The Godly visionary ideal of an integral marriage is that the roles of the man and woman, although distinct from one another, are first of all pleasing God in each other's fidelity to Him; and as a super-component and awareness of one another's courage to be and do such, a blessed harmony of One (God-man-woman) comes forth to focus upon God in their enlargement of one another; then and then only is the wife covertly protected by her husband.
The first step of insuring a successful marriage is the engagement period. The length of time varies, according to how long it takes for the couple to learn about each other; i.e., their childhood and other background incidents of illness, accidents, relationships, conflicts, achievements, goals, likes, dislikes, etc.
A popular false saying is, "Love is blind." But it cannot be blind in order for the union to survive. It is imperative for the couple to observe each other's attitudes, actions, and reactions under differing situations in order to understand each other. Of course, no one is perfect. Negative character traits will show-up as well as positive traits. But if both are Born-Anew Believers focusing on Christ, His Grace will enable them to accept each other's faults and make adjustments to them.
King Solomon, known for his wisdom, said: "A friend loves you all the time." Proverbs 17:17a (EB). "Love is as strong as death. Desire is as strong as the grave. Love bursts into flames. It burns like a very hot fire. Even much water cannot put out the flame of love. Floods cannot drown love." Song Of Solomon 8:6b-7a (EB). "Through skillful and godly Wisdom is a house (a life, a home, a family) built, and by understanding it is established [on a sound and good foundation]. And by knowledge shall its chambers [of every area] be filled with all precious and pleasant riches." Proverbs 24:3-4 (Amp.). Commenting on Proverbs 5:15-18, Life Application Bible, p. 1085 reads: "In contrast to much of what we read, see, and hear today, this passage urges couples to look to each other for lifelong satisfaction and companionship. Many temptations entice husbands and wives to desert each other for excitement and pleasures to be found elsewhere, when marriage becomes dull. But God designed marriage and sanctified it, and only within this covenant relationship can we find real love and fulfillment. Don't let God's best for you be wasted on the illusion of greener pastures elsewhere. Instead, rejoice with your spouse as you give yourselves to God and to each other." Every sin is done within one's body, except the sin of sexual promiscuity (Proverbs 6:27-29). Also, any other relationship outside of God's Plan is only a civil union and not biblically recognized by God. There is a Latin expression, ad astra per aspera, which means a "soul-mate couple" goes through the upper way regardless of the good, bad, different, or indifference coming to them, or to one or the other; i.e., to love at all times and circumstances then, is a choice!
When both individuals concentrate upon the intrinsic design of Christ within each other instead of capitalizing on extrinsic physical characteristics, the marriage will be a "touch of heaven on earth," as God is the source of all true, lasting love. "So God created human beings in his image. In the image of God he created them. He created them male and female. God blessed them and said, "Have many children and grow in number." Genesis 1:27-28a (EB). "Each one of you must love his wife as he loves himself. And a wife must respect her husband." Ephesians 5:33 (EB).
"Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands.... Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered." 1 Peter 3:1, 7. "Submission means to cooperate voluntarily with someone else, out of love and respect for God and for that person. Ideally, submission is mutual.... Even when it is one-sided, however, it can be an effective Christian strategy. Jesus Christ submitted to death so that we could be saved, we may sometimes have to submit to unpleasant circumstances so that others will see Christ in us. (Christian submission never requires us to disobey God or to participate in what our conscience forbids.) One-sided submission requires tremendous strength. We could not do it without the power of the Holy Spirit working in us.... Women in his [Apostle Peter's (lps)] day, if unprotected by men, were vulnerable to attack, abuse, and financial disaster. Women's lives may be easier today, but they are still vulnerable to criminal attack and family abuse. And in spite of increased opportunities in the workplace, most women still earn considerably less than most men, and the vast majority of the nations' poor are single mothers and their children. A man who honors his wife as a member of the weaker sex will protect, respect, help, and stay with her. He will not expect her to work full-time outside and full-time at home; he will lighten her load wherever he can. He will be sensitive to her needs, and he will relate to her with courtesy, consideration, insight, and tact." - Life Application Bible, p. 2200.
Marriage is NOT a contract, because the strength of sin is revealed in the law; and if by chance a couple indulges in the Hollywood Style of a prenuptial agreement of materialistic homage; the one making the terms is owner of the one agreeing to it as in lord/vassal. This type of "lower than thou" is a "thou shalt not" among Altruistic Christian Believers of Grace and Peace!! Those who and which engage themselves in such contracts are not only rejecting the equality of each the other, but are inviting themselves a "double curse" in more than one form or another! God forbid! Therefore, an Altruistic Christian Marriage is definitely a Godly Covenant entered into and unto the Lord, Who makes each equally responsible under God's Ownership so the Lord God could, would and should espouse one another to His desired favor of happiness for an entire lifetime; come what may upon them together or one or the other from extrinsic negative bearings. In other words, each are to the other's benefit, to see to it that each other's spirit, soul and body be preserved safe and in a state of giving glory to God at all times that the cognitive consciences of both be of a peaceful fortitude and refinement on an ongoing basis.
A lifelong commitment to marriage without spiritual richness, mental enrichments, and physical enjoyments can and does lead most to estrangement and divorce.
