From the book: Family Focus on Christ

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Family Focus on Christ #1
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THE WOMAN IN SUBJECTION TO HER HUSBAND
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THE ORNAMENT OF A MEEK AND QUIET SPIRIT

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Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; while they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or putting on of apparel; but let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price, 1PE 3:1-4.

The subject of our message will be to establish that the submission of the wife unto the authority of her husband is "The Ornament of a Meek and Quiet Spirit". This adorning is spoken of as an ornament, even as the submission of the church unto the authority of Christ and the submission of Christ unto the authority of His Father are spoken of as the robe of righteousness. As these truths unfold with the help of the Lord, may you see the beauty of this adorning!

In 1CO 11 the Scripture is setting forth the chain of command, or of authority, as it is set forth by the Lord. "But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and head of Christ is God," 1CO 11:3. This is the chain of authority as it is established by the Lord.

The Head of Christ is God the Father. It is through His submission to the authority of the Father that Christ purchased the robe of righteousness for His church. This submission of our lovely Saviour, this perfect obedience, this righteousness of Christ being imputed to us is the adorning, the garment, which makes us fit to appear before God.

This robe of righteousness is the submission of Christ's bride under the authority of Christ. This imparted righteousness of Christ is the righteousness of the saints. "And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints," REV 19:8, or the righteous acts of the saints.

Now we want to dwell on another robe—another adorning. It is a blessed robe, a blessed adorning, which is paralleled and likened unto the one spoken of in REV 19:7. "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath made herself ready." This making herself ready was through her submission to the authority of Christ. Christ is being formed in her, "the righteousness of saints." It was being "arrayed" in that "fine linen, clean and white" that made her ready for the marriage feast.

Submission to the authority of her husband is the adorning of the bride or the woman, which is a type of the church, in "...a meek and quiet spirit, which in the sight of God is of great price". "Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything," EPH 5:24.

Our text is speaking of the woman being in submission to the husband—looking to the man as her head as the church looks to Christ as its head. It is a type; it is a symbol of the church's relationship with Christ. "Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel. But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price."

To rightly understand this Scripture, in the context it is written, we must see the next verse. "For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves...." Now we shall see what that adorning was. "Who...adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands," 1PE 3:5.

The subjection of a woman to her husband is that garment, that "adorning," is that "ornament of a meek and quiet spirit which is in the sight of God of great price." It is that which is beautiful. One of the greatest blessings God has given unto fallen man is to have a wife who is adorned with such a robe of submission.

Oh, beloved wives, what a contrast there is between women with a meek and quiet spirit, "in subjection to your own husbands," and "the contentions of a wife" PRO 19:13b. "It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman [margin, 'a woman of contentions'] in a wide house [margin, 'an house of society']," PRO 21:9. "A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones," PRO 12:4.

The adorning of the woman must be, "in subjection to your own husband...the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price." "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body," EPH 5:23.

Subjection and submission are the adorning of the church in the robe of Christ's righteousness, which is His conformity of life to the divine law. The submission, the obedience, and the righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ is that wherein the Father is glorified! "...righteousness and judgment are the habitation of His throne," PSA 97:2.

The adorning of the Lord Jesus Christ was His conformity to the divine will of the Father. He showed perfect submission when He was in the Garden of Gethsemane, when He was sweating great drops of blood, when He was obedient unto death even the death of the cross, and when He lay down His life that He might take it again because the Father had so commanded. That adorning, that righteousness is "the glory of God", which is the light of heaven. The submission of "...the Lamb is the light thereof," REV 21:23. That submission of the Lord Jesus Christ is the brightness and the glory of heaven.

I pointed out in 1CO 11:3 that, "...the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God." Joseph said unto Pharaoh, "...The dream of Pharaoh is one...," GEN 41:25, and so it is here. The message is one—submission! Even as Christ subjected Himself to the authority of the Father as His head, so the man must subject himself to the authority of Christ as his head and, "LIKEWISE, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands," as your head.

