Saturday, September 15, 2012

Life Shape Family Growth & Discipleship Week 2 – Marriage

Memory Verse: Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband. (Ephesians 5:33)

God created the heavens and the earth and then spent six days establishing order and filling the earth with life. Each day when God finished His work He looked back on the day and said, “It was good.”

Six times in the first chapter of Genesis God covered His day’s work by saying it was good.

Genesis 1:31 Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

There were plants and animals, fish and fowl, bugs and spiders, seeds and snakes and someone like God in the garden to take care of all creation. Life was as God intended and everything was good … until …

Genesis 2
18  And the LORD God said, "It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him."
19  Out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name.
20  So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him.
21  And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place.
22  Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
23  And Adam said: "This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man."
24  Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
25  And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

The first marriage was divinely arranged by God and is the perfect picture of this union as God intends.

God is proprietary and as the inventor of marriage, the term “Marriage” is trademarked and God also holds the patent.
·        Marriage is a divine approval on the union between 1 man and 1 woman.
·        Marriage is not any two people who commit to each other in order to gain assets, legitimize sex, qualify for insurance, secure change or climb the social ladder.
·        Marriage should be the union of 1 man and 1 woman in that holy covenant which makes two lives one in the eyes of God until death parts.
·        Marriage can begin right or get right and stay right by learning and following God’s instructions.
·        The only marriage you can and should work on is the one you have right now. Outside of that, you can only work on you!

As I said, God is proprietary – He invented marriage and He holds the patent. Therefore as Creator, Only God holds the right to define marriage and He has clearly done so in His Word.

Today we will survey the roles, rules, rights and responsibilities of marriage according to the Creator. You would benefit from more information and there is a guide to marriage and pre-marital counseling which I wrote a decade or so ago available in the foyer. This book is used as a counseling guide by ministers and counselors both in the US and abroad. There is more to it than I can develop in this single class and I encourage you to get one, take it home, read it together with your spouse or fiancé and follow its wisdom. (I understand that we only have about 80 copies, our printing cost $5 and we make them available to everyone who orders at that replacement cost – if you can’t afford one, take one free … order)

Life Shape Notebooks … a $6000 re-investment in our congregation and community … we never charge more or make money off of anything we do with our congregation and most often bear the whole cost whether it is here in our Church or on our television programs … our standard is to never make merchandise of the Word of God. (John 2:16; 2 Peter 2:3) Any extra we receive above pure costs goes directly to missions.

I believe it is important that you know the integrity and commitment of your Church … but for now - back to the Roles, Rules, Rights and Responsibilities of Marriage according to the Creator.

God joins people together in relationship first for what they can give, not for what they can get.

1.  Marriage Roles
a.   Husband
                                         i.    Provider – Work
                                        ii.    Protector
                                      iii.    Defender
                                      iv.    Guide – Recognized Spiritual head of the home
1.   Needs – Respect
2.   Gives – Security (motivated by love)
3.   Generally appreciates headlines
4.   Compartmentalized
b.   Wife
                                         i.    Healer – Environmental Specialist
                                        ii.    Helper
                                      iii.    Stabilizer – Homemaker
                                      iv.    Support
1.   Needs – Love (fosters security)
2.   Gives – Respect (seen in submission & support)
3.   Generally appreciates details
4.   Non-compartmentalized
2.  Rules of Marriage
a.   What you did to get you do to keep
b.   No hitting below the belt
                                         i.    Intentionally hurt
                                        ii.    Abandon
                                      iii.    Make afraid
c.   Do your part
3.  Individual Rights In The Marriage
a.   Two are one
                                         i.    We Share In
1.   Assets
2.   Liabilities
3.   Hopes
4.   Fears
                                        ii.    We expect
1.   To not be intentionally hurt
2.   To not be abandoned
3.   To not be made to fear
b.   The Exchange – 1 Corinthians 7:2-5
                                         i.    Do not deprive
                                        ii.    Body not your own – “My Body” is a reversal of the Word
4.  Marriage Responsibilities
a.   Do our part according to the role we have received
b.   Husbands – Keep this in mind – 1 Peter 3:7
                                         i.    Weaker vessel/hindered prayers
                                        ii.    Don’t be a bully
c.   Wives – 1 Peter 3:1
                                         i.    Win without the Word – No preaching
                                        ii.    Be an asset
d.   Both – It’s not about you!!!
                                         i.    Cover the sinner –
1 Corinthians 7
14  For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy.
16  For how do you know, O wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, O husband, whether you will save your wife?

In the end, it does take two people to have a happy marriage but it usually begins with just one.
·        Do your part even if you are the only one
·        Strive to please God more than pleasing yourself
·        Expect to give more than you expect to get