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How husbands should lead the family

Here is vital knowledge making plain a husband's responsibility in marriage.
Every man on earth needs this understanding!


HER eyes flooded with tears, the woman before me began to shake and sob. Bending over with her face in her hands, she quietly moaned as she cried — finally catching herself, sitting upright and wiping her eyes. "I have always realized how empty my marriage was," she blurted out. "But hearing you describe in your talk today what marriage ought to be like makes me realize that I've just got to do better in my marriage!"

"What is wrong?" I inquired, asking the question in several different ways.

"My husband just won't talk to me," she said again and again. "I am lonely and frustrated. I don't even really know the man I married. I feel like I'm living with a stranger."

And the reason for this tragic circumstance is that our modern society fails to teach the real purpose and meaning of marriage. Today a growing number of men and women simply do not realize WHO instituted marriage. What is its purpose. And what are the spiritual laws governing true marital happiness.

Because of this crying need The Plain Truth must speak out to you husbands about your responsibility in marriage!


Man Needs a Help

At the very beginning of your Bible, God describes the purposes he had in mind — and responsibilities — in creating man and woman. If humanity today is ever going to find the answer to happy marriages, we had better be willing to accept instruction from the great God of creation — the author of marriage and the one who made us male and female!

Notice what the great God had in mind: "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth" (Genesis 1:26).

He also said: "Let them have dominion" — he intended that both the husband and the wife learn to exercise authority and responsibility over all of the creation under mankind.

Verse 27 continues: "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them." Here it is made plain. Both man and woman were created in the image of God. They both share through their minds the blessings, the opportunities, the joys — as well as the responsibilities — of acting for God on this earth and having dominion over the rest of the physical creation.

In Genesis 2:18, God reveals in detail why he created woman after creating the man: "And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him."

Man is not the great, all-conquering hero who stood alone against the sky. The fact was that man needed a help! He was not complete! And woman was created to fill that emotional, mental and physical void in his life.

This is something that all men should deeply appreciate.


A Wife Balances a Man

For man without woman is often like a train without an engine, an airplane without wings or a car without wheels.

Most men — there are rare exceptions — simply cannot be complete, cannot be fully happy and balanced — cannot function as they ought in the fulfillment of God's purposes unless each has the help of a loving, dedicated wife.

This knowledge the world seems to be losing in its rush toward material acquisition, false values and sexual liberation.

The Bible says: "Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered" (I Peter 3:7).

Most women realize that they are indeed "the weaker vessel." They have no quarrel with this. They are glad to take their place in life at the side of a strong, balanced and loving husband and act as his help and support. But if a husband takes advantage of this, crushes his wife in his desire to exalt himself and prove something to himself or somebody — it is no wonder that her love, respect and trust quickly fades. Only hate and misunderstanding result. (It was out of this kind of tragedy that the women's liberation movement was born.) Indeed the prayers of that household are greatly hindered if there ever were such prayers.

The wife was created as a help. She was created as the weaker vessel, by reason of childbearing — yet to assist and inspire her husband.

But how does a wife help and assist an egotist who is so intent on exalting himself, proving to himself that he is great and powerful and acting like a little dictator that he makes life miserable for all others around him? Or, how does a wife help and assist a lazy, spineless drunk who refuses to support his wife and family, refuses to earn a proper living and comes in night after night in a stupor — evil tempered and slapping and beating his wife and children? Think this problem through, men.


An Inspired Example of Marriage

Throughout the inspired Word of God, the relationship between husbands and wives is shown to be the very type of the relationship between Jesus Christ and the Church. This is particularly emphasized in the fifth chapter of Ephesians. Notice!

"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it" (verse 25).

"Love your wives"? But what is "love"?

Real love is deep affection, admiration, respect, a feeling of closeness and an outgoing concern for the one loved.

Jesus Christ had an outgoing concern for the Church and so he gave himself for it.

When a woman decides to marry a man, she should have such a strong affection, admiration and outgoing concern for the man she is to marry that she is willing to forsake all others, give up the freedom of singleness, and give herself to this man to be his sweetheart, his help and inspiration, be his nurse and comforter when he is downcast or sick, the mother of his children — and who knows how many other things?

But what are the man's responsibilities toward his wife in the sight of the God of the Bible?

I'm going to set forth five areas of a decent man's responsibilities toward his wife. If a man is so weak that he cannot wholeheartedly embrace these basic responsibilities, then he is not man enough to marry! If he is already married, he had better — for his own sake, for his wife's sake, for his children and grandchildren's sake and for the sake of his eternal life — study and pray that he will be able to inculcate the teachings of Jesus Christ and character of God sufficiently to carry out — for the most part at least — these five basic responsibilities in marriage!


Love and Respect

Certainly a man ought not to marry a woman unless he really and truly loves her. Yet, sorrowfully, we must acknowledge that millions of men have never learned the meaning of the word love. Because of cheap novels, cheap movies and wrong examples, they have all too often learned to confuse love with lust. They seem to think that a base, animal sexual desire to get satisfaction from another person of the opposite sex constitutes love. Nothing could be further from the truth!

For true love involves a giving, a sharing of plans, hopes and dreams between two people who want to build an entire life together until death does them part. If they are not able to talk things over, smile into each other's eyes, share little joys and intimacies and stick together when the big trials come — their love is lost indeed.

The apostle Paul commanded: "Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them" (Colossians 3:19). Some husbands do allow themselves quickly to become bitter because their wives do not measure up to an angelic idol of perfection envisioned in their own human imaginations.

But a wife was never intended to be an idol. She was never designed to be flawless in this life any more than her husband was. She was not intended to be a perfect housekeeper, mother, companion and also a Hollywood sex goddess all wrapped up in one individual.

She was designed and created, however, by the Maker of us all, to be a sweetheart, help and inspiration to a man who would share himself with her, go over his plans, hopes and dreams with her, give her encouragement and guidance and lead — not drive — their home in an attitude of confidence and love.

Quoting Genesis, Jesus Christ said: "For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh" (Matthew 19:5). In marriage, a man needs to realize that this cleaving is more than a mere physical relationship. It is an active and progressive growing together, a family relationship. A husband needs to concentrate on appreciating and encouraging his wife's happiness, beauty and personality. He needs to think of her and cherish her — not ever letting his thoughts dwell upon other women in the same way, or allowing his thoughts to dwell upon the negative aspects of his own wife anywhere near so much as upon her positive virtues, love and beauty.

So many scores of women have cried out in despair: "My husband just won't talk to me! That is why we are not close — he just doesn't share anything with me. He just sits glumly at the table at mealtime or reading a paper or watching TV at night!"