Respect God's Pattern For Marriage
By bro Lee Tian Seng
There was an earthquake in Turkey, and there are reports that some buildings collapsed and many lives were lost. People started to question if the buildings were properly constructed. It seems that it is too late to ask these questions because one should have constructed buildings which are structurally sound. When the marriage relationship is shaken by trials and conflicts, guess what makes it strong enough to withstand these tremors. Yes, it is to build a strong foundation and structure for the marriage.
The foundation of marriage has been laid in the beginning of time by God.
Gen 2:24 - Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
God expects husband and wife to be united as one, and not to be separated, except by death. The permanency of marriage is the teaching of the Bible, divorce is a sin.
Roman 7:2 - For the woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if the husband dies, she is released from the law of her husband.
Husband and wife are to commit to living together and to love one another.
Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her
The structure of marriage is the family. The husband is the head of the family, and the wife is to submit to him. Both of them are to submit to God. The teaching of the Bible is the manual of marriage.
Ephesians 5:22 - Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body.
When we do not follow these patterns, there is no stability in the marriage relationship. There will be disputes on what is right, who to follow, and where is the authority. If we cannot get the fundamentals right, everything else will fail.
For example, a couple finds it difficult to live together because of constant conflicts. What should they do? According to the wisdom of man, they can divorce since it is fruitless to continue in a meaningless relationship. It sounds like a logical thing to do. However, if your marriage is set upon the foundation that God has laid, you will be committed to resolve conflicts and make the marriage work. You will seek to follow His teaching in everything you decide and do in your marriage.
When there is no structure in our marriages, then it is not clear what our responsibilities are. If husband and wife do not submit to God, then they will follow the wisdom of the world. So, if there is a conflict or disagreement, they will use human wisdom to solve their problems.
For example, the husband gambles away his money and has none left to provide for his family. Based on worldly thinking, the husband is not wrong in having a hobby and the wife should not just sit around and complain. She should seek employment so that she can support her family. The Bible teaching is that the husband has sinned in not being responsible by providing for his family. He has also sinned against God in gambling, which is covetousness. He needs to repent of his sin and apologise to his wife for his fault.
When there is no structure in our marriage, then it is not clear what our roles are. Should the wife be the head of the family when the husband refuses to lead? Should husband and wife continue submitting to their parents as when they did as a child? Should there be a disagreement in matters of opinion, who should decide what to do? God has clearly instructed us on this. The husband should be the head of the family, and the wife should submit to him as unto the Lord. When a man and a woman are married, they “leave” their parents and set up their family following the teachings of God.
When we follow the pattern of marriage in the Bible, we are also following the rules of God. When God rules, there is peace and love. When men and women disrespect God and reject His rules, they have sinned and will suffer the consequences of their unrighteous living. So, when we see a broken marriage, we will definitely see that there is sin in it.