Daily Lectionary: Deuteronomy 8:1-20; Matthew 10:24-42
Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. (Small Catechism: The Table of Duties: Wives)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. These words of St. Paul are important because they will affect how you understand marriage and what you look for in a spouse someday. And the world doesn’t like these words. These words make it sound like a wife is just supposed to put up with her husband and do whatever he says. There are some husbands who think like that!
But that’s not what Paul means. When He’s talking about Jesus he can’t be talking about someone mean and burdensome! No, to “submit” means that a wife looks to her husband to receive love and goodness. She is to look to him as the one who provides for and takes care of her and wraps his arms around her when she needs protection and comfort. Young ladies, if that’s not how your man acts toward you, don’t even think about marrying him!
And this is how the Church submits to Christ. The Church looks to Jesus to be Her Savior, Her protector. The Church knows that it is Christ alone who can take away Her sins, wash Her clean, forgive Her, raise Her from the dead and give Her life. For Christ came to give His life for the Church. He died for Her and She was born from His side in the baptismal water and the communion blood that poured from His pierced side. On the cross, Jesus gave His life for His Bride. And she knows that He is the only One who can save and has saved Her from sin and death.
That’s the picture that marriage provides―not perfectly of course, because there is sin in this world. But pay attention, young men and young ladies, so that you know what marriage is all about. And even more, recognize that you all are the Bride of Christ and it is for your sake that He gave His life so you can look to Him for all good things. That makes submitting not a burden, but a holy gift! In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
The Church’s one foundation Is Jesus Christ her Lord; She is His new creation By water and the Word. From heav’n He came and sought her To be His holy bride; With His own blood He bought her, And for her life He died. (The Church’s One Foundation, LSB 644:1)