The glorious gospel the power for a glorious marriage!

I was almost 30 years old when I finally got married. Alisa on the other hand was…let’s just say younger than me…much, MUCH younger than me. Some tease me and some accuse me of “robbing the cradle…”! There was and is a big age gap between us which Alisa passionately reminds me of especially when I receive AARP materials in the mail. We also come from very different families. Mine though loving, was riddled with divorce and Alisas’ family was like Mary Poppins, “practically perfect in every way”. It has been over 26 years since the day we said “I do” and “I will no matter what”. We were told how great marriage is and how hard marriage is before we got married and we have experienced both. When you ask those who have been married for 50 years or longer what the secret to their success was you get all kinds of answers. I believe God gives us the best reason and provision for glorious marriages.

Marriage was created at the beginning…in the garden with Adam and Eve. It was literally “a match made in heaven”, heaven on earth that is. It was perfect because everything was perfect, even they were perfect! These two people walked with God, talked with God. No pressure at the office, no fights because there was no “does this make me look fat” questions to navigate. (that alone cut way back on the amount of potential arguments…I’m just saying)  To top it all off they were “naked and unafraid”! (ridiculous TV show) but this was Adam and Eve’s marriage.

The reality is, marriage today is made up of two very imperfect people, living in a very imperfect world, dealing with impossible circumstance and situations. At the same time expecting married life to be “heaven on earth” a “match made in heaven”.  Although there is nothing inherently wrong with the institution of marriage because God created it, there is something inherently wrong with the two people who make up the marriage union. To be blunt, we are sinful. Meaning we are selfish and driven to please only three persons, me, myself and I.

The great news is even with these conditions we can have happy, fulfilled and deeply intimate marriages. God has given us the secret to a happy, healthy, joy filled marriage. The secret is the gospel! That’s right, the good news of all that Jesus has done to save us, justify us, redeem our lives and reconcile us with God!
The only way for a marriage to be “heaven on earth” is for two people to understand and take full advantage of both the power of the cross and the reality of the resurrection of Jesus!
You see living our lives fully aware of the truth that we are “a new creation” gives us the power to be a great husband or wife. We are no longer slaves to our sinful nature! When two people live their lives in the reality of the gospel it sets them free to be the spouse their mate needs! The picture and proof of this is found in the association of Christ and the church.
Ephesians 5:31-33
31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

Marriage is a reflection of the gospel – all that Jesus did for the church! How He loved, served, sacrificed, humbled and submitted Himself all because, “Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.”  Ephesians 5:26-27

When two people are “in Christ” they have the potential and power to humbly love, serve, sacrifice and submit themselves to their spouse like Christ did the church! When we are in Christ the Spirit of Christ lives in us and the fruit of that union produces love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control, all the ingredients for a “match made in heaven”!
No matter where your marriage is at right now, no matter how it started or what has been said or done, you can have the marriage you have dreamed of!
The gospel, the good news that Jesus is the great equalizer in a marriage.  The gospel gives you and I the power to have healthy, strong, fulfilling marriages! In your marriage, start walking and living in all that Jesus has given you through the gospel and you will begin to have the same marriage God gave Adam and eve in the garden…minus of course the part of walking around in public naked!
The power of the gospel is the power for a glorious marriage!

1 Comment

Todd & Jody Kooistra - May 27th, 2019 at 1:45pm

Thank you Pastor Mike!

As Todd and I reflect on what you say about marriage it encourages us. Knowing we are doing it right keeping Jesus the center of it all.

We do appreciate all you do to teach us about our father God.

Through the goodtimes and the bad our faithful father carries us!

Thank You Jesus!!!!