Sacrificial Love

This post may contain affiliate links. Read the full disclosure here

First, and foremost, Happy Valentine’s Day!

This past week we have been discussing “submission” and how we view it in a Christian marriage…most particularly what it means to be a “submissive wife”.  In my last post, we were dissecting Ephesians 5.

Ephesians 5:22-33 NIV
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. 

I can’t help but feel that we also need to take a look at the other side, the other piece of the puzzle.  Because indeed this term “marriage” is a team effort…it takes two! What is a husband’s role in marriage? How does Christ call our husbands to this life long commitment? We get so caught up at the word “submit” that we fail to finish reading the rest.

Ephesians 5:25-33

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.  After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body.  “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. “This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”

This part of Ephesians is beautiful. Ephesians points out what marriage and love is all about.  God asks husbands to “love their wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her”…think about that for a second… God wants husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church…what a deep and powerful love that is! God really set the bar high. He wants husbands to strive to be like Jesus, to love like Jesus did. The passage goes on to talk about husbands loving their wives as their own bodies. Since our bodies are considered a temple for God we need to remember how serious this request is. Wives are asked to “submit” to their husbands but God asks husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.  God is asking them to be willing to put their lives down for their wives. To give their life as Jesus gave His. This love God describes is sacrificial. And there is nothing more powerful than love that is practiced with a servant’s heart.  

This Valentine’s Day, I hope that whether you are single, dating, engaged, married, divorced or widowed…that you know how much God loves you unconditionally. We are all worthy of sacrificial love. It is important to always keep close to our heart the truth of He who gave it all, whose love surpassed any that we could possible know in this life.  No matter what our days bring us, no matter what we are challenged with…God’s love surpasses all.  And that is enough.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.