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Summary: In our homes, believers must deal with the sin nature. Being in control of the Spirit rather than the flesh is the difference between Beauty & Beast.

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¡§Happily Ever After¡K¡¨ ¡V Part One ¡V 2002 Family Sermon Series

¡§BEAUTY AND THE BEAST¡¨ OUR SEARCH FOR THE PERFECT MATE

Ephesians 4:17-32

Introduction:

Brief background of Fairytale ¡§Beauty and the Beast¡¨ followed by ¡§what they both discovered about themselves was the potential to have both beauty and beast in the same person and the key was found in how to control the Beast so that the Prince could emerge.

I read some time ago that a panel of women debated on who they thought was the perfect man. You¡¦d have thought it might be famous actor or wealthy business leader. But the final conclusion of this panel was that the Perfect Man was actually....MR. POTATO HEAD.

Their reasoning: He¡¦s tan. He¡¦s cute. He knows the importance of accessorizing. And if he looks at another woman, you can rearrange his face.

This week, we begin our family series talking about something even more important than FINDING the right mate. What could be more important than finding the right person? BEING the right person. In fact, as far as God is concerned, it¡¦s more important that YOU be the ¡§perfect mate¡¨ than for you to find the perfect mate.

In the book of Proverbs, we find Solomon counseling his son on life. He talks to his son about the importance of trusting God, listening to his parents, & respecting others. Solomon advises his son on finances, honesty, hard work and moral purity. Mostly it¡¦s a book of do¡¦s and don¡¦ts. In other words, if you want to be wise: Do these good things and don¡¦t do those bad things.

BUT right in the middle of this listing of what his son should do to be wise; we find these curious comments, comments that lead us to believe the possibility of the beast theory:

Proverbs 21:19: ¡§Better to live in a desert than with a quarrelsome and ill-tempered wife.¡¨

Proverbs 25:24: ¡§Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.¡¨

Proverbs 15:17: ¡§Better a meal of vegetables where there is love than a fattened calf with hatred.¡¨

Proverbs 17:1: ¡§Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting, with strife.¡¨

Now, why would Solomon tell his son these things? Was it like some ancient joke, between men, about crabby wives?

Joke: ¡§Living outdoors ever since!¡¨

Like the man who had just celebrated his golden wedding anniversary. A reporter who was present asked him this question: ¡§To what do you attribute your longevity and apparent good health?¡¨ ¡§Well,¡¨ said the old man, ¡§when my wife and I were first married, we made a pact. We decided that if we ever became involved in an argument, I would leave the house and go for a walk to give us both an opportunity to cool off.¡¨

The man sighed and then said, ¡§And I guess it worked cause I¡¦ve been living an outdoors ever since.¡¨

I don¡¦t think Solomon was attempting humor with his son. Everything else Solomon said in Proverbs dealt with how his son could become wise. He¡¦s not about to stop in the middle of Proverbs and tell his son how to be really dumb. My guess is that Solomon is telling his son that if he¡¦s not a good husband, if he doesn¡¦t live in obedience to God¡¦s word regarding his family and his life, if he mistreats his wife, he¡¦s going to end up creating a home that is not going to pleasant for anyone.

How do we know that to be true? Because, in the same book of Proverbs Solomon tells his son: ¡§When a man¡¦s ways are pleasing to the LORD, he makes even his enemies live at peace with him.¡¨ Proverbs 16:7

Translation for husbands and wives: If your ways are pleasing to God, even if you are married to a Beast, your spouse can be made to be at peace with you. Isn¡¦t that what it says? If God can create peace between our enemies He can surely create peace between husband and wife.

The world teaches us that ¡§the key to a good marriage is FINDING the right person!¡¨ God¡¥s Word teaches us ¡§the key to a good marriage is BEING the right person!¡¨ And the key to being the ¡§right person¡¨ is making certain that your ways ¡§please the LORD.¡¨

That¡¦s why this passage from Ephesians 4:17-32 is such a great instruction manual for Christian couples. If you follow Paul¡¦s teaching in Ephesians and in obedience apply the biblical truth you will make your ways pleasing to the Lord.

Let¡¦s examine the text together and discover how you can Create the Beast in your marriage, how to Control the Beast in your marriage and how to Conquer the Beast in your marriage.

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