Back in October 2013, I was given the opportunity to preach at RCC, while our lead minister was on a mission trip. The message was a part of our worship series called, “Christian,” where we were walking through 1 Peter. Specifically, I was given the first seven verses from the third chapter, where Peter addresses husbands and wives. My wife joined me for a portion of the message, which I thought was great, because I do not have a direct connection to what it’s like to be a wife. Ha! I only wish we had somehow recorded our actual conversations about this, instead of trying to recreate it on stage. She had so many great thoughts, and I loved our discussions. I hope we can do even more together like this in the future.
One of the big things that stood out to me about this passage is that Peter was specifically addressing husbands and wives within the church. This is often used, out of context, as direction to men and women, in general. I think that is wrong. Peter is obviously talking to wives, and then he turns to husbands — both within the context of the church. He seems to address two things right away to these two people. First, he addresses wives who have unbelieving husbands. He tells them to not give up, but instead live out their faith over and over again in front of their husbands. Your consistent example will be testimony to the Gospel. Second, he seems to paint a picture of how a Christian marriage should look. It’s about husbands respecting and loving their wives while they lead their home in the way of God. Similarly, it involves a wife loving and following her husband’s lead. Together, they are to partner together to build up Christ in their home. I believe Peter is saying a Godly marriage looks like this.
In consideration of our youth group and other unmarried people at our church, I also mentioned how Peter seems to have an underlying message to them. As he describes how a marriage should look, I think he is telling those who are unmarried to have this as a goal. As they look for a spouse, I believe God wants them to set their standards high.
One of the biggest things my wife and I agree upon is our desire for marriages to succeed. Over the years, we have become more and more passionate. It is very upsetting to me that the rate of divorce within Christian marriages is the same as that for non-Christians. Followers of Christ should be setting the example of what a marriage should look like, because they are following the one who created marriage. Sure, we are not perfect, but we should have a desire to build each other up, realizing our spouse is on our team, and loving like Christ. I strongly believe that when we begin doing this, our marriages will look drastically different, and they will begin to have a huge impact on the world. God brings husbands and wives together, and He wants to use them together, as instruments for his Kingdom.
There was much much more I learned by researching this passage, and maybe it will end up in a future blog post or perhaps in a book that my wife and I may or may not be working on… :-)
If you would like to listen to the message, you can check out RCC’s podcast page or listen through the player below.