Two Become One!
Christian Devotional by Pastor Cecil Thompson
"Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib He had taken out of the man, and He brought her to the man. 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 a man.’ For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh."
You no doubt have heard the joke about the man who was speaking to an acquaintance on the street. He told his friend, “My wife and I have had 30 happy years of marriage. Out of 43, that is not too bad!” Unfortunately, that is too often the case. It should not be. God has established the marriage relationship to be a uniting of two people into one flesh.
I am continuing on with the consideration of God’s view of marriage. I just want to refresh our memory that we are in the process of contrasting the emotional desires of man and the absolute mandates of God. It is a dangerous area, since the safe thing humanly speaking is to say words, and give counsel, that will make people feel good and justify what they are doing. I would much rather be accused of being true to the Word of God, than to espouse a false doctrine that may be described as a “feel good about it” doctrine.
We hear terms bantered around to describe marriage: Getting hitched, tying the knot, walking the aisle, etc., none of which give the proper concept of the two becoming one. God never intended that two people merely live in the same home and try their very best to get along -- most of the time. God’s design was for the two to become one flesh.
There are two adjectives used in the Scripture in Genesis to describe this act of becoming one flesh: LEAVE and UNITED. It was important then and it is important now, that the two leave their former home, parents – even children of previous marriages, and be united to each other. I hear screams of protest. It is okay to scream, but after your tantrum is over, read what God says and then start thinking in a logical manner.
Couples that fail to leave the nest, become dependent on parents to do for them what they are told to do for themselves. It is a part of maturing. Going through the trials of too many expenses and too little resources, will teach lessons that bind the two hearts together. Children of previous marriages are capable of causing such havoc, that conflicts seem to never cease.
I am sure you have heard the old cliché, “Your kids and my kids are beating up on our kids – what are you going to do about it?” It calls for unity and the two marriage partners being one flesh in dealing with the issues of life. Only the couple, husband and wife, are one flesh. The parents and children of the couple are outside of that intimate relationship. Together they must deal with the problems that arise.
Many years ago in Nampa, Idaho, the Senior Pastor Chuck Higgins and I did almost all of the marriage counseling for a very large church. We often laughed that it seemed like half of those we counseled cried their eyes out because they were not married, and the other half cried their eyes out because they were!
How do we reconcile the obvious difficulties, which exist, when two people, from different homes, backgrounds, traditions and temperaments---“become one flesh.” It is well to consider that in Biblical times, marriages were arranged. Their fathers mandated the two who were to become one flesh, in that relationship. In that context, Paul tells the husband to love his wife in the way Christ loved the church, and gave His life for her. That means a death of self in order to make his wife feel cherished and nurtured. The wife was to acknowledge her husband’s position as the head of the home by honoring and respecting him.
I have counseled scores of couples, and have heard all of the arguments, so please receive this observation. Where one or both parties rebel against God’s design, there is unhappiness, strife and often divorce. On the other hand, those who come under the authority of God’s design, more often, find contentment and fulfillment. Doing things God’s way always brings us the greatest happiness.
I want to leave this subject with a personal testimonial. Joyce and I have been sweethearts since we were fourteen. We were married at age eighteen, and that was almost 56 years ago. We followed God’s principles before marriage, and for you who wonder what that means, (no pre-marital intimacy). We are so much in love with each other that we can hardly stand to be apart for even short periods of time. We are very much a living example of being one flesh. It can be done!
I have great love for all of you. I would never hurt you by words or actions. I would be hurting you if I advocated any type of behavior, which was in conflict with God’s Word. You may disagree with me, but please, I beg of you, do not disagree with His Word.
Blessings dear hearts. Walk with God today. Trust Him completely and be a blessing.
--- Pastor Cecil
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