Marriage Basics - Part 5

Faith Church March 21, 2010 Genesis 2:18

Introduction: 

1.  This is our FINAL study on the Bible Basics of Marriage

- specifically, our series is : Taking the NEXT Step With Joy: In Our Marriage & Family

- we want the marriages/families represented in our church to be GROWING

- To some, this may be new term, but we’re talking about the doctrine of . . .

  • Progressive Sanctification = the process of changing and growing to become more like Jesus Christ

>  we need to identify sinful habits (using God’s Word) of thinking and action that God wants to change and REPLACE them with biblical thinking & actions

> that’s done through the work of the Holy Spirit and the power of God’s Word as we chose to OBEY God’s Word (be a ‘doer’ of the Word, not just a hearer)

2.  While God will certainly do His part, we have to understand this process takes #1: TIME (we have to be patient, keep pressing on) and . . .it take #2:  EFFORT (we have to do our part – and we can’t do it without Jesus – which is why He sent the Holy Spirit to guide us and comfort us through the Word of God!)

3.  You have to start with evaluating where you are currently (admitting you are not perfect) and acknowledging you need to grow to be more like Jesus in the way you think and act

* Each week we’ve tried to keep emphasizing the reasons for this series:

#1: To glorify God in our marriages and families

- since marriage is a picture of Christ’s relationship to the church, we want to make sure we are giving the right opinion of God as people watch our marriage/families develop

- to strengthen our church because:

#2:  Strong Marriages and Strong Families = Strong Churches!

4.  Q:  Do you want our church to be spiritually strong?

strong’  = a high quality depth in our relationship with Christ and bringing glory to God in a multitude of different ways!!

- if that’s going to happen, we have to be growing in our marriage/family!

[OPEN bibles to Genesis 2:18-25 – have 1 person read a verse, next person next verse . . . ]

- So far, we’ve studied 2 key principles regarding marriage: [DO THIS AS A REVIEW!!]

I.  Marriage Was Given by God - Gen. 2:18 “And the Lord said . . .”

- Since God gave marriage, God has answers for marriage (found in His sufficient Word)

> that gives us HOPE and MOTIVATION to find those answers so we can grow and change

- the 2nd principle was

II.  Marriage Fulfills a Basic Need or Purpose.

- This answers the question, Why did God create marriage in the first place?

- we emphasized that marriage is not based on love, or sex, or compatibility

- instead, the purpose of marriage is to provide companionship (solves the alonenessproblem) and to glorify God by serving the Lord together

- It’s an intertwining of 2 persons in all areas of life and should always be growing!

- the 3rd principle (and we only got to ½ way through this important point) is this:

III.  Marriage is a Growing Relationship.

  • Genesis 2: 24 For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.

A.  Marriage involves "leaving" your parents.

- and that’s more than geographical leaving & it involves  radical change in the relationship

- from this passage, we get the T.P.T. principle:

  • T= Temporary (H/W + Child = T)
  • P = Permanent (Child gets married = H/W together – till death do we part = P)
  • T = Temporary(Child [H/W] have children as a result of their marriage = grandchild)
  • The process involves settling past conflicts as you leave.

- responding to authority, or learning the lessons God wants to teach you

- or making sure you’re not leaving with a bitter heart for something that was done or NOT done by your parents

  • The process includes not being slavishly dependent upon one’s parents.
  • The process creates a NEW decision making unit.

- the ‘one flesh’ relationship means the mates needs, ideas, welfare are first now.

  • The process creates a loyalty.

- loyalty to each other as husband/wife – doesn’t exclude Matthew 18 or seeking advice counsel from parents – but still open/honest communication with spouse!

  • The process does not allow children to dominate marital relationship

- now, let’s FINISH STRONG in this study and focus on how . . . .

B.  Marriage involves "cleaving.”

- this is another very strong term in the Hebrew language – and actually has differently levels of meaning and/or application:

1.  “Cleave” = welding together

- you could also use the phrase, literally . . . become “glued together”

Point: This relationship is so strong and welded so firmly nothing will break the bond!!

- in other words, marriage is intended to be a PERMANENT relationship –a strong bond!

> and that strong bond is growing stronger as the days/weeks/months/years go by

Illustration: Lester & Margret Bell (members of our church) have been married for 66 years – that’s CLEAVING!!

- cleaving implies that anything that is threat to the relationship (that would seek to destroy or decrease that bond) should be avoided and/or REMOVED immediately!!!

2.  “Cleave” = learning to love

- this is ‘agapa’ (God’s kind of love) that helps hold together the covenant relationship
(i.e. the vows that were made to each other!)

- given the fact that the husband is COMMANDED to love his wife, there should be a mutual commitment to investing in each other’s ‘love bank’

> lots of deposits and an occasional withdraw . . . instead of a lot of withdraws and only a few deposits!

- Paul instructed Titus about the role of the ‘older women’

>this isn’t necessarily older in age, but older in spiritual maturity – some older (in age) ladies can be very immature spiritually

  • Titus 2:3 Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, 4. so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, . . . so that the word of God will not be dishonored.

