Submission 101 is one of the topics that make many women frown. When you speak to a woman about submission, it’s like you put soured milk under her nose to smell. But as a Christian, it’s a lifestyle you want to familiarize yourself with, especially while Navigating the Single Life. God wants all His children to submit to the governing authorities and those set to watch over us. Husbands submit to Christ, the wife submits to her husband, and children to their parents.
If you have a problem with obeying and respecting those God established in your life for submission, you’ll want to seek God for this matter. Additionally, having the correct term view can help balance the scales. Before you go any further, for context, read Married to Christ at the beginning of this series and Marriage Steps and Preps on YouTube. It will expand your context on all the subjects covered in this collection.
So, what is submission? Oxford defines submission as the action or fact of accepting or yielding to a superior force or to the will or authority of another person. Some synonyms for submitting are surrendering, offering, and accepting.
Biblical submission expands a bit beyond the secular definition. Being submissive is tied to obedience and humility, although they are slightly different, they work together. Pride has to go when it comes down to obeying the Lord because even while you’re unmarried, you’re to submit to God.
Bibletools.com in What the Bible Says About Hupatasso; In Greek, the word is hupotasso, which means “to arrange in order under.” It is a military term, and in the military, there is a strong sense of submitting to someone of higher rank.
No interest in submitting
James highlights the underlying issues that cause strife and divisions. The Believers Bible Commentary says (James Chap. 4), “The reason is that we are ceaselessly striving to satisfy our lust for pleasures and possessions and to outdo others.” When we covet, we sin. It says, “It arises from the strong desires within us which are constantly struggling to be satisfied.”
Our aspirations lead us to act selfishly and rebellious against those we are called to submit to.
The world’s system is against and doesn’t welcome God, but they steal success principles from the Bible. Alister Crowley’s famous quote, “do what though wilt shall be the whole of the law,” is what humanity follows. The Christian should not subscribe to such a blatant disrespectful law. A friend of the world is an enemy of God (James 4:4).
Believer’s Bible Commentary also adds, “It was the world that crucified the Lord of life and glory. In fact, it was the religious world that played the key role in putting Him to death. How unthinkable it is that believers should ever want to walk arm-in-arm with the world that murdered the Savior!”
James 4:6-8 NKJV says, But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.” Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
We will continue battling lust and the desire to walk in the flesh. However, thank God for providing greater grace in our state of humility. When the pressure turns up, the grace goes higher. But, if we don’t surrender to God through submission and obedience, we cannot resist the devil. Repentance and drawing near God will keep you from living a double-minded life.
Following the world’s ways, you’ll drift further from the Lord.
Also, grab you a copy of the Soul Check-up. It will help you to regularly keep your thoughts in perspective, grow spiritually, and motivate you to organize and keep your environment intact for tremendous success. See what I’m referring to right here in this Soul Check-up YouTube video.
Who are we to submit?
We are submissive to each other in the body of Christ and to those in authority. If you revere God, you’ll learn how He established order and governed laws for our benefit. Our Father God is loving, compassionate, long-suffering, and merciful. Therefore, submission to God is a part of the Christian life. Jesus says, if you love me, keep my commands (John 14:15).
Submit to one Another
Joining to do life with one another is a massive part of why we don’t want to forsake assembling with our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ at the local church or fellowship and prayer meetings. Gathering with the saints helps us practice submission together and provides an opportunity to sharpen iron and encouragement.
Yielding to the Holy Spirit is the only way to demonstrate the fruit of being submissive.
Ephesians 5:21 NIV Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Submit to Authorities
Praise God for setting up laws and government. Without structure, there would be chaos and disorder. From the Christian lens, things look terrible with all we see going on in the world. But, did you know it would be worse if God’s presence was not here and Christians had no light within this darkness?
Yes, God has not unleashed the full fury of His wrath because He’s holding it back. That’s why I want to praise the Lord for setting up a hierarchy of submission for our protection.
Romans 13:1-2 NIV Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgement on themselves.
Judgment awaits the one who rebels against the authorities.
Spousal Roles in Submitting
Husbands have a very high calling from God as they are the head of the family. He models caring for and loving the wife like Christ. The man who submits to God is a beautiful sight to witness. Because their assignment is so great, I encourage you to pray for your future husband in this area before you meet him, as the practice will continue throughout your marriage. Husbands should never abuse their authority or treat their wives and children harshly.
Ephesians 5:25-27 NIV, Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
God commands wives to submit to their husbands as to Christ. While you’re single, you are under the Lord’s authority anyway. Consequently, when you marry, you’ll submit to your husband in obedience to Christ. God placed your husband in the leadership role over the family. You do not directly submit to a boyfriend or fiancé—only to your husband.
Ephesians 5:22-23 NIV Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
The Believer’s Bible Commentary (Eph 5:22) states, “Women who leave their God-appointed sphere can wreck a local church, break up a marriage, and destroy a home.”
Submission is beautiful if you operate in the Spirit instead of trying to fulfill the lusts of the flesh. I believe you, future wives, will have no problem submitting to your husbands, and future husbands will continue submitting to Christ. As of now, the Navigating the Single Life series is a wrap. As the Lord leads, I will add more writings to the relationships tab for singles. If you are jumping into this series, check out the seven posts I wrote and the playlist on the Cure 4 the Soul Ministries YouTube channel. The topics on YouTube differ from those covered here on the ministry blog.
I pray that your journey to connect with the spouse God has for you will produce much fruit, and soon you will have a testimony to share with us all about how God blessed you in your desire to marry.
Pray for the spouse you desire daily.
Reread the writings in this series and watch the YouTube videos for encouragement.
Continue in submission to God.
Thank you for reading to the end, and I pray that this teaching has blessed you. Please be so kind as to share this with a couple of friends. The Bible Commentary referenced in this teaching is available right here. If you don’t already have it, I encourage you to check it out and add it to your collection, Believer’s Bible Commentary.