January 3, 2012
© 1999 AMKCH
PHYSICAL RELATIONSHIPS IN DATING
In the September 1981 issue of Good News Broadcaster, there is a story about a beautiful young girl who was too tall, which limited her opportunities for dating. Most of her weekends were spent at home while other girls her age went out on dates.
One weekend, one of the stars of the Varsity Basketball team asked her for a date. She did not ask whether or not he was a Christian, but immediately said “yes”. Her mother was not pleased with the arrangement but the girl went anyway. As it turned out, the boy had other things on his mind than just having fun together and for her, it turned out to be a miserable evening. The girl learned the hard way that her mother was correct. We should always listen to our parents, because they know more than we do… by experience itself. A few months later, one of her girlfriends ended up marrying this boy because “they had to get married”. However, just before the baby was born he left her for another girl.
For some time, the Christian girl had argued within as to whether or not she should lower her standards for the sake of getting dates. Seeing what happened to her girlfriend, was the reality of what could have happened if she would have done so. Instead, she took the matter to The Lord, and in His time, He brought her a wonderful Christian young man who was training to be a preacher.
This story had a happy ending for the girl, but it also represents a little of the pressure that teens have today; to lower their standards so that they end up missing God’s blessings and direction in their lives.
- God’s Plan
God planned from the very beginning that male and female were made for each other. The very first relationship on earth was between a man, a woman and God. It was a relationship of love. God took the woman from man’s side and she has been close to his heart ever since!
God also designed for man and woman a physical relationship designed to express a perfect unity between the two. We commonly refer to it as the sexual relationship; and in its rightful place, it is beautiful, enjoyable and wonderful.
Another aspect of God’s plan is that His people are holy, separated unto Him even to the place where He asks His children to present to Him their very bodies. He has purposed that our lives glorify Him, and in order to do this we must be holy, righteous, pure and separated unto His perfect will.
Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy , acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God
It is God’s plan that His people be conformed unto His image, and that we are imitators of Him. He wants us to keep His mind on all matters. Thus, He expects us to work at being like Him in all the relationships in our lives. We are told in His Word that we are to be sanctified (set apart) unto Him for His use. He even wants us to yield our bodies to Him for that purpose. We do this by submitting totally to His control so that we, in turn, can have power to control our bodies so that they can be used to accomplish His purpose in our lives.
Rom 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestine to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
Matt 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
Eph 5:1-2 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savour.
Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
1 Thes 4:3-8 For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God: That no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.
When God first brought man and woman together, He told them to “be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth” (Genesis 1:28). He gave them the power of re-creation. Into Adam and Eve. He placed mental, social and physical differences, each designed to excite, compliment and harmonize with the other. He sealed this arrangement with an attractive power that we call sex.
Because of immaturity, some young people have expressed that God is against sex. On the contrary, He invented it and thus He knows how it ought to be used to bring about true happiness and the accomplishment of His will in our lives.
Please read the following passages:
Genesis 2:18-24 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof. And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
Deuteronomy 5:18 Neither shalt thou commit adultery.
Deuteronomy 22:23-24 If a damsel that is a virgin be betrothed unto an husband, and a man find her in the city, and lie with her; Then ye shall bring them both out unto the gate of that city, and ye shall stone them with stones that they die; the damsel, because she cried not, being in the city; and the man, because he hath humbled his neighbour’s wife: so thou shalt put away evil from among you.
Matthew 5:27-32 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.
And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.
It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement:
But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.
2 Satan’s plan is always trying to destroy God’s plan.
One of the beautiful results of proper sexual relationships are united families. One of the first things that Satan tried to do in the first family was to destroy the unity between God, Adam and Eve (Genesis 3). He knows that if God is not truly worshiped by the family, he is well on his way to victory. He somewhat succeeded to the place where the majority of the families living on earth today, exist without God. As a result, millions of family units have had or are experiencing confusion and disaster. To our shame, many Christian homes exist without God being the center and because of this, confusion and disaster are entering in.
