The Love of the Christian Husband
July 15, 2018 AM
Pastor Craig Ledbetter
Bible Baptist Church, Ballincollig, Cork, Ireland
I. Introduction (Nehemiah 4:10-14)
“Be not ye afraid of them: remember the Lord, which is great and terrible, and fight for your brethren, your sons, and your daughters, your wives, and your houses.”
A. We Need to Fight FOR our families – not against them
1. This year we are learning from a great book in the Bible called Nehemiah
2. It is a personal record (like a journal) of what Nehemiah thought, felt and did as he led a few thousand families in a massive reconstruction project
a. The Jews that had returned to the rubble of Jerusalem
b. And has started to rebuild their capital city
3. But they were surrounded and threatened by an enemy called the Samaritans
a. These were not nice neighbours – they were aggressive enemies of the Jews
b. The people’s lives were in constant danger
c. It was no game
d. The Jews lived in the constant fear of being killed by these Samaritans
e. Everything that the Jews were trying to build and protect was at risk
4. Nehemiah knew that only strong, high walls would be able to keep back this enemy and enable the people to thrive once again as families – they could not just get along with the Samaritans – they needed to keep them out of their homes and lives
5. So they began to rebuilt the high broad walls of Jerusalem, block by block, gate by gate, beam by beam
6. But that was not enough – until the walls were finished, they would remain vulnerable
7. The enemy leaders, Sanballat and Tobiah and so many others often would just walk right into the rubble of the city and threaten all the people without warning
8. So, we learned in chapter 4, that Nehemiah armed all the people with handy weapons
a. He knew that only weapons at the side of especially every DAD would discourage their enemies from attacking WHILE they were building their walls around Jerusalem
b. What was Nehemiah doing? Teaching the parents, and especially the men and fathers to fight to protect their homes, and not ever lose them!
9. Our enemy, Satan is against anything that God loves
a. And that includes every human family – no wonder the very ideal of a Christian home is under constant attack and mockery, and in distress
b. Too many homes / MOST families have been destroyed by Satan’s lies, and pressures, and temptations and sorrows
c. Our homes need saving Gentlemen!
B. It Starts with Loving your Wife, Gentlemen
1. Probably THE most important thing you need to do well
a. NOT that you ignore loving your children
b. But that you do THIS well, and most problems in a home will greatly improve!
2. Men believe they already DO love their wives
3. But we don’t – not like we should.
a. We have believed Hollywood’s style of love and attraction
b. Only to find it a very selfish and destructive kind of love and lust
c. We don’t love, like our wives need us to
d. And, We just don’t love like Christ loves the group of believers world-wide called His bride, the Christian Church!
C. Gentlemen… Fight for your family, by loving your wife
1. Both you and your wife are human
2. That means BOTH of you are messed up, broken, sinful
3. Instead of being spiritual, BOTH of you are wicked in different ways – selfish, sinful, arrogant, proud, Self-centred, mean, hurtful, cold at times, fierce angry at other times
4. Both of you fight and war and never win
5. And then, when someone tries to intervene and help you, you turn on them
6. People have survived marriage for the past 6,000 years only because of 2 things:
a. Biblical Rules and restraints
b. And the enabling power of the Spirit of Christ
c. The world has gotten rid of the rules
d. And Christians have gotten rid of the Spirit of Christ
e. We ALL need to get back to the Bible to find and live by BOTH
D. Let’s take a good look at what the love of a Christian husband ought to look like, so that we not only can compare ourselves and see if we measure up, gentlemen, but also so that we know what areas we need to really work on
II. Preview - What a Husband’s Love Should Look Like
In simple words, a Christian husband’s love life should look like Christ’s love for us
III. Last Week – What a Husband’s Love Should Look Like – Part 1 (Ephesians 5)
A. A Husband’s Love is a Result of Being Spirit Filled (5:18; Gal 5:22)
1. A Christian man is NOT just one who is saved – believes in Jesus’s death, burial and resurrection in their place - but someone who is controlled by the Holy Spirit of God!
a. We men forget this
b. We try everything else to fix things in our homes, besides trying to get right with God, and be open to His holy Spirit working in our hearts and thinking
2. But being constantly FILLED with the Holy Spirit of God
a. Gentlemen, you NEED to be filled with the Holy Spirit instead of:
1) Filled with Drink – like too many married men turn to a can or bottle instead of God when they have problems at home
2) Or Sports – wrapped up in in it like an addict sometimes instead of their home
3) Or your Work and Career
b. DO YOU HAVE a walk with God, daily be submitted to the work of the Holy Spirit in you? Do you even know what that would look like?
c. Don’t try and fake it – everyone will know when you are full of yourself, or full of the Holy Spirit! AMEN!
