Accepting Your Husband
Both men and women are encouraged to be "sober" literally meaning
not given to overindulgence in strong drink. It was also used
figuratively of being morally alert, sober-minded, calm, circumspect
and temperate. Some use the words sane and sensible. One writer states
that "the church, in order to be what God intends for it to be, must
have older people living godly lives as an example and inspiration to
the younger people. Old people need a church and churches need older
The next thing they are to teach is "to love their husbands". Now
doesn't that sound strange. We would all say we wouldn't have married
him if we didn't love him. Did you know that there is no place in the
Bible where it tells wives to love their husbands? That doesn't mean
we are not supposed to but I think by experience older women learn a
bit more about HOW to love them.
There are many books and many different outlines. I will just briefly
share one I like. Accept him, Admire him, Appreciate him, Adapt to
him. Each point could be a separate lesson. In order to show your
acceptance of him as he is, here are some things NOT to do:
- Don't try to change him. You are saying I don't love you as you
- Don't try to convict him. You are not the Holy Spirit.
- Don't try to correct him. You are not his mother.
- Don't criticize him. Privately or publicly.
- Don't compare him to others. Your father or other men.
- Don't try to compete with him. He has to win.
- Don't try to counsel him. He needs your support not advice.
(Remember, unasked for advice is really veiled criticism)
- Don't try to confine him. Don't fence him in.
- Don't try to chasten him. God will do that. Don't withhold sex
Prov. 14:1 says "Every wise women buildeth her house, but the
foolish plucketh it down with her hands." The above list contains
things that probably all of us are guilty of at one time or another,
but when we do, we are pulling down our own houses.
We'll continue this next month. See you then. Watch out for these
When we started to write about Titus 2
and the things God tells older women to teach younger women, we sort
of jumped the gun and began in the middle. We will have to back up now
and see who these older women were and what qualified them to teach
these things to the younger women.
The whole context of these verses along with those beginning the
chapter have to do with holy living, both men and women. These aged
women were to exhibit Christian character traits. The first is
general, "that they be in behavior as becometh holiness", reverent in
demeanor, the entire external deportment as manifesting the inner
life. priest-like gives the thought. Remember that believers are a
Three particulars, two negative one positive, are added. "Not false
accusers" - speaking evil or making accusations against others.
Slander is the devil's work not ours. Spence observed, "Old age is at
times intolerant censorious, even bitter, forgetful especially of the
days of youth: but Christ's aged saints must use their voice for
better things than these." "Not given to much wine" - Hiebert says the
meaning is not enslaved to much wine. The tense denotes the state of
being enslaved; it was a common vice among oriental women.
On the positive note these godly women have something better to do.
They were to be "teachers of good things", both by precept and
example. Their primary place would be in the home but I'm sure it was
not limited to that sphere.
Please note that Paul expected the older women to teach these good
things to the younger women. He did not instruct Titus to teach them.
I know of many a preacher (I started to say young preacher, but not
necessarily so) who has lost his ministry as a result of trying to
teach women these things about their relationships with their husband,
children, etc. Preacher, please train your wife or women in your
church to do this type of counseling. Don't you do it! Counseling
women regarding salvation or on some spiritual things may be
acceptable. But as I said I know of quite a few preachers whose
downfall began in counseling sessions with women. Preachers wives,
beware! Women can read women in away that men cannot, so preacher, if
your wife warns you
about someone, take heed. Listen to her!
We will discuss each of these good things we are to teach in the
months to come. It would be worthwhile to commit these verses to
memory - Titus 2:3-5 - and to meditate on them daily for a while. See
what the Lord teaches you through them!
May the Lord bless each of you and help each of us to be holy as He is
To Be Discrete
Some years ago I finally realized that I was one of those "aged" women God
was talking about in Titus 2 who was teaching young women and he laid out a
syllabus of good things to be taught. Titus 2:3-5. We will consider each of
these in a sort of capsule form but we are starting in the middle with "to
According to Webster, discreet means "careful about what one says or does;
prudent, especially keeping silent or preserving confidences when
necessary". By experience I have found this to be a great need among women.
I must confess on behalf of all of us that sometimes we are prone to talk
too much, at the wrong time and about wrong things.
Solomon presents a graphic portrait of a women who lacks this virtue in
Prov. 11:22. "As a jewel of gold in a swine's snout, so is a fair woman
which is without discretion". I'm sure you have observed this before when
seeing a beautiful women in appearance until she began to speak. Her beauty
was diminished as she used profanity or vulgarities.
