Friday, February 25, 2011

Ephesians 5:21-33

21 Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ. 22 Wives, be subject to your husbands as you are to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife just as Christ is the head of the church, the body of which he is the Savior. 24 Just as the church is subject to Christ, so also wives ought to be, in everything, to their husbands. 25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, 26 in order to make her holy by cleansing her with the washing of water by the word, 27 so as to present the church to himself in splendor, without a spot or wrinkle or anything of the kind--yes, so that she may be holy and without blemish. 28 In the same way, husbands should love their wives as they do their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hates his own body, but he nourishes and tenderly cares for it, just as Christ does for the church, 30 because we are members of his body. 31 "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two will become one flesh." 32 This is a great mystery, and I am applying it to Christ and the church. 33 Each of you, however, should love his wife as himself, and a wife should respect her husband.

Questions to consider:
  • Having had the opportunity to read the entire passage at once, does anything new stick out to you?
  • Do you think this passage is relevant only for those who are married?
  • What lesson(s) have you taken away from this passage, whether you're married or not?
Possibilities for prayer:

As I mentioned earlier in the week, a large portion of this passage has been and can be rather controversial in certain circles. Hopefully, we've looked at this text in its entirety in a way that has helped us to see the relevance of the author's words in the lives of us all, married or not married. Today, take some time to pray through the more difficult portions of this text. If there's some verse or phrase or word that strikes you as difficult to agree with or understand, reflect on that and ask God for his illumination and insight.