and obtaineth favor of the Lord
Suppose we took a survey. The question that we would ask is: What makes a good wife? I can just imagine all of the answers that we would hear! Some would probably make us smile. Others would, perhaps, make us very sad. But, from the beginning, God intended the wife to be a “good thing.”
Before we address our answer to the question, let’s recall the Creation for just a moment. Day by day, as God created, He viewed His Creation, and in each case, the Scriptures tell us that God saw that it was good (Genesis 1:4, 10, 12, 18, 21, 25). However, as details are given in chapter 2 of the creation of the man and the woman, we find, for the first time in the Scriptures, that God says that something is “not good”: And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone. Then immediately following that declaration, He announces His solution: I will make him a help meet for him. In contrast to that which was not good, the wife, being a help and companion to the man, was to be a good thing.
And, when God finished His Creation, we find this truth: And God saw everything that He had made, and, behold, it was very good (Genesis 1:31). Being a wife according to God’s intent and design truly is a good thing.
Listen to the truth of Proverbs 18:22: Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favor of the Lord. Here we find the same truth again – a wife is to be a good thing.
Listen now to the question of Proverbs 31:10-12: Who can find a virtuous woman? And then hear the answer to that question as it relates to her husband: The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her … She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
So we can see that God not only created and designed the wife to be a “good” thing, but He commends the wife who gives all the days of her life to doing good, and not evil, to her husband.
A “good” wife – do you have a heart that desires to be a good wife to your husband? Perhaps you are wondering in what ways you could be a better wife. Well, if God created the marriage, and He did, then let’s look at the three instructions that He gives to wives. We will find that these three truths describe qualities that truly do make a good wife.
… and the wife see that she reverence her husband (Ephesians 5:33).
Reverence – respect! This reverence and respect – or the lack of it – reflects a wife’s heart attitude – how she truly feels about her husband, from the heart. It is from the heart that all of a wife’s words and actions will flow. Respectful words and loving actions come from a respectful heart. Let the wife see to it that she reverence her husband!
Also, did you notice that this is a command? God does not make this optional. Neither does He say that a husband must earn the wife’s respect. Actually, the Lord requires this of us. Listen again to the wording: … and the wife see that she reverence her husband.
Be careful that you do not fall into the error of negating the Word of God by saying “I know that this is true, BUT …”
God’s truth is always true. We all have faults and failures. A wife can respect her husband, in spite of his faults and weaknesses. She can respect him just because he is her husband. And, if a wife will make a list of his good qualities, she will be surprised how many ways that she can find to respect him. As her heart toward him becomes more respectful, their marriage will begin to change. See to it that you reverence your husband.
The book of Titus instructs the older women to encourage the younger women to love their husbands (Titus 2:3-5). There are misunderstandings as to what love really is. The particular Greek word used in this passage is a friendship, companionship love. It is the kind of love that focuses on the relationship between husband and wife. This kind of love can only be fostered as a wife spends time together with her husband, sharing common interests, walking through life as friends and companions. A wife may feel as though she has nothing in common with her husband. There is a sure way to build common interests. Be interested in what he is interested in! Yes, a wife can be interested in what he is interested in – if she is truly interested in him! She can lay aside her desires, her schedules, etc., and love her husband. She can be a friend and companion to him as she shares his life with him. Through the ability which God supplies, love your husband. It will be a blessing to you both!
Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord (Ephesians 5:22).
Did you know that this is the most frequent command in the Bible given to wives? Yes, it really is. No other instruction is given to wives as often as this one. It must be the one that we need to hear the most often – Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands.
What does submit yourselves actually mean? It means being arranged under the authority of another. This is not the teaching of the twenty-first century, but it is most definitely Biblical teaching. Additionally, it is an outflow of a Spirit-filled life (see Ephesians 5:17-22).
Once a wife acknowledge, from her heart, that the husband is the head of the wife (Ephesians 5:23), she will find submission an easier thing.
No matter what the world says or how a wife may feel personally, the Word of God is true – even submit yourselves!
There is a key to learning to be arranged under a husband’s authority – simply learning to really listen. Husbands say what they like and what they do not like. They say what they would like for the wife to do or not do. It really is that easy – learning to listen and, without arguing, walking in agreement with him.
From my experience, I have found that my struggle will always be that I prefer my own way, that I think I know a better way, or that I think I am more spiritual. But not so! The Lord always knows the best way, and He is the most “spiritual” of all – and it is He who says submit yourselves. And, for those wives who have husbands who are not obedient to the Word, the words found in 1 Peter 2:21-3:6 will be an anchor for you!
The timeless truth of submission will take the tug-of-war out of a marriage. When a wife ceases from pulling against her husband, the struggle will stop. When, by faith, she arranges herself under her husband’s God-given authority, she will be pleasing to the Lord.
What makes a good wife? I guess we really did not need a survey. Respect, companionship, submission – three qualities of a good wife — three truths that will transform a marriage – three truths that bring glory to God.
Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing,
and obtaineth favor of the Lord