Christ adorned Himself in perfect submission, which is the saints' robe of imputed righteousness. Christ paid that penalty of our sin as an act of obedience. That has become the glory of heaven. It shall be eternally spoken of in heaven. It is His obedience wherein the Father was so glorified.

The subjection of the wife to the authority of her husband is a type of the church, as the bride of Christ being made ready for the marriage of the Lamb. "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath made herself ready," REV 19:7.

How did his wife make herself ready? It was through a lifetime of preparation of the heart. That perfect submission of Christ was imparted in the heart by Christ being formed in her and by the work of grace in the soul. Through this preparation, she was conformed to the blessed image of Christ.

The bride is prepared by the work of grace wrought in the heart by the Holy Spirit, breaking the power of sin, bringing the heart into subjection to and conformity with that perfect submission of Christ. Rebellion was broken by grace through the power of the Spirit. It says, "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to Him...." Christ is so honored by the subjection of His bride!

"And to her it was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white...," without spot and without wrinkles. This adorning, this garment which is the garment of salvation, that shall be worn for all eternity in heaven, what is it? It is the submission of the church being worked in the heart by grace. For it says, "...for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints," REV 19:8.

That fine linen, that garment in which they have been arrayed, is that fine linen of submission or, "...the righteousness of saints." That submission of Christ is formed in them, the power of sin having been broken. They can now stand righteous before the Father in the perfect submission of His Son imparted unto them.

This submission is the woman's adorning, "...of a meek and quiet spirit...being in subjection unto their own husbands," 1PE 3:4-5. This same submission is the robe spoken of here. All the way through Scripture the wife is set forth as a type of the church. The submission of the wife unto her husband is a type of the church in subjection to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Was that submission of the woman to the authority of the man only to the honor of the man? No. That submission is to the authority of God Himself, because God has commanded it. That submission or subjection of the wife to her husband is subjection to the authority of the Lord.

It is clearly set forth throughout Scripture that this garment, the adorning of a meek and quiet spirit, is not to be exalted in the things of this world. It is not to be adorned with the wisdom or the things of this world. "Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; but let it be the hidden man of the heart."

It's not human reasoning that the Lord is looking unto. He's looking to the meek and the quiet spirit of submission and subjection to the Word of God.

She does not owe her allegiance to a person, to her husband or to a man. No. She owes that allegiance to the authority of the Word of God. God has spoken and that is the way it will be. This is very important, because if we're going to walk in the nearness and the fellowship of the Lord, we're going to walk in obedience to His Holy Word. This adorning is submission; it is obedience to the Lord.

"But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible...," 1PE 3:4. If that proper adorning is in the inner man of the heart, then it is not corruptible. It is, "Even the ornament of a meek and a quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price." It's not a tradition of man. It's not the commandment of man. It is a commandment of and under the authority of God. It is subjection to His authority.

"For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands." Oh, beloved, the adorning spoken of there is that robe of submission, which is as the robe of Christ's imparted righteousness, "...being in subjection unto their own husbands," as under the authority of God. God has so commanded.

FOR OUR FIRST POINT, I want to speak of the adorning of the woman as a type of that, "fine linen, clean and white," which is "the righteousness of saints," REV 19:8.

FOR OUR SECOND POINT, I want to tell you why God placed the woman under the authority of the man. Sometimes we have in our hearts that we dare to ask and reply against God and say, "But why?" In this instance, God clearly tells us why. There should never be any question in any person's mind why God placed the woman under the authority of the man.

FOR OUR THIRD POINT, I want to speak of the blessedness of this adornment when God ordains an ornament. When God ordains a garment like the robe of Christ's righteousness, it is the most blessed and the most glorious thing there is. I want to speak of the blessedness of this adorning, this ornament of a meek and quiet spirit.

My first point deals with the adorning of the woman as a type of the "fine linen", which is submission to the authority of God. In 1PE 2:24-25 the Apostle speaks of Christ's relationship with His church. "Who His own self bare our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls."

