TTATT-6 - The Truth About Marriage & Divorce

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In the early days of mankind, God said, “For this reason a man shall
leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall
become one flesh.”

Welcome to our study of the truth about marriage. Marriage is indeed
a very serious and important topic. We look across the state of marriages in
the United States of America today, and many marriages are ending in
divorce. Many people are choosing not to marry. They are opting not to
have to deal with divorce and the heart ache that goes along with that.

Today we will be thinking about what God has to say that will help
and be profitable to every marriage that's willing to follow God's word. As
we think today about the subject of marriage, what an important topic!
Marriages need to put God at the center to really succeed.

We begin by asking: What can married couples do to make their

marriage really one that will glorify God?

First, we suggest from the Scriptures that for marriage to be what
God wants it to be, you have to understand the purpose of marriage.
What's marriage all about? Why did God create marriage for His creation?

Marriage is to provide needed companionship. No one wants to be
alone. God created Adam, and then God created all the animals, and all
the other things in the days of creation. God saw that it was not good for
man to be alone. He made a helper comparable to him. What's marriage
about? It gives us needed companionship. God knew what Adam needed.
God knows that man and woman need each other. They need the strength.
They need to lean on one another. They need to not face life as a loner, but
rather to have the companionship, the help, the strength, and to heirs of
life, 1 Peter 3:7, together. It gives needed companionship.

Secondly marriage is designed to propagate the human race.
Genesis 1:26-28, God said, “Let us make man in our image.’” God made
man in the image of Himself. He told man to, “be fruitful and multiply and fill
the earth.” When God created man, He created him with a desire, with a
need, to fill the earth. We have a need to reproduce and propagate the
human race. As we think about marriage, that is the proper scope for
sexual relations and reproduction. The Bible says in Hebrews 13:4
“Marriage is honorable and the bed undefiled but whoremongers and
adulterers God will judge.”

We then think about another purpose of marriage that I believe is

often left out, and it should be right up at the top of the list with other
purposes of marriage. God created marriage, and He created man a
woman to be a helpmate. He created her to be a helper. Genesis 2:18,
“God saw it was not good for man to be alone. He made a helper
comparable to him.” While we help one another in various levels, don't miss
the fact that God created man and woman to help one another get to
Heaven. God created the marriage arrangements, and God created man
and woman to complement and help one another.

As we think about the purposes of marriage and that being to truly
strive to do what we can to help each other get to heaven, let's realize if
that's the case we need to be ask ourselves a very serious questions about
those who we may be considering for marriage. You want to know, is the
person whom I am considering someone will help me get to Heaven? Are
they someone who will encourage me in my spiritual walk? Will they help
me to be a better student of the Bible? Will they help me to pray more? Will
they help me to draw near to God? When we bring children into this
marriage arrangement, will they do everything possible to help them learn
got about God, become Christians, and go to Heaven?

Right at the top of the list, I'm looking for someone God wants. I
need someone who will help me get to Heaven, a helper in that daily walk
with Christ. A helper will help me face the challenges, enjoy the good times,
and be there dependably during the difficult times. The Bible also teaches
that as part of the joy of marriage, we have the privilege of the sexual
relation, which is designed to prevent immorality, 1 Corinthians 7:1-5. ‘It is
better to marry than the burn.’ You've got passions; I have passions. We all

have desires that we were innately built with by God. And in and of
themselves and in the right scope, those are things that are pure and right
and holy. Where is that area that's approved by God? Again, it's marriage.
“The bed is undefiled,” Hebrews 13:4. And so marriage, part of it is to enjoy
that relationship, to fulfill those desires, and it is the right and holy place
that God has helped us to do that and told us how to fulfill that desire.

Now friend as we think about the purpose of marriage, let's also
realize it is to help one another developed spiritually, 1 Peter 3:7.Our goal
should be to help each other mature spiritually. Ephesians 5:21-31, you've
got husbands who are to be head of the home, and you have wives who
are seen as the Queen the home. She's to be in submission the husband.
The husband is to be the spiritual leader in the home and to think not of
himself, but of others and their spiritual growth and development. 1 Peter
3:7, ‘we’re to be joint heirs of the grace of God together.’ I want to help my
wife; I want my wife to help me to grow spiritually, to know the Lord better
and to develop a spiritual mindset to not think about things of this world, but
to truly think on the things of God and focus on what He wants me to do in
this life.

If we’re going to succeed in marriage, not only must we come to the
Bible and let it tell us what the purposes of marriage are, we've got to let
God and the Bible be the standard in our marriages.

Why do so many marriages breakup? What causes people to lose
focus and lose interest and not really have the kind of marriage that they

should have?
One of the key reasons is that we don't let God and the Bible have
first place in our marriage.

The Bible clearly teaches God should be the foundation of every
marriage. Psalm 127:1 says, “Unless the Lord builds the house they labor
in vain who build it.” The psalmist said in Psalm 34:3, ‘Let us exalt His
name together,’ that's the idea. God's has got to be at the center. We've got
to strive together in marriage to put God first.

