|New International Version (©2011)|
Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives,
New Living Translation (©2007)
In the same way, you wives must accept the authority of your husbands. Then, even if some refuse to obey the Good News, your godly lives will speak to them without any words. They will be won over
English Standard Version (©2001)
Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives,
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives,
King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;
Holman Christian Standard Bible (©2009)
In the same way, wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, even if some disobey the Christian message, they may be won over without a message by the way their wives live
International Standard Version (©2012)
In a similar way, you wives must submit yourselves to your husbands so that, even if some of them refuse to obey the word, they may be won over without a word through your conduct as wives
NET Bible (©2006)
In the same way, wives, be subject to your own husbands. Then, even if some are disobedient to the word, they will be won over without a word by the way you live,
Aramaic Bible in Plain English (©2010)
In this way, also, you women, submit to your husbands, that you may win without labor those who do not obey the word by your beautiful way of life,
GOD'S WORD® Translation (©1995)
Wives, in a similar way, place yourselves under your husbands' authority. Some husbands may not obey God's word. Their wives could win these men [for Christ] by the way they live without saying anything.
King James 2000 Bible (©2003)
Likewise, you wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conduct of the wives;
American King James Version
Likewise, you wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;
American Standard Version
In like manner, ye wives, be in subjection to your won husbands; that, even if any obey not the word, they may without the word be gained by the behavior of their wives;
In like manner also let wives be subject to their husbands: that if any believe not the word, they may be won without the word, by the conversation of the wives.
Darby Bible Translation
Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, that, even if any are disobedient to the word, they may be gained without the word by the conversation of the wives,
English Revised Version
In like manner, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, even if any obey not the word, they may without the word be gained by the behaviour of their wives;
Webster's Bible Translation
Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the deportment of the wives;
Weymouth New Testament
Married women, in the same way, be submissive to your husbands, so that even if some of them disbelieve the Message, they may, apart from the Message, be won over by the daily life of their wives, after watching your daily life--
World English Bible
In the same way, wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; so that, even if any don't obey the Word, they may be won by the behavior of their wives without a word;
Young's Literal Translation
In like manner, the wives, be ye subject to your own husbands, that even if certain are disobedient to the word, through the conversation of the wives, without the word, they may be won,
|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
3:1-7 The wife must discharge her duty to her own husband, though he obey not the word. We daily see how narrowly evil men watch the ways and lives of professors of religion. Putting on of apparel is not forbidden, but vanity and costliness in ornament. Religious people should take care that all their behaviour answers to their profession. But how few know the right measure and bounds of those two necessaries of life, food and raiment! Unless poverty is our carver, and cuts us short, there is scarcely any one who does not desire something beyond what is good for us. Far more are beholden to the lowliness of their state, than the lowliness of their mind; and many will not be so bounded, but lavish their time and money upon trifles. The apostle directs Christian females to put on something not corruptible, that beautifies the soul, even the graces of God's Holy Spirit. A true Christian's chief care lies in right ordering his own spirit. This will do more to fix the affections, and excite the esteem of a husband, than studied ornaments or fashionable apparel, attended by a froward and quarrelsome temper. Christians ought to do their duty to one another, from a willing mind, and in obedience to the command of God. Wives should be subject to their husbands, not from dread and amazement, but from desire to do well, and please God. The husband's duty to the wife implies giving due respect unto her, and maintaining her authority, protecting her, and placing trust in her. They are heirs together of all the blessings of this life and that which is to come, and should live peaceably one with another. Prayer sweetens their converse. And it is not enough that they pray with the family, but husband and wife together by themselves, and with their children. Those who are acquainted with prayer, find such unspeakable sweetness in it, that they will not be hindered therein. That you may pray much, live holily; and that you may live holily, be much in prayer.
