The Gift Of Love

A SOLUTION TO END DIVORCE IN CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE

By, Irene Webster

Have you ever asked yourself why are so many Christians divorced? But how do we change this tragedy?? Simple answer, OBEY GOD’S WORD. So, how do we do this?? By studying to show ourselves approved…I know, it sounds simple. But it really is.

Let’s look at a passage in God’s Word deals with the heart of what marriage is all about.

1 Ephesians 5:1 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children;

2. And walk in loveas Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savour.

3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;

4 Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.

5 For this ye know, no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.

6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.

7 Be not ye therefore partakers with them.

8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:

9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.

13 But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.

14 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.

15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;

20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;

21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord

23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the savior of the body.

24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,

27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.

29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:

30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.

31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.

32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverences her husband.

A Jewish Wedding

Let’s begin with Ephesians 5:17: Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

Sounds to me like we need to know what God’s will is for a Godly marriage? So, we need Godly wisdom but what is it?

James 3:13-17 KJV

13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.

14 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.

15 This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish.

16 For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.

17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

Ask for God’s wisdom and what His will is on how to have a Godly marriage. You will see a change of meekness, peaceful, gentle, and easy to be reasoned with, merciful, non-partial, and not hypocritical. Sounds Godly, but how do we do this consistently?

  • First of all, the Lord tells us through Paul we need to be filled with the Holy Spirit to love one another. Ephesians 5:18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

Clearly, he is also saying in order to be followers of God, as dear children we need to walk in love, just as Christ who loved us and the only way Paul knows is to be filled with the Holy Spirit of God! Ephesians 5:1, 2, 18!

  • Next, we need to submit to one another. Ephesians 5:21: “Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.”

But what does submit mean in this verse? Well, it means to be subject. It is a choice to allow yourself to be guided, controlled, or ruled by something (or someone). Simply put, we have to choose to be led by our mates and be willing to let them make decisions and lead even when we clearly oppose their choices. It is a moment-by-moment choice, all the while doing it as unto the Lord Himself! God is able to open your mate’s understanding and see your perspective if they are led by the Holy Spirit.

Let me say here this the most important thing here is mutual submission or there is no real Godly love in marriage. True Agape love requires personal death to self with both people. Ephesians 5:21Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. The fear of God here means out of respect and love for our God we serve because He tells us to and watch what happens!

For wives the most difficult thing is for them to be subject, to submit. But what does submit look like here? Apparently, in Paul’s times the Hebraic, Greek and Roman culture had a society where husbands ruled over their wives with undeniable authority with the man controlling his wife, and family. The wife had no choice if she was to survive. She was more of a possession than a partner.  So naturally, she had a great deal of resentment and being told to submit to a controlling, selfish husband took being led by the Holy Spirit no question. So, realistically, most women could only easily submit with God’s help! Additionally, respecting whatever she could find to respect in her mate goes a long, long way in building his self-esteem and encouraging his love for her, not to mention how it can lead the unbelieving husband to Christ.

Ephesians 5:22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord

23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the savior of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.

1 Peter 2:1-2 3 In the same way, wives, submit to your husband’s; so even if some of them do not believe the Word, they will be won over by your conduct, without your saying anything, 2 as they see your respectful and pure behavior.

Then, the husband’s challenge was to love his wife as Christ loved the church and laid down his very life for her! In fact, submission to a wife was unheard of but this is what Christ stood for. Christ’s example of love for the Church, His wife was sacrificial totally, to the very death so she might be saved. WHAT AN EXAMPLE to all believers! Holy Spirit led husbands putting their wives needs before themselves, in fact loving their wives as they love themselves!!

Ephesians 5: 25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,

27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.

29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:

Therefore, we have looked at the Word of God concerning the roles of husbands and wives in respect to how they treat one another in marriage, we can see in order to have a successful, divorce free marriage they must both submit to one another, with the woman choosing to submit and respect her husband, and the husband selflessly loving his wife as he loves himself, putting her needs above his own. The secret is selflessness, Agape LOVE, being filled and led by the Holy Spirit. Then divorce will end…

Thank you, Lord Jesus, for coming to the earth as a lowly baby in a manger, only to later lay down your own life on a cross for your bride, the Church, so we might live with you in eternity. We also thank you for sending us a Helper, the Holy Spirit to help us in our weakness after you set the perfect example of sacrificial love so we might know how to live together in loving marriages. Come Holy Spirit…fill your people once again…heal marriages, and help us love selflessly…AMEN

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