Variety of Ministration
The wife is not the counterpart of the husband, but the complement. Human nature is completed in the union of the man and his wife. Therefore, it is not the part of the women to imitate men, nor is inferiority to be assigned to women because they differ from men. The rich, full, perfect human life is attained by the blending and not the competing of differences.
No life can be more beautiful than that of the happy home. The serious question is how it shall be realised:
- The LORD First – Marriage must be ratified in heaven (Malachi 2:13-17). Its happiness may be wrecked on so many hidden rocks that it is not safe to venture on to the unknown sea without the assurance that God is in the marriage and is guiding the voyage.
- Adaptation – Every woman is not suitable for every man. Hasty courtships may lead to miserable marriages. So serious a matter as the choice of companion for life is not to be lightly undertaken it there is to be any hope of its issuing in happiness.
- Mutual Confidence – There must be mutual confidence between husband and wife if the marriage is to be one of true and lasting blessedness. Whatever be their position in the social scale, it is possible for conceding the fullest mutual confidence.
- • Self-Sacrifice – Selfishness is fatal to marriage. Love must learn to give, to suffer, to endure. The happiness is most complete when each seeks it chiefly for the other. Ogden Nash gave advise on how to make marriage a success in a little poem that he wrote:
To keep your marriage brimming
With love in the loving cup
Whenever you’re wrong, admit it;
Whenever you’re right shut up.
Proverbs 18:22 (KJV) “Whosoever findeth a wife fineth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the Lord.” What is good implies godliness. Godliness is found when the man marries in the Lord and one who is the Lord.” Manoah found a good thing in his wife (Judges 13:23). A Writer comments: “that Manoah could speak so loud that all our Israelites could hear him, about the goodness of his wife.” The “good thing” is:
- When the husband honours her, not as the wisest or the holiest of women, but as the person, whom God sees to be the best and fittest for him. She becomes his object of his undivided heart – “One flesh” (Genesis 2:24).
- Mutual faith is plighted in the Lord Jesus. Such a communion acknowledges His (God’s) affections and elevates Him (God) from earth to heaven.
- As an answered to prayer (Genesis 24) – “Choose thou mine inheritance for me” (Psalm 47:4) – is the cry and confidence of the child of God. Then assuredly, he will receive the wife, not as a result of good fortune, or as the proof of his own good discernment; but, as Adam received his wife, “from the LORD,” a token of God’s favour.
- The good thing is displayed in her skill in the management of domestic affairs – Proverbs 31:11-12“The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good, and not evil, all the days of her life.” – Their financial affairs (Proverbs 31:13-22). She is loved and appreciated by her husband and her children (Proverbs 31:28).
- The good sense that makes her an agreeable Partner and directs her to that kind of attitude which makes her husband happy (blessed) in this connection. To these qualities, if piety be added, it renders her a far greater blessing (favour) than any possessions that husband can obtain. We are to thank God for every outward enjoyment, but chiefly for those in which His favourable providence is most plainly shown in the person of a wife. A wife is a rich present from God her husband is bound to show her all that respect and kindness which God requires. Whatever character a wife deserves, God commands her husband to love her, but when a wife is prudent, the husband would be inexcusable who do not love her with the tender affection.
- Proverbs 18:22 ““Whosoever findeth a wife fineth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the Lord,” the wording, especially in the Hebrews, strikingly resembles that of Proverbs 8:35 “Whosoever findeth Me (God) findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the Lord,” and so suggests that after wisdom itself, the best of God’s blessing is a good wife. Proverbs 31:10 makes a similar comparison, putting her price, like wisdom (Proverbs 8:11), above rubies. Good = literally, “a boon (benefit).”
If a man desires to have a wife, he must acknowledge God by earnest supplications; for He alone know the hearts of men and women and exercises a Sovereign influence over their affections. God declares that a prudent wife is a far richer gift than those things which are so much valued by the generality of men (Proverbs 31:10).
To be continued. Stay Tuned……