The hubby and I recently celebrated four years of marriage, and it’s cool to think that four years ago, we stepped into this commitment before God and made vows to each other.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I sometimes struggle to keep promises. Most of the time, it’s because of my forgetful memory.
However, the vows we
shared in our marriage
represent so much more.
I can testify that a great marriage is not constant wedded bliss—but rather two sinners who are within God’s greatest tool for sanctification and are also filled with both joy and happiness.
“You told me awhile back that an important part of marriage is realizing our imperfections and working our hardest to act out of love and service toward each other just as Christ loved and served us. We are so unworthy of that love, yet he loves us so much, that my prayer for both of us is that we show that same type of love to each other.”
“I pray that our love and obedience to Christ will be perfected; that through our relationship, God will demonstrate to the world around us what Jesus Christ can do in the lives of His Children. Just like our Savior loved the Church and gave himself up for the Church, I promise to be a loving husband. I promise you my sincerest care, my deepest affection, and my fullest devotion.”
These vows that Ben and I shared four years ago mean something to God.
Marriage is God’s covenant.
God designed marriage to provide partnership, spiritual intimacy, and the ability to pursue God together. God designed it to reflect His image and to fulfill His interests. He is the one who joins a husband and wife in marriage, and He brings judgment on those who violate the boundaries of marriage.
Any marriage without God in the center is deficient; it lacks His blessing and violates His design. But when both the husband and wife are devoted first and foremost to God, and they love and serve each other sacrificially in obedience to God’s design, then the beauty (and therefore the glory of God) is on display. God patterned marriage on earth to illustrate the relationship of Jesus Christ and his bride—the church.
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church – for we are members of His body. For this reason, a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This is a profound mystery – but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. | Ephesians 5:22-33
This was always the design for marriage.
We understand these roles much better
following the work of Christ and
his promised vow to the church.
Jesus died on the cross for our sins to save us from eternal damnation. His resurrection sealed the victory over both sin and death, and his ongoing work to nourish and purify the church is the promised marriage to Him in heaven. This is the promised vow we have to look forward to.
“From one end of the Bible to the other, God assures us that He will never go back on His promises.” | Billy Graham