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Scripture Reading:  Genesis 2:18-25

Marriage:  Designed by God for Success

Intro.
1.  Biblical truth & values of marriage & the home have faced withering attacks in our faithless, godless society & from false doctrines of men.

2.  Enemies include:  Humanism, worldliness, materialism, selfishness).

  a.  1974 survey: 1 of 3 college students considered marriage obsolete.

  b.  1988:  Over 2.5 million Americans living together outside marriage.

  c.  2000:  Increased to 5.5 million; an eleven fold increase since 1960 (The Broken Hearth, Wm. J. Bennett, 13).  More than half of all marriages now preceded by a period of living together (Ibid.).

  d.  1998:  Only 45% of all teenagers (ages 13-18) live with married biological parents.

  e.  Same-sex marriages, abortion, no fault divorce,

3.  Satan has always cast doubt on God’s will (incl. marriage), Gen. 3:4-5.

4.  When marriage (home) is destroyed, society is destroyed, the church is destroyed & souls are destroyed.

 

I.  THE NATURE OF MARRIAGE, Gen. 2:18-25.

  A.  Ordained by God, Matt. 19:4-6.  (Bible:  Marriage did not grow out of civilization; civilization grew out of marriage; Fundamental faith.)

    1.  Covenant (oath) made before God, Prov. 2:17; Mal. 2:14 (Ezek. 16:8, 59).

    2.  Honorable & to be honored by all, Heb. 13:4.

    3.  Regulated & judged by divine law, Rom. 7:1-3.

  B.  Universal in Scope, Gen. 2:21-22 (Matt. 19:4).

  C.  Provides Companionship, Gen. 2:18-20 (Prov. 2:17).

  D.  Prevents Immorality, Gen. 2:25; 1 Cor. 7:1-2 (Prov. 5:15-20).

 

II. DESIGNED FOR SUCCESS, Gen. 2:24 (Matt. 19:5-6).

  A.  Marriage is Permanent (leave) (for life, Rom. 7:2; 1 Cor. 7:39).

    1.  Marriage is the primary, fundamental relationship of man/woman.

    2.  Permanency of marriage breeds endurance, steadfastness and stability.

  B.  Marriage Thrives on Mutual Commitment (cleave).

    1.  Oath to “hold fast” (be glued to) each other, cf. Deut. 10:20.

    2.  Permanency produces commitment, which engenders faithfulness (1 Cor. 6:18), respect & understanding (1 Pet. 3:5-7), trust & security (Prov. 31:10-12), contentment & joy (Eccl. 9:9).

  C.  Marriage is the Union of Two Lives into One.

    1.  No longer two…one flesh, Matt. 19:6.

    2.  No longer independent, but co-dependent; yoked together, 1 Cor. 7:4.  If you cannot live in this atmosphere of unselfishness, then do not get married!

    3.  Christ & the church are illustrated by one flesh union of marriage, Eph. 5:22, 28-32.

 

III. BUILD AN UNBREAKABLE MARRIAGE, Eccl. 9:9.

  A.  Is your Marriage in Trouble?  (Examine yourself, 2 Cor. 13:5)

    1.  Common warning signs (chart).

    2.  Commitment solutions: Communication, cooperation, character.

      a.  CommunicationJas. 1:19; Col. 3:8-9; 4:6.

      b.  Cooperation1 Pet. 3:7 (joint-heirs of life); Prov. 21:9, 19 (the harm of constant complaining, accusing & bitterness cannot be overstated).

      c.  CharacterCol. 3:12-15 (kindness, consideration, forgiveness, love, ruled by the peace of God) (Eph. 4:31-32), Matt. 7:12.

  B.  Keep Christ at the Center of Your Marriage, Eph. 5:21-25.

    1.  “Christ is the Head of this house, the unseen Guest at every meal, the silent Listener to every conversation.”

    2.  “Marriage Takes Three” (Peter Tanksley).

 

Conclusion

1.  Satan wants to destroy your love, marriage & home; your soul; “Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (Jas. 4:7).

2.  Your marriage can thrive…it can be better today than it was yesterday…it can be a haven of peace & joy in a world of trouble. 

3.  Your marriage can be all these things & more, because…

  a.  God designed marriage for success;

  b.  God has shown us what love is (in His Son);

  c.  God teaches us what marriage is;

  d.  God is forgiving, and we can forgive one another;

  e.  You choose to honor your marriage & be different from the world.