Marriage & The Gospel
Since the days of Eden, when God declared that “A man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24), marriage has been historically understood as the uniting of one man and one woman in a covenant commitment for a lifetime. However, in recent decades this bedrock institution of civilization has been slowly redefined into something altogether foreign from God’s original design. Therefore, it is imperative that the Christian have a biblical understanding of marriage.
Statement of Marriage
three foundational truths from the Scripture:
- Marriage is biblically understood as the union of one biological man and one biological woman. In Genesis 2, God initiates the institution of marriage as the heterosexual union of Adam and Eve indicating this as his exclusive design by commanding them to “be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth” (Genesis 1:28). The term “marriage” has only one meaning and that is marriage sanctioned by God which joins one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in scripture (Gen. 2:23–24). All sexual activity outside of the covenant of heterosexual marriage is understood as immorality.
- Marriage is biblically understood as a covenant commitment for a lifetime. In Matthew 19, Jesus declares that when a couple marries, “they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate” (Matthew 19:6). Marriage is not merely a social agreement between a man and a woman but a covenant sanctioned by God that man should not separate. Marriage was given by God as part of His common grace, and that it has no meaning other than as He has purposed (Gen. 2:18–24). Marriage is subject to the curse of the Fall but that believers, living in obedience to the Scripture and under the control of the Holy Spirit, can begin to experience peaceful, productive, and fulfilled marriage as intended by God (Gen. 3:16; 1 Peter 3:7).
- Marriage is biblically understood to reveal the union between Christ and His church. In Ephesians 5, Paul indicates that God’s design for marriage is a profound mystery that “refers to Christ and the church” (Ephesians 5:32). That is, marriage is a picture of the gospel, whereby a couple models the way God relates to His people. This is done when husbands sacrificially love their wives as Christ loved the church and when wives willingly submit to their husband’s headship as the church submits to Christ’s headship.
Therefore, we take the biblical institution of marriage very seriously at Hickory Grove. Our desire, in accordance with Hebrews 13:4, is that “marriage be held in honor among all.”