Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them. Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord. Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged. Bondservants, obey in everything those who are your earthly masters, not by way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but with sincerity of heart, fearing the Lord. Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ. For the wrongdoer will be paid back for the wrong he has done, and there is no partiality. Masters, treat your bondservants justly and fairly, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven.
Comment: There are two words in this short passage which we as human beings have hassles with – submit and obey! My dictionary says that submit means ‘accept or yield to a superior force or to the authority or will of another person.’ That is what it has always and does mean. I think people have problems because they fail to understand/accept that the authority is “God’, even if the submission is to another person. Obey means to follow the commands or guidance of someone or something – here this means God’s law. In this case it relates to children and workers. Husbands, parents and masters are given very good advice. Even though they have a position to fulfill they are still under God’s authority to act as God has ordered.
- husbands – love
- parents – don’t over-correct
- bosses – remember you are responsible to God.
Prayer: Help us all to remember that we are primarily responsible to You, O God.