We find the word often in Proverbs and it is often linked with wisdom. Along
with wisdom understanding is also implied (Mk. 12:34). The whole purpose of
the book of Proverbs as outlined in the first few verses involves this
To know wisdom and instruction;
To perceive the words of understanding;
To receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, judgment, equity
To give subtlety to the simple,
To the young man knowledge and discretion
In chapter two we see the value of discretion. "Discretion shall preserve
thee; understanding shall keep thee". Earlier we discover the source of
discretion. "The Lord giveth wisdom; out of his mouth cometh knowledge and
In chapter three we are commanded to "keep sound wisdom and discretion", and
in chapter five we are enjoined to pay attention to wisdom and understanding
"that thou mayest regard discretion, and that thy lips may keep knowledge".
We see verbal communication is involved.
In Prov. 19 we see the practical results of discretion. "The discretion of a
man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression".
The evidence of a discreet person is found in her long-suffering, forgiving
spirit. A good person "will guide his/her affairs with discretion (Ps.
112:5). But how to we teach or learn discretion?
The answer is found in Isa. 28:26 "For his God doth instruct him to
discretion, and doth teach him." Therefore, it seems that we older women
must teach the younger women the importance of knowing the Word of God and
how to apply it practically in our every-day experience.
As we endeavor to set this example we will become the epitome of the
expression, "the soul of discretion".
May all of us exhibit this character trait!
God's injunction is to "Take heed how
"Listening may be the most undervalued of the social gifts, the quiet key to
success in professional, personal, and romantic encounters." Christopher
Eighty percent of our waking hours are spent communicating--over half of
that time we are on the receiving end. We communicate (speak, read, write or
listen) eight out of every ten waking minutes and 45% of this total time is
spent listening. However while listening time is high, comprehension levels
are low. Immediately after hearing a 10-minute
presentation, we may remember 50%, within two days, only 25%. Another
authority says you only retain 25% immediately after hearing. I'm inclined
to think that may be right.
All agree that good listening is "active listening". If we evaluate our
current listening habits, we will see we could all improve if we took
responsibility for our half of the transaction. To do this:
1. Involves reacting not only to the speaker's words but also to his tone of
voice and body language.
2. Interpreting what is being said - sometimes rephrasing what we think
3. When we reach an understanding, we should respond to what we have heard
4. Determine the purpose of the conversation:
talk - just getting acquainted
Cathartic - releasing pent-up feelings, ventilation - requires empathy
Informative - sharing of ideas
Persuasive - to influence attitudes or produce action
(In listening to emotional catharsis - focus your complete attention on the
speaker - don't talk about yourself. Discipline yourself to hold back what
you want to say in order to listen to another.)
5. Practice daily - If we actively participate in the listening process, our
improved relationships will enrich our lives!
Try it out while hearing a sermon. Try it out on your husband and see if it
works. From one who is still working on it!
A prosperous and healthy new year to each one of you. May this be the best
A good definition is that communication is a process (either verbal or
nonverbal) of sharing information with another person in such a way that he
understands what you are saying. Talking, listening and understanding are
all involved in this process.
Most of the difficulties we face in interpersonal relationships are due to a
lack of communication or a miscommunication. In some courses on Counseling
we learned that it is always wise to restate what the person has said. "Do
you mean to say that you hate your mother?" "Oh, no, that's not what I
meant". When we are talking with another person there are actually six
messages that can come through.
1. What you mean to say.
2. What you actually say.
3. What the other person hears.
4. What the other person thinks he hears.
5. What the other person says about what you said.
6. What you think the other person said about what you said.
Husbands and wives often have this type problem. We are neither of us mind
readers so we don't really know what the other person is thinking or meaning
by the words said. It is easy to misunderstand.
A couple of causes of communication breakdown are that either one is not
willing or able to talk about what's happening in their life. Not listening
when the other person talks is another cause. We will discuss the importance
of listening and how to listen next month.
Some reasons for not communicating:
1. Some don't have the ability - never learned to share
2. Fearful of exposing what they feel or think
3. Attitude - think talking won't do any good - why bother.
4. Some people do not believe that they as a person have any thing to offer
- poor self image.
In his book, Why Am I Afraid to Tell You Who I Am?, John Powell says the
premise of the book is that "I am afraid to tell you who I am, because, if I
tell you who I am, you may not like who I am, and it's all that I have."
Many of us have a facade that we put on like a mask because we don't want
others to get too close to us, we are afraid they will not like us as we
Powell says there are five levels of verbal communication. Starting with the
fifth level which is the surface level of most communication. I have paired
them with five levels of friendship.
