Billy Graham once said, “Nothing can bring a real sense of security into the home except true love.” That statement is a powerful reminder of the influence men have on their families. Last time on the blog we began a study entitled, “Blueprint for Happy Homes” and looked at our families from a 30,000 foot view. This week we return to Psalm 128 and pause and reflect on the Divine Design. Take a moment and read this passage carefully and notice who is being referenced in these verses.
Psalm 128: 1-4, (NIV) –Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him. 2 You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours. 3 Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table. 4 Yes, this will be the blessing for the man who fears the Lord.
Do you see it? The Psalmist is speaking to the husband and father. When the man is leading and loving as God designed, it impacts the entire family. How can a man create an environment in his home where his wife and children prosper and live with a true sense of security?
First of all – Husbands must be Under Divine RULE.
Notice Psalm 128:1, “Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him.” For a man to lead and be in authority, he must first be under the authority of God! I have heard men use the excuse that their families should submit to their leadership because the Bible says so. Quite frankly, that is a cop-out! Do a real study of authority in the Scriptures and you will see that God never gives authority to rebels. To be in authority, you must be under authority. Guys, if we are going to love and lead our families, we must submit ourselves under the leadership and love of God first.
Read these powerful words given by Jesus and Moses.
Matthew 22: 37, (NIV) –Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”
Deuteronomy 6:5-7, (NIV) – Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.
What are both of these passages teaching? To be a godly husband, you must first be a godly man. Both the Old and New Testaments of the Bible teach that godly men are devoted to God and directed by God. Husbands must be under divine rule.
Second – Husbands are Called to Fulfill a Divine ROLE.
This passage is a little lengthy, but it is so vital. I’ve underlined some key elements for you.
Ephesians 5: 23-31, (NIV)- 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. (24) Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. (25) 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. (28) In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. (29) After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— (30) for we are members of his body.
(31) “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.
Let’s have a clear understanding of what it means for the husband to be the head of his wife. It does not mean dictatorship; it means responsibility. Being a godly husband is a POSITION, not a TITLE. The key is in verse 25, “Husbands, love your wives just as Christ loved the church…”
Think about that. How does Jesus love us? He offers us a love that endures all things. His love is not based on our actions. His love is unconditional and that amazing love transforms us. The love of God builds into us a sense of assurance and security that never ends. That is the way men are called to love their families.
The divorce rate is not going to go down unless we understand the divine design of men loving and leading their families like Christ loves and leads His church. So men, get around the table with your families. Get involved in their lives. Build into them the security that comes from your love that is both enduring and endless.
Will this have an impact on our families? Yes! Looking back at Psalm 128:3, when a man leads and loves his family the way God intends, the wife will likely respond like a fruitful vine and the children like olive shoots around the table. Let’s look at the effect on the wife and next time we will look at the children.
A healthy vine responds in three ways. For one, it clings to the support system where it feels secure. Second, it climbs the support system until it occupies all available space. Thirds, it clusters. Healthy vines don’t produce fruit sparsely, they produce fruit in abundance. Men who lead and love as Christ as directed, create homes where the wife can feel secure, flourish and prosper.
Let’s wrap up with verse 4.
Psalm 128: 4, (NIV) – Yes, this will be the blessing for the man who fears the Lord.