Summary: Today, all across the world, biblical marriage is in the state of being abolished and decimated...
Today, all across the world, biblical marriage is in the state of being abolished and decimated. Historically, marriage was considered the union between a man and a woman for life and the violation of the marital vow was considered by many cultures as a serious crime. Many cultures considered adultery as a very serious crime and incurred a severe penalty or punishment.
But many countries, especially those in the West, have changed their perspective on marriage and infidelity and although adultery may still have legal consequences, particularly in divorce cases, there is no punishment and social shame associated with it.
As of 2012, adultery was still illegal in 23 states although it is rarely enforced and fornication is still a crime in a couple dozen states and even more when it comes to having sex with a minor but there are those who are seeking to strike down those laws.
And most of us know of the Supreme Court’s ruling on June 26 or 2015 that orders States to allow same-sex marriage.
Yet people continue to want to get married so what is the church supposed to do? Marry people according to the dictates of the people and of the courts and of the States? Last time when we looked at worship we learned that God requires that we worship Him on His terms and it is the same way when it comes to marriage. We need to know that marriage is not a civil institution created by man; marriage is something that God created and ordained…He is the Architect and Designer who wrote the blueprints for marriage.
The Bible says in Genesis chapter two:
Gen 2:21 And Yahweh God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof:
Gen 2:22 and the rib, which Yahweh God had taken from the man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.
Gen 2:23 And the man said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.
In verse 24 we find God conducting the first marriage ceremony:
Gen 2:24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
Just in case you think that this was something that was restricted to those under the Old Covenant, Jesus reaffirms this idea of marriage in Matthew 19:5-6 and tightens it up a bit (He is God and can do things like that):
And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
And dare we think that this was just a Jewish thing, Paul writes to the Gentile church in Ephesians chapter five and affirms the truth that Jesus taught:
“For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.” (vs 31)
But then Paul, under the inspiration and direction of God the Holy Spirit, adds to this idea in verse 32: “This mystery is great: but I speak in regard of Christ and of the church.”
Paul uses the word “mystery”. If you are familiar with Paul’s use of this word in his epistles you would know that he is using the Greek word musterion, (moos-tay'-ree-on) which is referring to a truth or a “sacred secret” that was hidden in times past but now made known through revelation to the church. It is truth, that has now been manifested to God’s saints, was hidden from the past ages and generations, namely the Old Testament era and people.
The truth concerning the church was hidden in the Old Testament. What was it about marriage that was hidden in the Old Testament? The truth that was hidden was that marriage was a picture of Christ and His bride the church. This mystery was revealed in the words of Paul to the wife and husband in Ephesians chapter five:
Eph 5:21 submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Eph 5:22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.
Eph 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior.
Eph 5:24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her,
Eph 5:26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,