Take notice in these two verses of the relationship of Christ and His bride. The bride of Christ had strayed away from Him in rebellion, but she is returning to the Shepherd and Bishop of her soul. This means she is returning under the authority of the Shepherd. Jesus graciously says, "Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls," MAT 11:29.

Oh, beloved, what a blessing for the woman to be brought into such a blessed conformity to the image of our Saviour, who is "meek and lowly in heart". Oh what a blessing it is to be adorned with such a, "meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price."

What does it mean to be the Bishop and Shepherd of our souls? The commission of a shepherd is to supervise the sheep, to look after them and to protect them from the wolves, lions, bears, and all other wild beasts. It is to keep them from roaming, to seek, and to save those which are lost. The duty of the shepherd is to be responsible for the flock. Christ is also the Bishop of our souls. In other words, He is our instructor or teacher. Does not the Bishop do the teaching? The Bishop is the instructor. He is the one who is placed in the position of authority, but also in the position of being an instructor.

Now take notice how 1PE 3 begins! This is so remarkable! This chapter begins with, "LIKEWISE," in uppercase and bold print! There is much emphasis on the word "LIKEWISE". This means, "LIKEWISE, ye wives...," with reference to the Shepherd and the Bishop of our souls. It's speaking of the caretaker. It's speaking of the instructor or the one that is in authority and who has supervision over us. "LIKEWISE, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands."

This word "LIKEWISE" is a very important word. It emphasizes how the Lord is teaching us that even as the bride of Christ looks to the Lord Jesus as the Shepherd and Bishop of her soul, so the wife looks to her husband as the shepherd and bishop of her soul. "LIKEWISE, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands." The word subjection is a synonym of the word submission. What the Lord is teaching here is submission.

The Lord in his infinite wisdom has decreed that the wife shall be in subjection to her husband as an example of the bride of Christ in subjection to the Lord Jesus Christ. It demonstrates being under the authority of God and His Word. It's not a matter of choice. It's not a matter of who should be the boss. It's not a matter of whether the husband should have authority over his wife, or whether they should be equal. Oh, No! A thousand times No! The Lord says, "LIKEWISE, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands;" even as the bride of Christ is in subjection under Christ.

As we proceed into this subject, I want this to be the central theme of our thoughts. "LIKEWISE, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands." Does Satan whisper into your heart, "Oh, the Lord Jesus Christ is perfect, but your husband is not. I do not agree with him, and I believe he is wrong!" You might not agree with what your husband says, and he could be wrong. Does that mean that you should rebel against his authority?

It says in 1PE 3:1-2, "LIKEWISE, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the Word, they also may without the Word be won by the conversation of the wives; while they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear." That verse does not mean that the woman rebels against the husband, but that she shall remain in subjection and win him over by her chaste conversation coupled with fear or reverence.

The humanistic teaching is an equation of values. This means you measure wrong with wrong. The United States went into Granada; therefore, it was not wrong for Russia to go into Afghanistan. This philosophy of equation of values would justify a woman in rebellion against the authority of her husband if she thought he was wrong, but that is in total contradiction with God's Word! The Lord doesn't teach that.

The Word of God teaches, "LIKEWISE, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also without the Word may be won by the conversation of the wives." The wife is not to keep silent if she sees something that does not agree with God's Word, but she is not to rise in rebellion. In the way of submission and subjection to her husband, she must win him by her conversation. She may not rise against his authority.

"While they behold your chaste conversation, coupled with fear", or reverent respect and humility, you must win him. The word "fear" is not a slavish fear. That doesn't mean that the wife is in fear of being hit, but that she should be reverent towards her husband. In this context, fear means reverence and respect.

If the husband "obeys not the Word", the wife must plead with her husband in a respectful way. She must plead with him, showing all due respect for his authority, and win him by her "chaste conversation, coupled with fear". She shall win him by that "...hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and a quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price."

We must understand that we're all fallen creatures and we all offend in many things. We cannot use the philosophy of equation of values. Two wrongs do not make a right! We cannot correct a wrong with a wrong, and rebellion against the authority of a husband is rebellion against the authority of God and His Word! We must correct each other with love and tenderness, by example, and by the fruit of a meek and a quiet spirit which is in the sight of God of great price.

