The charm of a godly woman
One must not discount the power of a heavenly female figure. This is a point that Peter makes in 1 Peter 3, which we have been studying in recent weeks. We looked at 1 Peter 3:3 and asked, “How much jewelry is too much jewelry?” That was last time, on Monday, in APJ 1834. We’ve already looked at 1 Peter 3:1–2, two verses that address the wife’s response to her husband’s persistent transgression. That was APJ 1830.
In addition, 1 Peter 3:3-4 returns to the topic of a godly woman’s impact, this time on her husband. This text makes a fascinating connection between a wife’s jewelry and her influence on her husband, a relationship that Peter makes in his letter and which Pastor John briefly mentions in this episode. It’s a concept touched on in a sermon footage from a 1986 sermon by John Piper. The man in question has finally arrived.
You remember what it says about Sarah in Hebrews 11? In chapter 11 of Hebrews, we are given a definition of faith. “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for” (Hebrews 11:1), and all you witness through chapter 11 are heroes and heroines who hope in God. For example, “By faith Sarah herself acquired strength to conceive, even when she was past the age, since she regarded him faithful who had promised” (Hebrews 11:11). (Hebrews 11:11).
Sarah teaches us that holy women turn their attention away from the trials and tribulations of this world and toward God. They put their trust in him, considering him to be reliable, sovereign, powerful, loving, kind, and unfailing in his promises; so, they fortify their hearts with optimism and press on, dirty diapers and all, widowhood and divorce notwithstanding. They go on because they hope in God.
“Holy women hope in God and allow no horror to immobilize them in their duties.”
They no longer have to deal with whatever it was that was making life so difficult for them. Look at the end of 1 Peter 3:6: “And you are her offspring, if you do good and do not fear anything that is frightening.” Do you wish to join the Sarah family? Put your faith in God and let that optimism overcome your anxiety.
Holy women aren’t frightened of things, except one – displeasing God. Or let’s not overstate the case; let’s be accurate and realistic. Let us put it this way: holy women have the strength to press on with life because they have hope in God and fight off their fears and anxieties with the word. That’s number one in this paragraph. God-fearing women, on the other hand, keep moving on with their responsibilities without letting fear stop them.
Second, this faith in God provides an inner covering. The Bible teaches that devout ladies who put their faith in God will dress in this manner (1 Peter 3:5). In addition, the embellishment alludes to 1 Peter 3:3–4. What it says, let’s read. Find a description of the clothing inside:
For God does not value what is seen, therefore put no emphasis on outward adornment (such as braided hair, gold jewelry, or flashy clothes) but on developing the inner beauty of a gentle and peaceful mind, which is of great worth in God’s sight.
Peter’s discussion of attire, hair, and accessories begs the question: why? It doesn’t seem to fit. Let me try to show you why I think he brought it up. I think verses 1 and 2 provide us the hint that explains why he brings it up. He has in mind not only Christian women of Christian husbands but Christian wives of non-Christian husbands. And he says to them, “Likewise, women, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if any do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they witness your respectful and pure behaviour.”
Now Peter wants Christian ladies to live in a way that will convince their non-Christian husbands that God exists. Isn’t it a tremendous test of faith to live in such a way that her non-Christian spouse is overcome with shame, sees the truth of God, and decides to become a believer? I think it’s a fantastic opportunity for this woman to exert some power over her husband.
But, he cautions, “Don’t preach at him.” As you can see. He describes it as happening “without a word.” The wives should take that as a warning. Watch out, lest you drive him away by nagging him about religion.
In my opinion, verses 3 and 4 serve as a further caution against attempting to convert an unbeliever husband by changing superficial aspects of one’s appearance, such as one’s haircut, one’s tan, one’s jewelry, and one’s clothing. It’s OK to entice a man to the bedroom, but you won’t win him over to the faith if you do that. And if your purpose is to bring him or anybody to God, it’s got to be from within.
The world can advise you how to attract guys to yourself. Only the Scriptures can tell you how to attract men to God. And let me insert here for the single women that your hope needs to be in God, not in acquiring a spouse, because the only husband worth getting is one who wants to play second fiddle in your life.