Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
Perhaps no place in Scripture will you find a metaphor and a reality wound more together in such a tight ball—you might be tempted to confuse the reality with the metaphor! By definition, a metaphor is a figure of speech in which an implicit comparison is made between two unlike things that actually have something in common. In this case, a huge group of people (God’s people singled out by faith in Christ) is equated to a wife. Christ is equated to a husband. Pick out the things that make this a true metaphor by listing side by side the qualities that make Christ & His Church similar to a good earthly marriage.
Christ & Church
Husband & Wife
Think about how broad the Church is on this planet. Over 3,000 languages and 17,000 cultures make up the current Body of Christ. These are obvious barriers to relationship, but what ties such varied cultures together into “one” group (Church)?
In traveling throughout Asia, Africa, and Europe, I can truly say that the Body of Christ – the Church Universal, is truly “one Church.” There is a bond and oneness among believers that transcends culture. Despite differences in denominations that appear primarily in local and national contexts, generally speaking, when you begin to associate with and look for the Body of Christ in an international context, She begins to emerge and embrace you with arms that say “we’re in it with you – we are His too!”
And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.
For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.