Summary: GOd has given us a divine template for understanding marriage - salvation - which works to guide us into great marraiges when followed.
THE TRUE DEFINITION OF MARRIAGE
TEXT: Genesis 2: 15-25
Before I begin this morning, I want to show you this cool toy my wife bought for me. It is a new digital video camera. It will do amazing things. I can make movies and download them directly to my computer. I don’t know how to do it but she told me it will. I can make a movie of my kids and email right to their grandparents –I don’t know how to do it but she told me it will.
I can even hook it up to my computer and use it as a camera and talk to my parents through it - I don’t know how to do it but she told me it will.
Marriage is like that for many folks. They hear and believe that there is great stuff in it, but they do not know how to get that from their marriage.
God Himself designed marriage and designed it to be wonderful. In fact, it is a living illustration of the most wonderful thing in the world – salvation. But it must follow His design in order to work correctly and be all God designed.
That’s why God gave us His instruction manual – the bible – and His template for marriage – the picture of salvation. It is there to help us get all of the blessings God has prepared for you in your marriage.
Here is our outline for today. It is simple and yet unlocks for us the key to marriage. We will see these truths:
I. Picture of Salvation
II. Problems are from sin
III. Practical solutions
I. The Bible says Marriage is a picture of salvation
God actually designed marriage in a particular fashion. It has a specific plan and purpose and as such must be functioned in that way. If you are having trouble, or simply aren’t getting from marriage all that is there then the problem stems first from not following God’s pattern. It is like trying to use the video camera without reading the instruction manual.
Let me give you a definition:
One man and one woman totally committed, through Jesus Christ, to live out a picture of their salvation relationship through their marriage to each other.
Let me say this clearly so there is no misunderstanding: Outside of this definition, marriage will NOT work. Marriage is God’s! It must follow His design. It isn’t an accident that the Bible has a wedding as the beginning of recorded human history and a wedding – the Marriage Supper of the Lamb – as the beginning of eternity for those who know Jesus. God designed it this way and connected the dots for us in scripture.
God conceived marriage, He created marriage, and He consummated marriage. Remember what Jesus said in Matthew 19 when He quoted the Old Testament in Genesis:“ What God has put together, no man can put apart.”
A. Marriage parallels our relationship with God.
This passage clearly teaches how God defined the roles of marriage. He created marriage as a moving, life-sized drama of the beauty of salvation. The husband is an actor portraying Jesus. He loves his wife with total sacrifice, dying on the cross for her daily. The wife then plays the role of a person who accepts Jesus as his or her savior in order to teach how this is accomplished. The wife gives herself completely and totally to her husband. This is designed to picture “if any man would come after me, then let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.”
God did this because he wants to reach people with the gospel. He wants them all to have a chance to search for Him and to know Him. Therefore, He chose the fundamental experience which is inherent in all people, regardless of time, culture, nationality, etc. – the family. He wired into the basic human relationship – man and wife – the picture of salvation and thus the search for Jesus. Every person who asks how to do this relationship comes to the search for true love and salvation which found only in Jesus as the source of all true love.
In every aspect of marriage, it pictures salvation. This is true without exception. Let me give you some examples.
B. Marriage “oneness” pictures oneness with God
The promise of marriage is found in verse 24/25. The 2 became 1. “Oneness” is the one word definition of marriage. Intimacy is what defines a beautiful marriage. It was given for us as God’s gift and is God’s target for marriage. See verse 25. This mirrors that deep longing in every person’s heart to be one with God through salvation. This is God’s complete and effective answer for loneliness.