Godly Marriage

Jesus Christ wants a wife who is faithful, obedient, loving, caring, cooperative, helpful, affectionate and dedicated to him alone; not being selfish and demanding her own  way, not being adulterous and seeking out lovers; but faithful to him alone.

Christ went through a bad marriage with Israel as an example that we are to learn from.  Was Israel any of these things for more than short spurts; or was she intent on her own ways, always doing what was right in her own eyes, committing spiritual adultery and being a faithless, uncooperative, rebellious wife?

Was Christ patient, longsuffering, quick to forgive the repentant, yet always standing for what was right by the Father’s commandments?

You husbands and wives ought not to be bullies or selfish.

Brethren there are keys to good physical unity and a good marriage.

They come down to respect and acting for the good of the relationship and family instead of doing what each person wants for themselves.

These RULES apply to BOTH spouses!

  1. The golden rule applies in marriage; please others if you expect them to please you.
  2. Always be loving, caring and affectionate, easily approachable, considerate, respectful and cooperative. 

A good marriage when you wake up each day:  Are you grumpy, of a sour disposition, in a bad temper?  Demanding, selfish, controlling in too many little things?  Learn to lighten up and ease off, to be affectionate and cooperative with your spouse.

Are you a bully demanding obedience because you are the husband?  or demanding your “rights” as a wife? Then you do not deserve respect because you seek to demand it instead of earning it.

Instead of demanding, sit down and carefully explain why something is needed and ask for and discuss any input.  Show R E S P E C T for each other if you want respect yourself.

Our example speaks much louder than our words and our spouse will tend to react to us in the same way that we treat them. Yes the husband must set the example, and lead the way but you have no right to be a bullying abuser in word or action.  Rather he should set a godly and loving example, an example that he would be delighted for his bride to follow.

Yes, the wife should set a godly example that will influence her husband in a positive way.

A husband can and should learn from the example of his wife, even as his wife learns from him.

Do you not know that many women have been called to be prophetesses by Christ?  Do you not know that in the Kingdom your wife may rule over you?  You had better be ruling your house in the way that you want to be ruled yourself!  For we shall all, if we overcome, be a part of the bride of Christ and we should all be ruling our families in the same manner that we hope Christ will rule over us.

What if you have an uncooperative and selfish mate? 

Each person is R E S P O N S I B L E before God for their OWN actions, regardless of what the other does.  Almighty God will not tolerate the “I did that because he/she did this” justification.

This LAW applies to BOTH persons: Do you want to be loved; then be lovable as much as you can.

3.   Nothing turns a person off as quickly as atrocious breath or a stinky sweaty body.  To keep your mate interested, and to prevent infections: always be scrupulously CLEAN.

4.   It is far far better to entice instead of to demand.  When a wife is enticed she will willingly participate and seek to please; when demands are made, she may go through the motions but her heart will not be in it and she will be left feeling used and disheartened.

5.   Remember your marriage vows were made to God regarding the promises you made to your spouse at your marriage.  Your vows were made before and to God much more than they were made to each other; SO KEEP THEM!

The most important thing is to love your spouse.  Love is not sex, nor is it some shallow emotional feeling; it is a genuine desire to do all you can to please the other and to seek the good of the other.

This is true in our relationship with Jesus Christ and God the Father as well.  Our love must not be a personal shallow feel good emotion; it must be based on a solid exalting of the other above the self!

Each day before you say Good Morning: Ask God to help you to choose your words carefully, and to keep you far from being peevish, demanding and mean mouthed.

Through the day; ask yourself before taking any decision, before letting words of anger, or frustration, or any selfish decision leave your mouth:  Is this in the best interests of my marriage?  Does it build the relationship and engender respect, or does this matter tear down the marriage and engender frustration and resentment?

We are only mature enough for marriage when selfishness has been put aside.

Husbands have NO rights within the marriage except to act for the good of and in the best interest of the family at all times; in keeping with all of his marriage vows.

Wives have NO rights within the marriage except to act for the good of and in the best interest of the family at all times; in keeping with all of her marriage vows.

The success of your marriage will be in direct proportion to how this one rule is followed.

Matthew 19:5    And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh?

The two spouses are to be joined as ONE flesh and as ONE in a cooperative and united family; NOT two separate individuals living together!

It is trying to be TWO different persons that divides the relationship.

The same is true of our relationship with God.  When each of us wants to go contrary to what our espoused Husband teaches; are we not dividing ourselves from him?

