Everyone agrees that a good marriage is more pleasant and beneficial than an unhappy one. But equally important, a good marriage is a model of the heavenly union of God with the believer. In other words, your marriage might win someone to Christ or cause him to turn away from a life in fellowship with God. That in itself should be reason enough for us to learn to be godly mates and live the abundant life in the context of a Christian marriage!
As we review the details of the first union of a man and woman, a great deal can be learned about what God had in mind when He created marriage. When God made man, three Persons were involved: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. They created man in Their image, imparting Their nature to him so that man, in a sense, had Their nature.
Before the fall, Adam was able to walk and talk with God in the way two friends might visit on a summer evening. During those talks, God made His will clear to Adam. Among the topics they discussed was work. In the second chapter of Genesis, God places Adam in the garden and appoints him to be its overseer, a pleasant job in a fertile garden where there were no weeds, no destructive insects, and no droughts. Then God gave Adam instructions to enjoy all the fruit of the garden, with one exception: the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. God gave Adam lessons about work and following instructions even before He created a mate for him.
The first lesson we can draw from this is a warning for single women.
When any woman considers a man for marriage, they need to remember that before God gave Adam a wife, He gave him responsibility.
It’s clear from the order in which these events took place that God wants a husband to work and to be responsible. That shows us that a lazy and irresponsible man, no matter how attractive, is not a good choice. Marriage won’t make him a responsible provider and leader. God wants the best for each of His daughters, so single women should consider their choice of a mate carefully and follow God’s standard by marrying only a man who demonstrates while he is single that he can and will take care of them in marriage.
If you ask the average man what God has said about his responsibility to his wife, to his children, and to himself as the head of the home, he will often admit he doesn’t know or give an answer that demonstrates he doesn’t know. And instead of looking to God for answers, these husbands either listen to their friends on the corner or adopt standards from TV. Because they don’t know God well enough, they base their personal identities on clothes, cars, cash, or romantic conquests. That reduces manhood to a primitive level.
God’s definition of manhood is the ability to put divine truth into action at home and on the job.
No amount of strength, good looks, or assets can improve his performance from God’s perspective. A biblical husband is a man who has learned to submit his manhood underneath the Lordship of Jesus Christ. It is then that he will experience all of the fullness that a healthy marriage has to offer.
Marriage is a covenantal union designed by God to enable both partners to fully live out their divine purpose for being. Only when both partners understand their responsibilities underneath God will they maximize this unique union!