40 Days of Prayer – Prayer Focus: Covenant Relationships – Marriage
Love has been the favorite subject of artists and poets throughout the ages. However, God created the greatest love story of all time. The Bible, tells of God’s love for humanity. God’s love is expressed through His covenant relationship with mankind. This covenant relationship is designed for mutual blessings. Through our covenant relationship with God we express our love, commitment, and devotion towards Him. Likewise, through this covenant relationship, God expresses His love, commitment, and affection towards us.
Today, we are going to look at a unique kind of covenant relationship called “marriage.” God created marriage to mirror the beautiful union that He established with His Bride (Believers).
Satan’s Assignment Against Marriage
Satan hates marriage. Satan hates the marriages of believers in particular. Marriages among believers are powerful displays of God’s covenant. Satan aims to destroy godly marriages, because such opposition will hinder the witness of Messiah to the world through godly marriage.
In Genesis 3, Satan entered the garden of God to oppose his Creator and to destroy the first marriage. Satan deceived Eve and tempted Adam to rebel. This rebellion brought discord to the universe and to the marital union.
Adam and Eve would have become the progenitors of covenant blessings by spreading blessings to every generation. However, the first husband and wife were cast out of Eden and cursed.
Marriage would be characterized by disharmony as the two sinner’s fought for dominion in their relationship. However, God promised this conflict would end when Yeshua (Jesus) the Messiah would crush Satan’s head and forever render him powerless through His shed Blood on Calvary.
The Covenant of Marriage
To counter Satan’s attack we must understand God’s design for marriage, Satan’s strategy against it, and how to stand firm against his attacks:
Covenant relationships bring covenant blessings. In fact, the concept of covenant is the key to understanding all relationships with God, our families, our friends, our co-laborers, and especially our spouses. God entered a love relationship with us by establishing a covenant with us that includes sonship, good health, and provision. All that we enjoy in life has been established through our covenant relationship with God.
At the time of creation, God saw that it was not good for man to be alone, so God created woman out of man and entered man into a covenant relationship with woman. Marriage is a foundational institution that pre-dates all other institutions. The human existence depends on marriage and the family for its survival. Marriage is of divine origin. God created it. God designed it. God established it, and God defined its parameters.
The marriage relationship was designed to be a loving, caring, respectful, and intimate relationship. When the man and the woman became “one flesh” in covenant relationship, the man was given the responsibility to lead his family in providing and making rational decisions; while the woman’s responsibilities would be toward nurturing the family.
Importantly, since the woman was originally a part of man, we find that while there are differences in character / purpose, we find that in terms of bearing God’s image, men and women stand before God: Equal in value – Equal in dignity – Equal in worth.
God established marriage as a permanent relationship – the union of two separate people – a man and a woman – into “one flesh.” “One flesh” means the “fusion” of two distinct elements into one. A man and a woman who have become “one flesh” under God’s design form a marriage which cannot be separated without suffering great damage or even destruction. Thus, marriage is an irrevocable commitment of unconditional love.
Covenant Marriage Involves Three Distinct Components:
Leaving: Friends, parents, location, geography, becomes SECONDARY. Relationship to spouse: PRIMARY.)
Cleaving: Joining together having one mind, heart, focus, and agenda.
Becoming One Flesh: Becoming one intimatly, spiritually, physically and emotionally – to be understood and love.
Because marriage is a covenant and not merely a contract…
Divorce Is Not An Option: (God hates it! However, there are Biblical grounds…)
“Yet you ask, Why does He reject it? Because the Lord was witness [to the covenant made at your marriage] between you and the wife of your youth, against whom you have dealt treacherously and to whom you were faithless. Yet she is your companion and the wife of your covenant.”
Adultery Is A Serious Covenant Breaking Offence:
“[Discretion shall watch over you, understanding shall keep you] to deliver you from the alien woman, from the outsider with her
flattering words, Who forsakes the husband and guide of her youth and forgets the covenant of her God. For her house sinks down to death and her paths to the spirits [of the dead]. None who go to her return again, neither do they attain or regain the paths of life.”
Sex Before Marriage Is A Violation Of The Marriage Covenant:
“Let marriage be held in honor (esteemed worthy, precious, of great price, and especially dear) in all things. And thus let the marriage bed
be undefiled (kept undishonored); for God will judge and punish the unchaste.”
Same-Sex Relationships Are Forbidden:
1 Corinthians 6:9
“Do you not know that the unrighteous and the wrongdoers will not inherit or have any share in the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived
(misled): neither the impure and immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor those who participate in homosexuality.”
The covenant of marriageis the single most important human bond that holds all of God’s work on the planet together. It is no small wonder that the Lord is passionate about the sanctity of marriage and the stability of the home. This covenant of marriage is based on the covenant God has made with us. Through God’s power our covenant of marriages are protected against the forces of darkness that would destroy homes and ruin lives.
God wants us to have great marriages and families. Let’s conclude our lesson today with some simple marriage tools that will help keep our marriages healthy and strong:
Continue Your Courtship:
“Above all things have fervent love for one another, for ‘love will cover a multitude of sins.”
“Be kindly affectionate to one another … in honor giving preference to one another”
Successful marriages don’t just happen; they must be developed. We must keep our love for one another growing by expressing love to one another other daily. We should always try to “out love” one another.
Remember That God Joined You Together In Marriage:
“Therefore what God has joined together, let no man separate.”
We must never forget that God Himself joined us with our spouses. God has fit us perfectly with the right partner that will complement and complete us.
Never Go To Bed Angry With One Another:
“Do not let the sun go down on your wrath”
“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you”
To remain angry over hurts and grievances—big or little—can be dangerous. This is why God said to let our anger cool before going to bed. The wrong kind of thinking and attitudes can destroy our marriages. We must be big enough to forgive and to say, “I’m sorry” and gracious enough to admit a mistake when we make it.
Keep God The Center Of Your Home:
“Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it”
In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths”
This really is the greatest principle, because it’s the one that enables all the others. The vital ingredient of happiness in the home is not in diplomacy, strategy, or our effort to overcome problems, but rather living in a union with God. Homes filled with God’s love will keep ungodly influences out and will invite all the fullness that God has for our families. Let’s continue to put these principles to practice so that we can always experience the beautiful marriages that God desires.
- Pray with one another
- Communicate effectively with one another
- Respect one another
- Love one another
- Be temperate with one another
- Speak kindly to one another
Let’s Pray: Please click links BELOW to review these powerful prayer resources
Worship Experience: “Flesh of my Flesh Bone of my Bone” w/Leon Patillo