“Your Marriage Matters”

Posted: November 4, 2011 in 1 Corinthians, Christian Life, Marriage

  On a billboard alongside the highway a law firm was doing some advertising.  The sign read: “Traffic Tickets – $45; Divorce – $25.”  Perhaps the small print conveyed another message.  But imagine such a thing.  It’s cheaper to get a divorce than it is to get a traffic ticket “fixed.”

  Too many people, including many Christians, are looking for an easy and cheap way to get out of their unhappy marriages.  All kinds of reasons are given for their desire to break up.

  When the Apostle Paul wrote his letter to the church in Corinth, the moral conditions of the day were at an all-time low.  Women were married to be divorced and divorced to be married.  Some of the believers in Corinth wanted to know more about God’s perspective of marriage. 

  Prototype.  In the beginning God formed Adam out of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life.  Then He took one of Adam’s ribs while he was sleeping and made a woman for him (Genesis 2:21, 22).  They became one flesh. Therefore “…what God has joined together, let no man separate” (Matthew 19:6).  From these two people we all came.

  Vows.  “To have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness, and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part.”  Sadly, these vows are often not kept and divorce is rampant.

  Intimate.  “God designed marriage to be a delightfully intimate relationship (Genesis 2:18, 24-25; Proverbs 5:18, 19), a union of warm innocence (Hebrews 13:4).  He creates beauty in all things, and marriage is His masterpiece in the realm of relationships.” – C. Swindoll

  Solution.  One way to avoid divorce is not to get married at all.  Rather than go through all the hassle of getting a divorce if the marriage doesn’t work out, many people are simply living together without getting married.  Some false teachers are even endorsing this doctrine from demons (1 Timothy 4:1-4).  Others are suggesting “trial marriages.”

  Love.  A strong natural affection may have been the original cause of attraction to your mate but a Christian should exhibit “agape” love toward his/her spouse (1 Corinthians 13:4-8).  Read this passage carefully.  This kind of love is just one part of the “Fruit of the Spirit” (Galatians 5:22, 23).  When a believer is “filled with the [Holy] Spirit” (Ephesians 5:18), he/she will have this love to display toward the right objects at the right time.  Don’t misdirect it to the wrong objects (1 John 2:15-17).

  Command.  “A wife is not to depart from her husband…and a husband is not to divorce his wife” (1 Corinthians 7:10, 11).  God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16).  Physical death breaks the bond that exists between these two people (Romans 7:2).

  Concessions.  “…if [the wife] does depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband” (1 Corinthians 7:11).

  Mixed Marriages.  If a believer has an unbelieving spouse and he/she is willing to stay with the believer, the believer should not leave that spouse but should be a source of sanctification (blessing) to the unbeliever.  Just as Potiphar and Pharaoh were blessed by having Joseph around (Genesis 39:3-5; 41:38-40), so a believing spouse can bless his/her unsaved mate and the children in the home by his/her godly life style.  If an unbelieving spouse insists on leaving and divorcing the believer, the believer is to let him/her depart because God has called us to peace (1 Corinthians 7:15).

  Sacrificial Love.  God’s love seeks the highest well being of others.  God the Father did this when He sent God the Son (the Lord Jesus Christ) to earth to die for our sins (John 3:16).  Three days later He rose again from the dead and can/will save any and all who trust in Him exclusively as their personal Savior.  Have you done that yet?  If not, why not right now? 

  Show Me.  Christians demonstrate their love for God by loving other believers (John 13:34, 35; 1 John 3:16, 17).  “Husbands, love your own wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkly or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.  So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself” (Ephesians 5:25-28). 

  Picture. The Christian’s marriage is designed to be a picture of the relationship that exists between Christ and His church.  “This is a great mystery, but I [the Apostle Paul] speak concerning Christ and the church.  Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband” (Ephesians 5:32). “…with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26; Ephesians 3:20). 

  Confess.  If you, as a Christian, have failed to meet God’s standard, confess it to God and accept His forgiveness.  “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).  “And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32).

  Believe.  If you’re not saved yet, you have a huge problem hanging over your head.  Eternal separation from God in hell awaits all those who are not fit for heaven (Romans 6:23; Matthew 25:41, 46; Revelation 20:11-15). 

  Help?  If you’d like to know how you can be “fit for heaven” and have everlasting life as a present possession, call us at 805-238-3549 or visit our web site www.kelseypeach.com where we have “God’s Simple Plan Of Salvation” in 24 languages. 

    This and our other articles usually correspond to our Sunday talks.

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