Thursday in the Eighth Week of Ordinary Time

1 Peter 3:1-6

A Godly Wife

“An excellent wife who can find?  She is far more precious than jewels” (Proverbs 31:10).  I’m proud to say that I’ve known many in God’s church—none more excellent than mine, of course—but still many excellent wives.  This entire passage might be entitled, “The Godly Wife.”  And why not?  The theme of the Apostle’s letter is godliness.  To take a moment to address matters of family relations in the context of godliness is simply expected.

The godly wife’s first duty is to be subject to her own husband, not in a slavish way, but to willingly follow his God-ordained role as leader within the family.  But the Apostle’s concern at this point is the witness of the godly wife; that is, that she may win her unbelieving husband “without a word…by [her] respectful and pure conduct.”  In other words, a godly wife should win an unbelieving husband by her Christian conduct.  And though such a woman might not have had much choice in ancient times, allow me to add that no godly woman should ever freely enter such an arrangement today.  We must all marry “in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 7:39).  However, when a wife becomes a Christian of late, then she has no choice but as Peter dictates.  And it is important for wives to remember, a wife’s conduct speaks louder to her husband than her words which he might receive as nagging.  That might not be fair, but it is the way men are.

The next duty of a godly woman that Peter takes up is dress.  To sum, Peter counsels modesty.  The woman is the fairer sex; indeed, God especially designed her so to be.  But this can also be her weakness.  Clothing and beauty industries know this very well.  It is this that the Apostle cautions the godly woman against.  The beauty and charm of the godly woman is not her outward appearance but her heart—the gentle and quiet spirit.  Granted, such discussions about fashion cannot be boiled down to rules which would smack of legalism, but neither can we dismiss this passage and dress ourselves in luxurious, or even worse, revealing attire.  Besides, the poor need our compassion worse than we need jewelry.

Peter then points to Old Testament examples of the faith.  No, you needn’t call your husband, “lord,” though you might do so to tease him.  Peter is more concerned that as a godly woman, you do good and fear nothing.  Isn’t that interesting?  The weaker sex is told to fear nothing and thereby encourage her husband.  This is counter-cultural today; don’t let a feminist fool you with false promises.  Concern yourself with godliness.

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

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