Reader “NI” asks:
What are your thoughts on a Christian wife wearing a discrete collar as a symbol and reminder of her submission to Christ and her husband? It is borrowing from the BDSM lifestyle, but we do already enjoy incorporating some of that kind of play in our intimacy.
Here are a few examples of collar/choker style necklaces. Basically they’re short chains or bands that fit snugly and lay high on the neck.
The short answer to IN’s question is yes, it’s perfectly fine for a Christian to wear a collar or choker necklace. Collars are not inherently immodest or ostentatious, which are the primary Biblical requirements for Christian dress (1 Timothy 2:9).
Digging beneath the surface, let’s also consider NI’s motivation: “as a symbol and reminder of her submission to Christ and her husband”. This idea of a wife wearing a visible symbol of submission to her husband comes from 1 Corinthians 11 — I will excerpt a few verses here; read the whole thing if you’re interested.
3 But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God. […] 8 For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. 9 Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man. 10 That is why a wife ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels [or messengers]. 11 Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man nor man of woman; 12 for as woman was made from man, so man is now born of woman. And all things are from God.
The passage specifically discusses the symbolism of wives covering their heads with a hat or cloth, but head coverings were a culturally-grounded symbol of submission that may be less relevant in our current culture. The essence of the passage is the instruction for wives to wear a visible symbol of submission; the exact nature of that symbol likely depends on the culture. Some Christians argue that this entire passage is irrelevant to the church today. Some Christians believe that their wedding ring (or engagement ring) fulfills the intent of this passage. (We don’t have a strong opinion on this topic — seek God’s glory and the wisdom of the Holy Spirit.)
(We have even less of an opinion on what “because of the angels” means in verse 10. The word translated “angels” can refer to human messengers or observers, but that doesn’t do a lot to clarify the sentence.)
So then, back to NI’s question: “What are your thoughts on a Christian wife wearing a discrete collar as a symbol and reminder of her submission to Christ and her husband?”
As a husband, my thought is that collars and chokers are very sexy. I’ve discussed this with Sexy Corte and she thinks they look slutty. As NI recognized in her email, collars are somewhat culturally linked not only with submission broadly, but also specifically with submissive sexuality. For some wives, wearing a public symbol of your sexual submission to your husband may feel uncomfortable or unappealing, but that’s mostly a matter of personal preference not permissability.
If collars or chokers aren’t your thing, here are a few similar ideas:
- Rings engraved with secret messages
- Secret message panties
- Some wives also wear butt plugs, which we haven’t posted about
Husbands and wives, what do you think? Do any of you wear symbols of submission or anything similar?