You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free
Facebook Post, August 2015: I have been asked to write about marriage. Remembering that marriage is the first covenant, which God made between His newly created human species, and therefore it is a covenant no one should enter into lightly, I cannot help remembering the utterly superficial advice of most elderly people to young couples: "To marry is not buying horses." That's it? Makes sense in some silly way, because if we think of the marriage covenant in terms of ''playing true love,'' or a convenient business transaction, we would never get mauled when our spouses commit adultery, choose to party with their friends instead of coming home, lie, deceive, manipulate, never defend us when we need support, waste all the money on flashy cars, jewellery, gambling and unnecessary items - and assault us verbally and physically when we object. What will happen to such a marriage and the children of that marriage if both spouses choose to live so immorally? Where will these children learn the many precepts of God's moral law, which set humans apart from animals? How will they know the Creator God in all His love and mercy, and that a marriage requires constant fidelity, a lifetime commitment and self-sacrifice, if they are taught that Mommy is just ''one of the girls,'' and Daddy is just ''one of the boys?''
However, opposite characters usually attract. It is not uncommon to find a stable character married to a wild stallion powered on raw testosterone - or a wild mare, who just cannot get it into her head that she is not Cleopatra, married to Old Job. This is a great disaster in the making, if one or both spouses never truly surrender themselves wholly to Christ. Hence, God sternly warns in 2 Cor. 4:16, "Do not be unequally yoked to unbelievers, for what does Christ have in common with Belial?” (Heb.: Worthlessness.) Sadly, this is the grave situation many faithful spouses unwittingly dunked themselves into when they married an unfaithful husband or wife as unbelievers - or much worse, when they married unequally yoked as believers. Whatever might be the case, such deceived spouses always end up abused and broken. (Broken in many little pieces like that old Humpty Dumpty character, as there is no better explanation for complete brokenness, which only God can put together again.) But take heart, you very disappointed and deeply hurt husband or wife, because God has seen it all, and if you have really surrendered it all it Jesus, and are willing to work through this His Way, you will come through this marsh much stronger, wiser, and of course somewhat older. After all, did God, Who can never lie because He is not a mere man, not say in Rom. 8:28 that we know that God works all things together for the good of those who love Him?
Facebook Post, 2016, Speaking on marriage as ''not buying horses,'' and illustrating the marriage covenant like two horses, yoked together, drawing a carriage, I have to share what I once saw. I cannot find the video on the internet, but it showed two horses yoked together in a carriage during some kind of show. They began calmly, pulling together strongly, until one of the horses suddenly went berserk. It reared up with such brute force that it nearly flipped the carriage, hauling the driver into the air and yanking the other horse off its feet. However, the other horse immediately took a firm stand to bring the wild one under control. While the mad one continued to neigh frantically trying to rear onto its hind legs, butting, kicking and biting to get out of the carriage restraints, the calm horse slowly but meticulously began to force the wild one to the side of the track, using all its strength to subdue the crazy one until it eventually pinned the wild horse firmly against the rail. No matter how hard the mad one tried to continue its frenzy, the other horse would not budge. It so firmly stood it's ground, the wild one simply had to realize it doesn't have enough strength of keep on fighting the firm, level-headed control of the other horse. Once the crazy horse had completely calmed down, the driver took control and gave the command to continue. Although bruised and maybe even wounded, the calm horse immediately obeyed and the wild one followed suit, so that they brought the driver uninjured to the finishing line.
If the calm horse was unable to subdue the wild one so that the driver could take control, the outcome of this scenario would have been that the berserk horse would have been put down for the safety of all concerned. I later learned that it is custom to yoke a wild horse with a docile one, and a less experienced horse with a more experienced one. I know God forbade us to be unequally yoked to spare us an immense heap of trouble and sorrow. But, could it perhaps be, (and this is only my perception and not a licence to disobey God in the least,) that in His infinite wisdom, while we are ignorant of His Way and the ways of life, our Lord actually allows opposite characters to attract each other? By allowing wild people the immeasurable grace to have someone stable in their lives, He then also causes the spiritual and emotional growth of the stable ones, while teaching and forming the character of the children born from that marriage with the goal of ultimately saving the souls of all concerned?
Do not be deceived to think that we, by our 'goodness' and even our obedience to God, can change another person, if he or she unrepentantly rejects God and all that is good. This is not what I am saying. Paul expressly wrote, "If the unbeliever departs [because he or she chooses not to submit to God and a Godly spouse,] let him or her depart, you are not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace. For how do you know, o wife or husband, whether you will save your spouse?” What I am saying is, when bad things happen to good spouses, they should not quickly get discouraged, abandoning the wild horse and leaving the carriage to decompose. Dear believer, I know you have been abused and abandoned on many occasions, and you are tired, bruised and broken. I am not saying you should stay with a serial adulterer, unrepentant drunkard or a violent Rambo. I am saying that I know, not all abused marriage partners have the means to flee from such maniacs, who never surrender themselves either to God or their God-given spouses. However, I know one thing: God, as the Driver of the marriage carriage, always remains in control. Before you decide to abandon this marriage, truly seek His will first. Be certain that you hear from Him before you make any decision, for He is the One Who will never leave you nor forsake you…
Facebook Post August 2016, DIVORCE AND REMARRIAGE IN THE BIBLE. Paul wrote, “There is now no condemnation for those who do not live according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit...” (Rom. 8:1.) These are the believers of Christ who have experienced His complete forgiveness, and have repented from sin, dealing with those whom they have trampled according to Jam. 5:16. All sin is sin. Do not let anyone condemn divorcees while overlooking other types of sin. The problem with relationships began in Eden when the husband and wife disobeyed God. When they had to take responsibility for what they did, regretting and confessing their sin to turn everything around, they began to practice the fine art of blame shifting instead. “The snake deceived me...” “That woman You gave me...” And without cursing them directly, God cursed the whole earth because of them. The consequences of their unrepentant sin still severely affect not just every human being, but also every living thing on earth.
