"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)


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  • « Images of the Savior (40 – His Triumphal Entry) | Main | Dr. Michael Horton to Appear on CBS's 60 Minutes »

    Mutual Submission

    ... giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. Ephesians 5:20-27 ESV

    From the website of the council on biblical manhood and womanhood, Drs. John Piper and Wayne Grudem respond to the following question: Do you believe in "mutual submission" the way Paul teaches in Ephesians 5:21, "Submit to one another"?

    Yes, we do. But "the way Paul teaches" mutual submission is not the way everyone today teaches it. Everything depends on what you mean by "mutual submission." Some of us put more stress on reciprocity here than others. But even if Paul means complete reciprocity (wives submit to husbands and husbands submit to wives), this does not mean that husbands and wives should submit to each other in the same way. The key is to remember that the relationship between Christ and the church is the pattern for the relationship between husband and wife. Are Christ and the church mutually submitted? They aren't if submission means Christ yields to the authority of the church. But they are if submission means that Christ submitted Himself to suffering and death for the good of the church. That, however, is not how the church submits to Christ. The church submits to Christ by affirming His authority and following His lead. So mutual submission does not mean submitting to each other in the same ways. Therefore, mutual submission does not compromise Christ's headship over the church and it should not compromise the headship of a godly husband.

    Go here for more questions and answers on this theme

    Posted by John Samson on September 27, 2007 02:41 AM


    I am glad you are succinct and clear on this topic.

    I am also glad that in my ministerial training which continues now after 30 plus years, I was taught to look at the words of this topic and their meaning.

    Reading this article reminds me of the wonderful distinction the "Holy Ghost" made one day when I was parsing out these verses from the other John 3:16!

    In 1 John 3:16 in ESV you read:

    1Jn 3:16 By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.

    That's well and good until you go back a couple and read 1 John 3:14-15:

    1Jn 3:14 We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brothers. Whoever does not love abides in death.
    1Jn 3:15 Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.

    What came alive to me then and now is what the words LIFE mean:

    In verse 14 and 15, the "Greek" word is:

    From G2198; life (literally or figuratively): - life (-time). Compare G5590.

    But in verse 16, the words LIFE and LIVES in the "Greek" is:

    From G5594; breath, that is, (by implication) spirit, abstractly or concretely (the animal sentient principle only; thus distinguished on the one hand from G4151, which is the rational and immortal soul; and on the other from G2222, which is mere vitality, even of plants: these terms thus exactly correspond respectively to the Hebrew [H5315], [H7307] and [H2416]: - heart (+ -ily), life, mind, soul, + us, + you.

    For me, when one has revelation of the depth of meaning the Holy Ghost brings out to understand, submission one to another becomes something more than a placid compliance with the wishes of another!


    What does that mean?

    Well, follow the Leader. Our Earthly Leader, Jesus, gave His Life/Psuche to death for us so that He might redeem and purchase our Life/Psuche and give it to Eternal Life/Zoe!

    Naturally, for all of us, this is impossible! However, whenever we find the impossible to be true for us, we equally should rejoice that that revelation is not so impossible for God in us!

    I don't try to submit anymore.

    Now I simply yield to His Life Giving Spirit and die to self and love one another.

    Even in this, I still need My Savior. If anyone says otherwise, I would say they don't know what it means to submit one to another in the Fear of God.

    For a Husband to appeal to the Christ/Church model in justifying his own exercise of authority, he must be fully Christlike. Otherwise he would not be like Christ, and therefore could have no relationships that are like Christ's.

    But who among us is actually Christlike? Doesn't the Pauline analogy eliminate husbandly authority altogether?

    This blog site is great. How did you come up witht he idea?

    Wang Zhanlin was furious, said, "what the hell do you want?"

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