Now listen carefully, when we talk about God and the Bible being
our main priority being the center of marriage holding it together, that
means He has to come before our own wants and desires. It means God
has to be more important than money, worldliness, our jobs, and our
recreation. In every decision, I need to put God at the forefront, let Him be
the guide in my marriage, and His word be the standard. Husbands and
wives should make it their goal in life to help each other be more Godly.
They are to strive to improve their knowledge of God's word. They should
study together and pray together.

When critical decisions are going to be made in the home, we need to
let God's word have free reign in our marriages. We need ask, “What does
the Bible say on the subject? Is there any word from the Lord that will relate
to this that we’re dealing with in our marriage?” Jeremiah 37:17, “What
does the Scripture say?” is the question we want to ask, Romans 4:3. You
want to study the Bible together in marriage. The Bible says, “Study to
show yourself approved in the God a workman who does not need to be

ashamed rightly dividing the word of truth.” Who better to study the word of
God with, than the one you've chosen to help you get to Heaven?
Husbands and wives need to pray together and pray for each other. James
5:16 says, “The effective fervent pray of a righteous man overcomes
much.” “Men ought always to pray,” 1 Timothy 2:8. I should pray that I'll be
a better husband, a better father, that my wife will be an encouragement to
us, that we’ll all strive together to really have a home that will glorify and
honor God. And to bring prayer into that equation, what power and strength
that brings. We come boldly to the throne of grace that we might find grace
and mercy to help in time of need.

Here's a principle that relates to letting God and the Bible be the
standard in marriage, if God's going to be first and if His word is going to be
the standard, then I have to put God before anybody else in my family. That
means God has to come before my spouse. God has to come before my
children and my family. It doesn't have to be that way, but if we’re working
together, God should be right there with them. But when things aren't like
they should be, maybe someone has a Christian/non-Christian relationship
or maybe people are not following the word of God in the home like they
should, how do I look at that? God has to come first. Matthew 10:37 Jesus
said, “He who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me.”
Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things
shall be added unto you.

As we talk about God in the home, let's also realize that for
marriages and homes to be what God wants them to, the standard for living
in the home has got to be God's word. I love the words of Joshua 24:15.

Joshua said, “As for me and my house we will serve the Lord.” What kind of
principles did Joshua teach? In our home God and His word must be the
standard of living. God sets the tone on our lifestyle. God sets the tone for
our morality. His word is the guide that we follow. And when we have
questions, whether they be moral or questions about the home, or
disciplinary action, whatever it may be the will and the word of God need to
be the standard.

Matters related to the home must be decided by this book. The Bible
says in Jeremiah 31:17 that God's word is that source that we look to.
Jeremiah 37:17, “Is there any word from the Lord?” is asked. What does
this book say on the subject, the matter, that we're dealing with? John 2:5
we want to remember the statement that Mary made. Mary as she is giving
instructions to some of the servants, she turns them and said, “Whatever
he, Jesus, says to you, do it.” Can you find better advice than that?
Whatever Jesus says to us, we want to do it.

And so as it relates to matters the home, let's let God's word make
the final decision.

As Christian mates, we have to help one another live up to God and
His standards. As parents, we want to make sure that children do what is
right according to the Bible. As the Scripture says you want to, “Bring them
up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, so that they can know God
and know His way.”

Friend for marriage to work, you have to be committed to one
another. You have to be committed each other. Here are some of those
commitments you have to make.

First of all you have to be committed to, leaving father and mother.
We’re not saying that you can’t have relationships with your families. But
now my main focus and interest is me and my wife; it’s our family. Genesis
2:24, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother, be joined to
his wife and the two shall become one flesh.” There is the leaving of the old
family unit that you were a part of under your father and mother. You’re
joined to your wife and now the new arrangement, the new family unit, is
made. And we're not going to follow the same decisions we might have.
We’re to let God and His word in our family make those decisions. Will
many of those be the same? Yes. If going by the word of God, they
absolutely will. But we're not going to lean on parent to make those
decisions. This is a problem that occurs in marriage. Somebody, when
matters may come up or troubles may arise, they turn to mom and dad.
They may give some advice, but first to the Bible. Let's build our own family
unit based off the word of God and God's teaching. Leaving father and
mother and cleaving to one another, to build that wonderful relationship,
God wants. And so there's got to be that commitment to leaving father and
mother. There has to be a true commitment to the permanency of marriage.

Today marriages sadly are often cast-off like garments that one
loses interesting in and changed as though it's a just a suit of clothes. It is

sad. That's not the way God designed marriage. Jesus spoke clearly,
“What God has joined together let not man put us under,” Matthew 19:9.
God hates divorce, Malachi 2:16.

And so, when we talk about marriage, sometimes we hear at a
ceremony, ‘til death do us part.’ Did you know that’s biblical? Romans 7:1-4
marriages should be until death, that's God's design. And thus if my
marriage is going to succeed when I enter into that arrangement, I've got
say myself ‘this is a commitment that no matter what I make, come good
time, come bad time, come difficulty, if I have a lot or have a little, I'm going
to make it work. I'm going to overcome the struggles.’ And if you have the
mentality that we’re going to do everything possible within our power to
make this work, friend your head and shoulders above many in this world
who when hard times come, just throw in the towel.

