Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Where are the husbands?

Christian husbands, let me present a parable for you: if your wife one day told you, "Honey, I'm about to take a casual stroll through that dangerous part of town that even the cops don't go to," would you let them? If they told you, "Honey, I'm about to go have a nice private chat with that guy we suspect is a serial killer," would you let them? Obviously, most husbands would answer "no" to these questions. You'd probably want to protect your wives from all possible danger to their persons. Why then do so many husbands, when these situations are placed in the spiritual realm, answer "yes"?

Husbands are commanded by scripture to love their wife as Christ loves the church, and part of this is to "nourish" and "cherish" her (Eph 5:29). As the spiritual head of the house, the husband is not only the spiritual role model for his children, but is the one who provides the spiritual nourishment and education to his wife and, consequently therefore, from him and the wife to the children. He is directly responsible for what his family professes as orthodoxy and what his family declares to be their object of worship. "But as for me and my house," Joshua famously declared, "we will serve the LORD" (Jos 24:15). The definition of "LORD" means as much today as it did back in Joshua's day. Is is the husband's role to make certain that by "LORD" his family means the LORD our God, and not another deity such as Ba'al.

Yet constantly on social media, I see married women posting quotes from men and women who claim to be teachers of God but who have been proven to be wolves in sheep's clothing. They quote from individuals who, if they had existed in the Old Testament, would most likely have been stoned for their false prophecies, false visions of God, and false doctrines. What I immediately think each time is, "Does her husband know she's posting that?" I think to myself, "Is her husband aware from which fountain his wife is getting her spiritual nourishment?" Is the husband aware that his wife is seeking theological grounding from a heretic and false teacher? Is he aware that his fellow sheep is wandering towards a ravenous wolf? Of course, it will be granted not all the quotes shared are not necessarily bad or even "wrong" to some degree, but why would we permit our loved ones to traverse through a mine field of error hoping they won't step on the wrong spot?

In some respects, the wives may intentionally not care, and perhaps the husband permits her to be over him in this respect, not realizing that part of the husband's role, as said earlier, is to guide his wife on spiritual matters she may not fully understand (cf. 1 Cor 14:35). Other times, it might well be that the husband is fully aware, and doesn't care...in fact, he may approve of the false teacher having influence in his home. In this case, he invites danger into his life, and willingly puts his entire family in a line that leads to great sin, error, or even apostasy.

Christian husband, your role is to be used of God for the sanctification of your wife. Just as you need to be aware of the budget, the needs of the individual family members, and other serious concerns, so too do you also need to be aware of what your family is being exposed in their spiritual studies. Are they learning the truth of God, or are they learning heretical nonsense? Are they being fed on spiritual fruit or demonic junk food? Ask yourself, again, if you would put your wife or even family in such danger as I illustrated at the beginning of this post. If not, then why would you dare to put your family in danger related to their eternal soul?

I write this not as an open condemnation or a judgment against others, but merely a call for discernment.