3. Do you want to truly know how to love your wife?
4. God’s Holy Spirit is the SOURCE of a man’s best love – The source of a Christian man’s greatest love is not in any of us. Look again at Gal 5:22!
a. Does the Spirit of Christ dwell IN you? Or does a spirit of lust, of anger, of bitterness rest in your heart?
b. Does the Holy Spirit of Christ control you? Or are you your own man?
c. Does the Spirit of God restrain you gentlemen? Or do you always feel free to say and do as YOU please with no shame, no guilt, not concern for the feelings of your WIFE???
B. A Husband’s Love Submits to God and Others (5:21) – doesn’t lord over everyone
1. A Bible believing, born again Christian husband is subject to two great powers over their life
a. The Lordship of Jesus Christ
b. And the Needs of your Family
c. Those two great powers govern your life now gentlemen! Or at least they should!
d. You are not your own boss anymore – you do not have the power to just do as YOU please – NOT if you are married!
2. You had better be Subject to Jesus Christ (1Cor 11:3) – under Christ’s rule
3. You had better be Subject to the Needs of Your Family (5:21) – especially your wife
IV.Message – What a Husband’s Love Should Look Like (Ephesians 5)
A. A Husband’s Love Sacrifices Himself (Ephesians 5:25)
Husbands love your wives even as Christ also loved the church and gave himself for it
1. What does that even mean?
a. We usually only love to BE loved. We love with an agenda – to get our needs met
b. And that is not all that wrong. We are designed to NEED to be loved
c. But Christ loved at loss to Himself – sacrificially
2. We needed an Example! There is no way to actually understand that command without an example – of Jesus, the Son of God. John 10:15,17,18 As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep... Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.
3. To give yourself means two things:
a. Be the Lover of your wife, not just the “husband”
b. Become the Loser for the sake of your wife
c. I will explain both of these
4. Be THE Lover “Husbands, love your wives …”
a. Your wife needs to know and experience what love looks like FROM you! Not from Hollywood, or magazines, or romance novels, but from YOU!
b. Be ravished and content with who God gave you – more about that in a moment
c. How do we do that?
d. It means Love your wife FIRST – be the first to love
1) Just as Christ loved US first before we ever loved Him 1Jn 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.
2) Rom 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
3) So, go out of your way to be with her, hold her, play, and laugh with her
4) YOU do that!
e. This is a one-directional love (Jer 31:3; John 13:34; 15:12) unconcerned about getting anything back! Charity (self-less love)
5. Love your wife as the Loser… live and work to make HER the winner in your relationship! That doesn’t sound right, does it? But it is!
Husbands, love your wives even as Christ also loved the church and GAVE HIMSELF for it
a. Listen to the way the Bible talks about Jesus’ attitude about Himself
1) Jesus didn’t give the world miracles, or money, or powers… He gave all of Himself
2) Gal 1:4 Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father
3) Eph 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savour.
4) Titus 2:5,6 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
5) Tit 2:14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
b. Jesus LOST everything just to love us
1) Let that sink into your brain and even your heart!
2) He actually became poor (lost everything including His own life) so that HIS bride (all believers) would be saved, would become rich, be full and safe. 2Cor 8:9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
3) Loved us before we ever loved Him back – that hurt
4) Loved us when we rejected Him and hurt Him and crucified Him
5) When He came into OUR world, He lost His glory, and power, and might – He became meek and lowly compared to what He had been in heaven!
6) He relinquished His riches
7) He lost His relationship with His Father (briefly) – traded that for a relationship with us!
8) He gave up His righteousness and took on our record of sin! Like a man finding out his wife had just robbed a bank, and HE took the fall, the blame, and went to jail in her place!
