Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord.If anyone endeavors to commentate their way through the Bible, they will eventually run across many verses like this. Understand please, I am not talking about the topic, I am talking about verses that many have come to reject and almost cringe at.
There are many that feel that way about this particular verse. If you talk about wives being submissive to their husbands in America, whoa... hold everything. Most people hear this and they immediately get this picture in their mind of some mountain preacher with an amazingly thick southern accent preachin' this verse, with many hardy amens in the background.
There is a picture that should come to your mind when you hear this verse. It isn't southern preachers though. In fact, any mention of marriage should bring to mind the illustration of Christ and the Church, or Christ and His people. Marriage, though it has other God-given purposes, is meant to illustrate these roles.
I would also like to add that God is the authority on the subject of marriage. There are two types of authority: there are those who have the position of authority, and those that have the knowledge that makes them an authority. It is a wonderful thing when those two things are combined, and in God they are. He is in authority over us. He is the sovereign Lord of all creation, but He is also the authority on every subject, for he created all things. Do you realize that God invented the very idea of marriage? So we should go to Him to learn how this marriage thing should work.
We can see in this verse that the role of the wife is a submissive role. This has nothing to do with who she is as a person, and should never make her less, or her opinion less. This has to do with the role in the marriage.
There are many examples throughout scripture and also in the world of how having two heads isn't actually better than one. Most of the time when there are two people or two organizations or two governments... it leads to disaster. The Bible even talks about the double minded man and how unstable he is.
If you are a wife and you are reading this, might I suggest that you choose this role. Be submissive to your husband. It might be an act of faith, but remember that you are not trusting in the husband, you are trusting in God, and you are exhibiting that trust by doing things His way.
If you are a husband... Well, we will get to you in a few more verses. Your role is much more difficult if done correctly.