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Sermon #72 — Ephesians Sermons
Title: Three things that
Will Guarantee a Happy Home
Text: Ephesians 5:22-6:4
Subject: Building Your Home for the Glory of God
Date: Sunday Morning — June 18, 2017
Adult Bible Class
I cannot begin to enumerate all the blessings of divine mercy which I enjoy. Truly, the Lord God has been good to me. But I can tell you this — The Lord has graciously bestowed upon me the four rarest, richest, most honorable, and most precious privileges that a man can enjoy in this world.
1. God has revealed his Son in me.
2. God has given me the privilege of being a part of a church family where the gospel of Christ is honored.
3. God has made me a preacher of the gospel. He has entrusted to my hands the gospel of his grace and the care of his people.
4. And the Lord God has given me the blessed privilege of living in a happy home.
Would you be interested in three things that will guarantee a happy home? Some of you are older than I am and have been married longer than I have. But I am no novice. I have been preaching the gospel of the grace of God for almost 50 years; and I have enjoyed the benefits of a truly happy home for 48 years. I do not pretend to have all the answers to the many problems you may face in your home. But I do know that any problem you may have in your home will arise from one of the three areas we will be discussing in this message. I do not often make any guarantees. But the Word of God and my experience as a pastor, a husband, and a father have convinced me that there are three things that will guarantee a happy home.
I am talking to you who are believers. I am talking to you as men and women who recognize the authority of the Word of God. I am talking to you who know the saving grace of God in Christ, to you who submit yourselves to Jesus Christ as your Lord, to you who seek his glory and endeavor to live for his honor.
Proposition: This is what I want to press upon you — You can build your home for the glory of Christ. If you would do so, it will require deliberate effort on your part; but you can do it.
If we would build our homes for the glory of Christ, we must recognize and bow to the authority of the Word of God in our homes (2 Timothy 3:16). You must not allow social philosophy, human opinion, or the customs of the day to govern your home. We must not allow the latest opinion poll to dictate our familiesŐ principles. The Word of God gives us plain, clear, unmistakable instruction in all areas of family life. Finances, sexual behavior, child rearing, and moral conduct are all plainly explained for GodŐs people in the Bible. God tells us what is right, and what is wrong. If we are interested in building our homes for the glory of Christ, we must recognize and subject ourselves to the authority of the Word of God.
If we would build our homes for the glory of Christ, we must get our priorities in order (Matthew 6:31-33). There are somethings more important than a big brick house in the most elite part of town, the social class to which we belong, the clothes we wear, the accumulation of money, and the recognition of men. It is positively wrong for believers to live for and seek after those things. Concerning ourselves and our families, our primary concern must be about our souls.
á Seek the glory of God in all things. Make that your priority, and you will not greatly err.
á See to it that your family worships Christ. Do not allow anything to keep you or your children from worshipping the Lord our God.
á Seek the welfare of GodŐs church. My family is not my primary concern, but rather GodŐs family.
á Endeavor to promote the gospel of the grace of God. I do not suggest that you rob your family of food and shelter. But I do say that it is more important for me to give myself, my time, my labor, and my money for the furtherance of the gospel than it is for me to live in the lap of luxury. If we would build our homes for the glory of Christ, and have any real spiritual influence over our families, we must get our priorities in order.
If we would build our homes for the glory of Christ, we must live as believers in our homes. If we are truly the children of God, we are strangers and pilgrims in this world. We should be content with GodŐs good providence, desiring neither more nor less than our heavenly Father is pleased to bestow upon us. If we are true believers, we will demonstrate love, patience, tenderness, and self-denial in our homes. There is no place in a believerŐs home life for anger, wrath, malice, and selfishness. This is what I am saying — Children of God, live as the children of God at home.
Divisions: Here are three things that will guarantee a happy home. I guarantee you that wherever you find these three things, you will find a happy home. If you desire to have a happy home, you must seek these three things.
1. A happy home begins with a loving husband at the head of it.
2. A happy home requires a submissive, obedient, dedicated wife.
3. In a happy home the children must be respectful and obedient.
That is what the Spirit of God tells us in Ephesians 5:22-6:4.
