This is the most provocative and helpful book on marriage that I have read. It is always a joy reading Doug Wilson because of his sheer excellence as a writer, which is coupled with his willingness to write things few others would. He manages to do it in a way that challenges you, while amusing you all at the same time.
Chances are you won’t agree with everything (or perhaps a lot of things) in here. But if you don’t, you’ll be forced to consider why your perspective is more truthful, or more Biblical. He swings a hammer at most of the sacred cows of our age, and with each blow the iron seems to land square on the forehead.
If you’re married, hoping to get married, or intrigued as to what a Christian view of marriage looks like, read this book. But it is particularly men who must read this book. The tidal waves of cultural change have wreaked havoc with the family, and with godly masculinity, and it is now rare (in Britain at least) to find families that embody the scriptural values. Men don’t know how to lead, and they certainly don’t know how to teach their family. It is on these themes that Wilson really hits hard, and hits below the belt.
The challenges cut both ways, and women are addressed as relevantly as men. For example, on submission in marriage he writes:
“To say a husband should be the leader of his wife is not to say that any and every man is capable of being a spiritual leader, provider, comforter, and protector to any and every woman. Some might argue that the Christian doctrine of submission requires the belief that any man can lead any woman. This is more than false; it is ridiculous.
Women are not created to respond and submit to just anybody. A godly woman is therefore going to limit her range of options.”
Still, it is men who will gain most from reading Wilson. For example, hear him on the call of fathers to teach their family the Bible:
“As the expectations for men in the evangelical world have gotten lower, men have not objected–they have breathed a sigh of relief.
But a man who speaks for his house, as Joshua did, must be a man who teaches his house, and he must be a man who refuses to submit his family to the foolishness of unbelief–whether the unbelief is dressed up in liberal or pop-evangelical clothes makes little difference…
So the first thing necessary is that a husband must establish his home as a confessional home. This means he must know what he believes, and he must communicate and teach this confession of faith to his family.”
Read, repent, and see God revive family life along Biblical lines.