Yes, the Bible says that. Our wife is commanded by God, the Creator of marriage, to respect us. As Pharaoh (Yul Brenner) said in the classic movie The Ten Commandments – “so let it be written, so let it be done”

Our response to this command to our wives can take one of two directions:

 1. God said it, so woman you need to do it. It should not matter how I live my life, how I treat you, respond to you, provide for you or protect you – you are just supposed to respect me. I am the man of the house, and that is just how things are going to be around here.


 2. God said it, so I need to live my life in such a way as to warrant her respect and admiration. I need to make it as easy as possible for her to obey the commandment.

I have known many men on each side of this fence. Some who seemingly don’t give a care about living an honorable/respectable lifestyle – yet, desire/expect/demand that their “little woman” love and respect them, and provide for their physical and emotional needs – without any complaining, whining or nagging. “So let it be written – so let it be done”.

While the previously mentioned “men” completely take God’s command out of context and use it for their own gratification – the other men I know (and try to be myself) are fully aware of the reciprocal command to husbands to “love your wife – as Christ loved the church (His bride) and gave himself up for her” in Ephesians 5.

We are commanded by God to love our wife, and give our life up on her behalf, irregardless of her response or obedience to her own command. Christ’s love for His bride did not (and does not) require/demand any action, reaction or response from her. He loved her anyway. He gave his very life for her. He voluntarily laid down his agenda, his rights, his life – in order that she might live life to the fullest.

Since God created marriage, He knows better than anyone that a wife will more naturally and willingly respect a husband who is laying down his life, in love, for her. The marriage cycle God created was “Husband loves wife unconditionally – Wife responds with love and respect for husband – Husband responds with love for wife”.

Since husbands are commanded to “love our wives and give ourselves up for them” – we cannot afford to sit back, point fingers and demand respect without first taking the initiative to obey God and do what He says. He says we (husbands) are the “head” of the home, and are responsible for initiating and maintaining His marriage cycle.

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How do you do that? What can I do to earn her respect?

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Honor and Respect

Yes, the Bible is very clear that wives are to respect their husbands.

It is also very clear that husbands are to be men worthy of honor and respect. God never intended for husbands to be selfish tyrants, or passive wimps. We are commanded and challenged to become servant leaders, protectors and providers to our wives, just like He was (and is) to His bride – the church.

Husbands – love your wives “just as Christ” loved the church and gave Himself up for her….In the same way (same as Jesus), husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he nourishes and cherishes it, “just as” Christ does the church.

Husbands – love your wife and do not be harsh with her.

Husbands – in the same way be considerate (understanding) as you live with your wife, treat her with respect as a fellow heir, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.

The preceding verses from Ephesians 5, Colossians 3 and I Peter 3 – are not simply holy suggestions from God to be considered by husbands. They are commandments to us, with the same weightiness as “thou shall not…”. Are you burdened by these commandments in that way? Am I? We should be. God views them that way and holds us accountable as well.
Basically men, we are called by God to love our wives and treat them with them like He treats His bride. If we do this, our wives will, by design, be more inclined to respond with love and respect for us. If they see our love by the way in which we serve God and serve them; if they see us honoring Christ by nourishing and cherishing them “as Christ does” – their natural response will be to respect us. We don’t love, serve, provide and protect in order to gain respect (selfish motive). We do these things because we are told to by a loving and wise Father – and we want to glorify and honor Him – regardless of our wife’s reaction or response.

Let’s be responsible to become the husband we are called to be by God. Lets work on what we can work on – ourselves. Our wife can’t do it for us, our buddies can’t either – and God won’t do it for us either. We have to take responsibility to make the daily choices necessary to follow Him, listen to His voice – and do what He says. If we do, He promises to do the rest – and our lives, as well as our marriages, will be the better for it.

As the head, it is he who is responsible for his wife, for their marriage, and for their home. On him falls the care and protection of the family;he represents it to the outside world;he is its mainstay and comfort;he is the master of the house, who exhorts, corrects,helps, and comforts and stands for it before God.It is a good thing, for it is a divine ordinance when the wife honors the husband for his office’s sake, and when the husband properly performs the duties of his office. Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers from Prison, 30

Let’s become more deliberate about obeying God and loving our wives, and in doing so become men worthy of our wife’s respect.By Rob Thorpe, Used with permission. Read more from Rob at,

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