Marriage is a common blessing of God. It is a way of living that reflects the character of God and because of this, participation in marriage allows us to know God better. One of the modern developments in Christianity is to minimize the importance of marriage. I remember the continual resistance and discouragement Adam and I faced when we were seeking to get married. The response of Christians in our lives was that we should wait until we were established financially and that we should not rely upon one another to find wholeness. Sadly, this is still a common Christian response. I am not suggesting that another person can meet all your needs or complete you. I am saying that God designed the vast majority of people to be married, not to go through life alone. So when two young lovers (or old married folk) feel a sense of fulfillment in each other and their marriage, it is because God designed us that way. It is not because we have psychological issues and are co-dependent. It is because we are human and God made the two to become one.
God loves you so much that he designed someone just for you. This is one of the truths marriage teaches you about God. It is somewhat insulting to think that God, who knows how many hairs are on your head and holds the universe in his hand, does not have a person planned for you. It is also inconsistent with a lot of Scripture. One example is Genesis 24:14. Abraham’s servant was sent to find a wife for Isaac. He prays that God will make him successful. He asks God to have the girl say a particular thing so that he can identify the right girl. “…let her be the one you have chosen for your servant Isaac.” We get to experience the care and love of God in our marriage. By experiencing this, it enables us to trust him as he chooses and forms us to be a bride for His Son.
I remember when I met my husband. I was not a sentimental or romantic sort of girl. I liked to think I was above all that gooey stuff. Meeting Adam was somewhat off-putting in that he could make me giggle like a mindless twit, much to my dismay. He still can twenty-two years later. I was absolutely love struck and it revealed to me the passion of God. These emotions aren’t inconsequential or stupid, but necessary reflections of our relationship with Jesus. Many complain that some of today’s worship songs sound like love songs. I think the problem lies in the attitude of the listener, not in the song. We worship God because we must. We are driven to. We must express the amazing perfection of His character, His holiness. There is a very personal quality to our experience of the goodness of God. It is very similar to the passion experienced when you are in love.
Dan Barker never really grasped this concept. He once stated that atheists did not need to sing songs about gravity to prop up their faith. “Oh gravity, we believe in you gravity.” (or something to that effect) That misses entirely the point and the ecstasy of worship. It is difficult to blame Dan Barker as many Christians are equally uncomfortable and clueless about the passion driving worship. Yet intimacy and ecstasy have a long and proud tradition in worship. Why do we avoid discussing this truth?
Another truth we experience in marriage is the joining of two minds in the unity of truth. Your spouse sees things differently than you do. If you are blessed enough to have married someone who is consumed with finding truth, than you have experienced the process of coming into unity. This process is nearly identical to the process of coming into unity with God. “Come let us reason together…” Isaiah 1:18. It is slightly different because you know that God is right, whereas you do not know this about your spouse. However, you are no closer to understanding the thought processes of God than you are to understanding your spouse’s, so in that way they are similar. Some will warn you not to ask God why. I say always ask God why, otherwise you cannot know Him. If you start from the position that God is good, He almost always answers you. God desires for you to know Him. He wants to change your mind.
The last truth you will experience in marriage is that you are flawed. If you had other illusions, marriage undermines them in a hurry. This is a blessing because when your selfishness and sin are exposed, God can remove it. He can not do that if you manage to keep it safely hidden.
God’s shows his love and his character to us through his many names that are disclosed in the written revelation of the Scriptures. One of the audio books that Adam has performed is all about the names of God. It is entitled, The Names of God: Exploring God’s Character with 1000+ Names of God and Their Meaning. Chris Adkins (the author) in the introduction writes: “See first hand through His name how He is a caring and healing God who longs to hold you close to Himself, as a parent would embrace a child.”
God binds Himself to us through the form of covenant which is a highly relational term used throughout sacred Scripture. It is the human form that allows for God’s divinity to become relationally understandable to His people. God has covenantal loyalty or faithfulness which is depicted in the Hebrew through the word, chesed.
God is the ultimate covenant-keeper (Psalm 89:33-34) whereas humankind strives for perfection, tries to keep covenant terms but often fails. Of course, Christ, as God-man, is actually the only way to keep the covenant in a way that truly binds man to God.