Marriage Success series: Lesson 3

RCCG Agape House of Worship
Marriage Success Class 

Lesson 03 - Marriage: Covenant or Contract
Text: Malachi 2: 14

ln law, a contract is a binding legal agreement that is enforceable in a court of law or by binding arbitration. That is a contract is an exchange of promises with a specific remedy for breach. ln contract:
  •  Two people determines the terms, hence it is subject to interpretation 
  • The government, court and lawyers are the primary focus and remedy
  • People look for loopholes
Malachi 2:14 - You ask, "Why?" It is because the LORD is acting as the witness between you and the wtfe of your youth, because you have broken faith with her, though she i your partner, the wife of your marriage covenant.
  • It is spiritual and for o a higher pu{pose. The terms are determined by a higher being, God
  • In covenant you become identified with the other individual and there is a supernatural commingling of two lives. "two becoming one flesh" 
  • Covenant is ritualistic. It involves a sign to remember (Genesis 9:16),a change of name (Genesis l7:5), sharing of meal (1 Corinthians I I :24) and sacrifice. 
  • Covenant cannot be broken without serious spiritual consequence.
Marriage: Contract or Covenant
In the old Testament days a covenant was the most sacred and solemn of pledges. when two people entered into a covenant with one another, a goat or lamb would be slain and its carcass would be cut in half. With the two halves separated and lying on the ground, the two people who had formed the covenant would solemnize their promise by walking between the two halves saying, "May bod do so to me [cut me in half] if I ever break this covenant with you and God!" You get the feeling that a covenant in those days had just a little more substance than today. To an ordinary man marriage is a legal contract between a man and a woman, bui in the eye of God marriage is more than a contract, it is a covenant. Covenant is-spiritual thing and must not be taken lightly. The bible compares marriage relationship to that of Jesus Christ and the Church.

Eph 5: 21-Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it

1 Corinthian 6: 16-8 - Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, "The two will become one Flesh. " But he who unites himself with the Lord is one with him in spirit. Flee from sexual immorality' All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body.

Marriage Was Instituted By God
To most of us the desire to get married seems very natural, but the truth is that that desire was put there by God. The idea of marriage originated from God right from.  the creation of man (Genesis 2: l8-24). The implication of this is however is that marriage can only be sustained by God's principles. Looking at Genesis 2: l8-24, there are two aspects to marriage:

  • Attraction - Attraction is what brings the two of you together (looks, education, background, complexion etc). Adam was attracted to his wife as soon as he saw her.
  • Commitment - Commitment is what sustains a marriage. While attraction brings you together, it does not sustain a marriage' What sustains a marriage is commitment. It is the principle of leaving and cleaving
Marriage Requires Work
Because marriage was instituted by God, it can only be sustained by God and His principle. Eph.5: 22-29 gives us some of the responsibilities of both husband and wife in a marriage.

Eph.5: 22 - "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. ...... Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26to make her holy"

Genesis 2 also tells us that marriage involves abandoning individualistic lifestyle to embrace a lifestyle of collectiveness. When you get married, it no longer mines but ours.

Genesis 2: 23-24 - The man said, "This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, for she was taken out of man." For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh

Spiritual Aspect of Marriage
Lasting and blissful marriage requires submission of the two people involved to God first and to one another. Marriage itself is a mirror of the relationship between Christ and the Church. Therefore, without a personal relationship with Jesus, it is impossible to have a marriage that is blissful and fulfills God's purpose.

I lohn 5: 4-5 - For everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.

John 3: 3 - Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

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