The Meaning of Marriage | Week 1

Week 1 | Introduction

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This week 4 Pax met at Adventure Park to kick-off our latest book study: The Meaning of Marriage. Thank you everyone that was able to attend. We covered the introduction only. We will be reading a half chapter per week (appx 15 pages). See The Current Reading Plan. Each week there will be a marriage exercise posted to complete along with the reading assignment. See the end of this backblast for this week’s assignment.

A Book for Married People

  • Contemporary culture’s definition of soulmate is “a perfectly compatible match”
  • The author draws on his experience being married for 37 years.
  • This book is for those who have discovered how challenging day-to-day marriage is and are searching for practical resources to survive the sometimes overwhelming “fiery trials” of matrimony and to grow through them.

A Book for Unmarried People

  • Material in this book is based on a 9-week message series delivered to a church of mostly singles, and was the most listened to set of sermons the church ever produced.
  • Single people today need a brutally realistic yet glorious vision of what marriage is and can be.

A Book About the Bible

  • The bible begins and ends with a marriage.
  • Marriage is God’s idea and the bible instructs us on God’s plan for marriage.
  • The bible is a time-tested, multi-cultural resource on marriage. There is no other resource like it.

The Plan of the Book

  • The substance of the book draws from Ephesians 5.
  • Chapter 1: Put Paul’s discussion on marriage into today’s cultural context.
  • Chapter 2: Married partners need the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives.
  • Chapter 3: Marriage is all about love. But what is Love?
  • Chapter 4: What is marriage for? It is a way for two spiritual friends to help each other on their journey to become the persons God designed them to be.
  • Chapter 5: Three basic skill sets we can use to help each other on that journey.
  • Chapter 6: Marriage is a place where the two sexes accept each other as differently gendered and learn to grow through it.
  • Chapter 7: Helps single people use the material in this book to live the single life well.
  • Chapter 8: Sex. Why the bible confines it to marriage and embracing the biblical view.

Ephesians 5: 18-33

Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 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. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

Homework for 10/12

  • If you do not already have the book: The Meaning of Marriage then get a copy. The kindle versions is available too, but the paperback is a pretty good deal right now. I still have an extra copy.
  • Read the first half of Chapter One. Stop at: “You Never Marry the Right Person”.
  • Marriage Exercise: Everyday this week – Look Your Wife into her eyes and tell her: “I Love You”.

Thoughts for the week:

  • Aside from Ephesians Chapter 5, where else does the bible talk about marriage?
  • Before this week, how many times a day did you make time to tell your wife you loved her?
  • Are there any areas in your marriage that need improvement?