- Jesus said some very important things about what reveals our heart (inner man):

  • Matthew 6:19 Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

- this would include cultivating (investing) your love toward your spouse

IMPORTANT POINT: If a husband is not getting enough love, he better look in the mirror because he sets the standard

> he doesn’t GIVE to GET (that’s not the point)

> but if wants his wife to show godly love, he has to MODEL it!! (more on that later!)

- love is CHOICE, an act of the will – not something you FALL INTO or OUT OF!!

3.  “Cleave” = a commitment to God and to each other.

- Proverbs 2 admonishes us about responding to WISDOM – the value of it and what wisdom can protect us from (the adulterous woman)…

  • Proverbs 2:17 That leaves the companion of her youth and forgets the covenant of her God.  For her house sinks down to death and her tracks lead to the dead; none who go to her return again, nor do they reach the paths of life.

- God is speaking to Israel regarding their unfaithfulness to Him and to their marriage covenant

  • Malachi 2:14 "Yet you say, 'For what reason? [referring to the fact that God has rejected their offerings, crying & lamenting]' “Because the LORD has been a witness between you and the wife of your youth, against whom you have deal treacherously, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant.”

 

“The Lord’s reaction to this widespread unfaithfulness was threefold. First, He refused to accept the sinners’ offerings, even when they wailed & lamented over His displeasure (v. 13).  Second, He urged them to come to the senses and return to their wives (v. 15b, 16b). Third, He declared His hatred of divorce, which He characterized as a violent deed (v. 16a).”
Robert B. Chisholm (Jr.), Interpreting the Minor Prophets, p. 285

Point:  God doesn’t take it lightly when we don’t honor the covenant we made!!!

> in fact, He not only doesn’t take it lightly, He rejects it and will deal with our sin

- let’s summary what we’re communicating:

Love is NOT:

Love IS:

Feeling

Deliberatechoice

Convenience

Obedience

Blind Chance

Covenant

Compatibility

Weldingtogether

- Paul wrote in 1 Cor. 13 (a great study on love) that:

  • 1 Cor. 13:8 Love never fails.

* All this happens in spite of changes that occur over time:

-  one person described getting older as: the bulges, bunions, bulges, bifocals!

C.  Marriage involves "weaving."

weaving’ = becoming ‘one flesh’

* God’s view: 1 + 1 = 1

1.  When people get married, you have 2 unique people (w/many differences).

- with all these differences, they weave their relationship together that they become “one”

- that can reveal itself in a lot of areas:

Example:   2 different homes // 2 different sets of values // 2 different sets of finances // 2 different views of vacations or who takes garbage out // 2 different views of children

> Those differences are a part of God’s plan to strengthen the unity (to learn from each other – benefit from each other’s strengths)

*Key ingredient to this process: Humility

- to be learner – to do things God’s way instead of being stubborn, and having a “It has to be MY way or the HIGHWAY mentality!”

- PRIDE doesn’t build unity (look at Gen. 3!!) – in fact, Proverbs puts it like this:

  • Proverbs 13:10 By pride comes nothing but strife (NKJV)
  • Proverbs 28:25 An arrogant man stirs up strife … (NAS)

2.  Because of the affects of the curse of sin, we have to recognize the fact that adjustments will need to be made.

- we have to realize the goal is not to conform your spouse to be just like your family

- but to build a ‘godly’ family together as both of you seek the Lord’s will through His Word and obey His Word and grow together as husband/wife and as father/mother and grand father/grand mother ….

- finally – wrap this all up into a picture:

V.  Marriage is a picture.

A.  Of a marriage in Heaven - Rev. 19.

-  Your marriage is to be a picture of that marriage – someday the BRIDE of Christ will be united (totally) with the Groom!!

B.  Of how the church should obey God - Eph. 5:22-24

-  Wife should picture that (we’ll be dealing with that in a few weeks)

C.  Of the way Christ loves - Eph. 5:25-26

-  Husband should picture that truth:

  1. None of us can give love until we know His love.
  2. None of us can give His kind of love until we know His love.
  3. None of us can forgive until we know His forgiveness.
  4. None of us can live apart from Him.

Conclusion: Q & A / PRAYER TIME!!

Q & A:Are there any questions you have about the Basics of Marriage or any thing that you learned that has really help you to “Take the NEXT Step With Joy in Your Marriage”?

Prayer Time:  Break into small groups

  - Pray for our marriages/families to TAKE THE NEXT STEP WITH JOY

  • Men pray for the Husbands [NEXT WEEK: Husband’s ROLE – ladies, you can’t have the attitude, “Well, this is NOT for me, so I’ll stay home!!”]
  • Women pray for the Wives
  • Someone pray for ALL of our marriages/families to grow!

 

Recommended Resources for Further Study:

Adams, Jay.  Christian Living in the Home.

Thomas, Gary.  Sacred Marriage.

Tripp, Paul.  Marriage, Whose Dream?

Building Marriages God’s Way (Resources of Faith)

Mack, Wayne.  Homework Manual for Biblical Counseling, Vol. 2.

Mack, Wayne.  Strengthening Your Marriage.

Wheat, Ed. Love Life for Every Married Couple.

Viars, Steve et al.  Marriages That Last (audio series).

Adams, Jay.  Solving Marriage Problems.

Faith Church