We honor marriage because God honors it. Indeed the whole Trinity testifies that marriage is honorable.
- God the Father honored it by designing, instituting, regulating, and witnessing the first marriage. God defines it’s nature, its parties, and its terms.
- Christ honored it by performing his first miracle at a wedding (John 2) and using marriage in quite a few parables
- The Holy Spirit honored it by making it a picture of the church in Ephesians 5.
We also honor marriage because God commands it to be honored (Heb 13:4). Here are eight ways we can do this.
1. We honor it by praying for it
Some people will pray for a parking spot but never pray for a wife or a husband. They think it’s too much to ask. Or they’ll pray for their kids to get into college but not that they’d get into a good marriage. By not asking God for marriage for themselves or their loved ones, they are dishonoring marriage and the God who can give it.
A fund raiser once told me that some wealthy people he knows are actually insulted if he doesn’t ask them for money, or if he asks them for too little. Instead they feel honored that he should ask them and that he should ask them for so much.
Honor God and marriage by asking for happy and fruitful marriages for yourself and for your children. Let it never be said, “You have not, because you ask not.” Or “You ask not because you value not.”
2. We honor it by seeking partners according to God’s Word
God has clearly set out that Christians should only marry in the Lord (1 Cor. 7:39) and that there are certain characteristics and qualifications to look for in a wife or husband. We honor God when we comply with the Maker’s instructions for marriage.
3. We honor it by waiting for it
God has forbidden sexual intimacy before marriage. We’re not permitted an appetizer, not even a sip; that only spoils the feast. Honor marriage by waiting for it.
4. We honor it by entering into it at appropriate ages
We can dishonor marriage by getting married too young, when there’s little understanding or appreciation of marriage, when one or both parties are too flippant or frivolous about it. But we also dishonor it by delaying too long, by putting it off later and later in life.
5. We honor it by organizing Christ-centered weddings
Some weddings have virtually no reference to God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, or the Gospel. The messages are just full of do’s and don’ts, the speeches are irreverent and risqué. It’s like receiving the greatest gift from someone and then not even thanking them, or worse, making fun of him and his values. Honor marriage by honoring God on your marriage day.
6. We honor it by avoiding debt-laden weddings
The average wedding in America now costs $31,000! What a way to start out in married life. It’s like starting a race with lead weights tied round your ankles. It is wrong, displeasing to God, and damaging to everyone.
7. We honor it by taking on the roles God has designed
The wife’s role and the husband’s role have each been designed by God to show the relationship between Christ and church – the man to primarily show Christ’ love, the woman to primarily show the believer’s obedience.
8. We honor it by defending and promoting it.
We oppose every attempt to re-define marriage. But we must to more than defend marriage and oppose its attackers. We must also promote it by demonstrating what a wonderful thing it is – especially to our children. We must demonstrate its benefits.
The Puritan Daniel Rogers wrote:
Marriage is the preservative of chastity, the seminary of the commonwealth, seed plot of the church, pillar of the world, right hand of providence, supporter of laws, states, orders, offices, gifts, and services; the glory of peace, the sinews of war, the maintenance of policy, the life of the dead, the solace of the living, the ambition of virginity, the foundation of countries, cities, universities, succession of families, crowns, and kingdoms.