7 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” (I Peter 3:7).
How may a husband display a responsible self-sacrificial love (Ephesians 5:25) to and for his wife? The Apostle Peter gives two examples of how this must occur in the home for marriage to be God glorifying.
First, the husband must live with his wife in an understanding way. Understanding (γνῶσις; gnosis) means possessing knowledge. A husband must not only live with his wife having knowledge from God’s Word regarding his responsibilities as a husband, but also having knowledge about his wife’s personality. He needs to understand his wife’s spiritual, emotional and physical needs.
Second, he must honor his wife as the weaker vessel. To honor (τιμή; time’) means to give and recognize one’s wife as possessing a high status and deserving high respect. He does so because she is the weaker partner in the marriage. Weaker (ἀσθενής; asthenes) refers to physical weakness but not emotional or intellectual inferiority.
The husband carries out both of these responsibilities since the wife, if both are believers, is an heir with the husband of God’s grace. This refers to salvation by grace alone, through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone.
One of the results of such biblical behavior on the part of the husband is that the prayers of both he and his wife will not be hindered. To be hindered (ἐγκόπτω; enkopto) means to cause someone not to do something. Husbands are to be obedient to God’s instruction so the prayers of his wife, along with his own, will never stop. If one’s prayer life is in trouble, the marriage is in trouble.
Living in harmony with your spouse should be a lifelong goal. It can be consistently achieved as each partner follows God’s Word regarding their individual responsibilities in the marriage. Pursue it today, and keep on pursuing it ladies and gentlemen.
Soli deo Gloria!