This video segment is one of five presentations in the “Creating a Gospel-Centered Marriage: Decision Making” seminar. There will be four more seminars in this series covering the subjects: foundations, communication, finances, and intimacy. As those presentations are ready they will be posted on this blog.
NOTE: Many people have asked how they can get a copy of the seminar notebook referenced in this verbal presentation. You can request a copy from Summit’s admin over counseling at firstname.lastname@example.org (please note this is an administrative account; no individual or family counsel is provided through e-mail).
Evaluation Three: GCMevaluation_Corporate Decision Making
Overview Sheet Three: Approach to Headship-Submission Decision Making
Plumb Lines: These are the “sticky” statements that capture the core messages of this chapter.
- Headship decisions begin with engaging a person, your wife, more than obtaining an outcome.
- Resist the temptation to expect that authority should do what only maturity can accomplish.
- Biblical authority exists for the good of those being led, not the pleasure of those who bear it.
- Marriage cannot be reduced to one style of decision making and be healthy.
Memorize: I Corinthians 11:1-3 (ESV), “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ. Now I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I delivered them to you. But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God.” As you memorize this passage reflect upon these key points:
- “Be imitators… of Christ” – Any God-given influence or hierarchy in human relationships is for Christ-likeness.
- “Maintain” – Paul is clear that this style of marriage relationship is to endure because it’s rooted in the Trinity.
- “Understand” – Paul is also concerned that this style of marriage relationship can be abused, so he clarifies.
- “Man… Wife… Christ” – Submission is not “just for women.” Men submit to Christ. Christ submits to the Father.
- “Christ… Husband… God” – The expressions of a husband’s headship should look like Jesus and God the Father.
“Marriages break down because people have no bigger vision for their lives then the establishment of their own little kingdoms (p. 259).” Paul Tripp in What Did You Expect?
“The irony is that every marriage settles into some type of social and organizational arrangement, with both husband and wife playing specific roles to uphold it. The question is whether these responsibilities should be defined by God who created marriage or by the opinions of humans (p. 165).” Dennis Rainey (editor) in Preparing for Marriage
“Remember, you [husband] are merely a steward of God’s authority, and you are called to use it only for his goals and purposes… As you follow Jesus, expect your authority to be costly. Exercising authority means laying aside your own welfare for the sake of others (p. 11).” Winston Smith in Who Does the Dishes?
“[Before Eve] Who does Adam have in his likeness to love, serve, and honor?… Interestingly, only himself! This was the main issue. He had only himself to think about, serve, and honor. This is what God called ‘not good.’ In his alone state Adam could not reflect the complete image God wanted Adam to reflect (p. 64).” John Henderson in Catching Foxes
“Confusion over headship and submission is often the result of a distorted understanding of authority… No matter how marital roles are defined, they are only different expressions of love… Loving your spouse in his or her role includes knowing your spouse, not just his or her gender, and valuing his or her individual gifts and abilities (p. 193).” Winston Smith in Marriage Matters
“It was clear to me that Tim wanted to take the call [to plant a church in New York City], but I had serious doubts that it was the right choice. I expressed my strong doubts to Tim, who responded, ‘Well, if you don’t want to go, then we won’t go.’ However, I replied, ‘Oh, no, you don’t! You aren’t putting this decision on me. That’s abdication. If you think this is the right thing to do, then exercise your leadership and make the choice. It’s you job to break this logjam. It’s my job to wrestle with God until I can joyfully support your call (p. 244).’” Kathy Keller in The Meaning of Marriage