«Husbands, love your wives just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her (Ephesians 5:25).
Benjamin Warfield (1851-1921) is well-known in the theological field for his literary legacy on the authority of the Bible and Calvinism. For thirty-four years, he was a theology professor at the Theological Seminary of Princeton University (New Jersey, USA). What many people don’t know about him is his devoted love for his wife. Young Benjamin Was field and Annie Kinghead got married in 1876. Weeks later, they moved to Germany where Benjamin began his studies at the Leipzig University. They had not yet reached their first wedding anniversary when Annie got struck by lightning during a terrible storm. This accident basically left her functionally disabled until her death in 1915.
During almost forty years of marriage, Benjamin Warfield was so involved in Annie’s care that his biographers affirm that he never left the house for more than two hours. Warfield frequently read books to his wife and gave her all the care she needed. They did not have any children. Someone close once suggested to him:
«Maybe it would be better if you took Annie to an institution where she could receive the necessary care. You could spend more time on your writing and teaching and be able to work harder and better.»
To which Warfield answered,
«Taking care of my wife is my job. I will never leave her side; I’ll love her and care for her for all the years that God gives us to live.
And that is what he did until Annie’s death in 1915, after thirty-nine years of love and dedication.
Today’s verse exhorts husbands to love their wives just as Christ loved His church and gave Himself for her. Warfield’s example is inspiring and can motivate us to live self-sacrificing life by serving a loved one. It can also give us a clear idea of Christ’s love for His sons and daughters. Even though we are sickly, disobedient or stubborn, Christ does not leave us, not even for a moment. He is always ready to support and bless us
If you are married, reflect today on Christ’s perfect love and try, by His grace, to transmit this love to your spouse. And if you are not married, you can show Christ’s love to others, even in a heroic manner, as the for a apostle John wrote, «Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life friends» (John 15:13).