9) He sacrificed His time – 33 long years waiting for people to just love Him back
10) He sacrificed his own life. Loved us in death – most every woman yearns for someone to DIE for them!
c. What will it cost YOU to be a Spirit Filled, Submitted-to-God kind of Husband?
1) It will cost you JUST about everything
a) Love almost always costs everything we have
b) And if you love your wife, you really won’t mind it!
2) Real love, and real lives are built not on happy times, or perfection or ease, but on SUFFERING and LOSS
d. So, Put her needs above your own
e. Treat her as More Important
f. Love your wife like Christ loves YOU
g. Love your wife BETTER than she deserves, give up yourself, your needs, your demands, your honour, and your riches, FOR her betterment
h. Even to the point of loss, and hurt, and ruin
i. It completely RUINED Jesus Christ’s life just to love this world!
6. So, Why do it then? Why love when it will hurt US and cost US men?
a. Because Christ commands us to love like WE have been loved! Most men do NOT grasp how much they are loved
b. Because we know that God honours our obedient faith and rtewards us supernaturally – this way just works guys!
7. Amazingly, surprisingly, miraculously, you will never be happier!
B. A Husband’s Love Sanctifies His Wife and Family (Ephesians 5:26,27)
1. What does it mean to Sanctify my wife?
2. It means to clean, to purify, to protect your wife from things that defile her
a. Our wives and families get constantly soiled – dirtied inside
1) By Satan
2) By culture – the world around us
3) By sin
b. God gave your wife “YOU” to keep her clean! Amen!
3. Jesus is our sanctification – our cleansing from Satan, Culture and Sin 1Cor 1:30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption
4. But according to Ephesians 5, a HUSBAND can actually sanctify his wife and family – you can love you wife so powerfully by cleansing her past, her hurts, her fears and her weaknesses
5. Paul refers to it as the washing of the word of God like water through their minds and hearts
a. As a pastor, I try so hard to wash people with this Book every time I teach and preach – this is never just information, but a powerful cleaning agent, cleansing, healing, and restoring work
b. I can only do it on Sundays, and Wednesdays
c. But a Husband can do it every day, and throughout each day
d. It is a very rare thing for a Dad, a husband to wash his family’s spiritual feet
e. But that’s what a husband and a Dad is called to do
1) Wash out the spots, and soiled places in their past with the promises of God – like Romans 8:28
2) Iron out the wrinkles – not in skin, but in thinking and feelings
a) Wrinkles are jumbled up thoughts
b) Ladies, God gave you a husband to help you think through things, not panic
c) Let your husband iron out things that you find yourself worried about
3) Help your wife to be beautiful on the inside – and your daughters
4) It is how Christ Jesus works on US, making us beautiful, like a Bride prepares for her wedding without ANY wrinkle or spot on her dress
6. Gentlemen, one of the great gifts we can give back to God, are our wives and our children, clean, and strong, and prepared for Him to use and bless!
7. THAT is how a husband loves
A. What Should a Husband’s Love Look Like? Let’s compare ourselves with Christ’s…
1. It will look Spirit-Filled
2. Submitted / Yielded to God and Others. That makes the Bible believing, born again Christian husband subject to two great powers over their life
a. The Lordship of Jesus Christ
b. And the Needs of your Family
3. Sacrificing Ourselves
4. Sanctifying Our Wife and Family
5. Satisfying Our Wife
6. Being Sorry for Failures
7. Steadfast and even growing through the years
B. How does YOUR love life look so far, gentlemen?
C. I know most of you will not even try any of this.
1. Just too stubborn, hard-headed, arrogant, carnal, heartless
2. We are such foolish men to demand of our wives what we will not do for Christ!
D. But don’t you think we SHOULD?
E. Don’t you think your wife deserves a better kind of love than we currently are showing?
F. Don’t you think WE need Revival in OUR HEARTS gentlemen? – a powerful change in us that drives us to actually love our wives like Christ loved us
1. It won’t happen without MEN getting saved, and then getting filled with the Holy Spirit of God
a. Are YOU born again gentlemen? Do you even know what that means?
b. Are you FILLED, or at least SEEKING to be filled with the Spirit of God?
2. If you are, it will show by your efforts to read through your Bible, day after day, and pray with a prayer list for your wife and family, and pastor and church and all the people who do not know Christ!
3. And it will show on the face of your wife – if you really love her!