A few weeks ago in church, a gentleman filled in for a teacher who was out of town. He brought something out from God's Word that I'd never thought about in this way before. All things that I knew, but this morning something just clicked. I've been thinking about it ever since. It's good stuff.
That's one of the reasons why I love the pure, undefiled Word of God. It is a living, breathing Book. The Bible. You can have read and/or have been taught from a verse a thousand times, and then God will give you something new. Don't tell me God doesn't speak today. He talks to me!
We were studying 1 Peter 3. Verse one says, "Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives." Do you know how many times I've taught from this verse?
But this particular morning, I saw the word 'likewise' as if I'd never seen it before. Likewise means 'in similar manner', or 'the same way', or 'also'. So if you have a 'likewise', you have to have a 'something' that comes before it.
For example: It is really snowing. We already have six inches and it's still coming down. Barbara has taken off her flip flops and put on her boots. You should do likewise.
If we begin with the last sentence, we don't know what we should do. Do likewise? Do what? The word likewise tells us to pay attention to what came before. In similar manner to what? The same as what? If we don't look back, someone is gonna have frostbitten toes! (Not me. I already put my boots on. And I wear socks inside my boots. Warm, dry tootsies.)
In Luke 13 there is a 'likewise' that you can't miss. Verse 3 says, "I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish." Likewise to whom? Likewise to the Galatians who died in verses 1 and 2. All right there together. Impossible to miss. Easy.
But, back to 1 Peter 3:1. "Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands." Some people have a problem with this, but I don't. First, because God said it. 'Nuff said. Secondly, because it doesn't mean what people taking it out of context think it means. God is giving to women the most amazing gift here. Study what God thinks of women and her role. Study Jesus and women. God has chosen for us the best spot! Makes me feel sad for men. But we'll not study that here. And third, I want to live my purpose, no matter what that is! See the blog post on 'Purpose'. It's the second one I ever wrote, back in January.
But what I want to look at is the 'likewise'. It's the first word in the chapter, so I guess we have to go back to chapter 2 to see to what it refers.
1 Peter 2:21-23. "For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:"
There it is! The 'something' to which the 'likewise' referred. Jesus, who was God and sinless and suffered for us, had no thought of revenge, but instead committed Himself to the Father, the righteous judge! This we know, of course. It is the very foundation of our faith. But it is also the 'likewise' for our text!
Jesus was in subjection to God the Father. Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands. What an amazing truth! I just can't stop thinking about it. To be subject to someone, as Jesus was to His Father. God's ways are perfect. Always!
I want to be like Jesus! How about you?