If God wants His people righteous, holy and pure, then Satan wants them to be just the opposite. He delights in taking God’s beautiful creation and turning it into something cheap, dirty and disgraceful. While God puts the emphasis on the inner man, Satan glorifies the outer man. Man is totally fulfilled when his inner man is right with God. However, Satan tries to convince man that God is cheating him, and robbing him of many of the physical pleasures of life. There are so many things that he uses to try and get folk to follow his plan which will only steal the joy, kill the body and destroy the spirit of all humans. He says, in essence, “after all, why should the human be happy?” He is the tempter – called “the serpent” (Genesis 3:1-15, “the great dragon; that old serpent called the devil and Satan” (Revelation 12:9), and the originator of evil. In Hebrew his name means accuser or adversary. Each time his name is mentioned in the Bible, we can see that he is in total opposition to the best interests of mankind. Following are some examples of his tricks:
1 Chronicles 12:1 And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel. (take a census)
Zechariah 3:1 And he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him.
Psalms 109:1-5 Hold not your peace, O God of my praise; For the mouth of the wicked and the mouth of the deceitful are opened against me: they have spoken against me with a lying tongue. They compassed me about also with words of hatred; and fought against me without a cause. For my love they are my adversaries: but I give myself unto prayer. And they have rewarded me evil for good, and hatred for my love.
:6-7 Set a wicked man over him: and let Satan stand at his right hand. When he shall be judged, let him be condemned: and let his prayer become sin.
Let’s look more closely at a few more examples of Satan’s deception and his attempt to block God’s blessings on man by causing him to stumble and fall into sin and how God was victorious over him in every situation.
First, we will look at what God gave man when He first created him:
Genesis 1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.
27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
29-30 And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.
The Word dominion means to have the power to rule and govern over. God gave mankind the power to rule over every creature on the earth including Satan as he, too, was a creature on the earth.
Revelation 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
God chose the term serpent to use as Satan’s form not only because of its craftiness, but also because it was able to slither around the ground and up trees quickly. The term serpent means just that; cunning, sly, in essence, a “con artist”.
Genesis 3:1-15 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, (watch the deceit here) Yea, has God said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
In other words, “didn’t God say you could eat of every tree?”
2-3 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
Note how Eve, while telling him that God had given them permission to eat from every tree except the one in the midst of the garden, added that God had also said that if they ate from it or even so much as touched it, they would absolutely die. These last, God did not say. God had given them no idea what would happen to them if they did. He simply said “do not eat of it”. Period. Eve had added to God’s Word in her attempt to outwit, instead of rebuke and rule over, the devil.
Refusing to take responsibility for her action, as well, she blamed the devil. But in the next verse, Satan had no one else to blame and knowing this, God would not let him speak, but went immediately into his punishment and the prophecy of Christ’s victory over him.
14-15 And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
God had given man dominion over all creatures. But because Adam did not dominate the serpent and put him in his place when he first heard about the deception, he was punished. Now, through Christ’s sacrifice, we do have, once again, dominion over Satan if we would only accept it and put it into practice.
Let’s look at another way in which Satan tried to deceive man.
Job 1:6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.
7 And the LORD said unto Satan, Where do you come from? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
8 And the LORD said unto Satan, Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and eschews (avoids -stays away from) evil?
9-11 Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Does Job fear God for naught? Have not you made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he has on every side? you have blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. But put forth your hand now, and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.
Satan was saying, “if you take his material things away he will curse you”. But God knew that Job was strong in his faith, and there was nothing Satan or anyone else could do to change that:
From there we have how Satan robbed Job of his family, his wealth, and his health. His friends thought that he had sinned to deserve everything that happened to him. Even his wife told him to “curse God and die”. But Job stood strong on his faith unwavering. He knew he had done nothing wrong. Read the rest of the story for yourself and compare how your faith is with Job’s, and how God blessed him for his faith after he had prayed for his friends.
In the New Testament, Satan is mentioned often as the personification of evil. There are more than 60 references to Satan or the devil or other references to demons and evil spirits. his actions are calculated to bring people to within his spirit of evil influence. He is opposed to God and God’s redemptive plan for the world ( Matthew 13:37-43). JESUS successfully resisted Satan’s temptations, and Satan departed from him for a season (Luke 4: 13) The Gospels shows that Satan is continuing work against God’s people through demonic influence and the possession of people by demons (also called agent’s of Satan). During his public ministry, JESUS showed His dominion over Satan and through the casting now or exorcisms of demons from certain people, and He accomplished this by virtue of the Spirit of God (Matthew 12 : 28). Other names for Satan in the New Testament are “Beelzebub” (“lord of filth”), the “tempter”, “the great dragon”, “the father of lies”, “the evil one”, “prince (ruler) of this world”, “prince of the power of the air”, and “murder”.
