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Marital Success or Failure

Question: Why are marriages breaking up after 20 or 30 years? The same thing that breaks up Christian marriages at 20 or 30 years, is the same basic thing that breaks up marriage at 5, 10 or 15 years.

Answer:  No Fear of God.  The fear of God is foundational to the success of any marriage.

                Let me explain, the partner who breaks their wedding vows, does not FEAR God and has rationalized why he or she should abandon the marriage.  One of them or maybe both were not serious about what they vowed on their wedding day. God is REAL and most folks forget that. They abuse the grace that He gives called marriage, and believe that they can turn their back on God and their partner. At that point, the issue is all about what they want, not about the covenant they made. They make their decision and expect God to be ok with it and forgive.  He forgives when there is contrition, but there are many consequences. You reap what you sow, even though it may not be immediately realized. If you have broken someone's heart this way, then just know that God is not pleased.

                 If couples truly feared the Lord, they would do whatever they could to make their marriage work. Like Pastor James MacDonald of Harvest Church says, "don't leave, fight for your marriage." It requires team effort to obey God and love each other with biblical love. They both should have the same understanding of marriage and desire the same result i.e, a life together as husband and wife in obedience to the calling of marriage to the glory of God. In other words, they have to be on the same page from year one to year whatever, and learn how to forgive each others faults. True love covers a multitude of sins. It is not all about chemistry but rather it is about commitment.

                In addition, the success or failure of marriage starts with a clear understanding of why God designed marriage. God said, "Be fruitful and multiply." He who finds a wife has found a good thing. When you understand that marriage is a gift from God based on a covenant made with God, then you will remain faithful to the call. If you buy in to Hollywood's definition of marriage, i.e., what you can do for me, then it will fail. Unfortunately, many people look at Hollywood and the culture. They buy in completely. Thus, they rationalize why it is ok to leave their marriage. Some pastors and pastor types have made the bad decision to leave. God does not like that. God gives only two and maybe three reasons that a marriage can be dissolved (death or infidelity and abandonment). Remember, marriage is a covenant not a contract, a covenant with God first and then each other.  It takes a lifetime of work to develop a good marriage.  The couple should stop looking for a way out, enjoy what they have, and treat their mate like they want to be treated. When this happens, divorce stats will decline significantly.

                In Eph. 5:25, God commands the husband to LOVE his wife. In Eph. 5:22, God commands the wife to SUBMIT to her husband. Several passages of Scripture discuss the intricate workings of marriage. Passages such as Matt. 19; 1 Cor. 7 & 13; 1 Pet. 3:1-12; Col. 3. However, the Ephesians passage hits the nail on the head. When a man truly loves the Lord, (He obeys) and when he truly loves his wife, (he loves himself). True marriage is a covenant and biblically speaking, the only thing that breaks that covenant is physical death.


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