Marriage – For the Good of Children
In this fourth and final sermon of the short series – Marriage as God Intended It, it is clearly explained that God intended the act of procreation and the bringing forth of children was to take place within marriage, and that could only be between a man and a woman. Indeed, amongst other things, marriage was designed by God, for the good of children, providing a secure and stable environment, with concern for their emotional well-being.
Included in the features of such a marriage there should be an exclusive, lifelong commitment between the father and the mother. It also ought to be that a Christian marriage is of much more benefit to children, as they should see love in action, compassion, forgiveness, respect and communication. In a Christian marriage children should see something of the grace of God in their parents. There is of course a challenge to Christian parents to actually live what they preach.
Marriage – When Things Go Wrong
Sadly, in these days, we hear too much of broken marriages. Things go wrong, and it is a sorry statistic that fewer children are being born within marriage. Within the United Kingdom around 50% of children are born out of wedlock. Too often we hear of absent fathers, or children being nurtured within the context of a single parent. By the time they are 15, 50% of children will not be living with both of their birth parents.
It is important to stress that a marriage without children should not be considered a failure, as there are numerous circumstances which could lead to such a situation.
Marriage – Under Attack
God’s ideal is under attack, as within the wider society there is a weakening of the resolve to uphold marriage as God intended it. Many children today look at their parent’s marriage and seeing broken promises don’t like what they see, and thus their own idea of marriage is coloured by their own experience. It can be said that the God-ward dimension has largely disappeared from with society as far as marriage is concerned..
It seems to be evident that even within the heterosexual population there is a decline in marriage, and regrettably there also seems to be a growing acceptance of homosexual practice amongst the population at large.
The Christian is therefore often left marginalised, but God’s word confirms to us that marriage is between a man and a woman. Any other interpretation breaks God’s law, His commandments, is disobedient and will ultimately lead to God’s judgement.
Marriage – What Can We Do?
What then can we as Christians do? Let us be certain to uphold our marriages, let us make them the best we can. Let us remain confident in the Bible, and not ashamed of it. As Christians we are not bigots or homophobes. Let us surprise people with our humour, love, warmth and reasonableness. We must however work and pray for the conversion of souls, let us pray for the success of the Gospel. For only then will there be a turning back to the ways of God.