Remember the example of Israel!  When they faithfully followed the Being who later gave up his godhood to be made flesh as Jesus Christ their Husband, did they not prosper?  And when they strayed to do what they wanted, and committed adultery with the false gods and the doctrines of the pagans, did they not fall into all manner of evils?

If a man or wife is selfish and demanding; if they sin against one another; does that not tear down and divide the family?

I know that all of us are affected by how we were raised and by our other experiences in life!  This can make building a good marriage a real challenge and it can take years of patient hard work for both persons to come into the fullness of deep, passionate respect and understanding of each other.

In some cases there is an almost instant meeting of minds and mutual understanding, and in other cases this can take many years of hard work to achieve.  Remember to never quit but each time you fail, get right back up and try, try and try again!

Proverbs 24:16     For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again [to try again]: but the wicked shall fall into mischief [and does not rise again].

If as a babe we refused to try again after falling down once in learning to walk; where would we be?

Brethren, we ARE spiritual babes and we will often fall; yet we must keep on getting back up and going forward or we shall be stunted in our spiritual growth; failing to grow and overcome as our Father requires.

Matthew 18:21   Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? 18:22 Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

And if the sinner is not our brother but our better half, that we vowed before God to love with all our being until death:  Should we not forgive ten thousand times ten thousand times?

Ask yourself:  In spite of our best efforts to please him, how much and how often do we need forgiveness from our espoused spiritual Husband?  and then let us treat our spouse accordingly!

Family and marriage is about working together, forgiving one another, acting in the best interests of the whole family and loving our spouse enough to give up our own desires for the good of the others.

God is Family!

We need to get our physical families right!

AUTHORITY

The husband does have authority, even as God the Father has authority.

A husband’s authority should be used just as God the Father uses his authority; for the GOOD of the whole family and NOT for personal advantage or personal ego inflation.

The wife should obey her husband in the LORD, even if it hurts her pride and interferes with what she desires.

If the husband uses his authority wisely, primarily explaining and consulting on matters with his wife and respecting her needs and input and coming to agreement through cooperative communication; then things will run much better than continually demanding obedience.

Gentlemen, that is the difference between leadership and bullying! 

A leader who is wise and leads by EXAMPLE and teaching will have far more respect than a bully.

The Love Between Christ and His Bride

God is love; his law defines him and therefore defines love.

Those who break or compromise with the teachings of Christ do NOT have godly love!

Teaching tolerance for unrepented sin and compromise with the teachings of Christ is an abomination to God.

If you take Passover dedicating yourself to obeying Christ; while in your heart you bear grudges against anyone, or are willing to go out and buy on Sabbath polluting the Sabbath or continuing to engage in any other self-justified sin; you have taken Passover unworthily and are subject to strong correction from God.

Proverbs 17:15   He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the Lord.

At Passover Jesus Christ died for us so that we might live eternally.  That is love.

The scriptures liken the relationship between Christ and those Called Out to God the Father through him to the relationship between a husband and his bride.

Speaking now of a godly husband and bride; they have waited their whole lives for the moment that they will be united in marriage.  After a period of engagement the marriage union proceeds with great rejoicing and much celebration; and the husband and his bride become one flesh.

Countless stories and love songs have been written about a true deep passionate physical love that has spiritual qualities of dedication and commitment.

Hopefully we as human beings are blessed with such a passionate love that as a couple we mutually place our mate above all else in this physical life.

The wonder of loving and being loved exclusively, passionately and unswervingly, is so sublime and fulfilling, so as to be beyond description.

That is the relationship that our espoused spiritual Husband Jesus Christ wants with us.   He wants to be loved in a total commitment to him, as he has loved us and given his very life for his bride.  Our espoused Husband loves us with a passionate love and we should be filled with a similar deep passionate dedicated love [see the Song of Songs article].

Now, in our period of espousal, we should be as committed and passionately loving towards our Lord as he is towards us.  To be now, and over a period of time absolutely faithful and working with all our beings to please him demonstrates that we will live the same way after the wedding day.

For he who is faithful in little things will be faithful in much.

Jesus Christ is the perfect Husband who lives to love his bride, and who has given his life for his beloved; and like every man, Christ wants his love reciprocated; he wants a faithful, loving, caring, cooperative wife who seeks to please him with all her heart; a bride who is of one mind and spirit with him!

Revelation 19:7   Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.

How do we make ourselves ready for the resurrection to the Marriage Feast?