Jesus has declared a complete victory over Satan, saying that Satan has already been judged. The Book of Revelation discloses the execution of this judgment through consignment of of Satan to the lake of fire along with Death and Hades (Revelation 24: 10, 14). Until then, Satan’s operations are limited. While he, “as a roaring lion walks about seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8), Vigilance in the faith provides protection. If Satan is resisted in his efforts, he will flee (James 4: 7). In the words of Paul, our struggle in this world is not with flesh and blood, but with the devil and his minions (principalities and powers) who perpetrate wickedness in high places. The defense against these denizens (inhabitants) of evil, is the putting on of the whole spiritual armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-18).
One way to “resist” the devil is to totally ignore him. If he is talking to you while you are studying, or doing something which requires concentration, put on a gospel tape or cd and sing along with it.
Matthew 12:28 But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.
Mattthew 13:37-43 He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.
Revelation 20:10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
Revelation 20:14-15 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Ephesians 6:11-13 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Satan’s plans of destruction are as follows:
A. Love For The World. God’s word shows us that Satan is the prince of the world, if he can get people to love the world’s system or way of doing things, then he will rob God of the love that belongs to Him only. At the same time, he will try to pull people from the protecting hand of a loving God.
John 16:7-11 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.
1 John 2:15-17 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
1 Corinthians 1:28-31 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
B. Humanistic Philosophy is that which is being accepted by our world today. Instead of saying, “do right”, it advocates, “do as you feel”. Once Satan can get the person to love the world, it is easy to get that person to swallow his phony view and lies.
C. Rock/Hard/”Acid” Music and “rap”, is one of the vehicles that Satan uses is to get mostly children and teens to think wrong. God’s word notes that as a man thinks in his heart, this is the way he is. A person must think wrong before he can act wrong. Rock music emphasizes the humanist philosophy; a love for the world, improper sex standards, illicit drugs and other things that will further dull the senses to spiritual things.
Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee.
Romans 10:9-10 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
John 6:45 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. EVERY man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.
D. Habit forming practices such as the use of tobacco, alcohol and drugs work at destroying the body’s so that it cannot function as God designed. This can also put a person into such a state that he is unable to determine right from wrong.
1 Corinthians 6:11-13 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.
Rom 6:13 Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.
Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
E. Worldly Dress Standards People are more concerned with being “in style” than in dressing decently and modestly. Today in a world that is allowed to be more and more controlled by Satan, formality is being replaced with informality – “anything is accepted at any time”. This goes along beautifully with the humanistic philosophy which takes all standards of the fashion industry. Much of the dress of today is in line with the women’s liberation movement which states “I’m free, liberated in mind, body, and Spirit”. Sales promoter’s appeal to this philosophy with the idea that it is better to make a buck than to do what is right. As a result we have clothing that magnifies the of outer man and communicates very well the philosophy of the day, drawing attention to some part of the body instead of the inner beauty of the personality. This has caused many to be led into temptation that could not be stopped; and it makes our young ladies look like the Temple whores of the Bible.
1 Thessalonians 5:21-24 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil. And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.
F. Pornography in an age that glorifies only the body, and believe you ought to do as you feel. This practice is to be expected and is doing tremendous harm to God’s beautiful plan. Adults using children for their own sexual pleasures is the worst kind. These sins will be the more severely punished.
Matthew 18:6 But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
1 Corinthians 6:15-20 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid. What? Know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh. But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit. Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
Homosexuality between members of the same sex is universally condemned by God.
Scriptures are given respectively below:
Homosexuality forbidden by law and punishable by death.
Male and female homosexuality condemned.
Along with other sexually immoral persons, will be excluded from the Kingdom of God.
Was practiced even in the Temple!
Male prostitute also translates into the derogatory term “dog” which we hear many of our young men use today.
Leviticus 18:22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
Leviticus 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.
Romans 1:24-28 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonor their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshiped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient
1 Corinthians 6:9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind
1 Kings 14:24 And there were also sodomites in the land: and they did according to all the abominations of the nations which the LORD cast out before the children of Israel.