5. Cliché Conversation - What we would carry on with strangers
4. Reporting facts - about people or things - acquaintances
3. My ideas and opinions - casual friends
2. My feelings and emotions (gut level) - close friends
1. Peak communication - intimate friends - completely open and honest
Each point could be expanded and expounded on but I think this will give you
the idea. This interesting book is published by Argus Communications, 7440
Natchez Ave. Niles, Ill. 60648 in case you'd like to research further. It
may be out of print, of course.
God bless each of you who reads this and I hope it will help you to be a
better communicator. Be sure others understand the real meaning and that you
Have a wonderful Christmas season, remembering that Jesus Christ in His
birth, death on the cross for our sins, and resurrection is the reason for
Consequences of the Fall
After Adam sinned. and in him all mankind has sinned, there
were several judgments that occurred. Every person born since then has been
born with a sin nature. Sin always beings separation. They were driven out
of the garden of Eden lest they eat of the tree of life and live forever in
their sinful state. God himself provided a sacrifice for them and clothed
them with the skin of the slain animal. Their coverings of fig leaves were a
picture of their human works and were not acceptable. The moment he sinned
he and Eve began to die physically.
Adam now discovers there is something wrong. There is now a fear of God,
shown by his attempt to hide from His presence. Instead of confessing his
sin, he seeks to make excuses for it. He blamed Eve, Eve blamed the serpent,
etc. This blame game goes on to this present day.
The judgment on the serpent: Gen. 3:14-15
Cursed above all cattle
Would crawl on belly (had been a beautiful upright creature
Would eat the dust of the ground
Enmity between serpents and women...and her seed
The judgment on the woman Gen. 3:16
Multiplied sorrow and conception
In sorrow (pain) she would bring
Her desire would be to her husband
He would rule over her
The judgment on the man: Gen. 3:17-19
The ground would be cursed (no weeds before this!)
He would have to do hard physical labor
At death he would return to dust.
God's remedy for sin: Gen. 3:21
An innocent animal was slain and Adam and Eve were covered
with its skin. This was a picture of substitutionary atonement which Christ
Himself later fulfilled. He died on the cross for our sins, was buried and
rose again the third day, according to the Scriptures. I Cor. 15:1-4 says
THIS is the gospel!
When you have opportunity to witness or teach, ALWAYS take a few minutes to
present the gospel (the death, burial and
resurrection of Christ for our sins) because "the Gospel is the POWER of God
unto salvation to all who believe. Rom. 1:16.
After The Fall
Recapping last month's article briefly, remember these two
facts: Adam loved Eve with a pure agape love which no man has had in the
same way ever since. It was God's kind of love. Also Adam knew God in a more
intimate way than any man ever has. Adam had had some intimate fellowship
with God before Eve was even created when he walked with Him in the cool of
the day. Evidently he must have known that in order for Eve to be redeemed,
there would have to be one who must bear the penalty of her sin. This could
only be done by one who shared the nature of the fallen one. It must be a
kinsman redeemer, by the seed of the woman. He must have a human nature.
There was only one man who could be the father of her child, Adam.
When Eve sinned, she sinned alone and was deceived. 11 Tim. 2:14, 15. There
were no other far reaching consequences. When Adam sinned as the federal
head of the race, all his offspring fell in him, including Eve. Rom. 5:12
says that "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world and death by
sin, so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned."
According to Rom. 5:14 no one has sinned after the similitude of Adam's sin.
"Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not
sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is a figure of him
that was to come." He is speaking of Jesus Christ who would take on himself
our sin. Adam was a type, a figure of him that was to come. The type always
breaks down when it comes to the antitype. Adam shared Eve's sin, but Christ
who is sinless took our sins upon Himself.
However, after the fall there were tremendous changes. Adam is no longer the
unselfish husband with agape love for Eve. Now he is blaming Eve and
ultimately God Himself for giving her to him. "The woman that Thou gavest to
be with me, she gave me of the tree and I did eat." Gen. 3:12.
God sacrificed an innocent animal, clothed them in its skin to cover their
nakedness. Remember before this they were naked and not ashamed because they
had not yet eaten of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Now they
were embarrassed and hid from God when he came to walk with them. This was a
type of Jesus Christ later offering himself as the sinless sacrifice on the
cross for our sins.
We will discuss the further consequences of their sin in the next article.
Just this thought to close. When God drove them out of the garden, he was
being merciful to them. He put seraphim with swords guarding the tree of
life. Had they eaten of the tree of life, they would have lived forever in
their fallen state. What a wonderful Savior we have! He still loves us and
is looking out for our best interests even when we fail Him so miserably.
