- The Beholder’s Definition of Marriage
- Is Marriage a Covenant or Contract? Society’s dilemma
- A Snapshot in Defining a Covenant Marriage
- Relational Characteristics of a Covenant
- Searching Below the Surface – Looking into unexpected Islamic ideas.
- En Route to Defining a Covenant Marriage – Countering Contract
- Essence of the Covenant Matrix
Daily, different perspectives confront us. For example, if we interviewed people on the street and asked, “What is marriage,” the response is like beauty, each definition in the eyes of the beholder. But, unfortunately, the definition of marriage is up for discussion, or is it?
God created and ordained marriage and never subjected the idea to human crafting. At Creation, God created Adam & Eve as the modeled married couple. Marriage references the social unit in every society; without this compass, a society’s fabric will weaken.
Sitting in a bookstore, I noticed a magazine labeled The Science of Marriage; intrigued, I picked it up and looked through the articles. Numerous writings on how to stay married stacked the contents. Highlighted was a large section called “A Sacred Bond.” Wow, I thought this must be interesting as this secular magazine grasped a key component of what marriage is all about. As I perused multiple articles, I sought a definition of what a sacred bond was. In vain, my search leads to no descriptive description. Despite six essays on the subject, not one writer defined a sacred bond. Instead, they assumed that each marriage established a sacred personal bond with the other. Today, marriage’s definition allows those who behold this personal commitment to create their own definition. Likewise, sacredness stolen from the hand of God was placed into the hands of each couple but denied the source.
A personal perspective on one’s marriage never defines covenant marriage. The world enjoys using biblical terms without defining them, painting the best of humanity but ignoring absolute truth. How can anything be sacred without the divine? Humanity can no more diminish the standard that God has set into the very fabric of life and refuse to follow this manner for relational wholeness. C. S. Lewis said, “than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.” The choice is not individual despite the majority in the West choosing this route. Will all relationships sour if not placed upon this? Of course not, but ignoring God will not eliminate what a biblical covenant marriage consists of either.
Truth in society currently lacks a compass. Commitments today are only verbal assertions without any accountability, structure, or genuine promise. The directionless verbal commitments lack a point of reference in defining a relationship. Their purpose may be personal pleasures without hurt or long-term consequences. Yet, in reality, these verbal assertions often shoulder long-term emotional effects. In God’s marriage design, He gives us an exact reference point in what is committed and valued. No point of reference in a relationship grants no individual value since no promise of value is spoken. A personal opinion or choice is evident, yet it ignores the value in waiting to affirm one’s worth and what one has to offer in a lifelong promise to another.
Biblical marriage is in God’s presence, between one man with one woman. The public ceremony establishes that they left their family to cleave together in a new social relationship. This account means categorically two genders and only one structural definition of covenant marriage. The contradiction of this, by definition, is false – in other words, not a covenant marriage. Covenant marriage is categorically defined by God. Without him, there is no sacredness and no covenant bond.
A clear definition of covenant and contract marriage becomes necessary. The nature of truth promotes absolutes, but the world promotes pluralism. Where multiple points of view exist, we need to respect the individual while engaging the ideas. Nevertheless, covenant marriage has some pre-determined pillars in the Word of God. The forthcoming book, Searching Below the Surface, will reveal these foundational ideas.
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