What does the Bible say about marriage?

Question: "What does the Bible say about marriage?"

The divine institution of marriage is recorded in Genesis. "And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh" (Genesis 2:23-24). God created man and then made woman out of "bone of his bone." The process as recorded tells us that God took one of Adam's "ribs" (Genesis 2:21-22). The Hebrew word literally means the side of a person.

Therefore, Eve was taken from the "side" of Adam and it is at his side that she belongs. "And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him" (Genesis 2:20). The words "help and meet" are the same Hebrew word. The word is "ezer" and comes from a primitive root word that means to surround, to protect or aid, help, helper, succor. Therefore, it means to help, assist or aid. Eve was created to be alongside of Adam as his "other half," to be his aid and his help. A man and woman when married become "one flesh." The New Testament adds a warning to this "oneness." "Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder" (Matthew 19:6).

There are several epistles written by the Apostle Paul that speak to the issues that govern a Biblical view of marriage and how born again believers are to operate within their marriage relationships. We find one such passage in 1 Corinthians chapter 7 and another in Ephesians 5:22-33. When studied together these two passages provide the believer with Biblical principles that can be used to form a framework for a God pleasing marriage relationship.

The passage found in Ephesians is especially profound in its scope in reference to a successful Biblical marriage. "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body" (Ephesians 5:22-23)" "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it" (Ephesians 5:25)." So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church" (Ephesians 5:28-29). "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" (Ephesians 5:31).

When these principles are chosen by a husband and wife in harmony with their relationship as born again believers, this brings about a Biblical marriage. This is not a lopsided relationship, but one that is in balance with the concept of Christ as the head of the man and the wife together. Therefore, the Biblical concept of marriage is a oneness between two individuals that is a picture of the oneness relationship of Christ with His church.

Recommended Resource: Fit to Be Tied: Making Marriage Last a Lifetime by Bill Hybels.

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What does the Bible say about marriage?