Aren’t we supposed to submit to each other?
You might say “Sure, Ephesians 5 and 1 Peter 3 each tell wives to submit to their husbands twice, but it doesn’t really mean that. After all Ephesians also says to submit to one another.”
Yes, Ephesians 5:21 tells us to submit to each other. But it doesn’t tell everyone to submit to everyone. It goes on to define the 3 groups of people that are supposed to submit:
- Wives to husbands
- Children to parents
- Slaves to masters
I’m not supposed to submit to the guy who sits 4 pews down from me in church whose name I don’t even know.
I’m not supposed to submit to my friend Sally Sue.
I’m not supposed to submit to my brother even.
I can do what these people want, if I’m inclined to. I can submit to them. I just don’t have to.
Bottom line: Just like parents aren’t called to submit to their children and masters aren’t called to submit to their slaves, husbands aren’t called to submit to their wives. And that’s okay. If we were supposed to submit to everyone else, there’d just be chaos! And we don’t have a God of chaos.