"Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered." 1 Peter 3:7
On Monday night Laura and I were talking and she made the comment to me about feeling spoiled. I told her that I didn't want to feel spoiled, but to feel honored. Something that I tell her often is that I want so spend my life serving, blessing and honoring her. It is a clear mandate that men have from Scripture. There is a great chapter in the Exemplary Husband that expands on the idea of living with your life in an understanding way from 1 Peter 3:7. Today's post will look at that verse and what Scott has to say about it.
The word "Live" comes from the greek sunoikeo, which means to contiually dwell together with. The idea of living with our wives in an understanding way and showing them honor should never cease, but be regular like breathing. Just like our lives should be a pursuit after God, they should also have a pursuit after understanding and honoring our wives. For the commands of this verse there is no vacation, but it's a way of life.
The word "understanding" comes from the greek kata gnosin, which means according to knowledge. There are two types of knowledge that Peter is referring to in this verse. 1)A man's knowledge of his wife and 2)knowledge of Christian principles. This information is crucial and should guide a man's daily living. Understanding our wives is very important, because as we seek to give them honor, we have to know what honors them.
Honor is the highest degree of esteem and thankfulness. Peter uses an analogy to describe how we are to give honor. There are three key words here to break down; "showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel." The word, "as" in the greek, means "hos" which mean "like," or "in the manner of," so we should give honor to wives in the same way we would a weaker vessel. To break it down even more the word weaker can mean strengthless or fragile and the word vessel means useful container. When we put all of this together, how do we honor wives? "We are to treat our wives in the we would a very delicate and useful vessel...Every husband needs to honor his wife treating her as a delicate possession (Scott, 199-200)."
Now we move on from the how do we honor our wives to why do we honor wives. Once again the word "hos" (as) appears, but this time instead of making analogy, it states an actual quality. Laura is a sugkleronomos, an equal participant in glorifying God and an heir together in Christ. She is not lesser then me, but instead she is a complement to me. I do not look down on her because we are both sinners made in God's image that are daily in need of grace. I esteem her with great value because just like me she has been bought by the priceless blood of the lamb.
Edit: More coming soon on Biblical manhood. Sorry ladies, I won't say too much on Biblical womanhood because I haven't read much about being a woman.