Monday, September 17, 2012

Articles | Love And Subjugation

Turns out marriage is between two people: Articles | Love And Subjugation | Phillip Jensen:
Sydney Anglicans are accused of speaking a lot about the submission of the wife and the difference between the spouses, but not of the sacrificial love of the husband and the equal rights of the spouses. It is an accusation that does not ring true to my experience, where most wedding sermons on passages like Ephesians 5 major on both Christ’s sacrifice rather than the church’s submission, and on the husband’s responsibility rather than the wife’s response.These accusations are the result of selective listening.
This is hard to understand because English doesn't have a middle voice, which is used in the "submit" passages:
While the Bible calls upon the wife to submit it never calls upon the husband to subjugate or subdue his wife. It is never his prerogative or responsibility. Hers must always be her own willing, Spirit filled, response to the Saviour, never a response enforced by her husband. All forms of coercion – physical, economic, social, psychological, spiritual – are inappropriate and wrong for a husband to use on his wife. Some, such as physical abuse, are criminal and should be dealt with by the courts. The Christian husband’s duty and solemn vow is to follow the example of his Lord and lay down his life for his bride. This will always put her interests before his own at whatever cost it is to him. This will mean never using or even threatening force. To subjugate his wife is a complete denial of what he promised.

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