The Sweet Christian Bride

Philippians 4:8 in Marriage: Noble

by admin on August 15, 2012 in Faith, Relationship, Spouse with 2 Comments

If you missed out on the intro to the Philippians 4:8 series, check it out here.

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is NOBLE, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” (Philippians 4:8).

NOBLE

What do you think of when you picture a man who is noble?  I picture a knight in armor whose feat is to win wars and captivate women’s hearts with chivalry and sacrifice.  Perhaps the nature of being of higher rank makes nobility somewhat synonymous in my mind to valor.  The truth is, it’s not.

Noble simply means “distinguished by rank or title” or “pertaining to the aristocracy.”  Other meanings have derived from this elite standing such as “of an exalted moral or mental character or excellence” and “admirable in dignity of conception.”1  With the exception of the last definition, these are all related to who someone is rather than what someone does.

No money or success can compete with the distinguished rank that God holds.  He is royalty and we are heirs to His inheritance (Romans 8:15-17).  We are made worthy by His grace given to us (Titus 3:4-7; Romans 3:24).  If you picture your husband that way, he is more noble than living or historical royal and reigning families.  Your husband is distinguished by his title of a child of God (1 John 3:1).  And from his position comes godly character (Hebrews 12:5-11; Romans 5:1-5), the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16b), and love, which is necessary for excellence (1 Corinthians 13:1-3 ).

Our society doesn’t get that.  We are bred for merit based on our successes and for bailouts based on our failures.  Our definition of nobility has become one who works hard for his money, fame, and power or one who pulls another up from his poverty, anonymity, and oppression.  While there is beauty and honor in working hard and in living generously, that still misses the point.

Nobility is something you are born into; it is not something you earn.

What that means is that our marriages are put to the test because we tend to evaluate the health and worth of our marriages based on what we do in and for them.  Our husbands, particularly, desire to live nobly in marriage so they can receive honor and respect.  They desire to protect their families and to provide for them.  They desire to be needed and appreciated by their wives and kids.  While all of these things are good, they breed an expectation for performance.

If we are evaluating their performance by what cars we drive, how clean the house is, what kind of birthday presents they buy us, how they get along with our in-laws, how we feel about them today, how much money they bring home, and how attuned with our emotions they are, then we are pushing our husbands—and our marriages—down into the earthly ranks and measures of success instead of honoring them for what Christ has done on their behalf.  Every day, even on their worst days, our husbands are worthy of respect and honor because of Christ’s nobility that was given to them.

Can we boldly yet humbly approach our husbands with a heart of confession that we are not loving and respecting them for the noble men that they are?  We certainly try, and many times we do it right, but often we miss the mark.  We evaluate them instead for what they do rather than esteeming them for who they are.

If you are willing to ask your husband what he needs from you to reinforce his nobility, read this article for some guidance.  It truly could be the conversation that gives your man the freedom to live up to the birthright he has been given.  How bountiful a breath will that blow into your marriage!

Similarly, when we decide to sabotage our marriages or walk away from them, we are failing to see the nobility in our covenant relationships because they reflect God and are maintained only by His strength.  Sometimes we need to see someone else fight for our marriages to remember that they are worthy of fighting for.

Before reaching that place of need, can we see that God has distinguished our marriages because they are rooted in Him Who is King of kings and Lord of lords (Revelation 19:16)?  He has already elevated our marriages by making us righteous in His eye (2 Corinthians 5:21).  Therefore, your noble marriage is worthy of protecting and nurturing no matter the struggles or injustice that might color it along the way.

The enemy will try to disparage and destroy the value of your relationship, and society (often with good intentions) will reinforce that.  But God will always see your marriage with the worth and esteem that intrinsically comes when something is rooted in Him.  He can save us from sin and death; He can certainly save your marriage from the most hopeless of perils.

God 2: Enemy 0.

Protect your marriage from attack by thinking on what is noble about your husband.  If you don’t know what that is, think on Christ and that will calibrate your thoughts.


1 All definitions take from Dictionary.com on 2012 August 15.

By Lindsay
  • There are currently 2 Comments.

  • The Sweet Christian Bride
    • Caitlin says:

      I love this message and God intended for me to read it today! Thank you!

    • Trackbacks

    • Trackback from Philippians 4:8 in Marriage: True | The Sweet Christian Bride
      Friday, 24 August, 2012

      […] that advice pointed me to Philippians 4:8: ”Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is […]

    • Trackback from Philippians 4:8 in Marriage: Admirable | The Sweet Christian Bride
      Thursday, 30 August, 2012

      […] One of the subtle ways that we exert control over our husbands is by reserving our praise.  We think that if we praise them for a good thing they have done, then they will wallow in that praise forever, forgetting that there are forty other things we would like them to do better.  So we skip the praise and just remind them of the areas for improvement, in case they haven’t ascertained how important those things are to us.  In other words, we esteem our husbands based on their performances. […]

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