Summary: God doesn’t leave us in the dark regarding His beautiful plan for Marriage. Here are powerful principles for success in your’s.
UNDERSTANDING GODLY MARRIAGE
Pastor Eric J. Hanson
Any reader of this message knows full well that we are living in a time when marriage and the home are under attack. From a drifting culture comes the idea that marriage is whatever we want it to be, or maybe, it isn’t even needed. Clarity of understanding is needed in order to bring strength to our homes, and certitude to our convictions regarding this most ancient and important of institutions. Let’s examine the matter now from a Biblical World View.
It was God, not man, who designed marriage. (Genesis 2:19-25)
It was in the very beginning of human history that God very profoundly illustrated His intention and design for marriage. Observe now as the almighty creates the first marriage. (Please read the above mentioned Genesis passage.) In this passage, there is only one Hebrew word for both “Woman” and “Man”. It is “Adamah”. The separate words found in our Bibles are from the English translators. The word God used for both is the same! This indicates for us how close the husband and wife were to be in God’s perfect order, without sin.
Godly Marriage is closer than any mere partnership
When men or women enter into the covenant of marriage, our primary relational focus changes from our parents, to our wife or husband. Oneness within a married couple is on multiple levels in God’s design. We are to “leave” parents, “cleave” to our spouse, and become “one”, physically, emotionally, and in our goals. We are to walk together in vital relationship with God. Both partners need to put the Lord first. Then they can also honor each other properly. (Read Genesis 1:26-28) Dominion over the Earth as responsible stewards under God was given to “Man”, not meaning male alone, but male and female together, who are created in God’s Image. Marriage was not designed to produce bondage, boredom, or fear. God originally designed it in such a way that one man and one woman would complete each other and go about the business of doing God’s good and beautiful will in the Earth.
Having children is an important part of God’s design for marriage. Much of the thrust of our society today, de-values this, to the point that the population is actually falling in many western nations, and is barely at replacement level in the USA among whites and blacks, being slightly below it for whites, and slightly above for blacks. In Europe, their post-Christian society is in a population free fall. People are not reproducing anywhere near replacement level, having lost the spiritual impetus to do so. This suicidal development has created a vacuum that radical Islam is rushing to fill through massive immigration and aggressive child bearing.
How Sin has Scarred Marriage
It was sin, which messed up God’s beautiful, balanced, empowering marital design. After sin became part of human nature through the fall, people became basically self centered. Certain things regarding how sin harms marriage, are recorded for us in Old Testament history. These harmful effects were and continue to be clear violations of God’s will and design for people. Let’s look at these now.
Polygamy: By the time of Abraham, polygamy was widely practiced. A man would often marry two sisters, and sometimes would have four or more wives in all. Every time the Bible mentions such relationships, it always makes clear that there was trouble. The rivalries among the wives of the Patriarchs were sad and de-humanizing. Many messages could be preached on the lessons we can learn from these negative and often tragic situations. It is clear that God’s design from the beginning had not changed from that outlined in Genesis 1 and 2. Polygamy always produces bitter fruit, especially in the hearts of women, each one of whom should be the unique focus of a husband’s love.
Easy Divorce: Divorce is provided for in the Law given through Moses. Nevertheless, the reason for this permission was the hardness of people’s hearts. This is an area that Jesus made perfectly clear. (Read Mark 10:1-9) In many patriarchal societies, husbands are able to divorce with ease, even with a simple statement. This is a great evil! It reflects an attitude, widespread apart from the influence of the Gospel, and even codified in Islam, Hinduism, and many Tribal religions, which places women far below the protected place God intends for them. Women, in these systems, are not seen as being co-heirs with their husbands of the grace of God. There are times when divorce is needed, but such times often have to do with the need of protection for people from abandonment and abuse. Divorce is not to be used for the rejection of and wrong treatment of them.
Homosexual Practices: (Romans 1:24-27) From the start, homosexual practice has never been God’s will. In Old Testament times it was a capital offence. In societies where it has become dominant, a sexual militancy always eventually develops, particularly with males. History shows that they come to feel entitled to sexually have other men, teens, and revoltingly, even boys. Sometimes coercive group situations arise from this. The city-state of Sodom had reached this point when Lot was living there. Prisons often get to be like this, and forcible male on male rape, as alluded to on the anti-crime video Scared Straight, is the end result.