Equality within marriage is biblical

Two Sundays ago many Christians heard a passage from the Letter to the Ephesians which opens the door to the very different world in which the Church first emerged: Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, be subject to your husbands as you are to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife just as Christ is the head of the church, the body of which he is the Saviour. Just as the church is subject to Christ, so also wives ought to be, in everything, to their husbands (Ephesians chapter 5 verses 21–24).

The Lectionary had proven surprisingly topical for Australians. The previous week, news had come that the Anglican Diocese of Sydney was proposing a marriage service in which wives would promise to ‘submit’ to their husbands, language which runs counter to the current liturgy authorised in most of the Anglican Church of Australia, where identical vows are offered by both bride and groom. Read more


Associate Professor Andrew McGowan is Warden of Trinity College, The University of Melbourne.
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