Dignity and courtesy

The Patna High Court has observed that the use of “filthy language” by an estranged couple, who call each other names like “bhoot” (ghost) and “pishach” (vampire), does not tantamount to “cruelty”. (India Today 30 March 2024) How have the values regarding family, and husband-wife relationships been undermined?

Helpmeet and companion:
The creation account gives details about the creation of Eve. While Adam slept, God removed a rib from his side and created Eve. (Genesis 2:22-24) Matthew Henry wrote: “Eve was not taken out of Adam’s head to top him, neither out of his feet to be trampled on by him, but out of his side to be equal with him, under his arm to be protected by him, and near his heart to be loved by him.” When a wife is treated like a slave or servant, there would be broken relationships. In some cultures, the husband is god and the wife is just a worshipper, who should appease her husband, even if he is abusive. In other cultures, the wife is just a property and could be treated as such.

Words of contempt
The Lord Jesus Christ taught us to be discreet, courteous, and wise in words. A person who calls his brother a fool or raca, will be judged. Calling someone a fool is showing contempt regarding their character. In the same way, calling someone raca (brainless idiot) is showing contempt for the intellect of the person. (Matthew 5: 22-24) If showing contempt to a sibling is condemned, more so, when the spouse is treated with contempt. The husband-wife relationship is a sacred, covenant relationship that they become one. (Genesis 2:24)

Dignity and respect
Paul writes to husbands commanding them to love their wives. Love responds to love. Contempt could breed contempt. (Ephesians 5:25-29) And wives are supposed to obey, based on that love. Paul qualifies the love as The Lord loved the Church – the Bride. It means sacrificing, self-giving, and unconditional love. Not law demands, but love commands would be respected.

What are my attitude, words, and deeds towards my spouse?