Friday, July 20, 2007

Marriage and the Covenant Between Christ and the Church

“Husbands, love your wives just as Christ loved the church and gave His life for it. He did this to dedicate the church to God by his word, after making it clean by washing it in water, in order to present the church to himself in all its beauty – pure and faultless, without spot or wrinkle or any other imperfection.” (Ephesians 5:2527.)

Marriage is a covenant between a man and a woman just as Christ made a promise to the church and took it to be His bride. Though we are wretched sinners and as the church (and Bride) take Christ for granted and certainly do not deserve Him, He remains with us and honors the pledge He made to us. So then why are we so quick to walk out on a marriage that does not seem to be going as we had planned and/or hoped?

“Submit yourselves to one another because of your reverence for Christ. Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands as to the Lord. For a husband has authority over his wife just as Christ has authority over the church; and Christ is Himself the Savior of the church, His body. And so wives must submit themselves completely to their husbands just as the church submits itself to Christ.” (Ephesians 5:21-24.)

When we, as wives, do not offer ourselves to our husbands we are not trusting in the Lord for He is sovereign. He controls the birds of the air and the fish of the sea. He tells creation when to act and when to be still. He leads the tiniest dust particle and speck of pollen. All is within His charge to do with as He pleases. We are His children and He is our loving, nurturing, protective Father.

“Jesus answered, ‘How unbelieving and wrong you people are! How long must I stay with you? How long do I have to put up with you?”…Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked him, ‘Why couldn’t we drive the demon out?’

“‘It was because you do not have enough faith,’ answered Jesus. ‘I assure you that if you have faith as big as a mustard seed, you can say to this hill, ‘Go from here to there!’ and it will go. You could do anything!” (Matthew 17:17 & 19-20.)

Oh to have that kind of faith! I wish I had infinite trust in my Father and leaned on Him completely but instead I feel as though I should just give up and run away sometimes. When the tide comes and hurricane blows, I want to retreat instead of standing on firm ground with Christ.
“‘Why are you so frightened?’ Jesus answered. “‘What little faith you have!’ Then He got up and ordered the winds and waves to stop, and there was a great calm.” (Matthew 8:26.)
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