We must understand that the Lord allows trials to come into our marriages. The Lord sends these trials. For what reason? For the trial of our faith. Are we going to obey? Do you see? You can't separate faith from obedience! When the Lord is sending us a trial of faith, He's sending us a trial to see if we will obey. Is this trial going to make us disobey?

In Hebrews 11 we see all the monuments of faith. Every one of them teaches us that the trial of faith is a trial of obedience. "By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark...," V:7. By faith, Noah obeyed and built an ark. "By faith Abraham...obeyed, and he went out, not knowing whither he went," V:8. By faith, the Lord Jesus Christ "humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross," PHI 2:8.

We are to look unto the faith of Jesus as "...the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross...," HEB 12:2. It was by faith that the Lord Jesus obeyed, stepped into and immersed Himself in His Father's wrath. It was by faith that He endured.

The Lord is going to try our faith to see if we will obey. How does He do that? He will allow our nature to reveal itself, and we will come to realize we are not walking in perfection. We will become more forgiving towards our fellow man.

It says, "If any obey not the Word," what do the wives do? They win them "by their chaste conversation". The word chaste means pure. It means without rebellion and deceit; not harsh; nor a backbiter, whisperer or reviler. The husbands must be able to behold the Spirit of Christ in their wives—that humility, that simplicity, and that meek and quiet spirit. That will bring them to reconsider and to understand their plea through the adorning of submission.

Such adorning is to the honor of her husband. She honors his authority; the submission of the church honors Christ, even as the submission of Christ honors God the Father, all in submission to His holy will.

"For after this manner in the old time, the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands." 1PE 3:5. "...Sarah obeyed Abraham calling him lord...," 1PE 3:6. They adorned themselves with reverence and submission to their husbands. The apostle sets forth this example to follow. It was after this manner that they were in subjection unto their husbands.

In EPH 5:22-23 we see such beauty in how the Lord calls for a woman to revere her husband. They are called to be in subjection unto their husbands "as unto the Lord". "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body."

When a woman is subjecting herself to her husband, what she is doing is placing herself under the authority of the Lord, not under the authority of the husband. She is surrendering in submission to the authority of God, "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the Head of the church." It is so important that a woman understands that it is not the husband she's really in subjection to, but it is the Lord.

We are told in EPH 5:26, "That he might sanctify and cleanse it, i.e., the church, with the washing of water by the word." The Word of God is the basis for our decisions. It is by the Word of God that we understand what is the good and perfect will of God. We don't decide by human reasoning. Often the Word of God comes against our reasoning, but the Lord has an ornament. He has a garment with which He is going to clothe our women. Oh, beloved, this garment is so precious!

What does the word sanctify mean? To be made holy. "That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish," EPH 5:27.

Now, see the exhortation to the husbands! "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for it." Husbands are to sanctify their ways and their leadership over their wives "with the washing of water by the word". We must look to the Word as the adorning, the one and only adorning of every decision in our lives. That is the basis upon which the woman must now subject herself under the husband—the basis of the authority of the Word.

The husband must honor the wife. "LIKEWISE" ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered," 1PE 3:7. This is so beautifully expounded upon in EPH 5:33. It says, "Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself...."

The husband will love the wife even as Christ loves the church. Do you know why? It is because he is so honored by her subjection, or her adorning in that robe of submission, that "ornament of a meek and quiet spirit". The Lord Jesus Christ is so honored by that "fine linen, clean and white, for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints," REV 19:8. That righteousness of the saints is their conformity of life to the divine law. That is their submission to His authority.

Christ is so honored by His church because of its reverence, oneness of mind, oneness of purpose, oneness in submission to the holy will of His Father; whereby His Father is so glorified, therefore He honors the church. "LIKEWISE," the husband is so honored by the wife because of her reverence, oneness of mind, oneness of purpose, oneness in submission to the holy will of his Father; whereby his Father is so glorified, therefore he honors the wife.

