The Marriage Institution (v)

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Ephesians 5:21-33. 1 Peter 3:1-7.
Hebrews 4: 12-13.

Drink waters out of thine own cistern, and running waters out of thine own well.
Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad, and rivers of waters in the streets.
Let them be only thine own ,and not strangers with thee.

Let thy fountain be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of thy youth.
Let her be as the loving hind and pleasant roe,: let her breasts satisfy thee at all times, and be thou ravished always with her love.
And why wilt thou , my son, be ravished with a strange woman, and embrace the bossom of a stranger?
For the ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD, and he pondereth all his goings.” Proverbs 5:15-21.

5, Accomplishment.
Ecclesiastes 9:8;4:9-12;Acts 18:2.

Marriage is for progress, and progress means positive addition. This explains why the Bible states that two are better than one. With two , children are produced. And whereas, one can chase a thousand, two can chase 10,000 by God’s own arithmetic. Two heads are said to be better than one because they have greater capacity and double strength to garner more resources, to encourage each other and to resist any potential or real opposition.
Indeed, testimonies abound of individuals whose lives turned positively around as soon as they got married. Children from such homes desire to marry, and to raise homes similar to those of their parents. Yes, there are some aberrations. But such cases are far in between; and are resolved when such couples seek God for solution. There’s no doubt that such aberrations wherein individuals get married, and begin to witness some ugly developments in their health, finance, business and general well being may have their root in Satanic attacks, unholy living and , sometimes, a carry over of generational curses on either of the parties involved or even both. etc. Whatever it is, a recourse to the owner of MARRIAGE through faith in JESUS, and total commitment to Godliness and righteousness (, Proverbs 24:34 and Titus 2:11-13), will cause a restoration , not just of eternal life, but of everything lost during the years of the LOCUSTS. Am sure some reading this conversation will testify to this reality. No doubt, with Jesus in your marriage, your accomplishments would know no bounds. We bear this testimony as a family.. Luke 5:1-5.

  1. Accountability.
    1 Corinthians 4:2; Hebrews 4:12-13.

Jesus gives the parable of the Talents to teach us both enterprise and accountability. Accountability is to report back, or to show or give details of events, happenings and developments in unambiguous manner, of things in which we are involved. To be accountable is to disclose. To explain. To give details. To make clear . To clarify. To ensure understanding. To report back for purposes of records. Explaining to avoid being misunderstood, misrepresented or misinformed. Beyond all reasonable doubt. Leaving nothing to conjecture, imagination or unsaid. Therefore, when couples take to being accountable to each other, it’s not because they fear each other; Or that anyone has bewitched the other. No. They are only putting into practice what God expects from MARRIAGE. Don’t forget that when God created Adam and Eve, and placed them in the Garden of Eden: they were both naked. Yes, they were open to each other. Nothing was hidden in their individual lives from each other.
Apostle Paul amplifies the essence of ACCOUNTABILITY when in 1 Corinthians 4:2, he reminds believers to realize that we are all stewards of God. And as such , we must be faithful. Absence of Accountability is secrecy, cloudy, unclear, without explainings, opaque. unwilling to disclose. And if a marriage is full of these negatives, it would amount to no marriage at all because it will not be long before it crumbles. Even if it survives, it could well be peace of the graveyard. Sometimes without tangible progress, and lacking in the fear of God.
As a rule, couples should account of their : TIME. RESOURCES, including incomes, gifts,; their BODIES too.(You can’t just wake up and put tattoo on your body or bore a hole in your nose, your mouth etc, without telling your spouse),
Diversions from work must be accounted for, additional income outside of salaries, gifts to third parties by each spouse should be accounted for, especially if the gift will affect significant percentage of the family income, or, if the gift is not part of a spouse’s own personal allowance as agreed by the couple — if you run joint account.
Accountability keeps communication flowing in the family, and also reduces areas of conflict and crises.
Couples must be mindful of the fact that any expenditure, detour in movement, or receipt of anything, that can’t be explained or disclosed to their spouses may as well be difficult to justify before God. This is why Apostle Paul reminds us in Hebrews 4:13 that we are dealing with God before Whom all things are naked and open. Don’t hide anything from your spouse. I have read in a book where a man of God in agreement with the wife resigned from a particular local church, for another ministry in another city because he was not comfortable with his feelings toward a sister in the church pastored. Can you beat that! Matthew 5:27-30 .

  1. Appreciation (Acknowledgement).
    Luke 17:11-19. Romans 16:1-16

Jesus took time to appreciate the stranger-leper who came back to thank Him for healing him. In addition, Jesus made him whole, which meant that the scares of leprosy left him. Others who didn’t come back for thanksgiving only received cleansing. They still had scares of leprosy in their bodies. They were not re-created unlike the ONE who came back for appreciation. God also wants us to appreciate Him Jesus’ teaching in Luke 17 typifies this all- important element in our marriage relationship. We can’t afford not to learn how to show appreciation to each other as a couple .
In Romans 16, Apostle Paul took entire chapter of a book to appreciate all those who assisted him in one way or the other in course of his ministry work. He didn’t gloss over any name, including all the women , which was uncommon to do in those days. . Couples should do similarly: A good cooking, by the wife. A gift or a good buy by the husband. A birthday bash etc , should be appreciated always, and timely too to avoid forgetfulness, and ,somehow, unfulfilled desire or inner unhappiness for not being appreciated.
It is also an act of love to say thank you to somebody who has done you good.

8, Assurance: (Reassurance).

Solomon uses the book of Songs of Solomon to further deepen this truth that Love Songs are not carnal, but saintly ingredients meant to garnish our marriage relationship. There’s nothing wrong in singing songs of assurance and reassurance to your spouse. That is what Solomon seems to do in this book.
Yes, generally, women need to be assured, and reassured by their husbands
of their love and care, and commitment to the marriage project. This is especially so given the reality of the wear and tear , or faster fading nature of the girl- child in marriage, occasioned by child bearing and rearing. This is why a husband MUST dwell with this special gift to him with all the tenderness, the civility , the consideration and all the care in this world , to make her happy, settled and committed in a place she has chosen as her home – her marriage. When this assurance and or reassurance is lacking, the wife in particular, may begin to indulge in Self- Help because she doesn’t understand the mind of her husband.

One of the key means to achieve this assurance or reassurance is to buy property items in the name of the wife, or in the name of both couples. Doing a Will is also good where the wife and her children are captured as beneficiaries. Husbands must know that making a Will doesn’t represent license to death. God has the key to life and death : it’s not your Will that will orchestrate your passage. So, do a Will to protect your wife and children from unGodly family members and in-laws. Do not assume that you know your brethren because you are with them NOW. Their kindness to your family may just be because you are alive. Many have been so deceived. Even sibblings can fight dirty and petty where there is no Will.
A Will duly done will reassure your wife of your commitment to the marriage project.
Happy Sunday. God bless. (To be continued).

Pastor Okoro, a revivalist, and marriage counselor, can be reached on: 08051000462. All references are from KJV. (except otherwise stated).

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