Yes. The husband is the head of the wife
I know, I know. It’s 2012, and it’s not very “sensitive” to talk that way. But that doesn’t make it any less true. If God really said that the husband is the head of the wife, then I must conclude that God knows best, even if I don’t understand it, and that following what He says brings about His best in our lives and homes.
Deuteronomy 32:4 “The Rock, his work is perfect, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and upright is he.
2 Samuel 22:31 This God–his way is perfect; the word of the LORD proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.
Does the Bible say the husband is the head of the wife?
Let’s take a look at what the Bible actually says about this issue…
1 Corinthians 11:3 – 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.
Ephesians 5:23 – 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.
Creative attempts at getting around “the husband is head of the wife”
In recent times (and only in recent times) there have been some rather technical but creative attempts at avoiding any idea of authority in these passages. The most frequent and popular attempt is to insist that the Greek word for “head” (kephale) actually means “source,” not “head.”
OK, let me make sure I understand this… If kephale means “source” then the meaning of 1 Corinthians 11:3 would actually be…
But I want you to understand that the source of every man is Christ, the source of a wife is her husband, and the source of Christ is God.
I only have one question. HOW IN THE WORLD IS THAT HELPFUL?
- The source of every man is Christ? OK, I can buy that one, except that it seems to exclude women from being “sourced” by Christ too. – FAIL
- The source of a wife is her husband? REALLY? How is that the case? – FAIL
- The source of Christ is God? WAIT A MINUTE. Isn’t that pretty close to saying Jesus is not God, but rather a creation OF God? Sounds like heresy to me. – FAIL
On top of all that silliness is the facts.
- In all of the Greek literature from the 8th century B.C. (way before the New Testament was written) until the 4th century A.D. (way after the New Testament was written), the word “kephale” is found 2,336 times.
- Out of those, 2034 of them mean the actual “head” of a person. That leaves 302 instances where “kephale” is used metaphorically (like we see in the New Testament).
- Out of those 302 times, 12 of them are in the New Testament, so we can exclude those from our consideration for the time being.
- That leaves 290 times the word is used metaphorically outside the New Testament. And out of those 290 uses…
DRUM ROLL, PLEASE
NONE of them have the meaning of “source.” None.
So what does “the husband is head of the wife” mean?
- It means he is her leader.
That leaves many, many questions to be answered, doesn’t it? I agree… and I’ll try to do that in future posts. But until that happens…here’s where our hearts should be…
Considering who God is, and what He is like,
we should trust that He knows what He is doing
in creating male/female relationship as He has.
As in everything, there is a truly beautiful result
when we arrange our lives
according to His purpose and plan.
If you’d like to, you can read a full statement of my beliefs on this subject.