What We Learn from Christ pt 3

Feb 13, 2022 // By:Dave // No Comment


Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her,

“just as” means the husbands love is an illustration of Christ’s love

in the same way that Eph 5:2 tells us to be imitators of God

Eph. 5:2 and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.

the idea of Christ loving His Church only shows up here in Eph. 

the idea of how He loves His Church is the reason it is mentioned

He gave Himself up for her because of this love 

and the giving up: 

is the action of this love and the proof of this love.

gave   παραδίδωμι, paradidōmi, v.  [4123 + 1443]. to hand over, betray, deliver to prison; to entrust, commit

this verb is in aorist tense, meaning the subject is the doer of the action.

this is important because there are some who think that Jesus was killed as a result of getting in trouble with the sanhedrin and He was simply trying to teach about the kingdom and things got out of control. (in other words , Jesus’ life was taken from Him)

this is not scriptural. the Word clearly prophesized and Jesus clearly initiated and volunteered His life for his bride (the body of the Church)

John 15:12-17

This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. These things I command you, that you love one another. 

Romans 12:1

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 

1 John 3:16

By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 

John 10:15

As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. 

John 13:34-35

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” 

Philippians 2:2-8

fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. 


1 Peter 2:5

you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 

John 3:16

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 

John 10:11

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. 

John 10:17-18

“Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes 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 command I have received from My Father.” 

Ephesians 5:1-2

Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.

John 12:24

Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. 

John 13:12

So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? 

Galatians 2:20

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

How did Christ love His Church ?

  • laid His life down for her
    • was it taken from Him ?
    • or did He take the initiative before His bride even asked ?

How did He lay down His life ?

  • obedience to His Father, even to the point of death upon a cross
    • obedience to the bride or His Father ?

How are husbands called to love their wives ?

  • take the initiative to love them
  • lay down our lives for them
  • illustrating the love of Christ (which illustrates the love of the Father)
  • as an act of obedience and love to the Father (not obedience to the wife)

this idea of loving the wife in obedience to the authority of God to illustrate His love is the biblical source of our headship (not cultural)

Hoehner’s Commentary on Ephesians: “With this kind of sacrificial love as the model for the husbands to follow, the submission of the wives “can never mean slavish subjection. For the Church never feels her relation to Christ to be such.”5 Westcott states, “Christ loved the Church not because it was perfectly lovable, but in order to make it such.”6 Next, Paul demonstrates how this is accomplished.”

as the wives are told to submit to their husbands as unto the Lord:

Eph 5:22 Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.

Col. 3:18 ¶ Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.

Eph 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body.

Eph 5:24 But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.

the husband is the sanctifier of the wife as Christ is the sanctifier of the Church because one must submit to the one sanctifying you or else you are refusing to be sanctified.

Col. 3:19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be embittered against them.

1Pet. 3:7 ¶ You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.

Eph 5:26 so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,

Eph 5:27 that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.

OK, what is this talking about in verse 26



washing of water with the word

then in verse 27

presenting the bride with no spot or wrinkle, holy and blameless

how far does God intend for us to stretch this metaphor of Christ/Church to husband/bride ?

it might help to understand a background of the jewish wedding process.

  1. Fathers arranged marriages
    1. Father of groom pays father of bride a dowry (called a mohar)
      1. this could be money, gifts, or even service rendered (as Jacob for Rachel)
    2. marriages were arrangements between families, not individuals
    3. in most cases, the groom did not have his own home right away but would build a “nook” for he and his wife to be in a corner of his fathers house (or an add-on, or on top of it)
      1. therefore, the grooms family gained a person to help around the house, while the brides family lost a valued “helper” hence the dowry paid from father to father.
  2. the betrothal
    1. the first of two stages of a contract
    2. a price is paid and the purchased item is set aside as “sold”
    3. once the woman is declared “betrothed” she cannot belong to any other man. (she has been sanctified to her husband)
    4. the groom went to the brides home to pay her dowry value
      1. which must be known to the bride
      2. the bride must consent to the betrothal
    5. it was customary for both bride and groom to drink from a common cup of wine to celebrate and commemorate the betrothal
  3. the wedding
    1. the bride is brought, by procession, to the groom
    2. the purchaser takes possession of what was paid for.
    3. the bride takes her Mikvah bath
      1. ceremonial bath in running water for purification
      2. also same bath that women undergo after monthly cycle to become clean and be able to receive their husbands
    4. common custom that bride is hidden in house for seven days before revealed to world

the hebrew words for these two stages:

betrothed = kiddushin, meaning “sanctified”)

marriage (nisuin, translated “elevation”).