When the wife is in submission to her husband, he can give himself for her as the Lord Jesus Christ has given Himself for the church. It's only in the way of submission, through the work of regeneration, that the Lord Jesus gives His nearness to the soul. See how beautifully Jesus tells us this in JOH 14:23, "If a man love me, he will keep my words; and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him."

Oh, beloved, it is only in the way of submission that we will ever experience the love, the nearness and presence of Christ. "LIKEWISE," the husband shall love his wife and give himself for her when she is in submission, not when she is walking in rebellion. When she is in submission, a husband can give his wife his love and express his tenderness.

"Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband," EPH 5:33. Reverence is a great word. When we sit in reverence, we sit in holy respect. When we speak of reverence for God, that means we have a holy awe. The man is not perfect; the man is not without sin, but the man is placed in authority by the Lord, and that is why the woman must revere her husband.

See what it says in 1PE 3:2, "While they behold your chaste conversation...." When a man is held in respect or in reverence, then he also gains respect for the wife. The man's respect is for her in that beautiful ornament, or that adornment of a meek and quiet spirit. "While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear...," coupled with reverence and with respect.

When a woman is holding her husband in high respect, you will see that her husband gives himself to her. He'll do everything in his power to do what is pleasing to her as long as it's within the way of submission and not in the way of rebellion.

See in 1PE 2:24 how Christ honors His church. It says, "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness...." Do you see that? We don't live unto sin. The Lord Jesus gave Himself that we should live unto righteousness and unto conformity of life to the divine law. The church must walk in the ways of righteousness.

ISA 53:5 says, "...with his stripes we are healed," from the malady of sin and rebellion. Do you see the beauty and the harmony between Christ and His church? The church comes into a total submission to the will of God. The church repents of all its rebellion and of all its stubbornness. She walks in the ways that are pleasing to the Lord. She "should live unto righteousness".

We see that beautiful garment, the robe of imputed righteousness of Christ. He paid the penalty. He gave Himself for His church, even so the husband gives himself for the wife. But how? In the way of submission. When the wife is in the way of submission, the husband must also walk in the way of self-sacrifice, giving himself for the wife. Everything is done in harmony of faith and in harmony of purpose.

There should be no such thing as a man lording over his wife. They are one flesh, one purpose, and of one mind. When a woman is in proper submission, the man must sacrifice himself. He sacrifices himself for the wife as Christ did for His church.

In 1PE 2:25 Christ is so patient with our infirmities. "For ye were as sheep going astray...." What did he do? He brought us back! "But we are now returned unto the Shepherd and the Bishop of our souls." Often in marriage there are times when we need to be patient with each others' infirmities. "For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body," Jam 3:2.

We must understand that our wives are human. They must have much patience for their husbands, and the husbands must have much patience for their wives. There must be a harmony of purpose so they can come before the Lord, praying together, "That your prayers be not hindered," 1PE 3:7. God has ordained such a oneness; one flesh, one body, one spirit and one mind. They must come before the Lord together in oneness of spirit. This is how they come to return unto the Shepherd and the Bishop of their souls.

Not only does the wife honor the husband, but the husband must honor the wife, even as Christ honors His church. "And let us be glad and rejoice and give honour unto him." The honor of Christ comes first. Now watch how He comes forth. "The marriage of the Lamb has come, and his wife hath made herself ready." Now we start understanding the honor that He bestowed upon the wife, upon the bride.

First, His honor must be upheld. "Let us be glad and rejoice and give honour to him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and his wife has made herself ready. And to her was granted..." Now do you see how He honored the wife? What did he grant her? He granted that she should be arrayed in "fine linen, clean and white". He arrayed her in the robes of righteousness. He granted unto the church that she should be delivered from that power of sin and brought into that beautiful submission to the Word and to the will of God.

"LIKEWISE," the wife must show subjection to the husband. The wife must first honor the husband, and then the husband grants that her robe of that meek and quiet spirit might be made known, and that it might be demonstrated before the world. She is honored thereby.

