My Submissive Wife?

My wife Rachel is the Associate Pastor at Austin Avenue United Methodist Church. Last Sunday she and several from Austin Avenue joined in Mission Waco’s Walk for the Homeless.

A man from another church who was on the walk asked her, upon learning she was a pastor, “How do you deal with your pastoral authority when you are at home – where you must submit to your husband?”

Rachel responded with something like, “he is also a pastor, so we don’t have any issues with that.” In other words, she let him off easy.

I have never yet had any issues with Rachel refusing to submit to my authority. Nor do I expect to.

I have also never tried to wield authority over her in an adversarial way. Nor has she over me.

This is, I think, where Christians diverge on the “wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord” scripture; if we are following Jesus, this is not a hierarchical or adversarial submission.

Do you recall any of the disciples ever questioning Jesus’ authority?  Do you recall Jesus ever “lording it over” them?

The larger context of the Ephesians passage has every follower of Jesus submitting to each other, and all treating each other with love.


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