There is great power in this unity if the unity includes a oneness with Yahweh. Let's strive to attain that oneness! However, we later learn that the unity that Adam and Eve (Chawwah) had with Yahweh was broken in Genesis chapter three:
Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which Yahweh Elohim had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath Elohim said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: 3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, Elohim hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. 4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 For Elohim doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as elohim, knowing good and evil. 6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
Here we see that Eve was deceived into eating the fruit that Yahweh had forbidden. Also notice that Adam was 'with her' when all this was going on. Other translations I have checked (even the Septuagint) say that Adam was in the company of Eve at this time. It is true that Adam was not deceived (1Tim 2:14):
1 Timothy 2:14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.
So Adam apparently failed to protect her and take the lead in this situation. A silent husband who just kind of 'goes along with everything' has wreaked havoc in many a home. In this case, it appears a silent husband created an environment that wrecked the whole world and all of their children.
The potential is the same today, husbands! The "silent husband" perhaps thinks that if his wife does something and he just goes along with it, that somehow he is less responsible for what takes place. Adam too, thought he had an excuse:
Genesis 3:7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. 8 And they heard the voice of Yahweh Elohim walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of Yahweh Elohim amongst the trees of the garden. 9 And Yahweh Elohim called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? 10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. 11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? 12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
Adam said, "The woman that thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat". Adam's excuse was not effective at all. He was cast out of the garden and sentenced to death just as Yahweh had warned.
We too are expected to live according to the word of Yahweh, and not remain silent when a temptation enters our walled city. We must stand and protect our wives, and thus, our children from the enemy and the deception that he brings. We keep ourselves from evil in doing so. Therefore, when we fulfill our roles as husbands, we are only truly helping ourselves in doing so!
Let's look at some other reasons why it is beneficial to ourselves that we truly fulfill our roles as husbands. Doing these things will create the best environment for us to have the virtuous wife we all desire. Many men are missing one of the glorious crowns they could have, a virtuous woman:
Proverbs 12:4 A virtuous woman [is] a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed [is] as rottenness in his bones.
Proverbs 31:10 Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price [is] far above rubies. 11 The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. 12 She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
Proverbs 31:28 Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband [also], and he praiseth her.
Our wives can be safely trusted to do us good and not evil all the days of our lives. We can know that the decisions she makes are the same as our own because we have spent so much time with her in the Word, instructing her and the whole family in the ways of righteousness.
Such a woman will have mature judgment, wise counsel and knowledge and understanding. Such a woman would have no major spiritual problems in her life because her husband is so jealous for her spiritual well being. We see that the husband trusts and praises the virtuous woman of Proverbs 31. He is also a well known elder at the gates:
Proverbs 31:23 Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.
The husband sits among the elders of the land. He is trusted to make the decisions the elders make, in part, because it is evident that his house is in order, his children (who rise up and call their mother blessed) are in submission and his wife is obviously well cared for.
1 Timothy 3:10 And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless.11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.
But let's remember that even if our wives are perfect in character, it is Yahweh that deserves the praise and glory:
Proverbs 19:14 House and riches are the inheritance of fathers: and a prudent wife is from Yahweh.
Having a prudent, virtuous wife can bring about the same characteristics in our children. What a blessing we could have giving our daughters to wise husbands! A wise husband would spot a rebellious daughter pretty quickly. Having children whose marriages are good can save us a lot of heartache in the future.
These are only the beginnings of the great blessings we can receive when we are fulfilling our roles as husbands. We can and should take responsibility for their physical and spiritual well being. We are entrusted to care for them, to love them and truly appreciate them as the blessing from Yahweh they are.
If these things convict you, repent before Yahweh and before your whole family and confess your sins. It will go a long way toward the healing you need to improve your home and it will go a long way toward the respect you need to bring about the necessary changes.
Husbands, love your wives!
Now read "Motherhood and the Role of Women in the Home"
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