What is the Biblical concept of mutual submission as found in Ephesians 5:21 (and throughout the Bible) and how are we to apply it in our relationships today?
I’m working on a new concept in my mind and teaching. It has originated from recent marital counseling with several couples. Couples usually come to me with the mindset that they will meet the other person half-way, but only if their spouse does likewise. The thought of mutual submission, where each person is willing to give up all rights (100%) to the other person, is a very foreign concept and actually seems to anger people when I suggest it; yet I believe that’s what this passage teaches. The meaning of submission here literally means “to put under authority”. As I read Ephesians 5:21, we are to “submit” to each other. When both parties in a relationship are willing to give 100%, the dynamics of the relationship are incredibly enhanced. (It also seems that is what Jesus was willing to do for us!)
It is obvious today that we live in a very “me” centered society. Unfortunately that mindset includes my children and, sad to say, me. How are we to submit to one another? What is the correct Christian response to the culture in which we live that seems to teach us to think for ourselves and “every man for himself”? Of course the Ephesians passage is addressed to believers, so is submission only withing the Body?
I’m still in the wrestling stage with all this, but would love your thoughts…