Submission should rank up there as one of the top bad words of all time. Submission requires me to be under the control of another person and to respond at their whims. Submission forces me to do things that I might not otherwise do. Submission benefits others and never me – I get left out in the cold.
Or maybe not.
I suspect, that like so many words in your vocabulary, that the word “submission” used in the Scripture is not the same word tossed around today. It may be spelled the same, but the meaning behind the word is different. Or maybe it is that we (as a society) have taking the idea of submit and turned it into something it was never intended to be.
In Genesis 16:9, an angel comes to Hagar and tells her to go back and “submit” to her mistress – that would be Sarai (later Sarah). The definition of this word, according to the Strong Concordance, is to be occupied or busied with – to humble.
The rest of the terms for submit have to do with strangers and not the children of God.
In the New Testament, the word “submit” is used much more frequently. It most often comes from the word “hypotasso” and means to yeild to, arrange under, or be subject to. It was a Greek military term.
The same word is used in James 4:7, “Submit yourselves, therefor to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
The submission that we are doing is not to people – it is to God (or in the case of people “as unto God”).
The Benefits of Submission
- When I choose to submit to God – to His Will, His Way, and His Word – then the devil will flee from me. Submission to God is reflected by my attitude and actions towards others.
When I choose submission, I grow in humility and God blessed the humble and gives grace to the humble.
When I choose submission puts the responsibility on others. Hebrews 13:17 makes it clear that when I am submissive to those in authority over me then what they will be accountable TO GOD for what they do and how they respond to that submission. In other words, God will have my back with I choose to walk in submission.
When I choose submission, it is not about the person but about God. When I submit, I show my Father that I respect Him and honor Him.
When I choose to submit to God (or to others as unto God) then I open the door for peace in my home. Because a submissive heart hinders the path of strife.
When I choose to submit – to be humble to others – then I make the way for God to exalt me in His time. I can seek the authority and praises of man, or humble myself and wait for the exalting of God.
Submission has been twisted by the enemy. It is not a bad thing or something to be feared. It is something to be grasped because with a submissive and humble heart, everything becomes possible.
Join Discipling Women: Damage Control – Thursday, March 5th, as we discuss the challenges of being a submissive and strong woman in today’s society.