1 Kings 15:12 And he took away the sodomites out of the land, and removed all the idols that his fathers had made.
2 kings 23:7 And he brake down the houses of the sodomites, that were by the house of the LORD, where the women wove hangings for the grove.
Deuteronomy 23:17-18 There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel. Thou shalt not bring the hire of a whore, or the price of a dog, into the house of the LORD thy God for any vow: for even both these are abomination unto the LORD thy God.
Revelation 22:15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
Genesis 19:4-5 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter: And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.
Jude 7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrhah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
Judges 19:22 Now as they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men of the city, certain sons of Belial, beset the house round about, and beat at the door, and spake to the master of the house, the old man, saying, Bring forth the man that came into thine house, that we may know him.
Physical relationships before marriage is a sin against God. If a person tells another, “I love you”, then they should be willing to wait until things are done according as God wills through marriage. True Godly love says, “sex can wait”.
Diseases and plagues apparent these days: A.I.D.S., hepatitis, and other deadly virus’ are killing more young people than at any other time in history because of more disobedience to God’s commandments. God will not ignore this kind of ungodly behavior, but will discipline and chastise both persons involved.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO “FALL IN LOVE”
Colossians 3:1-3 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
5-11 Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience: In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them. But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: Where there is neither Greek (Gentile) nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.
12-15 Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.
16-17 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.
18 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.
19 Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter (cruel – mentally or physically) against them.
20 Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.
21 Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged. See also the Doc “Worthy of Honor”.
22 Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God:
23-25 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ. But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of person.
INHERENT QUALITIES FOR MARRIAGE
As in the above, For simplicity’s sake (and to give my typing fingers a break), I will use “he” instead of the proper gender of he and/or she. However it goes for both he and she, his and her, etc. No offense meant.
SALVATION……………………Has he invited Jesus Christ into his heart and crucified himself to God as a living sacrifice? (Romans 10:9-13,15; 12:1-2) Does he love the Lord and is his life proof of HIS love (John 15:1-10)?
SELF ESTEEM………………….Is he thankful for the way God made him (Isaiah 45:5-8)? Has he learned to attach significant meaning to unchangeable “defects” (Hebrews 13:5)?
CONCORDANCE TO AUTHORITY Is he sensitive and obedient to the wishes of those in authority over him (Galatians 3; Ephesians 4:1-3)?
Does he show deference to their ideas? Is he alert in designing creative alternatives?
CLEAR CONSCIENCE…………Has he asked forgiveness of ALL those he has offended and has he made restitution wherever necessary (Matt 5:23-24)?
SPIRIT OF FORGIVENESS…..Has he forgiven all those who have offended him (Matthew 6:14-15)?
Has he yielded, to God, his personal rights? Does he respond to sources of irritation appropriately according to God?
ETHICAL FREEDOM………….Has he learned self-discipline; especially in his thought life? Is his personal and moral behavior above reproach? Has he learned to walk in God’s Spirit and meditate continually in His Word?
OBJECTIVE IN LIFE………..Does he have clearly defined goals which are related around the work and reputation of Christ? Is he aware of the new priorities which his marriage will demand?
Does he see clearly how marriage will assist him and the one he is marrying in reaching these goals?
PRINCIPLES OF FINANCE…..Has he dedicated his possessions talent, time, money and earning power to God?
Is he diligent in his work and wise in his use of money?
Is he able to institute in basic youth conflicts?
GENUINE LOVE……………..Does he show the qualities of true love? 1 Corinthians 14:4-8 notes these as being patient, kind, generous, humble, objective, courteous, unselfish, good tempered, guileless, pure, sympathetic, concerned, sincere, desirous, loyal and persistent in doing what is right and Godly.
On a sheet of paper, each person is to write what you feel are your own personal qualities for each statement listed above. Write how you can help each other live the life that God wants for both of you in your marriage. If there are any conflicts, discuss them together calmly, and lovingly. Remember, do not try to change the other person to what YOU want them to be, but allow God to change them the way HE wants them to be. Do not raise your voices in disagreement. If either feels that this may happen, take a few minutes apart to collect your thought and think these things out for yourself.
