Sermon on October 23 by Pastor Roland Eskinazi
Scripture: Malachi 2:10-16
Why does God esteem marriage and hate broken vows? Marriage is a picture of how He relates to His people.
1. BE CAUTIOUS – IT MATTERS WHOM YOU MARRY! (v10 – 12, 15)
- Abusing your freedom is abandoning God
‘As Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father had been.’
(I Kings 11:4)
If religion is merely a private matter, then it is does not matter what kind of ‘god’ you choose. Divided purpose in marriage always leads to divided hearts.
- Trifling with idolaters is idolatry
God is not against mixed-race marriage and He is not xenophobic (David’s grandfather Boaz married Ruth, a Moabitess)
‘To be holy is not to be neutral…it is to be wholly devoted to God, to obey God’s will, to keep God’s covenant and to live to God’s glory’.
If you would be a better lover of Christ, why marry someone who won’t take you in the same direction? (2 Cor. 6:14)
- Raising godly children demands devoted hearts
A godly marriage is not just good for this generation, but the next. You marriage is not just about you…
2. BE COMMITTED – WHAT COSTS MOST, HURTS MUCH! (v13-14, 16)
- Letting go is not letting God
Our culture today encourages divorce…
‘Your marriage can wear out. People change their values and lifestyles… Getting a divorce can be a positive, problem-solving, growth orientated step. It can be a personal triumph.’
(John and Nancy Adam in the magazine ‘New Woman’)
Jesus is all for keeping the unity and sanctity of marriage – and so should we.
‘…at the beginning the Creator made them male and female….
Therefore what God has joined together let no man separate.’
- Breaking your vows is shattering hope
The gospel is the proof that there is hope for the most difficult marriage. When you live in love, imitating Jesus is the hardest moments of your marriage, you are changing and becoming the person God created you to be.
- Sticking it out is the gospel
Fighting for your marriage is not optional. The church is made up of failing, messed–up people to whom God is faithful and from whom He never walks away.
Remember! If God is your God, the measure of your marriage is not what it is in easy days, but in the darkest moments.
Whether you are single, married or divorced, God so loved you that He endured the worst separation, that you may know His love which is worth more than a million marriages. What do you need to do today so that your marriage will picture God’s love?
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QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION AND DISCUSSION
1. Define marriage as the culture views it today. Now read Genesis 2:24 and define if from God’s perspective.
2. Why does God hate divorce? How do you think the Israelites justified marrying foreign wives and continuing to sacrifice in the temple? What was the result in their own lives and those whom they were meant to honor and protect (v16)?
3. Can marriage itself and even looking for the right partner become idolatrous? When and how?
4. How have you been challenged today in your own life and relationships? Repent where you ought and ask God for His forgiveness. Pray for those losing hope in marriages and those who are healing after divorce.