"For this reason a man shall…" Matthew 19:5 (NKJV)
We've been laying some much-needed groundwork as we approach the subject of marriage. First, we saw that marriage is God's idea to begin with. Next we learned that the differences men and women bring into a marriage relationship are deliberately and divinely designed.
But now we need to cross over. We need to switch over from God's divine role in marriage and examine our responsibilities when it comes to marriage.
Notice in the passage above that Jesus, who had just declared God's divine act of creating marriage and the differences that define it, turns the attention to the man. He says "a man shall…" We need to stop and see something here. Another version of the Bible renders this passage as "a man will," and the point being made is that there's a willful action on the man's part. There's a decision that's being made here, a determination to do something.
In addition to being a matter of divine design and differences, marriage is also a matter of human decisions. That's important to recognize for this reason: although marriage is God's idea, it isn't something we can just put on autopilot. There's an undeniable element of decision and participation that needs to take place in order for a marriage to be biblical.
We should not and cannot expect marriage to simply take care of itself. Just like a garden, it needs to be actively tended to and cultivated. And that happens as we recognize our responsibility to use the free will God gave us to make decisions as it pertains to our marriage relationship.
Marriage is a gift from God, but it's a gift that requires our attention and our determination to make God-honoring decisions.
Think about it…
What does this passage reveal to me about God?
What does this passage reveal to me about myself?
Based on this, what changes do I need to make?
What is my prayer for today?
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. James 1:17 (NKJV)
Consistency breeds security. If you're an employer, you take comfort in knowing that you have consistent employees working for you. If your car needs to be fixed, you're going to take it to a mechanic who has consistently performed well. And if you're a coach, you'll probably draw up a play at the end of a tight game that puts the ball in the hands of your best and most consistent player.