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Who Is the Head of Your House?

We live in confusing times. Men who marry often don’t understand what a husband should be. Is he still supposed to be head of the house? Or should the wife in these modern times assume that responsibility? Is it a 50-50 relationship where neither is in charge?

Where can we find the answers? The Holy Bible provides the right framework, and gives direction to happy family life – how, if applied, the Bible will direct men and women to the happiest marriages and family life in the entire history of mankind.

Some modern views:
Given the feminist movement of the past 4 decades, the roles of men and women have become confused. Has feminism gone too far, even from a woman’s point of view? Many are now coming to see that applying feminist philosophy has produced a weakened generation of males who don’t know how to exert masculine leadership. The whole society has become topsy-turvy. Boys don’t know what is means to grow up and head a family. A common word appears more and more frequently to describe modern young men – wimp. What a tragedy!

A few years ago, I read an article in a major magazine about the changing role of husbands and fathers. The author, a woman, had come to see a happy home should be led by a strong husband and father. The article she wrote was entitled, “Let’s Put Father Back at the Head of the Home.” At first glance that might seem like a good idea. Many men have lost that sense of responsibility. They indeed should be “head of the home.”

But who should put him there? The wife and children? The poor guy still is floundered while Mom and the children somehow try to put him back in a position of leadership. Husbands should not have to be “put back” at the head of the house. They should be head of the family in the God-ordained organization of the home. What God says????

Because a lot of people don’t understand the Bible, many become hostile at the very mention of the apostle Paul as an authority on family life. Branded as the classic male chauvinist, Paul has little, if any, respect among most modern women’s liberationist types. But they totally miss the point.

Paul was not antiwoman. He was not a male chauvinist. He was a called apostle of Jesus Christ who knew, understood and taught the proper relationship between husbands and wives, between parents and children. In fact, the only way to truly happy family life is to apply the laws of God to the marital relationship. You see, it was God who inspired Paul’s writings and the other Scripture.

So what does the Bible have top say about the head of the house? Let’s read in Ephesians 5:23-24: “For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.”

That scripture, taken out of context and misunderstood, has made the blood of many feminists boil. The verse seems to say that men are superior – that they have dictatorial rights and can run their families like demagogues and tyrants. That’s not what the Bible says. Notice what Paul wrote in that same context: “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for it, that might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 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. So husbands ought to love their own wives” (verse 25-28).

That hardly sounds as though a man has the right to drag his wife around by her hair, keep her in the back tent or deny her any privileges and responsibilities in the family. God’s instruction also states: “Likewise you husbands, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the [physically] weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered” (I Peter 3:7).

So, who is in charge?
God placed the husband at the head of the family to lead, guide and inspire it – not as a dictatorial monster, but as a loving authority whose wife and children are the highest priority of his life. God created marriage when He created Adam and Eve. Neither of the first humans was complete without the other. Together a man and wife become a team – two people, making one new and complete unit. God says of marriage, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24).

Yet, as in any other facet of life, there has to be leadership. Even in the Family of God, the Father is over Jesus Christ , who is the Son. Christ is subject to God in everything. But they live in perfect harmony and unity. God is the perfect Father and executes His leadership with unfailing love. But does anyone doubt that He is in charge?

Christ is Head of the Church. He presides over it with equally deep concern and love. In fact, the spiritual analogy in the Bible shows that Christ’s relationship with the Church will be like a marital relationship. Notice how the Bible describes the coming of Christ: “Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife [the church] has made herself ready’ (Revelation 19:7).

The relationship of Christ, in God’s Kingdom, to spirit-born saints will be as a husband to a wife. Most of us have no fears of submitting to Christ. We know He is filled with love, that He is not a harsh dictator, that we will have an eternal relationship.

If the husbands would pattern their leadership and loving authority after that of Jesus Christ, women would never feel abused and rejected. Sad to say, throughout most of human history, few men have patterned their relationship after that great example. But you can.

One path to Success:
You men who are husbands and fathers must assume your proper role and place at the head of the family. You are not elected to that position – God has given you that responsibility. Men who have abused it have pushed women to rebel. Men who refuse to accept their leadership role have pushed women to take the lead to get things done.

neither extreme is right. Neither produces a happy and healthy home. There is only one path to success in family life. The Bible lights that path. A successful family consists of a man at the head who applies the law of God in loving authority, a woman of capacity and ability who responds to the lead of her husband and parents who set an example of love for their children.

If you create that environment in your home, your marriage and family will grow in happiness and love. It is guaranteed!

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One Response to “Who Is the Head of Your House?”

  1. Hi there! This article could not be written any better!
    Looking through this article reminds me of my previous roommate!
    He continually kept talking about this. I am going to forward this article to him.
    Fairly certain he’ll have a great read. Thanks for sharing!


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