Tuesday, January 09, 2007

I Know Who's The Boss - Message 3


Listen to I Know Who's The Boss.

This message is the third sermon in the series entitled "What I Wished I Had Known Forty Years Ago," preached by Paul Burleson at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Enid, Oklahoma, January 7-10. The outline is presented below to follow along as you listen.

“I Now Know Who’s the Boss”

Mark 10:42-45 - “But Jesus called them to him, and saith unto them, Ye know that they which are accounted to rule over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise authority upon them. But so shall it not be among you: but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister: And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all. For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all. For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.”

1 Peter 5:2-3 - “Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being examples to the flock.”

Introduction: Remember Sunday morning I said that in my understanding of marriage forty years ago, we operated best when my wife understood who was the boss -- and “God said I’m the boss.”

I based my view on an understanding of the following verse.

Genesis 3:16 - “Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.”

But is this the way a marriage is to operate? Are men to exert themselves as 'the boss?'

I. The Original Pattern for Relationships

Genesis 1:26-28 - “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

Adam and Eve had a partnership, based upon New Covenant principles reflected in our text of Mark 10:42-45.

II. The Beginning of our Problems with Relationships

After the fall in the Garden, God said two things about Adam and Eve's relationship with each other.

1. Eve … she will 'desire' her husband The word 'desire' is often misunderstood. It means in scripture 'to exert domininion' and the word is used just a chapter later:

Genesis 4:7 “If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his (sin's) DESIRE . . .”

2. Adam … will rule his wife.

Are these two things prescriptive or descriptive on God’s part? In other words, is the desire to dominate or rule a part of God's blessing or curse?

The Scripture indicates that this desire to 'rule' or dominate, by both the man and the woman, is a result of the curse and prescriptive of where men and women are because of sin.

But God by His grace transforms a man and a woman through the power of the Holy Spirit to relate to one another in a totally different manner.

III. The Supernatural Provision for Relationships

Ephesians 5:17-18 -“Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;”

Without John 3:16 there is no full appreciation for salvation, and without Ephesians 5:18 there is no full understanding of experiencing healthy spiritual relationships -- whether they be pastor/people, husband/wife, etc . . . It is the Spirit of God that enables us to be the person and partner God intends us to be.

So what does a spirit-filled person look like?
v. 19 – joyful – this Spirit produced
v. 20 – grateful – this Spirit produced
v. 21 – serving, submissive – this Spirit produced

The biblical style of relating in marriage is one of mutual submission, mutual service, and mutual dependence on the Spirit of God.


volfan007 said...


i am enjoying your dad's sermons. but, i would have to ask about the wife submitting to the husband... according to the bible, the husband is to be the leader of the home. the wife is to be submissive. she should follow her husbands leadership. to have anything different would be turmoil and chaos and trouble.

1 peter 3:5-6, "...being in subjection unto thier own husbands, even as sarah obeyed abraham, calling him lord; whose daughters you are, as long as you do well..."

ephesians 5:22, "wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord."

wade, i didnt read where your dad dealt with this aspect at all. i agree that God is the Boss...He's the Boss of whatever...marriage, family, church, whatever. but, in the bible, the Lord has said who should be the leader of the home, and who should be the follower. and, a man cant even be a pastor unless he rules his own house well.
i dont think that we should back off what the bible says about marriage due to the feminists influence upon our society. the church should influence society, not the other way around.....true?

btw, this is nothing personal against your dad, and i hope that you wont take it that way.



Debbie Kaufman said...

volf: If you listen to the message, I promise that all your questions will be answered. The outline is a guide.

Also read Philipians 2:5-11. :)

wadeburleson.org said...


You ask a good question. I agree with Debbie, the question is answered when you listen to the tape.

Rex Ray said...

A person was hired for minimum wage to wash dishes.
Another was hired for $1,000/hr to be a bodyguard.
By their code, which one would serve more or take a bullet for their employer?
If you chose the bodyguard, you chose Jesus laying down his life for the church, and you chose the husband serving more than a submitting dishwasher.

Of course the husband is not just a bodyguard and a wife is not just a dishwasher.

This sermon of Paul’s was the best ‘eye opener’ that I’ve ever heard. Instead of a partner relationship as in the Garden, after the fall, the curse upon the woman was desiring to dominate her husband and the curse upon the man was trying to rule his wife.

As Paul pointed out; by the power of the Holy Spirit, we are to: “Honor Christ by submitting [serving] to each other.” (Ephesians 5:21)

And that will bring the partnership back into a marriage.
Rex Ray

CharlesRam said...


I apologize for not hearing the sermon all the way through. However, did your father also comment on vs. 33 of chapter 5.

This verse is the basis of a very good book by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. In this book, "Love and Respect", Dr. Eggerichs gives some good counsel in helping to deal with submission and love.


Paul/Mary Burleson said...


Thanks for the comments.


I do personally believe a wife is to submit/serve in the Lord. I also believe a man is to submit/serve in a male way of loving as Christ loved the Church and gave Himself for Her. I just don't see a man loving as Christ loves to be any less serving than a woman is to be.

It is also interesting to me that it appears that the word "submit/serve" in verse 21 of Ephesians 5, where all are enjoined to do so, is not in verse 22 in the early manuscripts. Maybe what follows verse 21 is a description of what submission/service looks like in the home from a female/male perspective. By the way, in chapter 6 of Ephesians when speaking of kids and parents a different word is used for "obey."

