By Keith Clayton
If one were to peruse the classified ad section of his local newspaper, he would find a section entitled “Situations Wanted.” This writer can certainly think of many situations listed in that column that a Christian should have no part of. In reverse, I can think of some situations that a Christian should desire.
A Christian man should desire the companionship of a mature Christian woman who knows and practices the duties and responsibilities God has given her. There are few things worse than a woman who is continually remiss in her domestic duties. The situation of a mother not mothering and a wife not caring for her husband is one of the more unprofitable circumstances to which a man could be confined. The woman who does not live according to God’s word is a stumbling block to her kindred’s spiritual development; therefore, single Christian men should seek a single Christian woman who shows her faith by her works.
Wives should be domestically oriented, taking heed to the workings of the household and being responsible for the domain God has given her. “Therefore, I want younger widows to get married, bear children, keep house, and give the enemy no occasion for reproach” (1 Timothy 5:14). The wife of a Christian is to “keep house” and not be given to running around town, neglecting her duty to keep the house in order. Thus, no one can bring reproach upon her or the household she is supposed to maintain. God has given the wife this important responsibility to fulfill to the best of her ability, as to the Lord.
Another duty of the Christian wife is to love her husband and help him improve himself in all seemingly good aspects of life, even inspire him to a more fruitful life,”. . . that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands . . .” (Titus 2:4). Wives are to love their husbands. This is a commandment from the Lord that should not be received lightly. It is sometimes difficult for women to love us error-prone men, yet Scriptures list loving imperfect men as a godly duty for the woman. That implies abiding love needs to be continually nourished, lest it wane. Love can, and does, languish if not viewed as a God-given duty. This love should motivate a wife to seek the improvement of her husband’s well being before the Lord. “In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives, as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior” (1 Peter 3:1-2). It may be difficult to love an ungodly husband, but God expects the woman to love him and the Lord. Thus, she can improve her husband by the righteous example she lives, a model life, derived from the love she has for God and her husband. A husband with such a wife could possibly be inspired to a more fruitful, faithful life.
A Christian man should seek a woman who will pledge her fidelity to only him, until death do they part. In Hebrews, chapter thirteen, we are told by the inspired writer that only the marriage bed is held in honor. Infidelity transgresses God’s law and defiles the marriage relationship. A woman who is loose with her favors is an adulteress and a fornicator, which things God will give just recompense. Purity is not optional; it is a prerequisite for righteous living in Christ.
A very important, godly duty is that of the woman’s bearing children. So many times this writer hears such comments as, “Having children will limit our freedom,” “I am afraid I will not be able to rear them properly” or “Children make me too nervous.” The word of God does not allow optional child bearing; indeed, from the time of Eve women have borne children. “And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being quite deceived, fell into transgression. But women shall be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint” (1 Timothy 2:14-15). If a woman is capable of bearing children, then she must give birth to her lawful husband’s children, in order to be pleasing to God.
Men need to be more careful in choosing a marriage partner because of the situations a man can find himself in if he is not more discerning about the “help meet” he chooses. Christian men must realize that a Christian woman who knows and practices her God-given duties is an asset in a marriage. Care in the selection of a wife will pay many dividends in the years you spend with your chosen partner. You will appreciate God’s plan for the family, and you will discover it is much easier to love, praise and cherish a godly woman. “An excellent wife, who can find? For her worth is far above jewels. The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. Her children rise up and bless her; her husband also, and he praises her saying: many daughters have done nobly, but you excel them all” (Proverbs 31:10-11, 28-29).
Truth Magazine XX: 49, p. 754
December 2, 1976