The husband must not think that he can humiliate his wife. There is no way that the man is put in a position of authority to treat his wife as inferior. His wife is not inferior. His wife has feelings. His wife has to be honored for being in subjection. She cannot be brought out into public to be humiliated and put down. That's a gross sin. The man's position of authority is given UNDER AUTHORITY. The man is under the authority of Christ even as the woman is under the authority of the man. Under that authority of Christ, the man has the duty to sacrifice himself for the honor of his wife.

See what the sacrifice of Christ does. He gave himself for what? "And to her it was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white." It was through His submission that Christ obtained this white linen for her. It is also through the sacrifice of the husband for the wife that the wife is able to walk in submission.

You cannot ask a woman to walk in submission to a person that is a hard master, using his fists and treating her as a slave. That isn't the type of submission the Scripture teaches. We're talking here of a harmony between a husband and wife, even as a harmony between Christ and His church.

Now I will proceed to our second point. Why did God place the woman under the authority of the man? We read in 1TI 2:14 that the woman was deceived, not the man. The man was not deceived in the Garden of Eden. It was the woman who was deceived. The Lord is taking note of that. "And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression."

When the woman was in the Garden of Eden, she was deceived to believe that through rebellion she could become equal with God. "...and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil," GEN 3:5.

This pride of self-exaltation was reproved by placing the woman under the authority of her husband. Now Satan would again deceive the woman to believe that through rebellion she could become equal to the man. This is not only rebellion against the husband, but it is openly defying God's authority to place her under her husband.

The Lord placed the woman under the man because the woman is more subject to being deceived. She is more subject to being brought into deceit and going astray. In the Garden of Eden the woman was deceived, and being in transgression she tempted Adam. Adam sinned, but he was not deceived. The woman was deceived, and she tempted Adam. He fell because of the woman.

"For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil." GEN 3:5. Eve was deceived to believe that she should decide what was right, and what was wrong. She should be as a god, knowing good and evil.

This is where rebellion was born. "And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat," GEN 3:6. It was the woman who was deceived.

The Word of God tells us that this is why "...he shall rule over thee," GEN 3:16. I want you to understand that in the Garden of Eden the woman was placed under the authority of the man. "Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee." This is the curse that God placed upon the woman in the Garden of Eden.

God also placed a curse upon the serpent. "And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel," GEN 3:14-15.

Then He spoke of the first gospel. What was that gospel? The seed of the woman, "...shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel." That is where the Lord Jesus Christ was first proclaimed; He was the seed of the woman of whom the Lord spoke, and that is where the curse was pronounced upon the serpent.

There was also a curse pronounced upon Adam, and what was that? "And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return," GEN 3:17-19. This is the curse God placed upon man.

It was God who placed this curse upon the woman; we must understand this. This was the Lord's doing, and it will never change as long as man and woman live upon the face of this earth. The Lord said to her, "Thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee." That is the commandment of the Lord.

Due to this curse, the women are to keep silent in the churches. Today the women want to start taking active places in the church, but it is absolute rebellion against the Word of God. The Lord has said that because the woman was deceived; she is to be silent in the church. The man is to teach, not the woman.

"Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection," 1TI 2:11. That word "subjection" means with all submission—being in submission to their husbands. "But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence," V:12.

Why may a woman not teach? Because she was deceived. She must be taught. She may not teach in the church, so she does not deceive. This is clarified in verses 13 and 14. "For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in transgression."

A woman may not teach nor usurp authority over the man. A woman may not be brought into a Bible study as a teacher of the men. A woman may not push herself forward with a ministry of teaching the Word of God. God just flatly forbids it.

She must now be in subjection to the teaching of the "Shepherd and Bishop of her soul," 1PE 2:25. What does the word Bishop mean? It means teacher. The man is the head of the woman even as Christ is the head of the man. "For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls. LIKEWISE, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands," 1PE 2:25, 3:1. Your husband is the shepherd and bishop of your soul.

The man is not only to be the shepherd—that is to look after her security and her welfare and to take care of all of her needs— but he is also to be the bishop of her soul. That means he is to be her teacher. The woman is not the teacher. She is to be in silence, because the woman was deceived, not Adam. The woman, having been deceived, was the transgressor.

