Summary: Christian marriage involves leaving, cleaving, and becoming one flesh
INTRO.: Story of first marriage. Gen. 2:18-24 Marriage and family were God’s ideas. We need to reemphasize the Bible’s teaching about family, family life.
Our society demonstrates less and less respect for family life.
Divorce grows at a frightening pace. One of twp marriages ends in divorce.
Partly attributable to widespread moral depravity, but perhaps the Church has not always faithfully held up the ideal of the Christian family. Often even Christians are not well enough informed about what it takes to make a home happy and secure.
Let us talk about the ingredients of a happy marriage:
A. Jesus doesn’t mean abandonment:
1. Our duty to care for parents: I Tim. 5:4
2. One of ten commandments. Always duty of God’s people.
3. Jesus rebuke of Jews: Matt. 15:1-9
B. Be independent of parents:
1. Emotional support, affection now comes from spouse.
2. Likewise physical., financial needs.
3. Security comes from the new relationship.
C. Parental understanding is needed:
1. Not easy to give up children.
2. Must raise children to be independent if they are to be happy.
3. Unhealthy for parents to cling to children.
4. Marriage means investment of one’s entire life in a mate.
II. Cleaving: (The King James word is easier to remember.)
A. What is meaning of "be united?"
1. Both Heb. And Gr. Words mean to be glued or cemented. "Bonding."
2. Closer to each other than to anyone else. Exclusive relationship.
3. Should not even cling to children or job over married partner.
B. Refers to physical union as well:
1. Sharing of one total person with another.
2. Sexual act: companionship, communication, commitment, completion.
3. Must be reserved exclusively for one person.
4. If not, it is less than it should be.
C. Includes unity of purpose, goal: One can see this from Scriptures on "cleaving to God."
1. Josh. 23:7, 8 - rejecting all others.
2. Deut. 30:20 - accompanies loving, listening
3. Josh. 22:5 - sharing goals, accomplishments. "Walking in His ways."
III. Becoming one flesh:
A. Not giving up individuality:
1. Sharing a common purpose in life.
2. Cooperate in working together:
3. Not competing, functioning as a unit.
B. Like the unity of the Godhead:
1. God is three persons, yet perfect unity.
2. Jesus one with the Father: Jn. 10:30, 14:9
3. Jesus submitted to the Father, did works of Father, received honor from Father.
C. Implications of being "one flesh:"
1. In absence of mate act as if in presence.
2. Harmonious purpose for living. Common standard for making decisions.
3. Can only be realized as far as both partners give self up to Christ.
CONCLUSION: These three points are like the three legs of a stool. The stool can exist with less than all of them, but will not be stable or solid. A successful Christian marriage depends on these three legs working together.
If these three legs become wobbly, they must be strengthened by application of God’s Word, prayer. God must be the center of our home life. A home where Christians live may not be a Christian home. A Christian home is one where Christ rules.