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What truly defines a christian marriage?

Hi everyone, I trust you all are doing okay?

Okay guys, here is my question,
What truly defines a christian marriage?

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Here is one consideration (among many)

Assuming there are 2 kinds of forgiveness: True forgiveness and false forgiveness:
Only years arrayed with true forgiveness give hope to the years thereafter.

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Unity in the Spirit.

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Hi Tony,

How are you. You have a great question here. May I make some clarification of your question on What truly define Christian Marriage? First, what to you is a christian marriage? Hope to hear from you soon. Stay safe.

Elsie

Companionship.

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Drawing closer to each other by drawing closer to Christ - and it’s meant to last for a lifetime - even back in Eden when lifetimes lasted forever!

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Love. All forms.

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Hi @elsie.elio,
I’m doing very well, thanks.
I believe you’re doing well yourself?

To me, a Christian marriage is defined as;" that marital life or journey where the couple involve delibrately apply the word of God, in all areas of their marital life".

Over the years, I have come to realize that many believers who are married, do not realize that being born again does not automatically make their marriages a Christian one.

This reality explains why good Christian couples find themselves in the divorce court.

Judging from the context of my background as a counsellor, I have discovered that many believers who plans to get married and most that are already married, confuse getting joined within a church certain , by a priest/ pastor as what makes their marriages Christian marriages. So they do not make plans to delibrately honor God by making sure they apply His instructions regarding marriage both in the preparation of their marriage ceremonies, and overall marital life.

For example, today, its easy to find Christian couples living in two different cities or even nations, longer than they should, as advised against by the scripture, and still expect their marriages not to fail because they are Christians.

On the other side of the spectrum, we have Africans who have been made to believe that unless they get joined in a church and by a priest, their marriages conducted and sealed under the law and cutsom of their mother tongues are not recognized by God, and as such, could not be called Christian marriages.

These findings   has made me realize that a couple could actually be good Christians, and yet fail to have a Christian marraige. And because of this, they would experience divorce, and still,  it will not take away from the fact that God is  the author of marriage.  

I will really love to get more insight from others regarding this, from this platform.

Blessings
Tony

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Hi Tony,

I fully agree with your definition of a christian marriage and what is going on with the world in respect to marital relationship in most couples:

It is a sad reality that marriages fall apart, families are broken because in most cases God is not in the equation. Like a triangle where God is at the apex and down below the apex are the two angles of the triangle - man and woman.

My preamble is that we need to be intentional in teaching our next generation about God and about Biblical view on Marriage because Marriage depends on our relationship with God.

marriage-triangle-logo-600-amp

This is my definition of a Christian Marriage.

Hope this helps,

Elsie

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Great answers from everyone. A seriously meaningful question brother Tony.

So here’s my kick-at-the-can:

When the man and woman are married under Christ Jesus’ authority and are accountable to Him in their thoughts, speech and actions; in respect to the honouring of each other as to honouring a son and or a daughter of the Lord Most High.

The marriage ceremony can be a telling witness to the couple’s love. The status as husband and wife can be a blessing. The joint family bond will produce potential positive long term benefits. But, ultimately, the earnest will and determination of both believers to be obedient to their Lord- that will define the “Christian” in their marriage. And that is possibly the hardest part about marriage itself: turning aside personal pride, ambition and goals for the common good in a loving sacrifice of the other. I believe that is why Apostle Paul used marriage in how he taught of Christ and the church. We are supposed to emulate that sacrifice and obedience in our marriages. And that makes marriage a beautiful magic, and rare to find like treasure.

“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless. So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies.” Ephesians 5:25-28 NASB

That there is a tall order for us guys eh?!

Ken :canada:

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It is a conglomerate of the four loves, it is just like @jlyons said;

What truly defines it, is love in total surrender, sacrifice and companionship. :couple_with_heart_woman_man:

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Hi Elsie,
Yes it does, thanks alot.

Tony

Hi Tony,
I think what defines a Christian marriage as opposed to a secular marriage is that it is made as a covenant relationship before God and man. It reflects the same type of covenant that God has made with man and therefore is a sacred relationship. From that, all else follows. How you treat a spouse that is in this covenant/sacred relationship is with care and attention. It is a relationship that in all aspects is not casual. So in all areas of your marriage you value your spouse and love and care for them.
For me, in my marriage, I remember to love with actions and words. I believe it is a 100 percent/100 percent relationship. I give 100 percent of myself to him and he gives 100 percent to me. Doing more for my spouse than I would for myself. Lifting them up in prayer, and not cursing or dishonoring my spouse in my actions in public or private.
In a secular marriage the main point is to get self satisfaction. There is a pervasive idea that you will only be satisfied if you adopt a “me first” attitude and satisfy yourself first. And that you happiness is of primary importance. This can be problematic if happiness wanes, which it always will and commitment has to take over for a long time.
I believe true satisfaction in marriage and all aspects of the Christian life is in an attitude of service. Working on that relationship as a team and growing in relationship with God and being committed to that covenant.
Hope my thoughts are cogent.
Good day to you all,
Victoria

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Ravi Zacharias addressed this at Passion 2020 in his talk on what it means to be human I think.

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Tony, your comment about couples living in different cities or nations concerns me a bit. Many, if not all, couples would prefer to live together. İf they aren’t, there are often complexities outside of their control involved. Often visas, maybe a conflict of job in one place and the other spouse has sick parents to care for elsewhere. I would hesitate to judge those couples as not following Christ in their marriage.

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Hi KaelinPriger,

A warm welcome to Connect. We are glad you are here with us. Hope to hear more of you and your discussions. Stay safe.

My heart as well. The rub is discerning how that unity is illustrated. Ephesians 5 speaks of sacrifice. If that sacrifice is not motivated by devotion to Yahweh, does it lose its potency?

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Hi KaelinPriger,

Thanks for your thought and comments.
I truly understand your concerns, ofcourse, these complexities you highlighted are some of the reasons we’re having this discussion on this platform, so we could learn from each other.

Far be it that anyone should judge another from their place of strength, not especially as a believer.

Blessings
Tony

Greetings Maria,

I think you make a strong point. If my sacrifice for my wife is to mimic the sacrifice Christ makes for the church, I had best be doing what I am doing with my love for the Lord first. I am made open to God’s plan for my marriage by Ephesians 5:28 “to love their (my) own wife as their (my) own body.” That is an impressive command. To care for another person with the care you would give to your own self. In a world where self gratification is preached, God commands us to consider the other person over ourself.

That implies that the spouse understands how to love their own self also. If the person was self-loathing and hateful to their body, they would not be able to know how to treat their spouse either. So, knowing God’s love over yourself is step one to being able to accomplish the task given in Ephesians 5:25-28.

The heartbreak is when one of the married people have no love for Yahweh or their partner. But then the passage in Ephesians is speaking to a believer. It is a challenge to manage that command, but worth it.

I don’t believe a person can honestly sacrifice this way if they do not know devotion to God. How will they relate to the sacrifice Jesus made for the church, if they need to apply that type of passion toward their spouse? It would be unrealistic to assume such a person could carry out that task to fruition.

I hope that helps.

Ken :canada:

Yes sir, well stated. How imperative the command to pray for each other! Yes, unrealistic from human perspective and yet our God is the God of the impossible; and He simply calls me obedience. Thank you for your thoughts.

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