By reciprocating the love of our espoused husband who gave himself totally, right to the death for us; by DOING what he has said and by seeking to please him, and exalting him above ALL others.

The spiritual adulterer who follows after any other [including clinging to false unscriptural traditions and exalting any man or organization above God’s word] will be rejected as the spiritual adulterer that he/she is.

Only those who have enough faith and love to seek to obey and please their Lord will be chosen for the resurrection to the wedding feast! 

What does our espoused Husband Jesus Christ require of us?  He requires that we sincerely repent ad turn away from all sin to live by EVERY WORD OF GOD!

Brethren, baptism is a commitment to KEEP all the teachings and commandments of God the Father and Jesus Christ:  and Passover is a commitment and marriage espousal to Jesus Christ, to accept his sacrifice and to commit ourselves in marital unity to him!

We are to commit ourselves to obey and please him with ALL our hearts; in wholehearted dedication to God the Father and Jesus Christ [not to any organization or any other man].

Many of us have a deep love for our families; yet we leave our father and mother and family to join in matrimony with a spouse!

Even so, we are to commit ourselves to leave worldliness behind, to join with Jesus Christ in espousal to a spiritual marriage to him!  We are to become of one mind with Christ just as we are one flesh with our physical mates!

We can only become of ONE mind with Christ, by DOING what Christ has taught; for what he has taught is how he wants us to be!

Do study back over the Gospels and Epistles at the Outreach Site and see what internalizing the nature of our espoused Husband to become like him means.

Truly if we loved Christ; we would DO what he teaches!  We would NEVER even think of compromising our love for him, by willfully offending him!

Those who advocate a false love, in which WE MAY DO AS WE WANT, instead of pleasing our Lord by doing what HE has commanded and taught; are of their father the devil; the father of all liars.

 

Marrying Outside The Faith

There are a few more points concerning marriage that need to be discussed because they are serious problems in the COG Groups today.

The first is that many young people frustrated by the lack of eligible and suitable mates are marrying outside the faith.  This is clearly forbidden by scripture and is a sin before God.  This sin inevitably leads to more sin until in very many cases the converted mate turns away from God; it also results in a divided house which dramatically affects the children, causing most to grow up hostile to the faith.

Ezra 10 is about the fact that Judah had many who had taken wives of other religions; and these Jews were required to put away these strange wives of other religions.

Once again the issue of mixing paganism with true religion, through knowingly marrying unconverted wives reared its ugly head.  This is a great evil for it is uniting good and evil, as one flesh. 

In the spiritual sense this is marrying false teachings and false traditions with the Word of God; which perverts and pollutes the very Word of God. 

This great sin of allowing wickedness to the assemblies is commonly indulged in the Ekklesia today, most especially the apostate idolatry of claiming an authority for men to bind and loose God’s Word, thus exalting men above God as idols for the brethren.

Consider how Christ drove the wicked out from the temple; which was an example for us that he will likewise drive self-justifying sinners out of God’s Spiritual Ekklesia if we do not repent (Revelation 3:15-22). 

Do not forget how all those of Israel who sinned in the wilderness were destroyed, and how the Canaanites were destroyed as an example for us; to teach us that if we sin, we shall all likewise perish. 

Remember that the whole earth was drowned in water for the wickedness of humanity, and now we dare to think that we can usurp the authority of the Almighty to decide right and wrong for ourselves like Eve and Adam did in the Garden, and we think that we will not be expelled from God’s presence like they were.

Brethren, we are being deceived into thinking of Jesus Christ as a pansy who will not enforce his and God the Father’s Word.  Many of our groups just tolerate sin and teach that it is alright to break God’s Word a little; saying that, “Jesus will understand for he loves us.”  What absolute nonsense!  What spiritual FILTH, polluting God’s spiritual Temple today!

Those who pollute the Temple of God with willful sin will be DESTROYED! 

God will not hold the guilty: GUILTLESS.   In the resurrection the unrepentant wicked who sin willfully will be excluded from among the mighty men and women of God who have sacrificed and suffered so much throughout history.

1 Corinthians 3:17   If any man defile the temple of God [by sinning willfully,or justifying our sins], him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

Did not Jesus Christ destroy those who wanted to turn back into Egypt?

God will remember both the righteousness and the wickedness of every person.  It is SIN to knowingly marry and become one flesh with an unconverted person; and it is SIN to attempt to mix our own ways with the sound doctrine of  Holy Scripture.

