There are many beautiful phrases to be found throughout the Bible concerning the husband and wife. Yes, I said husband and wife. When one searches the ideas of worldly men and women concerning spouses there is a wide spectrum of views. The shame of the worldly view is most of the ideas are negative. Most married people that one would meet would probably give a selfish answer when asked what is positive about their spouse. When one reads the Song of Solomon, God opens up a view of marriage that is rarely seen today. Why is that the case?
What is wrong with marriages today? Is marriage trivial? Why do people keep saying the same dumb things to their spouses to cause them to harbor resentment? Why do they keep doing the same selfish things, all the while wanting things to magically change in a bad marriage? Why do they avoid God’s Word at all costs in improving a marriage that is going downhill? Is marriage for those that love God? Is marriage for those that love one another? Or is marriage for the immature, selfish individual that loves only himself regardless of how miserable it makes another?
Marriage is for those who love God!
When Christ is the center of a marriage we remember passages such as these:
Ephesians 5:22 …as unto the Lord. 23 … even as Christ is the head of the church: and He is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, … 25 … even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That He might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. So ought … 29 … but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church. 30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones. 31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
Husbands need to remember that it was God that said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” (Gen. 2:18) Wives need to remember that it was God that brought the woman to man. (Gen. 2:22) Husbands and wives need to remember that it was God,
…which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let no man put asunder. (Matt. 19:4-6)
Marriage is for those who love one another!
Husbands think on these things: The man who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor of the Lord. (Prov. 18:22)
Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; (Eph. 5:25) So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. (Eph. 5:28) Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them. (Col. 3:19)
Husbands, this is said twice. Take notice. “Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself…” (Eph. 5:33) Husbands, “Two are better than one; … how can one be warm alone?” (Ecc. 4:9-12) “Let thy fountain be blessed:” (Prov. 5:18-19) Let her be your satisfaction and always be ravished with her love. Husbands, learn what love is – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7.
Wives think on these things:
A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband .(Prov. 12:4) 10 …For her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her. . . 12 She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life… 25 Strength and honor are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come. 26 She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. 27 She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. 28 Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her… 30 … a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised. (Prov. 31:10-31) Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord .(Eph. 5:22)
This is being in subjection to your own husbands in everything that is pleasing and commanded by our Lord. Also wife, see that you reverence your husband. This means the world to him! To respect one’s husband is to have a feeling or attitude of deep respect tinged with awe. From the Greek it means to “treat with deference or reverential obedience.” One of the first thoughts that comes to some minds is, “Well, he doesn’t always act in a way that I can respect. How am I supposed to respect or reverence him then?” Well, let’s look at it from another angle. Husbands are commanded to love their wives as themselves and as Christ loved the church. Do wives always act worthy of love? Is the husband’s love conditional on her behavior or performance? Don’t wives want their husbands to love them no matter how they act? Isn’t that, in fact, exactly how Christ loves the church? So, too, the wife’s respect of her husband is not based on his performance or attitude or demeanor.
The book of Proverbs has plenty to say about a brawling woman (21:9, 25:24) and the contentious woman (21:19, 27:15). Yet in the Song Of Solomon 5:8 there is a passage that is beautiful to behold. There is a command given by the love stricken bride, “I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem, if you find my beloved, that you tell him, that I am sick of love” (I am sick with love toward him). Then the daughters of Jerusalem ask, “What is thy beloved more than another beloved, O thou fairest among women? what is thy beloved more than another beloved, that thou dost so charge us?” They said this tauntingly. But she replied,
My beloved is white and ruddy, the chiefest among ten thousand. His head is as the most fine gold, his locks are bushy, and black as a raven. His eyes are as the eyes of doves by the rivers of water, washed with milk, and fitly set. His cheeks are as a bed of spices, as sweet flowers: his lips like lilies, dropping sweet smelling myrrh. His hands are as gold rings set with the beryl: his bellies as bright ivory overlaid with sapphires. His legs are a pillars of marble, set upon socket of fine gold: his countenance is as Lebanon, excellent as the cedars. His mouth is most sweet: yea, he is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, and this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem. (SOS 5:8-16)
And at last 7:10 is absolutely beautiful, “I am my beloved’s, and his desire is toward me.” Notice the assurance: he is mine and I am his!
In chapter 4 of the Song of Solomon there are words of beauty and adoration from the bridegroom concerning his beloved.
Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves’ eyes within thy locks: thy hair is as a flock of goats, that appear from mount Gilead. Thy teeth are like a flock of sheep that are even shorn, which came up from the washing; whereof every one bear twins, and none is barren among them. Thy lips are like a thread of scarlet, and thy speech is comely: thy temples are like a piece of a pomegranate within thy locks. Thy neck is like the tower of David builded for an armoury, whereon there hang a thousand bucklers, all shields of mighty men. Thy two breasts are like two young roes that are twins, which feed among the lilies. Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, I will get me to the mountain of myrrh, and to the hill of frankincense. Thou art all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee. (SOS 4:1-7)
The mindset here is beautiful! There is no doubt that physical beauty and attraction are important in a marriage, but also that the husband and wife SAY these things to each other. The bridegroom says, “Thou hast ravished my heart, my sister, my spouse; thou hast ravished my heart with one of thine eyes, with one chain of thy neck. How fair is thy love, my sister, my spouse! how much better is thy love than wine!” (SOS 4:9-10) That is an amazing sentiment coming from the man to his beloved. Today husbands need to focus on words – of adoration and thankfulness and appreciation toward one’s own wife. Husbands are told to love their own wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it. Never was there a cross word or “cutdown” from Christ concerning the church. He loved His bride so much He gave Himself for her.
Marriage is for those who love God. If we do not love our Creator and Sustainer and our Redeemer, how then can we love each other? We can’t. We are given the answer to what love is in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.
Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth:
Marriage is for those who love God — and each other. When we start sacrificing ourselves and putting our spouses first, then we start to realize what love is. It is very easy to get caught up in the physical, but until we get “caught up” in the spiritual we have plenty of self-sacrifice before us. Marriage is not a small item before us. It is not trivial. It is also not regulated by the laws of men. It was established by God. This wonderful institution was created for His greatest creation – man. God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone.” (Gen. 2:18) In marriage we have procreation and we have companionship with the blessings of our Father in heaven. When we are guided by His word this institution becomes holy and is so needed in the world today. With marriage comes the family and with the family comes the blessings of children and the happiness that should come with oneness.