Verse 1. - Likewise, ye wives. St. Peter has spoken of the duties of servants: why does he omit those of masters? There must have been Christian masters in Asia Minor, as is plain from Ephesians 6:9; Colossians 4:1. But we notice that St. Paul, though he has a few words for masters, addresses slaves at much greater length. Probably Christian masters were comparatively few, while large numbers of slaves had embraced the religion which could do so much to comfort and elevate the oppressed. Again, the immediate purpose of the apostle is to inculcate submission to authority; therefore, having enforced upon Christian servants the example of their Lord, he proceeds to speak of the duty of Christian wives. Christianity was in its infancy; it was to be the means of abolishing slavery, and of raising woman to her proper place in society; but as yet slaves were cruelly oppressed, and women were ill treated and despised. Aristotle tells us that among the barbarians (and a large proportion of the population in the greater part of Asia Minor was barbarian, i.e. non-Greek) the woman and the slave hold the same rank ('Pol.,' I. 2:4). In Greek communities the case was different; but even among the Greeks women occupied a very subordinate position. Christianity would introduce a great and sweeping change in the relations of the sexes, as well as in the relations of master and slave. But the change must be gradual, not violent; it must be brought about by the softening and purifying influences of religion, not by revolt against recognized customs and established authority. Indeed, Christianity would introduce an element of division - the Lord had said so (Luke 12:51-53); families would be divided. It could not be otherwise; Christians must not set even family ties above the love of Christ. But Christian wives must be peacemakers; they must, as far as possible, live at peace even with unbelieving husbands. They would often have much ill treatment to endure in those coarse, cruel days; they must bear it with the quiet strength of gentleness. Be in subjection to your own husbands; literally, submitting yourselves. The participle, as in 1 Peter 2:18, seems to look back to the imperative, "submit yourselves," in 1 Peter 2:13. The present participle implies that this voluntary submission is to be habitual. The adjective "your own" (ἰδίοις) emphasizes the duty. That, if any obey not the Word, they also may without the Word be won by the conversation of the wives. There is a well-supported reading, "Even if any." Husband and wife would often be converted together; but if this should not be the case, and if the unbelieving husband should set himself in direct opposition to the Word of God (for the words "believe not" have more than a negative meaning, as in 1 Peter 2:7), still Christian wives must submit themselves. They must do this for the glory of God, and with the hope of saving their husbands' souls; that those unbelieving husbands may be won to Christ and to everlasting life by the silent eloquence of the quiet self-restraint and holy behavior of their wives, without argument or preaching on the wives' part. A self-denying holy life will do more to win those with whom we live in close intercourse than even holy words, and much more than debate and controversy. This seems to be the meaning of ἄνευ λόγου rather than the other possible interpretation, "without the preaching of the Word." Be won; literally, be gained. Each soul converted is a gain to Christ, to the kingdom of heaven, to itself, in this case also to the wife who is the happy instrument of saving her husband (comp. 1 Corinthians 9:19, 20). The word rendered "conversation" here, as elsewhere, means "conduct, behavior." (Compare, on the whole subject, the teaching of St. Paul, Ephesians 5:22-24; Colossians 3:18; 1 Timothy 2:9-11.)
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands,.... As well as subjects to princes, and servants to masters; though not with the same sort of subjection, but what is suitable to the relation they stand in to their husbands; See Gill on Ephesians 5:22. See Gill on Colossians 3:18.
that if any obey not the word; any husband who is an unbeliever, has no love for the Gospel, and gives no credit to it, but despises, disbelieves, and rejects it, the word of truth, of faith, of righteousness, reconciliation, and salvation. The apostle, though he includes all wives, and exhorts them in general to subjection to their own husbands, yet has a particular regard to such as had unbelieving husbands, and who, on that account, were scrupulous of living with them, and of being in subjection to them; and therefore, as the Apostle Paul also did, he advises them to abide with them, and behave well to them, using much the same argument as he does in 1 Corinthians 7:10.
they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; for though the ordinary way and means of conversion is the word, faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word; yet it may be sometimes done without it; or however by the agreeable conversation of professors, and so of religious wives, the hearts of such as were averse to Christianity, and the Gospel, as unbelieving husbands, may be so softened, and wrought upon, as to entertain a better opinion of it, and in process of time be inclined to hear and attend it; the consequence of which may prove their conversion, which is a gaming, or winning of souls; and which, as it is for their good, is for the glory of Christ; for as every soul that is delivered from the power of darkness, and is translated into the kingdom of Christ, is a loss to Satan, it is a gain to Christ, and to his church. The Syriac version, instead of "without the word", reads, "without labour"; as if the winning of unbelieving husbands was easily obtained by the conversation of their wives.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
1Pe 3:1-22. Relative Duties of Husbands and Wives: Exhortations to Love and Forbearance: Right Conduct under Persecutions for Righteousness' Sake, after Christ's Example, Whose Death Resulted in Quickening to Us through His Being Quickened Again, of Which Baptism Is the Sacramental Seal.
1. Likewise—Greek, "In like manner," as "servants" in their sphere; compare the reason of the woman's subjection, 1Co 11:8-10; 1Ti 2:11-14.
your own—enforcing the obligation: it is not strangers ye are required to be subject to. Every time that obedience is enjoined upon women to their husbands, the Greek, "idios," "one's own peculiarly," is used, while the wives of men are designated only by heauton, "of themselves." Feeling the need of leaning on one stronger than herself, the wife (especially if joined to an unbeliever) might be tempted, though only spiritually, to enter into that relation with another in which she ought to stand to "her own spouse (1Co 14:34, 35, "Let them ask their own [idious] husbands at home"); an attachment to the person of the teacher might thus spring up, which, without being in the common sense spiritual adultery, would still weaken in its spiritual basis the married relation [Steiger].
that, if—Greek, "that even if." Even if you have a husband that obeys not the word (that is, is an unbeliever).
without the word—independently of hearing the word preached, the usual way of faith coming. But Bengel, "without word," that is, without direct Gospel discourse of the wives, "they may (literally, in oldest manuscripts, 'shall,' which marks the almost objective certainty of the result) be won" indirectly. "Unspoken acting is more powerful than unperformed speaking" [OCUMENIUS]. "A soul converted is gained to itself, to the pastor, wife, or husband, who sought it, and to Jesus Christ; added to His treasury who thought not His own precious blood too dear to lay out for this gain" [Leighton]. "The discreet wife would choose first of all to persuade her husband to share with her in the things which lead to blessedness; but if this be impossible, let her then alone diligently press after virtue, in all things obeying him so as to do nothing at any time against his will, except in such things as are essential to virtue and salvation" [Clement of Alexandria].
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