Why?  Because being one flesh with the unconverted is analogous to being of one spirit with sin. 

A harlot is an unbeliever so in this next verse replace the word harlot with the word unbeliever.

1 Corinthians 6:15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot [or any unbeliever]? God forbid.  6:16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot [or any unbeliever] is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.

Therefore: 2 Corinthians 6:14   Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?  6:15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?

6:16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. 6:18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

Jesus said the same thing in Matthew 12:25  And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand:

Now if the converted knowingly and willfully marry the unconverted their house is divided between Christ and those contrary to Christ.

Again Jesus said:   Matthew 6:24   No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon [the things of the flesh].

If a converted woman takes an unconverted man for her master; has she not pledged to serve her husband?  Is she not then divided within herself between pleasing her husband and pleasing God?

Now hear this!  If it is forbidden to marry the unconverted; the wickedness of  mix the Word of God with the writings of  unbelievers is an even worse sin!  This is because the very purpose of forbidding mixed marriages is to prevent the mixing of the Word of God with the traditions and beliefs of the unconverted!  

WHY are the elders not standing up and speaking out on this matter?

In all this I am speaking of a willful and deliberate mixing of the spiritually clean with the spiritually  unclean, and the scriptures say that if the clean touch [including being  married to] the unclean, then the clean will become unclean.

What if one person already married to another is converted and not the other?

Remember that we are in a new and spiritual dispensation from Ezra, so Paul instructs us.

1 Corinthians 7:12 But to the rest speak I, [Paul’s personal opinion] not the Lord: If any brother hath a wife that believeth not, and she be pleased to dwell with him, let him not put her away. 7:13 And the woman which hath an husband that believeth not, and if he be pleased to dwell with her, let her not leave him.

Once baptized we are forbidden to marry outside the faith. It is to be understood that on occasion someone might marry a person in good faith thinking them to be converted who later falls away, and in that case the instructions regarding remaining married to an unconverted person if married before baptism hold.

7:14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy.

If a person is baptized, already having an unconverted spouse; the unconverted spouse who is content to accept the baptism of their spouse will be sanctified by that marriage as long as there is no opposition to the faith. The children are sanctified by their believing parents as long as they respect and obey their believing, obedient to God, parents. The unconverted spouse and our obedient children reap the benefits of a respecting and obedient to God faithful believing spouse or parent.

7:15 But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage [If an unconverted spouse abandons the marriage, the converted person is no longer bound by the law of marriage; for the unbeliever has departed not the believer: and in departing has rejected the Word of God.] in such cases: but God hath called us to peace.

The purpose of marriage is to teach us about the deep loving single minded unity that Jesus Christ wants with his collective Bride. It is to teach us of the love and passion that Christ has for his Bride. Marriage is to teach us about the permanent loving unity of mind, nature, deeds and spirit that we are to have with our Husband Jesus Christ for eternity.

As we are physically united in marriage and that union develops over time into a union of mind and spirit when that initial love develops and grows; it teaches us about the nature of the relationship that Jesus Christ wants us to have with him for eternity.

Physical marriage also teaches us of the need to overcome our faults and to accommodate ourselves to the needs of our mate and that we all need to replace our own natures with the nature of Christ through our passionate love for him.

We are to LOVE our espoused spiritual Husband and to internalize his nature and keep his commandments and instructions, out of a genuine wholehearted love for him! If we love him, we will seek to please him with all our being!

We are to obey our espoused Husband – who commands us to live by every Word of God the Father – and to get into the habit of doing that for all eternity.

These are the lessons that physical marriage is intended to teach. Therefore when the unconverted spouse leaves and takes another; we are no longer bound to them, and are free to seek the true godly kind of marriage that teaches us the true ways and lessons that God wants us to learn.

7:16 For what knowest thou, O wife, whether thou shalt save thy husband? or how knowest thou, O man, whether thou shalt save thy wife? 7:17 But as God hath distributed to every man, as the Lord hath called every one, so let him walk [remain in the marital state in which you were when you were called of God unless the unconverted spouse rejects you]. And so ordain I in all churches.

This is NOT a license to go out and deliberately and knowingly marry a non believer, for it is Paul himself who commands that we be not unequally yoked.

What then of the lack of a suitable mate?

First let me suggest that the only real difference between many of the COG groups is leaders and governance. that is a broad hint about expanding your search.

