The Institution of Marriage According to the Bible

Image of wedding rings in a heart

In the first instance, God’s design for marriage is to meet our need for companionship (Genesis 2:18). A couple should be able to turn to each other for fellowship, support and comfort in their marriage. Furthermore, Marriage is intended as the vessel for procreation (Maleachi 2:15), to protect ourselves against sexual immorality (1 Corinthians 7:9), to reflect the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27) and to serve as an illustration of the relationship between Christ and His church  (Ephesians 5:25–26). If a couple serves each other in accordance to principles in Scripture, their marriage will honour God and bring them lasting joy.

Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” (Genesis 2:24, ESV) Marriage signifies the point in life where two people come together in their service to the Lord. “And the two are united into one. Since they are no longer two but one.” (Mark 10:8, NLT) The “becoming one” part of this verse is of important significance in a marriage. When a couple gets married, the man and the woman are no longer individuals; they are one in Christ. There is no longer a “me”, everything they do and have is unified. His mission is hers, and her suffering is his. “Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate” (Matthew 19:6, NIV). It is no secret that God HATES divorce (Maleachi 2:16), so we must do our absolute best to remain married once we’ve made that commitment. Even though the Bible gives us two valid reasons for divorce (Matthew 5:32; Matthew 19:9; 1 Corinthians 7:15), it is not a favourable outcome and should therefore be avoided as much as possible.

Ensuring that you only marry once and forever starts from when you are still single. Even though we live in a time where regular dating is deemed a prerequisite to finding the right partner, it shouldn’t have to be the case. If God wants someone in your life, He will find a way to cross your paths. You don’t have to do it yourself. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD” (Jeremiah 29:11, NKJV). God has already sorted out His entire plan for your life. And trust Him, these are some pretty amazing plans! In every aspect of life, one’s faith in God should be bigger than any circumstance, this includes (unintentional) singleness.Image of Sons of Solomon I have found the one my heart lovesWhen the time comes that you get married, do not turn your back to God. Investing in your relationship with Him is the best thing you could ever do, since you know for sure that it is a relationship that will last forever. When you invite God into your marriage, it will be a marriage that will enhance your life, not complicate it. And even when the marital bliss doves off, and a couple starts encountering problems, the best one can do is to turn to God and deliver the other to Him in prayer. Because, let’s be honest, no amount of complaining can change someone like prayer can. But how can you do that when you’ve forgotten about Him? Keep in mind that God cannot bless a relationship that He is not being involved in. God should have full control over every marriage. Since He gave it to us, He should reign over it.

A marriage is a bond in service to one another, but most importantly to God. Marriages require a lot of attention and work to make them prosper in the way God has intended them to. Psalm 34:12–14 is very much applicable in maintain a fulfilling marriage. In the NIV translation it says, “Whoever of you loves life and desires to see many good days, keep your tongue from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.” You can definitely have a marriage that both honours God and fulfils your personal needs if you take note of behavioural commands in the Bible. Maybe the most important one can be found in Ephesians 5:22-33, where God orders women to submit to their husbands, and men to love their wives as Christ loved the church. Ultimately, make sure to keep God in the middle of your marriage; for all things will work out for your good (Romans 8:28).

All with all, it must be noted that Scripture does not oblige us to get married. Actually, the apostle Paul has given a preference to singleness in 1 Corinthians 7:8. However, in verse 32-35, he clearly explains that remaining unmarried is a more favourable situation for the reason that one can devote his/her time to the works of the Lord. Ultimately, there is no obligation to get married if one can live a morally just life being single.

God Bless,
Sipporra Akua

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