Grace to You, and came across a comment with several questions that I found interesting. I did not see any attempt to answer the lady's questions, so I thought I would respond here at Grace and Truth to You. The woman wrote:
"I am concerned about a marriage situation in which the husband is a ob/gyn doctor. He believes they should not use birth control and delivers all their children at home. She is exhausted with the load of the continual pregnancies and the little ones. He is not willing to allow her to have outside help in the home. She would like to be able to limit the pregnancies. He rules! She submits. How does this fit in with God's balance of the man loving the woman? What are her options in this type of marriage? How can she disagree and be biblically correct? Any insights on this? I would love to hear them."
McArthur, Piper and other conservative Bible scholars I admire are fond of referring to the husband's "authority" over his wife. There is only one place in the entire New Testament, however, where the word "authority" (exousia) is used in reference to the husband and wife--I Corinthians 7:4:
"The wife has not authority (exousia) over her own body, but the husband. In the same manner, the husband has not authority (exousia) over his body, but the wife."
Authority in the marriage seems to be mutual between husband and wife. Paul goes on to affirm mutual authority by saying in the next verse that the sexual union in marriage is an act requring "mutual consent" or agreement. The Greek word is "symphonou" from which we get our the English word "symphony." In an orchestra there is harmony in the symphony when all instruments are played at the right time and the right place with mutual understanding and agreement. There is a discordant and disharmonious symphony if even one instrument strikes out on its own against the wishes of the rest.
So it is in marriage. The Bible is quite clear in its answer to the lady's questions above.
(1). There is no sexual union unless both the husband and wife agree.
(2). Multiple childbirths requires mutual consent, not the demands of one.
(3). Disagreement in marriage is not only biblical, it is expected, thus the instructions of I Corinthians 7.
(4). The loving spouse will honor the wishes of the one being loved and wait for mutual consent.
(5). Authority and submission, according to the sacred text, is mutual in the husband and wife relationship.
It's ironic to me that many inerrantists seem to want the sacred text to say that which it doesn't. It's time we actually believed the Bible and obeyed it.
In His Grace,