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Seeing Jesus on the Stage of Marriage

Seeing Jesus in a Wife

She reflects Jesus, too. “Wives, submit to your own husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church” (Ephesians 5:22–23). And so Jesus the Son submits to the Father.

While fully God himself, he humbled himself by becoming a human (Philippians 2:6–7).

A wife reflects Jesus when she submits to her husband’s will. This means that she will follow her husband’s leadership, even when she prefers or desires another way. Jesus did. Do not pass over that reality too quickly. No matter how strong her desire is for a different direction than her husband’s, her desire to conform to her husband’s will is greater. Jesus’ desire was. As a godly woman wedded to a man, she will submit to his will and so reflect the glory of Jesus’ submission to the Father.

The one exception to this is when the husband’s will would lead her into sin against God. But even when she faithfully and graciously resists his lead, her resistance is with a broken heart. She wants her husband to honor the Lord. Her resistance is a winsome call to repentance. In this she reflects Jesus as a wife.

Lastly, in her humble submission to her husband’s leadership, she will be exalted. Jesus humbled himself taking the form of a slave and going to the cross in submission to the Father. Paul tells us what comes out of that greatest act of submission: “Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name” (Philippians 2:9). God exalted Jesus because he humbly submitted himself to the Father’s headship.

James and Peter give us the principle, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6). There is a time to be exalted. This correlates directly with humility and submission. God will often exalt the persevering godly wife in this life: “Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: ‘Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all’” (Proverbs 31:28–29). And even if not in this life, certainly in the judgment to come she will receive her reward for her submission. And in that final, glorious exaltation, she will reflect Jesus Christ who was exalted for his humble submission before her.

The husband reflects Jesus’ love as he serves and sacrifices for his wife’s good. The wife reflects Jesus’ love as she humbly and boldly submits to the will of her husband, looking forward to the exaltation to come. Therefore, marriage is a unique and wonderful stage filled with opportunities every day to reflect the glories of King Jesus.