Abundant Life Crusades
Tony and Marge Abram have been preaching the Good News for over 61 years!


Biblical Marriage

Marriage is an institution created by God.

That much is clear from Genesis 2:18-24(NIV).
- 18 The LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him."
- 19 Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name.
- 20 So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field. But for Adam no suitable helper was found.
- 21 So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man's ribs and closed up the place with flesh.
- 22 Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.
- 23 The man said, "This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called 'woman,' for she was taken out of man."
- 24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.

Marriage was included as a part of the original creation, it is clear that God's fundamental intention for marriage applies to all human beings.  However, a look at the whole of Scripture reveals that marriage has special meanings for the people of God.  Marriage is a faith journey toward an unknown destination the discovery that people must share not only what they don't know about each other, but also what they don't know about themselves.

I. The Preparation for Marriage An average of 13,500 Americans get married every day.
Marriage is not gritting your teeth and bearing it but gritting your teeth and making it work. A couple must be:
  A. Mentally Prepared
  - Mark 10:9 ((KJV) What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
    1. It is for a lifetime!
  B. Physically Prepared
  - Amos 3:3 (KJV) Can two walk together, except they be agreed?
  1. A couple must be in realistic agreement. Matthew Henry writes: "Eve was made by God not out of His head to rule over Him, nor out of His feet to be trampled upon by Him, but out of His side to be equal with Him, under His arm to be protected, and near His heart to be loved."
  C. Monetarily Prepared
  - 1 Tim 5:8 (KJV)  But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.
    1. No money (or job)-no marriage.
  D. Married husbands and wives are:

Happier, healthier more prosperous than people in other types of households across all ages and races, Americans who live alone die at a much higher rate.  For example, divorced men in the under 65 ages group have considerably higher mortality rates for a number of diseases than their married counterparts.  Their death rate is twice as high for lung cancer and strokes, three times as high for diseases related to hypertension, and seven times higher for cirrhosis of the liver.

II. The Plan for Marriage Must include:
  A. Salvation
  - Rev 3:20 (KJV)  Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
  B. Submission
  - Eph 5:22 (KJV) Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.
  - Eph 5:23 (KJV)
 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.
  - Eph 5:24 (KJV) Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
  C. Showing
  - Eph 5:25 (KJV) Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;  
  - Eph 5:26 (KJV) That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, (Eph 5:27 (KJV)
   That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. (Eph 5:28 (KJV)
   So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. (Eph 5:29 (KJV)
   For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: (Eph 5:30 (KJV)
   For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. (Eph 5:31 (KJV)
   For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. (Eph 5:32 (KJV)
 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
  Love is known only by the action it prompts.
  D. Sharing, Adam and Eve shared a rib.

III. The Practice in Marriage
How marriage is carried out day by day. A couple must be:
  D-Diligent (in cooperation)

IV. The Problems in Marriage
  A-The Certainty of Problems
  B-The Cause of Problems
  C-The Course of Problems
    1. Your Progeny (children)
    2. Your Purse (money)
    3. Your Passion (affection)

V. The helper in Marriage is the Holy Spirit. The Cherokee marriage-ceremony is very expressive. The man and woman join hands over running water, to indicate that their lives are thenceforth to flow on in one stream.
  A. Jesus attended weddings and also His mother Mary.
  John 2:1-2 ((KJV) 1 And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there: 2 And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage.
  B This is what Jesus said about marriage.
  Mark 10:6-9 ((KJV) 6 But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. 7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; 8 And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. 9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
     1. Then note in this same chapter He blesses the little children.
     Mark 10:14-17 ((KJV)
     14 But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. 15 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. 16 And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them. 17 And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?

VI. Closing thoughts.
This beautiful prayer was written by Bishop Slattery, soon after his marriage, to be used each day in their family devotions at home in Boston, Massachusetts.

A Prayer for a Married Couple
O God, our Heavenly Father, protect and bless us. Deepen and
strengthen our love for each other day by day. Grant that by Thy
mercy neither of us ever say one unkind word to the other.
Forgive and correct our faults, and make us constantly to forgive
one another should one of us unconsciously hurt the other. Make
us and keep us sound and well in body, alert in mind, tender in
heart, devout in spirit. O Lord, grant us each to rise to the
other's best. Then we pray Thee add to our common life such
virtues as only Thou canst give. And so, O Father, consecrate
our life and our love completely to Thy worship, and to the
service of all about us, especially those whom Thou has appointed
us to serve, that we may always stand before Thee in happiness
and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

  A. Some things to think over.
  "To keep your marriage brimming / With love in the loving cup / Whenever you're wrong, admit it / Whenever you're right, shut up!"
  Marriage is like twirling a baton, turning handsprings or eating with chopsticks. It looks easy until you try it.
  Overheard: "Marriage is nature's way of keeping people from fighting with strangers."
  "An archaeologist is the best husband a woman can have; the older she gets, the more interested he is in her."   Mystery author Agatha Christie, who was married to one.

God bless you and yours!
On behalf of this generation,
Your friends in the service of Christ,
Tony and Marge Abram
Abundant Life Crusades

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