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Scripture Reading: 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a
The Importance of Marriage
1. Love never fails…because it never gives up, 1 Cor. 13:4-7.
2. Every marriage needs this kind of love – the love Christ shows us.
a. Marriage in America is in decline.
b. Widespread pessimism about marriage (Doyle).
3. Christ’s admonition is profoundly relevant, Matt. 19:6.
-The Importance of Marriage:
1. Marriage is from God and honors God, Gen. 2:18-25.
a. Relationship God ordained that satisfies mankind (Prov. 18:22).
b. God is the witness of your covenant; Hates divorce, Mal. 2:14, 16.
c. God joins husband and wife together: Do not sunder, Matt. 19:6.
d. Honorable: “precious…as of great price, held in honour, esteemed, especially dear” (OLB Greek Lexicon), Heb. 13:4.
2. Marriage lasts a lifetime, Rom. 7:1-2; cf. Matt. 19:4-5.
a. Permanency of marriage is the essential foundation.
b. Commitment is the glue that bonds the husband and wife together.
c. Union is the result. (Companionship)
d. Problem: American divorce rate (2018): 7.7/1,000; Marriage rate, 16.6/1,000 (U.S. Census Bureau).
3. Marriage is the foundation of a stable society, Gen. 2:24 (Ps. 127:1).
a. Intact family structure gives stability to society, Ps. 127:3-5; Prov. 4:1-4.
1) Marriage is the basis for parenthood, Gen. 1:27-28.
2) Same-sex “marriages,” etc. damage parenthood and society (Kurtz).
3) “Chart 2: Children Living in Intact Families” from "The Positive Effects of Marriage: A Book of Charts."
b. Marriage provides moral constancy, Heb. 13:4.
c. Training ground for next generation to serve God, Ps. 78:4-7; Eph. 5:33-6:4.
4. Marriage protects against immorality, 1 Cor. 7:1-5 (cf. 6:12-13, 18).
a. God commands us to keep our bodies morally pure, 1 Thess. 4:3-8 (Rom. 13:12-14; Eph. 5:3, 11-12).
b. Husband and wife have responsibility to communicate and fulfill sexual needs of each other, 1 Cor. 7:3-4.
c. To turn to other sources for sexual fulfillment hinders marital fulfillment; frustrates trust and love and defiles the marriage bed.
5. Marriage exemplifies Christ and His church, Eph. 5:22-33.
a. Christ is the head of the church and the church is submissive; Husband is the head and the wife and the wife is submissive.
b. For husbands to lead sounds outrageous to today’s culture ("Misogyny!"). No, God's arrangement of order in the home.
c. “Do modern societies, in which marriage is often a tragedy or a joke, really offer a better model?” (Wright, Paul for Everyone).
-No marriage, single-parent homes, same-sex marriages, etc.; the Scandinavian model.
6. In marriage, God teaches us the virtue of loving someone else more than self, Song of Sol. 6:3; 7:10; 8:6.
a. Love is learned before it can be lived; Marriage is such a place.
b. Leave and cleave expresses love’s devotion, Gen. 2:24.
c. In marriage, love is learned and lived, 1 Cor. 13:4-7; Eph. 5:25-29.
“A marriage lives...upon those almost impossible times when it is perfectly clear to the two partners that nothing else but pure sacrificial love can hold them together.” (Mike Mason, "The Mystery of Marriage," cited by Rob Moll, “No One Told Me Marriage Was Like This,” growthtrac.com)
d. Wives: Keep right spirit, a submissive heart and life; Husbands: Learn to understand your wife and honor her, 1 Pet. 3:5-7.
1. God gave marriage its purposes, pleasures, and preciousness, Eccl. 3:11.
2. There is a “time to embrace,” Eccl. 3:5. Married folks, go home tonight and embrace each other; be enraptured in your love for one another, Song of Sol. 4:9-11 (Prov. 5:18-20).
3. As goes the home (marriage), so goes a nation, the world, and (if you are married) your soul.
Doyle, Rodger, “The Decline of Marriage,” Scientific American, 12/20/99
Fagan, Patrick, et al., “Chart 2: Children Living in Intact Families,” The Positive Effects of Marriage: A Book of Charts, Hagelin, Rebecca, “Was God Wrong?,” The Heritage Foundation, www.heritage.org
Kurtz, Stanley, “Death of marriage in Scandinavia,” The Boston Globe, 3/10/04
Marshall, Jennifer, “Marriage: What Social Science Says and Doesn’t Say," The Heritage Foundation, www.heritage.org
Mason, Mike, "The Mystery of Marriage," cited by Rob Moll, “No One Told Me Marriage Was Like This,” growthtrac.com
Online Bible Greek Lexicon
U.S. Census Bureau, https://tinyurl.com/yfndnynq
Wright, Tom, "Paul for Everyone," cited in The Skagit Valley Herald, 5/29/04, C3
By: Joe R. Price
Posted June 25, 2021