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Life Stations 2 - Christian Marriage

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Reading: Genesis 2:18-25
The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” Genesis 2:18 (NIV)

I.   Marriage is for Companionship

     A.  Marriage is God’s idea

           1.  Marriage belongs in the garden

                 a.  Marriage isn’t a concession to deal with human weakness.

                 b.  Marriage is there before sin.

           2.  God doesn’t have bad ideas.

                 a.  It was God’s idea to give Adam a wife.

                 b.  It was God’s idea to point out to us that his creation intended marriage.

     B.  It isn’t good to be Alone

           1.  The first time the Bible says that something wasn’t good was before sin.

                 a.  This is a parable in action.

                 b.  Men pay attention: “It is not good for the man to be alone.”

           2.  Nothing can satisfy the built-in human need for relationship except other humans.

                 a.  The animals weren’t enough.

                 b.  God made us so that even when we’re perfect we need each other.

           3.  The design of marriage is for intimacy.

                 a.  For this reason. . .they will be one flesh.

                 b.  A marriage can be a very lonely place when intimacy is missing.

     C.  One Man, One Woman

           1.  God’s design: one man, one woman.

                 a.  Even though there was polygamy later

                 b.  Monogamy is the Biblical ideal

                 c.  A qualification for a deacon or elder is to be a “one woman man.”

           2.  This doesn’t mean that all of one’s needs for friendship can be met by one person.

                 a.  This may have been true before sin.

                 b.  One suggested cause of divorce is expecting too much from marriage!

II.  Marriage is for Enjoyment

     A.  A suitable Helper

           1.  Helper - doesn’t mean assistant.

                 a.  This is the same word used
I lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. Ps. 121:1-2

                 b.  The term doesn’t reflect inferiority, but necessity.

           2.  Suitable for what?

                 a.  A suitable companion.

                 b.  Adam needed someone suited to meet his need for friendship.

           3.  Marriage is supposed to appropriately help meet our need for committed friendship

                 a.  This doesn’t happen perfectly anymore.

                 b.  This doesn’t happen without work

     B.  Marriage is for Mutual enjoyment

           1.  Do you hear the joy in Adam’s words?

                 a.  The first words of a human being quoted in the Bible are these!

                 b.  The words celebrate Adam’s joy in finding one who was like him.

           2.  Enjoy each other! (Song of Songs!)

                 a.  I know the answer is Jesus but it sure sounds like a squirrel to me!

                 b.  This book celebrates physical love.

     C.  Married people Belong to each other

           1.  Married people’s bodies belong to each other!

                 a.  Read 1 Corinthians 7:3-5

           2.  Married people have rights and obligations toward each other.

                 a.  These are spelled out in marriage vows.

                 b.  Some of these are simply assumed.

           3.  What God has joined together. . .

                 a.  God joins married people together

                 b.  This union is meant to be permanent.

                 c.  When divorce happens it is painful.

III. Marriage is for Growth

     A.  Marriage is for Personal growth

           1.  One point of a life-time commitment to one person is personal growth.

                 a.  Divorce was permitted because of hardness of heart (Matt.19:8).

                 b.  Loving one person over the period of many years softens our hearts.

                 c.  What can be glossed over in friendship can’t be glossed over in marriage.

           2.  Sticking things out through thick and thin grows you up.

                 a.  Running when things get hard is for boys and girls not men and women

A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. Proverbs 17:17 (NIV)

                 b.  Beard and forbear, give and forgive.

                 c.  Growth=change. Change often hurts.

     B.  Marriage is for Relational growth

           1.  We need intimacy and don’t always know how to meet our need.

                 a.  We have to learn how to find, hold onto and maintain intimacy.

           2.  Building a healthy friendship with one person makes healthy friendship possible.

                 a.  In learning to be a friend with one person we learn what being a friend is

           3.  Being family with people we wouldn’t choose to relate to can be good!

                 a.  We get stretched sometimes.

                 b.  We learn to appreciate different types of people.

     C.  Marriage is for Spiritual growth

           1.  When we get to crisis points in marriage, we are driven to God for help.

                 a.  Every marriage goes through crises.

                 b.  God is with us every time.

           2.  Marriage is supposed to mirror the love of Christ for the Church.

                 a.  We are to be as Christ and the Church to each other.

                 b.  A marriage is the first place to put our faith into practice.

           3.  Marriage is the most significant place to love one’s neighbor as one’s self.

                 a.  Love your enemy! Love your neighbor. Love yours spouse.

The Bottom Line:

God intends married people to be committed Friends, Enjoy and Support each other, and Grow together.

PH#481 O Perfect Love (God’s love is the only perfect love)

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