An Agreeable Covenant relationship - not a Hollywood prenuptial contract - in marriage or family life can be maintained only as long as the institution is based on the giving of advantages by each partner or party, rather than getting advantage of these four loves.
If in marriage, partners of either the husband or wife begin to loose hold of their Godly Love as interdependent, individual, and purposeful roles of each the other; and if family, towards those also, then friendly love is lessened which becomes one big disconnect. If reconciliation is not altruistically reconstructed, then the partners and/or family will become a second bigger disconnection. If hope cannot be obtained and reconciliation made, then the selfishness of the loss of a third larger disconnect will make way for a yet the fourth largest of disconnects, that is of sexual misconduct, and the loss of total trust makes yet the final way of those gross wrongs, to end in estrangement and divorce, which God hates, but nevertheless has made provision because of the hardness of the hearts (Matthew 19:8). This means God can no longer bless or prosper the unity with Him which once was, should, could, or would of been. However, because the individuals involved did not learn or were educated towards the cleansing of their waywardness(es) that were to be cleansed early on, He sympathizes mercy and empathizes graceful caring to such a loving extent, that as much as the divorced parties/families hurt with pain, He does not take the Holy Spirit from them (Psalms 51). In order not to repeat, or keep repeating sinful actions, Christ will stick "closer than a brother" (Proverbs 18:24). But He further warns us that to make greater strides from the failures by taking heed to the things of His Word; that is verbum sap, i.e., a word to the wise is sufficient.
When one or both of the marriage partners drift away from their original commitment to Christ, the commitment they have made to each other loses its sacredness; and, divorce is the ultimate result. If this has happened to you or someone you know, be encouraged that God Himself is a two-time Divorcer! "Well," you say, "That's not in the Bible," or "That's a little far fetched," or "Where is that in theology???" God Himself divorced, in fact, even drowned all the Antediluvians (His First Wife) except eight spiritual, faithful children (Noah and his family) from that marriage. See Genesis 6. Then God was husband of a Second Bride ... the nation of Old Covenant Israel. But because they insisted to stay in the desert or wilderness of sin, and not have all God had promised to share as their Husband, He also divorced His Second Bride.
The whole story of Old Covenant Israel was that every time they repented in the midst of their storms, they allowed the blessings of God to die out in their calms!! See Exodus 32:7-11; Hosea 4:6; Jeremiah 3:8; Isaiah 50:1. At the end of Christ's life of service on earth, He cried the devastating cross-patched limit of His merciful patience (Matthew 23:37b).
But now, Christ's Bride of AD 66 became a Charm to Him because of her integral faithfulness onto His Everlasting Covenant Eternally. The first two brides gave-in at times, without reciprocating loving back wholeheartedly/faithfully/ undenyingly!!! But the Third loved the Given Life and reciprocated wholeheartedly/faithfully/undenyingly!!!
The point here is this. Every whosoever living today in this Age of Grace may have, hold on to, and boldly share all God promised to His former "unfaithful wives" who were not impressed with His Intrinsic and Extrinsic Values (Virtues) He Himself possessed. So THEN, God not only gave His Virtuous Life of Himself and for His New-Found Third Bride in AD 66 (in the middle of the Great Tribulation) sanctifyingly setting her apart as an earthly - and then Heavenly - Companion, but sealed His Bride to be His throughout the endless ages to come - Eternally Forever and Ever! Ephesians 5:21-30. In all the ages and generations since THEN, all possessors of Christ in any Body Of Believers are NOW brothers and sisters in good standing of that Marriage!
Thoughts To Ponder
Put your prayer life into quaquaversalized harmony within the Holy Spirit throughout reading God's Word, and He will keep His Relationship with you in a perfect, peaceful way as your mind is stayed on Him. Isaiah 26:3
Q. Why are "designer churches" overflowing - as such - with such??
A. The trouble with men today is that [they] are looking for women who are going along with Sing-Song; instead of looking for women who are broken and contritioned before God Almighty. Then they use [their] he-man audacity to aggressively forge into an immature relationship without the understanding of what they are doing is to [their] own hurt; and will double-back on [their] own packed-backs! The trouble with women today is that [they] get emotionally excited over nothing and end up marrying him; because [they] didn't understand the difference between a Proverbs 21 wearing-out type of woman, and a Proverbs 31 Graceful, Born-Anew Kind of woman! Proverbs 3:5 is counsel to both men and women!
Those who have experienced a divorce - when they had full intentions at the time of the marriage that it would last forever - may be biblically assured that God has not cast them off, as He did make allowance for divorce and re-marriage in His Holy Word. See Matthew 5:31-32; 19:6-8; Mark 10:3-5. And be encouraged too, that God Himself is a twice divorcer.
Quotation Credits. (1) Scripture quotations taken from The Amplified Bible. Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation. All rights reserved. Used by permission. (www.Lockman.org). Indicated by (Amp.). (2) Scriptures quoted from The Everyday Bible, New Century Version, copyright © 1987, 1988 by Word Publishing, Dallas, Texas 75039. Used by permission. Indicated by (EB). (3)Life Application Bible Notes Used By Permission. Life Application Study Bible 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1996 by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, IL 60189. All rights reserved. Life Application is a registered trademark of Tyndale Publishers, Inc. (4) All other Scripture quotations are taken from the King James Version, and indicated as (lps) when the authors have inserted explanations within the text.
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