A must-hear for men. In this sermon, we expound on Genesis 3:16 where God says to Eve, “…Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.”

I encourage you to listen to the sermon in addition to reading this article.

This article is a follow up to “Why Do Men Cheat: A Biblical Perspective.” In that sernon, I mentioned that the curse of Eve was the reason women desired exclusivity from their husbands and boyfriends.

The curse of Eve is a result of Eve eating the forbidden fruit in the garden of Eden. Genesis 2:16-17; 3:1-20 gives us the account of what happened.

The key verse is Genesis 3:16 (KJV):

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 (Genesis 3:16).

At first read, the word “desire” doesn’t mean much, but the same word is used in 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 desire, and thou shalt rule over him (Genesis 4:7).

We can conclude that desire means something more in these passages. The New Living Translation Bible renders the verse more clearly:

…And you will desire to control your husband, but he will rule over you (Genesis 3:16 NLT).

We can safely conclude what God meant when he said to Eve, “and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.” Here are few things that would result from Eve’s sin:

  • Women will desire to rule, possess, control, dominiate, and even be men.
  • A war between men and women will always arise if men don’t remain dominate.
  • Men will always regain rulership over women even if they temporarily lose to women in a war.

It’s a common fact that all women who give birth experience great pain (the first part of the curse). Therefore, it stands to reason that a woman’s desire to dominate her husband would apply to all women and not just Eve.

Note: This desire to control men is the result of Eve eating the forbidden fruit—God didn’t make women this way as a punishment. The fruit corrupted Eve and thus her children.

There’s much evidence of the curse in effect today:

  • America and much of the Anglosphere are gynocentric societies.
  • Women have become masculine and men feminine.
  • Men follow and worship women.
  • Men put the needs and desires of women before their own.
  • Men and women are considered equals.
  • Women are considered superior and more virtuous than men.
  • Husbands and wives partner in marriage instead of the biblical hierarchy (1 Corinthians 11:3).
  • Many women dominate their men in relationships.
  • Women are more likely portrayed as victims while men as villians in relationship conflict.

…But “he will rule over you.”

What does it mean to rule?

I’m glad that despite the curse of Eve the order between the genders will always be reestablished. The King James dictionary defines “rule” as the following:

RULE, n. L. regula, from rego, to govern, that is, to stretch, strain or make straight.

  1. Government; sway; empire; control; supreme command or authority.
  2. That which is established as a principle, standard or directory; that by which any thing is to be adjusted or regulated, or to which it is to be conformed; that which is settled by authority or custom for guidance and direction.
  3. To govern; to control the will and actions of others, either by arbitrary power and authority, or by established laws.

In thinking about this definition in relation to a wife or women in general, a female must be “made straight” because of her corrupted nature. She must be molded to fit the husband and carry out the stewardship of his affairs.

Therefore, virtuous and prudent women are not born, they are made. Godly women are crafted four ways:

  1. godly parenting
  2. godly patriarchal husbands
  3. older godly wives as mentors
  4. determination through the Spirit of God

What does dominate mean?

Domination is closely related to ruling as well. The definition of dominate is as follows: Power to direct, control, use and dispose of at pleasure; right of possession and use without being accountable.

Note: In the above definition, men would be accountable to other men and especially God. And men can’t just “dispose” of their wives.

This definition settles the differences between men and women:

  1. Men and women are not equal.
  2. Men are superior and women are inferior.
  3. Women are property to be molded for use to their husbands
  4. If that sounds “male chauvinistic” that’s because it is, but the Bible supports it.

Finally: A man’s duty, if he wants to please God, is to rule his wife. And in society, if at all possible, a man should take the lead in all areas and avoid submitting to and following women. In this sermon, I discuss how husbands are to rule their wives.


Update: Due to the negative responses to this article/sermon, I did a sermon on abuse and patriarchy. See below:

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4 Comments

  1. Hey Neal…. Please clarify…….By rule, I hope you mean, “rule like Christ” with servant leadership…..In this love and leadership there is no room for the husband putting himself before his wife. Indeed men should be putting the needs and desires of their wives before their own, even to the point of dying for her. This is precisely how Christ loves the church. (Ephesians 5:25)

    And husbands should not be harsh with their wives or their prayers will be hindered.

    This way of loving like Christ comes from learning from the example of other selfless, Christlike men and following the example of Christ Himself.

    So…..is this what you mean by rule?

    1. Hi Jewelia,
      This sermon/article’s focus wasn’t on how men should rule over their wives, but that they must because their wives will likely rule over them.

      I have a detailed sermon on how spouses should treat each other and what godly ruling and godly submission look like coming soon. But Yes, husbands are to rule like Christ.

      Christ can be strict and unpleasant with us when he disciplines us. Or, he will often put us through hardships that are unpleasant, rough, and jarring to build our character, break down our pride, and strengthen us for the better. Likewise, husbands may be the same in their dealings with their wives as they do with their children and there is no sin in that. God is not all soft and pleasant especially when molding our souls to fit his kingdom for eternity.

      You mentioned that if husbands are harsh with their wives, their prayers will be hindered, but that is not so. The scripture says “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers” (1 Peter 3:7 NIV).

      I also agree with Colossians 3:19 as states, “Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.”

      Husbands ought to respect their wives and Christ died for the church, true.

      You said, “Indeed men should be putting the needs and desires of their wives before their own.” That’s absolutely wrong. No man of God should ever think like.

      Does Christ put the needs and desires of his people before his own? NO. Therefore, no husband should either. Christ is a boss. A king. A ruler. His desires and will come first and so does the husband’s in relation to the wife. The righteous husband will determine what the wife needs and provide it.

      Once again, God said, “thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee” (Genesis 3:16).

    1. Thanks Tony. Men must regain righteous rulership over their wives, families, and communities; this pleases God.