(Ephesians 5:22-6:4) ŇWives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. (23) For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. (24) Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. (25) Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; (26) That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, (27) That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. (28) So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. (29) For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: (30) For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. (31) For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. (32) This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. (33) Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband. (6:1) Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. (2) Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) (3) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. (4) And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.Ó
1st — A truly happy home must begin with a loving husband at the head of it (Ephesians 5:23, 25, 28, 29). — ŇHusbands love your wives!Ó The primary responsibility of every home rests upon the shoulders of the husband and father of that home. Yes, even in the 21st century, a man must be the head of his house. It is not possible to have a happy home unless he is. God holds me responsible for my household. Before God, I am prophet, priest, and king in my home. I am GodŐs representative in my family. That is an awesome responsibility. I am the one responsible to provide for my family, to train my children, and to govern my household. Every husband must be the head of his family. The decisions of the family, the welfare of the family, and the government of the family rest on his shoulders alone. And he must exercise that headship in true love, ruling his house for the glory of God.
Illustration: Joshua said, ŇAs for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.Ó
What is my responsibility as the head of my house? There are certain things God requires of me, things which my family may reasonably expect of me.
1. It is my responsibility to provide for my family (1 Timothy 5:8).
2. It is my responsibility to protect my family.
3. It is my responsibility to teach my family and lead it in the worship of God.
4. It is my responsibility to teach and train my children (Ephesians 6:4).
á By instruction.
á By example.
á By discipline. A loving father will see to it that his children obey him.
5. It is my responsibility to love my wife. I am to love my wife Ňas Christ loved the church and gave himself for it,Ó to love her to such a degree that I prefer her happiness to my own happiness and her welfare to my own welfare. I am to lay down my life for her (Ephesians 5:25, 28, 29).
What do such responsibilities as these require a man to be? Three things are essential characteristics of true manliness. These three characteristics should be found in every man, especially in those who assume the responsibilities of a husband and father. No young lady in her right mind will marry a man who does not possess these three characteristics of true manhood.
1. As the head of his house a man must display firmness. Every woman wants and needs a man who is a real man. The woman is the weaker sex. God has made her with a natural need for a man upon whom she can lean and depend (Genesis 3:16). — True manliness involves firmness, not harshness, not meanness, not brute force, but firmness.
2. As the head of his house a man must display dependability. Our wives need to be able to depend upon us. It is not possible for a woman to respect a man who is lazy and irresponsible. She needs to know that her husband will provide for her and the children. A woman cannot respect a man that she cannot count on. If you want the respect of your family, you must be responsible and dependable.
3. As the head of his house a man must display tenderness. Every real man is a gentle-man, tender, loving, kind, and thoughtful. I cannot imagine any excuse for a man neglecting his wife. Women love affectionate words, thoughtful gestures, and special attention, almost as much as men do. Men, learn to be thoughtful, caring, and tender. —
á About your wifeŐs needs.
á Her emotions.
á Her wishes.
á Dwell with your wife in knowledge and honor (1 Peter 3:7).
In your speech and in your actions be tender, thoughtful, loving, and gentle. I am sure that your wife will respond favorably.
A truly happy home must begin with a loving husband at the head of it.
2nd — A truly happy home requires a submissive, obedient, and dedicated wife (Ephesians 5:22-23; 1 Peter 3:1-6). By divine inspiration, the husband is commanded to love his wife; and by divine inspiration, the wife is commanded to reverence, submit to, and obey her husband. It is not difficult for a man to love his wife if she reverences him and submits to him; and it is not difficult for a woman to reverence and submit to her husband if he truly loves her.
This is not a matter of male supremacy and female inferiority. It is simply a matter of divine arrangement. Our president may or may not be a man who is superior to us, but by GodŐs arrangement, he is in a position of authority over us; and it is our responsibility to show him the proper reverence and obedience as our president. Even so, it is the responsibility of a wife to reverence and obey her husband as her head.
