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Submission in Christ: Ephesians 5:21-24

August 23, 2020 Preacher: Bob DeWaay Series: Ephesians

Scripture: Ephesians 5:21-24

This section begins with the fifth of five participles--"submitting" (to one another). The other four are speaking, singing, psalming, and giving thanks. Our reverence for Christ is expressed in our submitting to one another as those Christ has redeemed. This means seeing the value of each member of the body of Christ and treating Christians with respect. We mention the priesthood of every believer which is important in understanding why submission can described as to “one another.” All believers are built on the same foundation of Christ as the cornerstone and the apostles and prophets as the rest of the foundation. Paul then turns to family relationships in the Christian family. In the Christian family, the wife’s submission to her husband is as to Christ. This teaching is new covenant teaching given by Paul, not something gleaned from either Greek or Jewish culture.

The problems in families can be traced back to Adam and Eve plus Cain and Abel. It is not a new thing that issues arise in families. The cause is sin, not a failure to adopt the latest cultural inclinations. This sermon delves into a key theological issue that is derived from the doctrine of the Trinity. That issue is ontological equality with relational differences. The wife submitting to her husband does not imply any lack of status in her value in God’s eyes. We give the example of Christ submitting to the will of the Father while still being fully God.  Paul’s teaching in 1Corinthians 12 about the value of various members despite differing gifts is referenced to reinforce this truth.

It is also important to know that things will be much different in eternity. We make a strong appeal to reject the bullying of the pagan culture which rejects Christian values and relationships. Plus the Bible promises healing for those who have been damaged by people who have abused their power and status.