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Family Life - Part Four

Good Morning Family!

Oh what a wonderful day to worship our Lord!

Heavenly Father,

We pray in Jesus’ name that You would open the hearts of the lost to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ; Father, that You would soften those with calloused hearts, that they would be drawn in true repentance and by faith and by hearing Your Gospel of truth they would come to know that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. Lord we ask that You would remove from their minds any false teachings, grant them Your wisdom and discernment of Your truth, Your gospel, that none would perish. Use us as Your instruments, to make Your gospel know to the unbelieving.
In Jesus' name

"Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body."
Ephesians 5:22-23 

Many voices in our world call out to wives for attention.
One voice tells them they should devote their time and energies to a career.
Another voice tells them they do not need a husband at all.
Still others tell them they should only do what they think is best for themselves.
In the midst of these voices, God is speaking. His Word has clear instructions for women who marry. His Word does not change from culture to culture.

Women are special creatures. God designed them to fill a special function, but most have forgotten, or never known, God’s plan. This has caused much pain and suffering in our world.

“A woman was not made out of his head to top him, nor out of his feet to be trampled upon by him; but out of his side, to be equal to him; under his arm to be protected; and near his heart to be loved.”

Women are not the only ones who have misunderstood or never known their God-given function. Men have played a major role in women failing to find their place and be the special creatures God meant them to be.
Remember the story of Adam and Eve?
Adam was created first and given major responsibility in the world. But Adam was alone, and he needed a helper.   

"And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him."
Genesis 2:18

"And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
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.”
Genesis 2:21-23 

The first man and woman were not born, but created by God to fill a special place in each other’s lives. Adam recognized this and knew without an introduction that the woman was going to be an important part of his life. But Adam failed to fulfill his responsibilities toward this first woman, just as many men have done since that day. He told her about God’s warning, do not eat of the fruit of the tree in the midst of the garden.

However, when the serpent talked to the woman, asking her questions, Adam did not stop their conversation. He was there when she took the fruit from the tree. When she gave it to him, he said nothing, just ate with her.

God had given the woman to the first man to be a helper, to share in his responsibilities and help fulfill God’s purpose for their family. When she listened to the serpent, and Adam subsequently listened to her, they both disobeyed God’s plan. Their desire to know “good and evil” Genesis 3:1, 4-6 overcame their desire to live as God intended.

After their disobedience, Adam named the woman Eve, mother of all living, Genesis 3:20. When God came to commune with them, each blamed another (Adam blamed Eve, and Eve blamed the serpent) for their sin, Genesis 3:9-13. This “passing the blame” to others is still going on. Husbands accuse wives and wives accuse husbands, and “no one” accepts the blame for anything. If we take a close look at God’s design for the family, we will discover that “everyone” is to blame. 

Church, we seem to have forgotten God’s plan, failed to follow it, and our families are dearly paying for our mistakes!

She should return to her beginning. If God created her to be a “helpmeet,” she should learn how to be one. Many women do not understand what this means. They have followed their husbands in trying to put their own interpretation on God’s design. Anytime humans try to decide right and wrong for themselves, they mess up more than their own lives.

Did you ever wonder why God did not make the woman from the dust of the ground like He did the man? Do you know why He removed a rib from the man and used it as the starting point of the woman? The Bible never answers these questions, but it does give clues to the puzzles they present:

She was to be a helper for the man, Genesis 2:18.
The man called her “bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh” because she was taken out of him, Genesis 2:23.
The woman was created for the man, 1 Corinthians 11:8-9.
The woman was supposed to be so close to the man that he would change his loyalties from his parents and “stick to” her Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:5; Ephesians 5:31 

How was she supposed to help him? God did not tell the woman to work in the garden, hoe the maize, harvest the cassava, or pick tomatoes. He did not tell her she should cook all the meals, clean all the messes, and wash all the clothes. He said she was to be a “helpmeet.”
So where do we find what God meant?

The meaning of the Hebrew word used here for “helpmeet” gives the idea of someone who “assists another to reach complete fulfillment.” This same word is used in other places in the Old Testament when referring to someone who comes to the rescue of another.
The Webster’s Encyclopedic Dictionary defines “help” as:
  1. “To join someone and contribute to the performance or completion of a task;"
  2. “Used as a cry of distress indicating that one urgently needs intervention from outside to rescue one;"
  3. “To contribute to the relief, remedy or cure of, benefit;"
  4. “To be useful and effective to someone in the attainment of a desired end;"
  5. “To make easier, likelier or more probable;"
  6. “To prevent oneself or others from doing a certain thing.”
It is good to understand the meaning of words that we use daily. Sometimes a word is made to sound bad, when actually it's meaning is good. 
The enemy has a way of accomplishing that doesn't he?
A “helpmeet” is someone who performs all the functions of the verb “help.” This same word is used to describe God in the Book of Psalms:

“Our soul waits for the Lord: he is our help and our shield” 
Psalm 33:20

"But I am poor and needy; Make haste to me, O God! You are my help and my deliverer; O Lord, do not delay."
Psalm 70:5 

Is it demeaning to call God a “help”? God created everything, and we are nothing. Yet God refers to Himself using the same term that He used to describe the role of the woman. If God isn't offended by the term for Himself, why should you be?