If both, full of the Spirit, serve in the Lord, being in charge will not be an issue. The husband will do the job where he's responsible and the woman would too in any of her responsibilities. Kinda the way it all started back at the beginning isn't it.

By the way, Sarah seems to have messed up with that Hagar thing and old Abe didn't do too well in it either, did he. Their relationship sure keeps me from thinking I've got it all together myself.

Your questions are appreciated as is your spirit.

volfan007 said...


i have no idea what you're trying to say with the dishwashing stuff. but, anything that has more than one leader is a two headed monster. there has to be someone who makes the final decisions and leads the others. God gave this role to the man.


i would agree with everything you said in the above comment except that there has to be leaders and there has to be followers in all walks of life. in govt., in church, in the family....all have to have leaders. the man is supposed to be the leader of the home. the wife is supposed to follow the husbands lead. and yes, we are to serve each other. and, if i love my wife like Christ loves the church, then i have a lot of serving to do. but, the fact still remains that there has to be a leader. does there not?

paul, let me get this straight. are you saying that there is no leader, and that submission is just talking about serving? if you are, then i would have to disagree. there's too many verses besides eph. 5 that teach that a woman is to follow and the man is to lead...not as a dictator....but as a servant leader....but still, the buck stops with the husband.

like in a church...a pastor is a leader whether he wants to be or not. he is a leader. and, a pastor has to be a good leader of his home if he is to be the leader of the church. he is to be a leader. correct? not a dictator, not a ceo, but a clear leader nonetheless. right?


Paul/Mary Burleson said...


Leaders, yes. Wherever the Spirit places you with your gifts in the Body/home there is the delegated authority to lead in that assignment.

When one is seen to be "under" authority as was the Centurion in Luke 7:8 where he said to Jesus "for I also am a man UNDER authority, and I say....." and, you remember Jesus said, "I've not seen so great faith in all of Israel you have leadership and followship. [To be over you must know how to be under.] I believe we all need both. With our Lord and His Spirit to control, we will never see chaos and turmoil.

volfan007 said...


i guess i ought to take the time to listen to your message....but, i have people in the hospital....i preached a funeral today....i am speaking at an elementary school tomorrow, etc.

but, do you believe that the man should be the leader of the home? not the dictator....not the ceo...but, the God ordained leader of the home, and the woman should follow her husbands lead. i beleive that every Spirit-filled woman will willingly, lovingly follow her husbands leadership. and, every Spirit-filled man will lovingly lead his family with a servants heart.


Rex Ray said...

Sorry I didn’t make it clear enough for you to ‘read between the lines’ about the ‘dishwasher’ vs. the ‘bodyguard’.

Ephesians 5:22: “Wives, submit to your own husbands.” Verse 25: “Husbands, love your wives.”

In the world of math that could be written: ‘Wives/submit’ and ‘Husbands/love’.

Substituting names: ‘Dishwasher/submit’ and ‘Bodyguard/love’.

More substituting: ‘Dishwasher/takes orders’ and ‘Bodyguard/takes bullet’.

As Paul’s sermon brought out a better word for ‘submit’ is ‘serve’.

Back to the Bible: ‘Wives/serve husbands’ and ‘Husbands/serve wives more’.

Volfan, you’re right that a car has only one steering wheel, but it’s a partnership when the other has the roadmap.

My mother would say that daddy was the head, but she was the neck. I’ve stated that I wear the ‘pants’, but my wife tells me which ones to put on.

Who makes the decision is determined by which one has the most skill, knowledge, etc. in that ‘department’ and always considering the feelings of the other.

I agree with Paul that with the attitude of ‘I’m the boss’ can lead to abuse; even to breaking the law.
Rex Ray

volfan007 said...


i never said that anyone should have a "i'm the boss" attitude. that would be wrong. but, the husband should be the leader of the home. to do otherwise would be unbiblical. like i said, anything with two heads is a two headed monster.

i think the church today has listened to the womens libbers and the feminazi's out there so much that men have become whipped. they dont know who they are anymore, and they dont know how to be a man. and, marriage is crumbling with all this "i dont have to follow my husbands lead.... i can live my own life and be the boss too" attitude. it leads to much fighting.

now, do i consider my wife equal and important....yes! is she a partner in the marriage...yes! but, i am still to be the leader in this partnership, or else we are not having a spirit-filled marriage. it has become something that our modern culture has demanded that it be.


Rex Ray said...

How do you decide which pants to put on?

volfan007 said...


i pick out my own clothes, and then i ask my wife do they look alright.


Rex Ray said...

For a leader, you speak words of wisdom.

Rex Ray said...

BTW, have you read the New Living Translations?

July 1996: Genesis 3:16 “…And though your desire will be for your husband, he will be your master.”

July 2004: Genesis 3:16 “…And you will desire to control your husband, but he will rule over you.”

Paul Burleson is not the only one to explain a better meaning of “desire.”

I believe Paul is on target that verse 3:16 is not a command of God to fulfill, but is part of the curse put on mankind and can only be changed back into a husband-wife partnership by the Holy Spirit in Jesus.

Volfan, notice I put husband first in the husband-wife. That’s just to keep you from ‘kicking the pricks.’