Your husband is in a God-ordained position of authority over you. To rebel against him is to rebel against God. To speak evil of him is to speak evil of God. To dishonor him is to dishonor God. No woman will ever find happiness in her home until she recognizes her husband as her head, reverences him, and submits to him as such.
There are three things that the Scripture require of a good, faithful wife. And these three things are exactly what every man wants and needs in his wife. Ladies, if you would be real companions and helpmates to your husbands, if you want a happy home, you must seek to fulfil these three areas of responsibility.
1. Every man wants and needs the reverence of his wife.
Your husband needs to know that you truly respect and appreciate him. Ladies, speak well of your husbands. Praise them, honor them, and encourage them with your speech. DonŐt ever belittle him, either in private or in public. DonŐt even do it in jest. If you will show your husband reverence, both in your speech and in your submissive obedience to his desires, it is very likely that you will receive the love and tenderness you desire from him. I have never yet seen a woman who reverenced and obeyed her husband fail to have a happy home.
2. Every man wants and needs for his wife to be a faithful housewife (Titus 2:5).
I do not mean that a woman must not work outside the home, or that she should have no outside interests. But the Word of God does teach that the primary, principle sphere of a wifeŐs responsibility is to be in her home (Proverbs 31:10-31).
Nothing pleases a man more than for his wife to keep a neat, clean house, spend some time preparing good meals, and put forth some effort preparing special treats for him. If you want your husband to come home at night, give him a reason for doing so. Spend your days making your home, and he may spend more of his evenings with you in it.
3. And every man needs for his wife to be content.
A loving husband will give or do most anything within his ability to make his wife happy. But you ladies must learn to be content with what he is able to give and do. DonŐt ever nag him about what you donŐt have, or what you wish you had. And donŐt ever compare him with other men. Learn to enjoy that which God has given you. Be industrious, thrifty, and content, and your husband will love you for it. If you will learn to live within your means, so that your husband doesnŐt have to work just to pay the creditors, it will make life much happier and more pleasant for both you and your husband.
Let me make just two comments here to both husbands and wives:
1. Our families need us, much more than they need all the frills we may give them to pacify them.
2. DonŐt build your home around your children. One day they will be grown and gone; and it will be just the two of you again.
In order to have a happy home, you must have a loving husband at the head of it and it must have a submissive, obedient, and dedicated wife.
3rd — And in a truly happy home the children must be respectful and obedient (Ephesians 6:1-4). It is not possible to have a truly happy home with unruly, disobedient, and disrespectful children. Neither the parents nor the children are happy in such a situation. It is the responsibility of children to honor and obey their parents. And it is the responsibility of parents to see to it that their children both honor and obey them. I know people say that it cannot be done, but God requires it and it can be done. Start early, be consistent, firm, and loving in your discipline, and your children will honor you and obey you. — I recommend these five things to you who are parents.
1. Be a loving, but firm disciplinarian.
If you truly love your children, you will make them obey your word and your wishes, without argument or hesitation. God holds you responsible for your childŐs conduct (Proverbs 13:24; 19:18; 23:13-14; 29:15-17).
2. Live before your children as you would have your children to live after you.
Discipline is only effectual if it is enforced by example. There is more truth than error in the old proverb, ŇLike father, like son; like mother, like daughter.Ó
3. In all things, seek your childŐs spiritual and eternal welfare above all earthly considerations.
4. Provide your children with the best possible instruction in the gospel of Christ.
á Teach them yourself.
á Keep them under the sound of the gospel.
á Teach them to reverence GodŐs Word.
á Teach them to respect GodŐs servants.
5. Commit your children to the Lord.
May God give us grace and wisdom to do what is right and to do what is truly best for our children for the glory of Christ.
Do you want a happy home? Do you want to honor Christ in your home? You men and women can build happy homes together for the glory of Christ.
á Recognize the authority of the Word of God in your home.
á Get your priorities in order.
á Live as believers in your home.
á Husbands, assume the responsibility for your home as the head of your household — in love.
á Wives, submit to and reverence your husbands.
á See to it that you win the honor and obedience of your children.