Summary: Missing ingredient that holds marriages together is intimacy

18Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper as his partner.” 19So out of the ground the LORD God formed every animal of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. 20The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper as his partner. 21So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then he took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. 22And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. 23Then the man said, “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; this one shall be called Woman, for out of Man this one was taken.” 24Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and clings to his wife, and they become one flesh. 25And the man and his wife were both naked, and were not ashamed. Genesis 2:18 - 25 (NRSVA)

A man went to see his doctor in an acute state of anxiety. Doc, he began, you gotta help me. I’m dying! Everywhere I touch it hurts. I touch my head, it hurts; I touch my leg, it hurts; I touch my stomach it hurts; it all hurts. You gotta help me, Doc; I’m dying!

After a complete examination the doctor said, Harry, I have good news and bad news. The good news is, you’re NOT dying. But, Doc, everywhere I touch…. Relax, Harry, you’re not dying, you have a broken finger.

In our world today marriage has been pronounced Dead on Arrival by a society with a broken finger. Marriage is not really the problem. The problem with marriages is what happens within poor marriages -- and the pain that results from the failure of so many marriages within our society. It is the broken-finger syndrome pressed against the backdrop of God’s good creation, marriage, the family and home.

Yet it is hard to argue with the facts – marriages fall apart in our culture more than they hold together. What is wrong with marriages in America?

More than twenty years ago, Josh McDowell, the popular preacher and minister to America’s youth, identified a major problem that attacks and ruins many peoples’ chance of ever having a happy marriage:

Another reason for where our young people are today is the lack of intimacy. A little over a year ago I debated the co-founder of Playboy on television for three hours. He agreed with me on this point. My statement was this -- we have not been through a sexual revolution. We have not. What we have been through in the last fifteen years has been a revolution in the search for intimacy. Most of our young people do not want the physical aspect of sex, they want someone who cares. They want to be able to care. They want intimacy. We have allowed our culture to dictate to us that the only way you find intimacy is through the physical -- and that’s an absolute lie!

One woman called me at a university. She said, ’Mr. McDowell, in the last five nights I’ve gone to bed with five different men. I got out of bed tonight and looked back and said to myself, ’Is that all there is to it?’ and she started crying. She said, ’Please sir, tell me there’s something more!’ I said, ’Yes, it’s called intimacy. It’s what the Bible calls ’the two shall become one.’" [1]

A very famous singer was asked why she hadn’t gotten married earlier, and she shared how when she was ten years old, her parents went through a devastating divorce. She said, "You know, it’s hard to believe a relationship can last when you’ve never seen one." [2]

What Josh McDowell has been telling us for years is the same thing our text says -- marriage is God’s way. Notice, please,

God knows our need for Relationship (intimacy)

God Knows Us

18Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone;” Genesis 2.18a

When God expressed that it is not good to be alone, He used a word that gives the picture of a branch separated from the tree, or a body part, missing from the body. We could paraphrase this; it’s not a good thing for the man to be alone, like a severed arm from its body.

God created us. He knows that He placed within our souls the need and desire to have relationships. We are made in His image, and the best description of the kind of intimacy God wants is the permanence and security of a marriage.

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