I realize some of this may sound hazy to some of you. If you are really
interested in this subject, let me recommend that you write to the Radio
Bible Class, P. O. Box 22, Grand Rapids, MI. for a copy of Dr. DeHaan's
little booklet "The Love of God". I don't know if it is still available, but
it was a real eye-opener to me.
In The Garden
Back to the Garden of Eden. Remember that God had given Adam
alone all the instructions about the garden and the tree of life. When Satan
approached Eve in the Garden, she had never heard
directly from God about the tree of life, although I am sure Adam had told
her. Satan came to Eve with the same three-fold temptation that he still
comes to us with: the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride
of life 1 John 2:11-12.
Eve first added to the word of God, "neither shall ye touch it." They were
only told not to eat of it. Then she altered the word of God, "lest" ye die,
instead of "ye shall surely die." Then Satan cast doubt of on the word of
God by saying, "Thou shalt not surely die."
I was listening to M. R. DeHaan on the radio one Sunday morning in the
sixties. I was arrested while listening and had to stop and listen
intently to him while getting a paper and pencil
to write down the name of the message. I couldn't believe I heard him say
what he said. I got the little booklet and I read it over and over and the
more I read it the more I believed what he said. It is the greatest answer
to what happened in the garden I have ever seen.
Remember two undeniable facts: Adam loved Eve with a pure, undefiled,
perfect love. His love was like God's love. There was no other known then.
He loved Eve in a way no man has ever since been able to love his wife. Also
Adam knew God in a way that no man has ever since known God. He was in
perfect fellowship and walked and talked with him.
He knew the awful result of Eve's sin and of his own when he partook of the
fruit. "Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the
transgression." I Tim.2:14. He understood fully the consequences of his act,
but voluntarily, motivated by love, and as the only way he could redeem his
wife from the sentence of death he partook.
There is so much more than I can put in this article, but remember the two
main facts, Adam loved Eve with pure Agape love and he knew God in a more
intimate way than any one. It puts the events of the garden in an entirely
different light. Everything is changed from now on. But we'll go on with
this next month.
The Creation of Eve
As promised, we would like to discuss the creation of Eve and what really
happened in the Garden of Eden. I don't know if we can get all of this in
one lesson or may have to carry over to next month.
As we look back in Genesis 1 and see that God created light on the first
day; land and sea on the second; grass, herbs, seed on the third; sun, moon
and stars on the fourth; sea creatures and fowl on the fifth; and land
animals and man on the sixth. Man was created first and then later Eve. We
usually hear of them being created at the same time. One commentator says
that the "essence of humankind" was created on that fifth day. Image and
likeness refer to this invisible essence., real but invisible like God. The
body for man was also prepared that day, but there must have been some lapse
of time before a body was prepared for Eve.
God gave Adam some very explicit instructions about what his
responsibilities would be and about the tree of life and the tree of
knowledge of good and evil. During that time Adam had the job of naming all
the animals. He evidently realized that there was a male and a female of
each kind. The Scripture says after he had named them, "but for Adam there
was not found an help meet for him." When something is not "found", it
indicates that someone was actually looking for it in vain.
As he completed his creative works on each day, the Scriptures say he "saw
that it was good" and in 1:31 "And God saw everything that he had made and
behold, it was very good. But when we come to Gen. 2:18 God said, "It is not
good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him."
And God proceeded to put Adam to sleep (administered the first anesthetic)
and performed the first surgery, removing a rib from his body from which he
made a woman, and brought her unto the man. The Hebrew word for "made" is "banah"
when speaking of Eve's body meaning to build. When a man speaks of a woman
being well-built. He is on the right tract. The word for the creation of the
man's body is "jatsar" meaning "to fashion or devise" The difference of
words indicating again that they were very different. There are also
different words for the male soul and the female soul.
Both Adam and Eve were named Adam according to Gen. 5:2 "male and female
created he them; and blessed them and called THEIR name Adam [the human
race] in the day which they were created. God gave her the name of "Woman,
because she was taken out of man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and
his mother: and shall cleave unto his wife; and they shall be one flesh".
Remember that at this time there was no mother or father.
I am so sorry that I don't remember who made the statement but it is a
beautiful quote and worthy of sharing with you. "Although the Cross is God's
greatest demonstration of grace, the woman is God's walking illustration of
grace. She can satisfy everything for which man's soul longs, everything his
body desires. She is his completion, fulfillment and glory."
May I suggest that you read and reread the first three chapters of Genesis
in preparation for "the rest of the story" as Paul Harvey says. God has made
you and me very special creations and is desirous of using each of us in