Most men give lip service to the idea headship doesn’t make men better, but fewer live in a way that shows they feel this is true. God didn’t make men the head because they are smarter, more spiritual, or better loved by God. We need to get this into our hearts and heads and then we need to live as if we believe it. We are called to protect our wives, not use them. We are to honour and lift them up, not despise and push them down.
I touched on “feminism” yesterday. I see all manner of wrongs done in the name of feminism, but the solution is not to exchange one error for another – which is what they did. Women aren’t the enemy, and neither is feminism. The enemies are Satan, sin, and selfishness. These are the roots of the wrongs men have done to women, and the roots of the wrongs women have done to men. Just as it was in the garden, Satan wants us to blame each other. This leaves him free to whisper in our ears, playing on the hurts, frustrations, selfishness, and fears he has worked to place in us. The only way to win is to refuse to play.
When God told Eve that Adam would rule over her, He was not giving anyone a command; He was stating a fact. The choice of word there is not a kind, loving, benevolent ruling; not the kind of headship we see in the New Testament. Maybe God was warning Eve her husband was going to “lord it over her”. First Adam failed to protect Eve, and then he tried to blame her for his sin. It seems he went from protector to oppressor.
But Jesus called them to him and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” [Mt 20:25-28]
Jesus gave us a very hard word in this. I think we need to apply this to every relationship we have, including our marriages. A godly leader serves; a leader who expects to be served shows he is not godly.