The following is suggested to be done separately and thoughtfully, then jointly coming together to discuss and resolve anything that is not Godly and loving:
On a piece of lined paper, draw a line down the center and put the word HIS on one side and HER on the other. At the top of each page write the following (one per page):
Commitment to Christ Self Esteem
Concordance To Authority Clear Conscience
Forgiveness Ethical Freedom
Objective In Life Principles Of Finance
Genuine Love, Adamant Hates
As you discuss these topics, write down under each one, the thoughts spoken. Then, as you grow in your relationship, review these; at first once a month, then after about 6 months, once @ 3 months; encouraging each other as you grow in love, and in your faith in Christ. Then continue doing this every so often during your marriage.
FIVE TYPES OF MARRIAGE
There are five types of marriage relationships that can either destroy or strengthen the lives of each spouse. The purpose here is to guide each couple into the direct path of God’s will in their relationship and away from the path of destruction. Satan, God’s and our enemy, along with his minions would rather do nothing more than to steal our joy, kill our bodies and destroy our Spirits (John 10:9) . And since God ordained Marriage, Satan wants to destroy it and will do anything he can to do this. It is up to each individual to stand against him and keep the relationship strong.
- THE CEMETERY ZONE
A. Key Atmosphere: Placid (lifeless)
B. Description: This type of marriage lacks emotional involvement, no conflict and no passion. Both partners live separate lives under the same roof. The husband provides money for running the household and leaves the details to the wife.
When one flees normal responsibilities and emotions, he or she will find substitute actions and feelings. A husband will fill his schedule with his work, hobbies, sports, etc… A wife will find other ways to substitute as well.
C. Problems: All communication is at the surface level with no sharing of thoughts and feelings which can lead to many more problems.
A second problem is that this arrangement is characterized merely by an exchange of “service” between the partners. There is no real marital relationship.
- THE BATTLE ZONE
A. Key Atmosphere: Habitual conflict
B. Description: This type of marriage is characterized by constant fighting. Both partners are in a real dilemma, for they both know that their methods are destructive, but they can’t seem to stop because their tactics are too far developed. They actually find some comfort from the fact that they can blame each other for their own unhappiness.
C. Problems: They will eventually destroy themselves and their family. This type of marriage is a very painful level of experience.
- THE COMFORT ZONE
A. Key Atmosphere: Congeniality and humdrum
B. Description: This type may at first appear to be the perfect marriage because the partners seem to have so much in common. However, there are few ups and downs and the couple, after a while become somewhat passive in their day to day experiences.
C. Problems: Life becomes very routine and dull.
- THE FRAGILE ZONE
A. Key Atmosphere: Forced Closeness
B. Description: The partners seem to be very close in as much as they share a constant togetherness and mutual interests. Every experience of life is mutually shared.
C. Problems: Any minor change can “rock the boat”. After awhile one or the other begins to feel boxed in and any attempt to change things can bring sharp resistance even when change is beneficial.
- THE HEAVENLY ZONE
A. Key Atmosphere: Freedom to function as God designed the marriage relationship to function.
B. Description: Each partner has made Christ the very center of their relationship. Thus, in Christ, the past has been dealt with, and there exists a trust in His leading for the future. As a result, each partner is involved in the interests of the other but not locked in. They do many things together, but have opportunity for self growth and expression. They are not locked in.
C. Problems: None that they cannot solve together while putting their trust explicitly in God.
I hope this session has been a blessing to you. If you feel your marriage is on the “verge of collapse”, talk to God about it… and seek the help of a Christian marriage counselor. Nothing is too bad, or too hard for God.
New Year’s Eve is my husband’s birthday. One day, as I was thinking about this, and how I could be a blessing to him, I thought to myself, How much do I UNDERSTAND his love for me, and mine for him? It’s not JUST in loving our spouses and family and friends, but it’s also in understanding that love.
It takes time for relationships to grow. As they grow, we need to think on this and gain understanding of the how’s and why’s of that love. If we can get this understanding, then that relationship will grow even stronger.
How do we gain understanding of our love for one another? By considering every aspect of that person: their likes, dislikes, their personality, how they act in different situations and circumstances. By knowing these things, we can help that person become a better person and grow. Not forcing any changes in them, but subtly suggesting. Never making demands, but coaxing in a loving manner.
As this new year begins, resolve to understand the relationship you have with those you love. Don’t just SAY “I love you”, but mean it; prove it. Doing things together for those who have need will return a blessing to you as well.
I wish EVERYONE God’s blessings and peace in this coming year.
I hope this seminar has been of some help for you.