In the text of Ephesians 5:22-33 Christ’s relationship to the church is presented as a model for the relationship between husband and wife.
23 For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head
of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body.
The love of a husband for his wife should mirror Christ’s love for the church (v 28).
25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and
gave Himself up for her.
Christ’s love is not presented as an example of sacrificial love as much as love for one’s own self. However, that self does not refer to an individual but to a union. In marriage the self is a union in which two are joined together and become as one.
28 So husbands also ought to love their own wives as their own bodies.
He who loves his own wife loves himself; 29 for no one ever hated his
own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does
the church, 30 because we are parts of His body.
31 For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother and be
joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. (cf Mt 19:5,
Distinct from other kinds of love, marital love is a commitment to the life of union. Though it may not require the literal sacrificing of one’s life, inherent to this union is the relinquishing of the individual notion of self. If you will, it requires a dying to the self. The effect of the comparison to Christ’s love for the church is to elevate the marriage union and call it to a higher purpose, that of the sanctification of one's spouse (vv 25-27), the highest goal of love being the greatest good for the other.