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Marriage: Foundations & Principles – Lesson 6: The Role of the Wife

Scripture Verse: Genesis 2:18.


The confusion surrounding a husband’s role is equaled, if not surpassed, by the confusion surrounding a wife’s role. In an age struggling with the concept of a biblical family, understanding a wife’s role is not an easy task. The “Barefoot-and-pregnant-slave-of-the-husband- babysitter” definition offers no more than bad theology and unreasonable expectations. On the other hand, the “I-am- woman-do-it -all- corporate-executive-who-needs-men” attitude isn’t a viable alternative either. Women need a sound, theologically correct definition of what it means to be a woman and wife.

Wives have two foundational roles – completer and companion. Genesis 2:18 says, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” As completer, wives have been designed to perfectly compliment their husbands. Who a wife is and what she can do is exactly what her husband needs. Her highest call is to minister to her husband as his helper and completer. The honor attached to this role should never be diminished by the husband or wife. No one can replace or compare a wife’s ability to complete not only her husband, but her family.

Beyond a completer, she is to be a companion. God determined it was not good that Adam was alone. The result of this determination wasn’t a bunch of guys to pal around with, a dog to go hunting with, or a hobby or job to keep him entertained. The result was the creation of Eve and the need for companionship was fulfilled. This is an exciting testimony of the woman’s call and ministry.

Unfortunately, society is all too ready to lament and criticize this concept of a woman’s role. Nevertheless, true peace is found not in societal conformity but in genuine obedience to God’s Word.

Lesson Questions:

  1. What is a wife’s primary role? Genesis 2:18b; Proverbs 31:11-29.
  2. Christ died for the Church and, in response, the Church is called to live for Christ. Discuss the responsibility of the wife to live unto her husband, as the Church lives unto Christ. Ephesians 5:22-24; I Peter 3:1.
  3. What benefits does a wife have being under the authority and covering of her husband? I Corinthians 11:1-12; Proverbs 12:4; 31:30.
  4. Why is it important to understand that the wife’s primary ministry is to her husband, and that she is to be her husband’s unique helper? Genesis 2:18-22; Proverbs 31:10-12; Psalm 128:3; I Corinthians 11:11.
    Note: This does not mean or imply that the wife’s life and energies are solely dedicated to her husband. Proverbs 31 makes it clear that women should be allowed to minister in powerful ways, both inside and outside the home.
  5. Proverbs 31:10 asks a rhetorical question: “Who can find a virtuous woman?” In the Hebrew, the word “virtuous” literally means power or strength, and is used of armies, riches, and war. How should wives be perceived in light of this truth?
    Note: Examine the influence and leadership of such women as Miriam, who assisted Moses and Aaron in the leadership of Israel; Deborah the Judge; Esther, who led the children of Israel in fasting and prayer, which routed a slaughter of the Jews; and Priscilla, who helped her husband lead Apollos to a greater understanding of Jesus Christ, the Messiah.
  6. Within what ministries does scripture confirm women can operate? Acts 2:17; 18:26; 21:9; I Corinthians 11:5; Romans 16:1-5; I Corinthians 12:8-11; Romans 12:3-8.