Scripture tells us in 1CO 14:34-35, "Let your women keep silence in the churches...." This isn't a matter of choice. This is the Word of God. Why? Because God commanded it in GEN 3:16, and because He has commanded it throughout His Word. "Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law." To what is "also saith the law" referring? We go back to GEN 3. God has commanded that a woman be under subjection to her husband and that he will bear rule over her.

Women are to keep silent. They are not to teach, and if they have any questions, they are to ask their husbands at home. That means if they are sitting in a worship service, a church gathering or in any church circle, and they want to know something, "let them ask their husbands at home."

The woman is placed in submission and subjection to her husband as the bishop of her soul and her teacher. A woman may attend a Bible college and become knowledgeable in the Bible, but that doesn't mean that she has the discerning of the spirit. The Lord has ordained that she is to learn from her husband. "And if they will learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church."

Do you know why it is a shame? It is a demonstration of rebellion from under the authority of their husbands. It is a demonstration of a rebellion from under the authority of the Word of God. It is an absolute rebellion against the Word of God. The Word of God says in 1CO 14:34, "...for it is not permitted unto them to speak, but they are commanded to be under obedience...," or under subjection, "...as also saith the law."

Ephesians 5:22 says, "Wives submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord." This truth is what is so important to understand. They're not submitting themselves to the man; they're submitting themselves as unto the Lord. When you see a woman who rises up against the authority of her husband, she is in open rebellion against the Word of God and the authority of the Creator of Heaven and Earth.

In the Garden of Eden, the Lord in his infinite wisdom saw fit to place the woman under the authority of her husband. "Wives submit yourselves unto your own husbands as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church...," EPH 5:23. It is so unquestionable. Even if the husband is wrong, it is by submission in the way of a chaste conversation that the woman shall win him over to the truth and get him to do what is right.

My father made a statement one time when I was just a child that I didn't understand at the time. I had a situation that I discussed with him, and he told me what to do. I thought he was wrong, so I didn't do it. His answer to me was, "I reserve the right to be wrong. You still do what you're told. You don't disobey just because you think I'm wrong."

Do you understand why? He might have understood a few things with a far broader connection than I did. What he was doing had many more connections than I realized. Therefore, when he told me to do something, which he had the authority to do, I had to submit to it even though I didn't understand what he was doing.

In many cases a husband doesn't have time to explain why he wants something done; therefore a woman must submit, even if she does not understand. If she believes he is walking contrary to the Word of God, at home is the place for her to ask him the question. At home, she may point out to him and say, "But doesn't the Word of God say this?" But say it in the way of subjection. At home, she may question her husband, but not in public worship. "As the church is subject unto Christ so let the wives be unto their own husbands."

A woman is to have a covering. Isaac was walking out into the field, and his bride saw him. We read, "For she had said unto the servant, What man is this that walketh in the field to meet us? And the servant had said, It is my master: therefore she took a veil, and covered herself," GEN 24:65. The immediate effect when she saw the man who was to be her husband was, "She took a veil and covered herself."

What is this veil? What was the significance of her taking that veil and covering herself? Well, as soon as she saw her master, who would be her husband, she covered herself. We read in 1CO 11:10, "For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels." What power are we talking about? We're speaking about the power of her husband.

In the margin of 1CO 11:10 it says, the "covering is a sign that she is under the power of her husband." That's the purpose of the covering. A woman is to have her head covered as a sign of being under the authority and power of her husband.

What is 1CO 11:10 speaking of when it says, "because of the angels?" See ECC 5:6 where the meaning is made clear. "Suffer not thy mouth to cause thy flesh to sin; neither say thou before the angel that it was an error: wherefore should God be angry at thy voice, and destroy the work of thine hands?"

We must understand that we are always in the company of angels. Every person is in the company of angels. We don't see them, but they are there. "Because of the angels" means because of the authority of the Word of God, because of the authority of God; a woman must have power upon her head. What is that power? It is a symbol of being under the power of her husband, in subjection and in submission to her husband. A woman must have her head covered as a demonstration and as a sign of the power and authority of her husband and of the Word of God.