So how can a wife “help” her husband?

Begin with the understanding that both husband and wife should have help, that he needs her and she needs him. Study him even before they are married and strive to understand the things that are important to him.
Learn to support, encourage, and cheer him on with his chosen life work.
Show respect to him, especially in public or in front of other family members.
Learn to praise him for his accomplishments and improvements—even small ones. As she praises him, he will work to do more and better things.
Make requests, not demands. 
Demanding tends cause us to feel like someone is trying to take control.

Remember that love works two ways. Try to show her love and affection in ways that she knows will please him. Always remember that he does not have the same needs she does, after all he is a man and she is a woman!

If her husband gets defensive, check her motives for her comments/criticism. Then look for reasons why he is reacting this way. Maybe there is something in his history that is causing her words to sound different than she intended.

Remember the basic biological differences between men and women. He responds to sight, and she responds to touch. If he grabs her without some sign of tenderness or loving touch, she should try not to push him away. Here is where open communication is very vital. Help, there is that word again, him understand her needs, and make sure he knows she is ready and willing to fulfill his.

These suggestions are in no way exhaustive or conclusive, but nonetheless, should be taught to daughters, in the home and church. Hopefully, they will give some idea of ways the woman can be a “help” to her husband. The wonderful thing about this “help” is that she is increasing her closeness to him with every one of them, which in turn will help her and their relationship.

The third chapter of Genesis makes it plain that the woman was not designed to lead the family in spiritual matters. The serpent easily beguiled her and tempted her with something that looked good. But Genesis gives no record of what Eve actually did in the Garden of Eden. Until her conversation with the serpent, we see her with her husband, Genesis 2:25, and we know they communed with God every day, Genesis 3:8. That does not seem to be such a hard life, does it?
We know that God told Adam to take care of the garden. He also made sure that Adam knew he was in charge of the animals and plants, and they were subject to him, Genesis 1:28-30. Since Eve was called his “helpmeet,” we can assume that she helped Adam take care of these things in their garden. There is no mention of hard work, that is until disobedience entered their lives in Genesis 3:16-19.

After their disobedience, the lives of both the man and woman changed. Adam was condemned to sweat and toil for everything he grew, Genesis 3:17-19. Eve was sentenced to the pain and near death of childbirth, to desire her husband, and to be under his rule.

"To the woman He said:
'I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception;
In pain you shall bring forth children;
Your desire shall be for your husband,
And he shall rule over you.' "

It is from this verse, we can understand that the woman will desire her husband, and he will rule over her. Many men take this word to mean they are supposed to keep their wives under their feet and rule her like a king does his subjects. But God gives us a clear picture of the type of “rule” He meant. We discussed it in an earlier lesson. This understanding is vital if the woman is going to fulfill her God-given role.

The God-given command to submit is probably the hardest for most women to swallow. This, too, comes from a lack of understanding of what it means. According to Dennis Rainey, in his book Ministering to Twenty-first Century Families,“the Greek word translated submit literally means ‘to place or arrange under the authority of another.’ It is a voluntary subordination.” This means she chooses to place herself under the protection and guidance of her husband. He, in turn, listens to her advice and counsel and makes the final decision. Then, if the decision turns out to be a bad one, she is protected from shouldering the blame.

There is another part of this God-given plan of submission that is often misunderstood by both men and women. Have you ever heard a man say that women are supposed to submit? 
It helps our understanding to look at the entire Scripture:

"Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything."
Ephesians 5:22-23

"Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives."
1 Peter 3:1

Do you notice anything similar about these verses? 
They each say, “Wives, submit to your own husbands.” This makes the picture a bit different. 

The devil would have it that women believe that they are inferior, only good for helping their husbands, and in subjection to all men. 

Let's be clear, this is NOT what God’s Word says
It tells women not to try to take authority over men, but to be in obedience to their husbands and under submission to him, asking questions in private. 

In closing.....

When we clearly understand the Scripture, we can use God’s Word to defeat the enemy and we can each find our proper place in God’s family plan.
It's amazing how different a word can look when it is clearly read and fully understood. 
God designed both men and women with their good in mind. He created them both in His image and brought them together to be a blessing and help to one another. 

He planned their future to be one of joy and fulfillment together. And he intended their family unit to form the foundation of all living things.

Men, isn’t it about time that we all start following God’s plan? 
It sure works better than what he has created with his human wisdom. 
Let us seek the face of God, let us understand His Word and will, and live our lives according to the blueprint that works, created by the Creator, the Bible.

And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

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Brian Monzon Ministries

The Brian Monzon Ministries



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