Along those same lines, you also have to be committed to facing the
problems of life together, that's what marriage is all about. God saw all that
was not good for man to be alone. As we have problems and difficulties,
we're to be there for each other. We want to help one another. We want to
work together. You don’t have to be alone in this anymore, that's the
beauty and the harmony of marriage. It is having somebody to help you in
this life.

And of course part of the commitment of marriage is, you've have to
be committed to provide for one another. If a man won’t provide for his
own, the Bible says he's worse than an infidel or an unbeliever. The man
provided. And in Proverbs 31 you also had the virtuous woman, who also

did her share in the home and elsewhere as well. And so, part of the
commitment is to take care of one another physically, financially,
emotionally, and spiritually. That is a commitment you have to make.

But you know the key to marriage is it has to really be bound by true
love. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 13: 13, “Faith, hope, and love. The
greatest of these is love.” Ephesians 5:21-31, “Husbands are to love their
wives as themselves.” No one ever hated or abused himself is the idea. No
one in his right mind harms himself. He loves himself and is going to take
care of himself. You are to love your wife and your family in that extent.
The Song of Solomon, which is a beautiful love story, shows us the bond of
love. Love is to be stronger than death. It's fire flames most vehement
flames that many waters cannot quench. The writer said, ‘If a man were to
give for love, all the wealth of his house, it would be utterly despised,’ Song

And so, let love be the binding agent that brings you together.

Now listen carefully, we’re not talking about lust. When we say the
word “love” we’re not talking about sexual attraction. We’re not talking
about desire. Those things may have their proper place, but they're not
love. True love thinks about others first. True love is self-sacrificing. True
love wants to make others happy, take care of them, and wants to see
them get to heaven. And while the relationship physically may exist inside
that, compared to all the other things related to love, it is indeed a small
part of the equation.

Now as we think about marriage, let's also listen to what God has to
say concerning the subject of divorce and remarriage. Friend when God
instilled the home in Genesis 2:24, God meant for there to be one man and
one woman for life. God said, “For this reason man shall leave his father
and mother and be joined to his wife and the two become one flesh.” That's
the ideal. That's God's original plan: one man, one woman for life. Staying
in that relationship, until death do them part Romans 7:1-4.

God and never wanted divorce to occur. He never wanted multiple
marriages and remarriages and divorce. That is not part of God's original
plan. One man, one woman for life is God's original plan that He formed.

Now as we know, the Scriptures teach God Himself hates divorce. It
feels one's garments with violence the Bible says in Malachi 2:16.

Does Jesus say anything in the New Testament on the subject of

He absolutely does! I want to direct your attention to the words of
Jesus in Matthew 19. I want you notice what the Lord says in Matthew
19:3. “The Pharisees also came to Jesus testing Him and saying to Him, ‘Is
it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?’ He answered
and said to them, ‘Have you not read that He who made them at the
beginning made them male and female and said, ‘for this reason a man
shall leave his father and mother be joined to his wife and the two shall
become one flesh. So then, they're no longer two but one flesh, therefore

what God is joined together let not man separate.’ They said to Him, ‘Why
then did Moses command to give a certificate of divorce and put her away?’
Jesus said to them, ‘Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts,
permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so.
And I say to you whoever divorces his wife, except for fornication, sexual
immorality, and marries another commits adultery; and whoever marries
her who is divorced commits adultery.’”

What does Jesus say on the subject of divorce? It is not according to
God's original plan. When God brings people together, He wants them to
stay together. Even though, because of the heart hardness of the Israelites,
God permitted it, it was never a command. “And I say to you, whoever
divorces his wife except for fornication and marries another, commits
adultery, and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery as
well.” Jesus taught that Mark 10, Matthew 5:31-32, and in Matthew 19:1-9.

So what are Jesus’ words on divorce? Keep it together. Make it
work. The only scriptural reason for divorce is fornication, sexual
immorality. The Greek word porneia, illicit sexual activity outside the
marriage bond, and then and only then does the innocent party has a right
to remarry.

God has not given 101 reasons for divorce, for marriage, divorce and
remarriage. God hasn't done that; He's only given one reason for scriptural
divorce. And then, only the innocent party can remarry.

Now as we think about the subject of marriage, let's realize though,

Study Questions for: “Truth Series: Marriage and Divorce”

1. According to 1 Peter 3:7, husbands and wives are heirs to what?

2. Who are we made in the image of according to Genesis 1:26-28?

3. Where are sexual relationships honorable according to Hebrews 13:4?

4. In Genesis 2:18 when God saw that it was not good for man to be alone,
what did He do?

5. According to 1 Corinthians 7:1-5, what do the sexual relations of
marriage prevent?

6. According to Ephesians 5:21-31, what are husbands to be?

7. According to Ephesians 5:21-31, what are wives to be?

8. What is the question, in Jeremiah 37:17 and Romans 4:3 that we must
ask when problems and difficulties arise in our marriages?

9. What does God hate according to Malachi 2:16?

10. According to Matthew 19, what are God’s commands as to who is
permitted to get a divorce?