Notice what we read in 1CO 11:5, "But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven."

This teaches the same thing as 1CO 14:34 and 37. "Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak but they are commanded to be under obedience." Do you see the authority? "...they are commanded to be under obedience."

Isn't this why they are to put on a covering when they come into God's house? In so doing, they demonstrate submission to that authority. They are commanded to be in subjection. That is why they are to keep silent.

After the apostle finished penning down the commandments of the Lord in 1CO 14 about a woman's subjection, silence and asking of her husband at home; then he said, "If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord." It's not the apostle Paul that said this—it was the commandment of the Lord that the Word of God be not blasphemed. It is so important that a woman be under the authority of the Word of God and under the authority of her husband as unto the Word of God, that the Word of God should not be blasphemed.

TIT 2:5 says, "To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed." Rebellion against God's Word brings reproach upon Christianity and upon the Word of God. It gives occasion to the enemy to blaspheme the Word of God when people who profess Christianity are seen walking contrary to the will of God.

Now we must hasten to our third point, the blessedness of this adornment. God created man for His glory and His honor. "Even every one that is called by my name: I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him," ISA 43:7. We have to understand that the purpose of God's creation was for His honor and His glory. It was the woman who was deceived. It was the woman who brought about the fall of Adam; yet the Lord will still be glorified. How? By her submission and subjection.

It says in 1CO 11:15 that long hair is a symbol of submission. "But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given to her for a covering." We have to see that the wearing of long hair is part of that ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, because it is coming out with an open confession of submission and surrender to the will of her husband.

I spoke about that perfect righteousness or submission of Christ, and how the Father was so glorified by such obedience. Then I spoke of the white linen,which is the submission of the saints. This submission is the adorning of that meek and quiet spirit. It is that submission and subjection to the husband, which is in the sight of God of great price. God the Father is so glorified with such submission.

The submission of the woman is the fulfilling of the purpose of God's creation by honoring His Word and His authority. God the Father was glorified by the obedience of His Son. "Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father," PHI 2:9-11.

God the Father is glorified in honoring His Son. The Son is glorified by honoring His bride. God the Father is so glorified by honoring the bride with the imputed righteousness of His Son and by imparting unto her that white linen which is the righteousness of the saints. They can again stand pure, chaste and perfect before Him.

The husband is glorified by giving honor to the wife. "LIKEWISE, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together...," 1PE 3:7.

Do you see that beautiful harmony of which I spoke? They have that perfect harmony of mind and of purpose, and the husbands are glorified. How? Even as the Father is glorified by the submission of His church, so is the husband glorified by this submission of the wife, "And that they dwell according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of God." That honor is shared; it is a mutual thing.

The husband is glorified as Christ is glorified by that white linen, but also is the woman glorified. They are given to walk in white linen, and that white linen is the righteous acts of the saints. This ornament of a meek and quiet spirit honors the husband, so that the husband can honor the wife. He can honor her by not putting her down and not humiliating her, "...as unto the weaker vessel, as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered."

Isn't that beautiful? If we are in our right place, if we are obeying the Word of God; then our prayers will not be hindered. What does this mean? It means that now we can come together in oneness before the throne of God, laying our needs and wants before His throne. We can come together as man and wife, and we can pray for our own needs, for our family, and for our children.

Just think how our hearts can come together before the Lord! Oh, that He would send His salvation into the hearts of our children; that He would work His wonder of grace. It is so important for unity in prayer that God would give the man the wisdom and discretion to be able to be the bishop of his house, and his household would be given the grace to be in subjection to His God ordained authority; and that their prayers be not hindered.

"Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples. As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love," JOH 15:8-10.

It is so beautiful, the way the Lord, throughout the whole Bible, shows that if we come to Him in subjection to His will, He will hear our prayers. "Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him," JOH 14:23. When we walk in subjection to the Word of God, He will answer our prayers. Amen.


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