Proverbs 31:10 - More Precious Than Jewels

“An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels.”
~Proverbs 31:10 

An excellent wife is very hard to find. Her rare, inner beauty is so exquisite, that she alone (on earth) can have the greatest influence on her husband. The gentle and quiet spirit of an excellent wife also captures the attention of the Lord God Almighty who not only qualified her submissiveness as her greatest strength, but created it to be precious in His sight (1 Peter 3:1-6).

The dictionary definition of excellence is "to possess outstanding quality, superior, surpassing others with good qualities". But what is God's standard of excellence? We find it in 1 Corinthians 12:31(b): "And I will show you a still more excellent way." This verse proceeds the most noted, quoted and often used in wedding ceremonies—1 Corinthians 13, also known as the "Love Chapter". 1 Corinthians 13 goes into much detail of God's agape love, which through Christ, we find is first and foremost: submissive to the will of the Father with great love and humility (Philippians 2:5-8). No wonder God finds this rare quality in a wife so precious in His sight. She (a biblically submissive wife) is the best model of Christ's love and submission to God the Father (1 Corinthians 11:3) and the earthly paradigm of Christ's love for and relationship with, His Bride—the Church.

"Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives submit in everything to their husbands."
~Ephesians 5:22-24

Just imagine sisters, this great gift God has set before us! Our gracious Lord and God has given us the privilege to exemplify the most beautiful and powerful expression of love ever known to mankind...Jesus Christ! What is your response to God’s inexplicable Gift (2 Cor 5:21, 2 Cor 9:15)?

As it is written, Jesus was equal with God (He was perfect, pure and without sin), but did not consider equality with God something to be grasped (Philippians 2:5) or used the aspects of His deity to work His will (as a man), but submitted to the will of the Father in all things. As daughters of God, and co-heirs with Christ, we have the same opportunity set before us. We are "equal" with our husbands in that, we have the same value in God's eyes and we are equal sinners.

Remember, it was a woman (Madalyn Murray O'Hair) who demanded Bible reading and prayer in schools to become illegal. Remember it was a woman (in Roe v. Wade) who was the catalyst to legalizing the murder of hundreds of thousands of unborn babies.

It is a well known fact that the only thing that can take down a spiritually and physically strong man, is an unbiblically submissive wife. Don't believe me? Ask Samson.

Choose each day which song your heart will sing. Will you sing the words that Helen Reddy wrote calling God, "she" to demonstrate her power and her liberty from being under a man's authority in the 1970's when she sang:
"I am woman, hear me roar...
I am woman
I am invincible
I am strong
I am woman!"

Or will you embrace the God-given inner beauty and strength of a gentle, quiet and submissive wife who fears the LORD?
"I am woman, watch me hide....
In Christ alone,
To change the tides
Of this world,
I will stride;
With Christ my Savior,
As my Guide!"

Did you know that the Hebrew word used for "excellent" in Proverbs 31:10 is חַיִל? "khah'-yil"? Khah'-yil means: strength, might, efficiency, a force (like an army). Interesting isn't it? The first thing that's mentioned about the Proverbs 31 woman, is that she is strong, she is efficient, she is a force. Unfortunately, in today's society and even in evangelical churches, the term "submissive wife" is often thought of as enslavement, entrapment or viewed as something vulgar. It is often described as an archaic perception of women and threatens the very "rights for freedom" women have so diligently fought for since the 1960's. But none of these views are accurate of the biblically submissive wife. As you can see by definition, an excellent wife is no man's pawn, no man's doormat, is not mousy, nor is she an idiot unfit to do anything but be "barefoot and pregnant". No, a biblically submissive wife is exactly what God intended her to be: strong, mighty, efficient, and a force to be reckoned with— against Satan, not against her husband.

Any woman who acknowledges the truth of a biblically submissive woman would never shrink back or think twice about attaining such a great honor. Instead she would readily recognize the power God has already given her, rather than listening to Satan's empty lies, like he offered Eve— to give her what she already possessed, great intellect (because she was intimate with God), and great influence over her husband (that's why Adam also ate). Eve didn't have influence over Adam after the Fall, she already had it...that's what caused the Fall (1 Tim 2:14).

Rather than follow Eve’s example, as daughters of God, let us learn from her transgression (1 Cor 10:6, 11-13).

"The woman described here is of priceless value. She has physical strength, mental strength, moral strength and spiritual strength. Above all she loves God deeply and reverently. She is characterized in this section six ways, and I'll point them out to you as we just look together at the Scripture...six ways. Her character as a wife, her devotion as a homemaker, her generosity as a neighbor, her influence as a teacher, her effectiveness as a mother and her excellence as a person...the sum of all of that makes the excellent wife. And I might add that this is no woman in particular but this is the woman that every woman should seek to emulate. She is rare, look at verse 10, an excellent the way, the word excellent in Hebrew means force, a woman of force, a woman of substance, a woman of strength would be another way to characterize her. It's excellent in the sense of her strength spiritually, morally, mentally, physically. She is a woman of substances. She is a woman who has made a dent in society. She is one who makes a difference. There's a force about her life. This kind of wife, he says, who can find? Very rare. Hard to find this kind of woman."
~ John MacArthur :: Grace to You

Oh dearly beloved sisters, daughters of the one and only God Most High, heed the Word of our Lord and do not be deceived by our enemy, the devil, who entices you to wield your strength, your might, your efficiency and force that our Father God has graciously bestowed upon you to strike your own head, that is, your husband. But let us instead armor ourselves with the armor of God and wield our influence over our husbands for the glory of God through biblical submission and strike Satan, our true adversary, on the head. Your intellect and great knowledge was not given to you so you could lord it over your husbands, but God granted these to you so you could wisely fight against your emotional and irrational flesh, and the Deceiver.

May the words of our mouths and the meditations of our hearts be pleasing to You, our gracious Lord God, our Rock and our Redeemer. And may we, as Your daughters who call You Father through our Savior Jesus the Christ only speak words that are a benefit to our husbands according to their needs, not what we think they need. Help us to restore and maintain oneness with our husbands. In the glorious name of Jesus Christ we ask and thank you for these things.  Amen.

"Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear."
~ Ephesians 4:29

Biblical Perspective, Practically Applied:
Based on your memorization of Psalm 139:23 - 24 and Psalm 19:14, make a two column list:

  • Column 1 - Any sins God brings to mind that you must crucify;
  • Column 2- Scripture verses to help you when tempted with each sin you listed.

Once you've completed the list, you should:

  1. Only work on one sin pattern at a time or you'll be overwhelmed with sorrow;
  2. Find all the Scripture verses that note and/or shows examples of Christ's submission to God;
  3. Thank God for revealing these sins to you, repent to God and to your husband, children and others for sins you’ve committed against them;
  4. Tell your husband you're taking this study and that you need his prayer and support to press on as you learn to become the holy woman of God He created you to be;
  5. Ask your husband to help keep you accountable;
  6. From your two column list of sins to crucify, take the first sin pattern you intend to crucify this week and write down an action item or items you will intentionally pursue to achieve (e.g., not nagging; speaking more kindly to and being more supportive of your husband; not speaking harshly or critically of your husband either privately or publicly [which includes in the presence of your children]); make him lunch with love notes (not lessons) that express how much you love him and appreciate how hard he works for the family and/or anything positive you can honestly say about him. Words of flattery defeat the purpose of honest, God-pleasing compliments (Rom 12:9). If you can’t think of anything to genuinely commend him on, at the very least, you can commend him for and appreciate the stellar job he does breathing.
"And the world is passing away along with its desires,
but whoever does the will of God abides forever."
~1 John 2:17, ESV