God's Plan for Marriage

Marriage is designed and blessed by God
Genesis 1-2
26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
27 So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them.
28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
18 The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”
19 Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name. 20 So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field.
But for Adam no suitable helper was found. 21 So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.
23 The man said,
“This is now bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called ‘woman
for she was taken out of man.”
24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.
What are God’s purposes and plans for marriage?
1. Reflect God’s image 
26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness…27 So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
• We were created as image bearers
• We were created to complement one another as image bearers
• We reflect God’s image through our unique maleness and femaleness
2. Rule God’s creation
26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
• God’s stewards and ambassadors
• Rule and subdue: The marriage union is God’s frontline to establish His Kingdom
• A changed couple can influence a changed family; church, neighborhood….world
• God’s call to ministry-influence and kingdom advancement
3. Reproduce a godly legacy
28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
• Not just biological but spiritual
• My wife and I have prayed, even before we were married, that our children would have a greater impact for Christ on their generation than we have had on ours
• If God has not blessed you with physical children be spiritual parents and leave a legacy
4. Respect God’s Covenant
15 The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. 16 And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.”
• An implied covenant of works
• Man’s failure to live on obedience led God to reestablish a covenant of grace which was God’s eternal covenant of salvation
• The relationship of Adam to Eve; Adam to God; Eve to God; Adam and Eve to God were all covenantal relationships
5. Receive God’s gift
18 The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”
19 Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name. 20 So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field.
But for Adam no suitable helper was found. 21 So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.
• Eve was God’s gift, our spouse is God’s gift, we are to receive God’s gift as our compliment to complete us
• Acceptance of God’s gift is acceptance of God; rejection of God’s gift is rejection of God
• Marriage is God-centered
6. Respond to one another as “one flesh”
24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.
• The repeated principle that is in both the Old and New Testaments
• Marriage creates a oneness of relationship that is analogous to New Testament salvation
7. Represent Christ and the church
Ephesians 5:22-33
22 Wives, submit to your own husbands as to the Lord, 23 for the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of the body. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so wives are to submit to their husbands in everything.25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
• Husbands love and sacrifice like Christ, Wives respect and submit like the Church…both reflect Christ through the mystery of the one flesh principle
• Marriage is a picture of Christ and the Church
• God’s purpose for marriage was that it be the most dynamic human relationship that provides a living example of what a relationship with God through Christ looks like!
• Christ and His love is to be the foundation of marriage and the example for both husbands and wives
We experience a mutually satisfying and God blessed marriage when we build our relationship on God’s plan

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