Rebuilding a Marriage Culture: A Fourfold Mission for the Church
Article by Ryan T. Anderson, Ph.D
“……First, the church needs to present a case for biblical sexuality that is appealing and that engages the best of modern thought. The virtues of chastity and lifelong marriage are enriching, but after fifty years, the church has still not devised a compelling response to the sexual revolution. The legal redefinition of marriage could take place when and where it did only because the majority of Americans lacked a sound understanding of the nature of man and the nature of marriage……”
“….To experience God’s highest and best in marriage, God has to be first in our lives. Prior to teaching on marriage, the Apostle Paul talks about our relationship to God—about being filled with the spirit and the word. Our relationship with God is first, and there is a reason for that. The fact is, to experience God’s highest and best in a marriage, God has to be first in our lives. Being full of the word and the spirit and having a reverence for God will translate into blessings in marriage.
The relationship between husband and wife is affected by the relationship with God; and the relationship with God is affected by the relationship between husband and wife. If I am in right relationship with God and full of His word, which is His wisdom, and I am full of His Spirit and have a reverence for God, it is going to affect how I treat my wife and how I relate to her. God is going to deal with me about that because marriage was His idea. It was not man’s institution. In fact, before God had a church, He had a marriage……”
Great article that appears on the Family Research Council (USA) web site written by Andreas J. Kostenberger. There is also available a pdf brochure, for download, that you can print and hand to others.
“…..What is marriage, biblically defined? And what is the biblical definition of a family? In this brief treatise on marriage and the family, we will take up these questions and proceed to discuss a number of related matters, such as singleness, divorce and remarriage, and homosexuality, in an effort to develop a full-orbed understanding of the biblical teaching on the subject……”
“…..Culture does play a very significant role in our attitudes and actions regarding marriage. The Christian must not be shaped by his culture, but by the cross of Christ, the Word of God, and the Spirit of God:
Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul (1 Peter 2:11; see also Romans 12:1-2; Ephesians 4:17-24).
When the Christian comes to marriage then, we dare not allow the world (our culture) to shape our thinking, our attitudes, or our actions. The purpose of this message is to consider Christian marriage primarily in light of the teaching of Peter in his first epistle…..”