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The Responsibilities of the Husband

As Joshua addressed the people on the eve of his death, after they had occupied the promised land, he made a statement which clearly shows the influence of a man as the head of his own house. He said, “And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD(Joshua 24:15).

Joshua’s proclamation was a challenge to all of Israel, and indicates that a nation’s well being is largely attributable to the leadership of the home. As the head of the home, the primary responsibility of the Husband/Father can be summarized in this way. He determines by the force of his will, his good example, and his love for God and family, that his home will serve God. It can rightly be stated that any man who does not make it his primary goal to have a God fearing and obedient family will fail in his responsibilities to them.

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Love and Submission: Ephesians 5

Southern Baptists, at their 1998 convention in Salt Lake City, adopted an addition to their statement of faith, which states:

“…A husband is to love his wife as Christ loved the church. He has the God-given responsibility to provide for, to protect and to lead his family. A wife is to submit graciously to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits to the headship of Christ.”

Those who are familiar with the fifth chapter of Ephesians recognize this statement as a simple paraphrase of the Apostle’s words. Paul wrote, “Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her” (vs. 24-25). What is amazing is the response of many to the adoption of the phrase. It indicates how distorted a view our world has to the concept of submission, and to the marriage relationship as designed by God. Note the following:

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