the ceremony of the bride’s mikvah is as follows:

the checklist of mikvah preparation that is required before entering. This includes 

  • removing all jewelry, nail polish and makeup, 
  • showering, washing your hair, 
  • cutting your nails and toenails,
  • brushing your teeth in a private preparation room. Usually, the most comfortable rooms are appropriated for brides. Many mikvahs do provide shampoo and toiletries.
  • the attendant will lead the towel-clad bride to the private mikvah pool (a women’s immersion is always private). While the attendant turns her back, the bride will drop her towel and proceed down the steps into the mikvah’s water which should be about chest high.
  • she thoroughly submerges herself- once, twice, three times reciting the blessings:

Blessed are You, Adonai, Ruler of the Universe, Who has sanctified us with mikvah and commanded us concerning immersion.

Blessed are You, God, Majestic Spirit of the Universe, Who makes us holy by embracing us in living waters.

I will betroth you to me, forever. I will betroth you to me with righteousness and with justice, with goodness and with compassion. I will betroth you to me in truth, and we will come to know God.

With this, the bride has been spiritually elevated and purified

in the case of the church

  • Father pays the price of the dowry (His Son) (John 3:16)
  • groom travels to the home of the bride 
  • groom gives a gift as part of the dowry (His blood, His life, Holy Spirit)
  • groom returns to fathers house to prepare a place
  • groom prepares a place of ceremony to receive his bride
  • groom returns for his bride to take her home (unannounced time)
  • bride is elevated (in the rapture) and purified
  • bride is hidden for seven years (tribulation period) then revealed to world for millennial reign

the groom would return for his bride, accompanied by male escorts. The exact time of his arrival was not usually known in advance (see Matthew 25:1–15). 

The groom’s arrival was announced with a shout. The Church’s Bridegroom has been separated from His Bride now for nearly 2,000 years, and one day He will come for her and snatch her from the earth to meet Him in the air (1 Thessalonians 4:17). We don’t know when exactly this will happen; we must be ready and remain faithful (Mark 13:33). Jesus will be accompanied by an angelic escort, preceded by a shout, when He returns for the Church (1 Thessalonians 4:16).

After being whisked from her home, the Jewish bride remained hidden at the groom’s father’s house for seven days. Similarly, the Church will remain “hidden” for a period of seven years, during the prophesied tribulation period. After the seven days, the Jewish bride left the bridal chamber unveiled; likewise, after seven years the Church will return to earth with Christ, in full view of all (Colossians 3:4).

recap: How are husbands called to love their wives ?

  • take the initiative to love them
  • lay down our lives for them
  • illustrating the love of Christ (which illustrates the love of the Father)
  • as an act of obedience and love to the Father (not obedience to the wife)

this idea of loving the wife in obedience to the authority of God to illustrate His love is the biblical source of our headship (not cultural)

the husband has authority because he is expected to initiate the acts of love to fulfill his calling as a husband under the authority of God

the husbands love to his wife is an illustration of God’s love for us

(whereupon He did all the initiation on our behalf as well)

and our deserving it or not had absolutely nothing to do with the love


Eph 5:28 So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself;

Eph 5:29 for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church,

Eph 5:30 because we are members of His body.


Eph 5:32 This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church.

Eph 5:33 Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband.

husbands are to love voluntarily 

  • “just as” means the husbands love is an illustration of Christ’s love
  • love their wives and give themselves up for her (just as Christ does for His church)
  • to choose to not become embittered against their wives
  • sanctify our wives
  • wash them with the water of the word
  • present her as holy and blameless
  • love his wife as his own body, cherish and nourish her
  • leave his mother and father and cleave to his wife

husbands are to initiate all these as a lifestyle, illustrating the love of Christ for His church

what happens when the husband does not submit to the needs of his wife ?

  • his selfishness tempts the wife to take care of herself
  • forces a spirit of competition between himself and his wife
  • his choices are selfishly motivated and not motivated by character of Christ
  • his skills become accomplished in selfishness (rather than learning to be Christlike)

we now see two potential  reinforcing circles of behavior

  1. GOOD: wife submits to husband and husband learns to serve his wife, which encourages his wife to submit more, etc
  2. BAD: wife does not submit, husband learns to sit back and watch wife make all the calls, meanwhile, the husband continues to live selfishly … forcing the wife to continue to take the lead 

How to break the bad cycle ?

  1. wife submits forcing husband to lead and love (painful but needed path)
  2. intervention for either party 
  3. ignore the cycle and watch the marriage fall apart

The husband is the initiator because Christ is the initiator.

The husband has the authority in order to be the initiator

and he has the call to initiate in order to love his wife



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