Second we are told to “Count the Cost”  before making a baptismal commitment, and the cost may be that God will test us in the area of suitable spouses.  Who knows if you are being tested with the desirable stranger to see if you will be faithful to the commandments of God?  Who knows that if you are faithful to God that he will provide?  Or who knows if this is just our burden to bear for the sake of loyalty to the Great God.

Matthew 19:12  For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

 

Historical lessons concerning mixed marriages

1 Kings 11:4 For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father.

The wise Solomon was led astray by his wives to worship these false god’s himself.

11:5 For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites.

To mix holiness with sin renders one spiritually unclean and separates us from God. 

1 Corinthians 3:16  Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 3:17 If any man defile [make spiritually unclean with idolatry and false  traditions] the temple of God [our minds], him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

1 Kings 11:6 And Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD, and went not fully after the LORD, as did David his father. 11:7 Then did Solomon build an high place for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, in the hill that is before Jerusalem, and for Molech, the abomination of the children of Ammon. 11:8 And likewise did he for all his strange wives, which burnt incense and sacrificed unto their gods.

Then the anger of YHVH was hot against Solomon; as it is hot against the latter day corporate church groups for their idolatry of men, false traditions and corporate organizations; exalting them as idols above the Word of God.

11:9 And the LORD was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned from the LORD God of Israel, which had appeared unto him twice, 11:10 And had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods: but he kept not that which the LORD commanded.

God took the kingdom away from Solomon and surely God will take away our place as rulers in his kingdom if we follow anyone or anything away from a passionate zeal to live by every Word of God. 

Yes, God is the author of division! God divides the wicked who have departed from him, from those who are faithful to live by every Word of God! 

11:11 Wherefore the LORD said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and will give it to thy servant. 11:12 Notwithstanding in thy days I will not do it for David thy father’s sake: but I will rend it out of the hand of thy son. 11:13 Howbeit I will not rend away all the kingdom; but will give one tribe to thy son for David my servant’s sake, and for Jerusalem’s sake which I have chosen.

Brethren, Almighty God is FURIOUS at those who do such appallingly evil things, departing and leading others away from any zeal to live by every Word of God; and exalting men as idols above God’s Word and above God the Father, the King of the universe! 

The Almighty in Righteous FURY will cast those who do such wickedness and claim to be the deciders for the brethren, usurping the Word of the Eternal-All Wise – Almighty God, out of his sight and into the furnace of affliction.

13:23 In those days also saw I Jews that had married wives of Ashdod, of Ammon, and of Moab: 13:24 And their children spake half in the speech of Ashdod, and could not speak in the Jews’ language, but according to the language of each people. 

Consider Nehemiah’s righteous fury.

Nehemiah 13:25 And I contended with them, and cursed them, and smote certain of them, and plucked off their hair, and made them swear by God, saying, Ye shall not give your daughters unto their sons, nor take their daughters unto your sons, or for yourselves.

13:26 Did not Solomon king of Israel sin by these things? yet among many nations was there no king like him, who was beloved of his God, and God made him king over all Israel: nevertheless even him did outlandish women cause to sin.

13:27 Shall we then hearken unto you to do all this great evil, to transgress against our God in marrying strange wives? 

 

1 Comment

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  1. Greetings James,
    you state “Second we are told to “Count the Cost” before making a baptismal commitment, and the cost may be that God will test us in the area of suitable spouses. Who knows if you are being tested with the desirable stranger to see if you will be faithful to the commandments of God?”.
    The scriptures declare; “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when He is tried, He shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. Let no man say when He is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth He any man: But every man is tempted, when He is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.” James 1:12-14
    In the above scripture the word tempt/tempted is translated from the Greek word which means to test. Now if the word of God testifies that God does not tempt any man how can you say “and the cost may be that God will test us”? Your statement is contrary to the word of God!
    Regards,
    Didier

    God does not “tempt” by enticing us into sin, but God does allow us to fall into temptation to test us while tempering us, to teach us lessons and to make us stronger. How long did God allow Joseph and David to be tested? Do not forget that God allowed Satan to tempt Eve and Adam in the garden, do not forget Job; do not forget Abram and Isaac, or that God allowed Satan to tempt Jesus and God allows Satan to tempt us.

    Satan does the enticing but God allows him to do so, in order to test and perfect us. God allowed Satan to afflict Israel in Egypt, but God also provided a way of deliverance. In like manner God has provided a way of salvation from bondage to Satan and sin.

    Psalm 66:10 For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried.
    See also Deu 8:2, 13:3, Ex 20:20.1
    James

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