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A wife's on-going love

A look at Proverbs 5 v18-19

May you rejoice in the wife of your youth. May you ever be captivated by her love. Proverbs 5 v 18 & 19

Not quite so young as "youth"

I know not everyone married their husband when young. Today, in the UK, marriage is unpopular altogether but those who do marry are far more likely to be in their late twenties or even their thirties. This verse still has something for us though. What we are looking at is a hope—a prayer—that marriage will be long and remain satisfying.

These verses were written to a husband but the wife is not without her part to play. If the hope of the prayer is to be fulfilled the wife is to love. This is implied in the phraseology but we will come to that in a moment.

Years and years

These words are a wonderful image of love built on years of relationship. The Hebrew word translated here as ‘rejoice’ is also translated in the Bible in other places as gladness, delight, happiness. How much does this reflect your heart response to the love in your marriage? Is rejoicing over each other still part of your lives together? Or is there a little (or more) of taking each other for granted?




The world tells us that love settles down over the years and becomes everyday and boring...But that is not what God says. 




The verses are not telling us to keep things the way they were when we were young.




Listen for the voice of God.


The image goes on in the next verse; the husband should be ‘captivated’ by his wife’s love. This original word is also variously translated as stagger or straying. What? Think about it. It is an image of intoxication. A love that is literally overwhelming, taking hold and leading off. Wow. That is some love to still have years down the line.

The world tells us that love settles down over the years and becomes everyday and boring. The world says that you need a new relationship if you want that zing in your heart again. But that is not what God says as this passage in the Bible spells out for us.

So what is a wife’s part in this? Should we remain just as we were when we were young, youthful in looks and figure? No, this is not what it says.

As an aside, yes we should look after our bodies but we should gracefully accept what the years of godliness bring. If you are getting frown lines, stop frowning! But if you are getting smile lines round your eyes welcome them—they are the evidence of many years of godly joyfulness. Did you know grey hair is a crown of splendour (See Proverbs 16 v31 and Proverbs 20 v29)? Do you not want to be splendid, mature, live a long life and full of wisdom? Don’t hide from them they are attractive features of yourself which are a gift to you and your husband. Your body is to be a living sacrifice to God (Romans 12 v1) not a victim of the world’s ways.

Back to the passage. No, the verses are not telling us to keep things the way they were when we were young. What they do tell us is that love should be continually shown in even a long marriage. That takes effort—dare I say work—on our part.


There are several Hebrew words which are translated as love in English. The one here is not so often used in Scripture but is appropriate where the sense of longevity, persistence and loving-commitment are intended. It is the on-going commitment of the wife to her husband over the years which is to capture her husband.

So what commitment, what work, is required to maintain this love?

Look again at the passage on love in 1 Corinthians 13(copied out below). It is not just talking about love in marriage by any means but it is often read at weddings and is a good place to start.

Have you fallen down in any of these areas lately? Pray through each phrase (Don’t listen to the accusing voice of Satan or, perhaps for some, a critical husband or mother-in-law) listen for the voice of God. Is it time for you to make a new marriage commitment in some of these areas?

Is the love there, worked on by you, for your husband to find captivating?

1 Corinthians 13 v4-8a NIV

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails.

(place holder)

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This article © Linda Faber 2006-2009.