What Would Jesus Say about Marriage and Materialism

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Synopsis of    What Would Jesus Say About  Marriage – Materialism

Good and joyful day today to all Christian brothers and sisters on this the day the Lord has made. Pull up a chair, pour yourself a cup of coffee, or tea, or milk, or whatever is your favorite, we’re about to slice a piece of the Bread of Life, the Word of God. And today we will serve two slices.

Last week I spoke not about W. W. J. D.   but   W. W. J. S.  – What Would Jesus Say.  

Last week we covered What Would Jesus Say about Me, about Modern Churches  and  The Marginalized.  Today we will look at His thoughts on Marriage and Materialis m.      We will go to scripture from:  Matthew 19:3-12    Some Pharisees came and tried to trap him with this question: “Should a man be allowed to divorce his wife for any reason?”  4   “Haven’t you read the Scriptures?” Jesus replied. “They record that from the beginning ‘God made them male and female.’  5  And he said, ‘This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.’  6  Since they are no longer two but one, let no one separate them, for God has joined them together.”  7   “Then why did Moses say a man could merely write an official letter of divorce and send her away?” they asked.  8  Jesus replied, “Moses permitted divorce as a concession to your hard-hearted wickedness, but it was not what God had originally intended.  9  And I tell you this, a man who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery –unless  his wife has been unfaithful.”  10  Jesus’ disciples then said to him, “Then it is better not to marry!”  11   “Not everyone can accept this statement,” Jesus said. “Only those whom God helps.  12  Some are born as eunuchs, some have been made that way by others, and some choose not to marry for the for the sake of the Kingdom of Heaven. Let anyone who can, accept this statement.”

  1. Christ Himself said there was a back door…. unless his wife has been unfaithful.”
  2. And a reason for those who commits their life to the Lord…. for the sake of the Kingdom of Heaven.

Now it’s time for a little humor on the topic.    Harry and Martha had been married for fifty years when their friends and family threw an anniversary party for them. At the height of their celebration Harry proposed a toast with these words: “Martha and I have been married for fifty years and never had a fight. The secret to our bliss can be attributed to this. On the night of our wedding we agreed that whenever an argument arose between us, I would take a walk. Which, come to think of it,  probably explains why I have lived a largely outdoor life.”

Marriage, who needs it? Marriage, why is it? Marriage, how long should it last? With questions like these, the Pharisees try to test Jesus. In response, Jesus gives us a teaching about one of societies most sacred institutions. Let us see if we can understand what He says.

The promise of a lifetime covenant is now much longer than ever. We are asking people to enter into a covenant for a much longer relationship than ever before because we live longer

This try it and see if you like it philosophy brings with it some sobering statistics. According to census, of one hundred co-habitating couples, forty will break up before marriage and of the remaining sixty who do marry, forty-five will end in divorce.

So, why should a marriage be a life-long covenant? I would like to suggest two reasons.

  1. You deserve it. Marriage is a valuable estate.
  2. In marriage we come to know people as they really are. Intimacy deserves our unconditional commitment. If we are not married what hope is there for real love?

Likewise having a life-long, loving commitment creating the security of a family is hard work. But it is worth it. Anybody can marry for richer and for healthier and for better, but it is that old rhythm in those historic sacred vows that make family what it is: for better and for worse, for richer and for poorer, in sickness, as well as in health. Why? Because-you-deserve-it.

Marriage is not a game of power and control or superiority and submission; but a partnership of mutual trust. Sometimes you lead. Sometimes you follow.   It’s the coming together of two tributaries which after being joined together flow in the same direction, carrying the same burdens of responsibility and obligations. That is why divorce is so messy. It is trying to separate water that is flowing together in a common stream.

Why should marriage be a lifetime covenant? Children need it. Interestingly I think it is no accident, that the teaching immediately following Christs’ dissertation on marriage happens to be Jesus’ famous statement about children. “Let the children come unto me and do not hinder them for the kingdom of God belongs to them.”

It is also interesting that the teaching immediately before this one has to do with mercy, grace, and forgiveness. Wedged between, we find the principal of marriage sacredness.

NEXT….. Divorce can be a reluctant necessity.

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