The fall affected the provider-husband in a way that made everyone suffer. Weeds and thorns of all types infected every sphere of life, and, since that day, not only humans, but every living creature has to wrest a life from the earth. [Ever watched a spider or an ant work for its food?] In spite of what churches teach, God did not curse the wife to a life of violence, verbal abuse, and demonic oppression under the harsh rule of her husband. The same goes for the husband, of course! Instead, God actually warned the wife that, [and this also applies to the husband,] if she allows her now scrambled priorities to idolize her husband instead of worshipping and serving God above all else, the man, as the physically stronger one, will treat her very harshly.
All relationships, especially humanity’s relationship with God, with each other under the marriage covenant, in their families, and with all other people, were severely marred by only that one act of unrepentant disobedience to the Highest God. Jesus came to give every human being a way out of that cursed position without God by bringing complete blessedness and healing to all those who choose to truly live in Him, (Jn. 1:12-13; Gal. 3:10-14.) Still, most of humanity chooses to continue in the art of blame shifting, hatred, and emotional and physical murder. A Jewish writing described the marriage relationship as follows, “God did not create the woman from the feet of man so that she should be his doormat, but from his side, so that she can be near his heart.” They should have added, “God did not create the woman from man’s head that she should rule him, but from near his heart, so that she should help and encourage him.” But instead of realizing these great truths, the fact remains that behind every successful man... is a woman rolling her eyes. And behind every successful woman is a man shaking his fist. They forget that even before God joined them together through the marriage covenant, God gave them joint-management over His entire creation.
Instead of pulling together to get their marriage carriage to the finishing line, either the husband or the wife or both are going mad to get out of the restraints that yoke them together in marriage. Every Godly marriage counsellor will always attempt to save a runaway marriage carriage by calling both the husband and the wife to accountability, and repentance, so they can stop attacking each other and start pulling together. However, if one or both spouses refuse to submit to God and to each other in everything Good, Godly, and True, there is no hope for that marriage. If adultery, drug and alcohol abuse and violence are left unrepented [remember that our bodies are supposed to be temples of the Holy Spirit,] guilty spouses are systematically demolishing their marriages and everyone around them – especially the precious family that God had entrusted to their care.
However, if the wild horse insists on getting out of that yoke and greater harm to all involved is unavoidable, then divorce is imminent. Before we take that dreadful step, let us remember: divorce is death to that marriage, but without a burial or complete turning away we will suffer continuous grief, because in many ways, both the guilty and the innocent partner as well as the children remain yoked to that rotten corpse, the dead marriage. Sadly, young lovers and newlyweds never realize that Jesus said we must not enter the marriage covenant, nor annul it lightly, because He hates divorce – not because He condemns it as some ‘unforgivable, binding’ sin, but because He wants to spare us all the incredible brokenness and disruption attached to it. There is no such thing that divorced people are still married “in the eyes of God.” Rom. 13:1-7 makes it plain believers are still living physically here on earth, and therefore, they are subject to the laws of their government here on earth. God allowed Moses to allow the Hebrews to divorce, although, “from the beginning, it was not so.” So, if divorce is legal death to a marriage, then surely, after all is made right with God and our fellow man, through obedience to the Moral Law as far as possible, we are no longer bound to that wild ex-husband or ex-wife, are we?
Facebook Post August 2016, Speaking out or keeping quiet, when spouses check out other women and men, flirt and commit adultery? These, and all other types of sin and misbehaviour demolish marriages. It is a real problem when spouses of both sexes unrepentantly expose too much of their bodies through the clothes that they wear, throw anger tantrums, abuse their spouses verbally and/or physically, spend indiscriminately, are unreasonably jealous or lack caring; are lazy in supporting their families, shirk responsibilities, have poor personal hygiene and a general lack of manners, (many marriages disintegrate because of simple do’s and don’ts like this,) abuse drugs and alcohol (prescription drugs too,) behave spiteful and selfish, use intimacy as a manipulation tool, remain passive in times of adversity, etc. These problems are real enough, but how to deal with them, is always the question. No one in their right mind wants to fight - especially not all the time; push their spouses to act appropriately, or constantly restrain bad behaviour. Should the husband ignore it when the wife wears low cut T-shirts and dresses, tight and revealing pants, shorts and mini skirts, or should he confront her lovingly but firmly; giving reasons why he disproves of such behaviour? And what if she turns tigress and fights frantically, insisting to continue in what is unacceptable to him? What if the husband checks out other women? Should the wife keep quiet and do the same to make him jealous? What if the husband disapproves of his wife checking out other men, while he checks out other women? Should either the husband or the wife tolerate lies and manipulation to cover such terrible sin? Or is flirting not really dangerous because ‘everyone’ does it?
It doesn’t matter what everyone else does, but it is most important that Jesus said, “He who looks at a woman [or man] to lust after her [or him] commits adultery [in the heart, which will surely lead to the act of adultery; acquiring a lot of demons for him or herself to destroy him or herself and the wife/husband and children, (Jam. 1:15.) Paul warned in 1 Cor. 6:15-20; 3:16-17, “He who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him. He who is joined to a harlot [either male or female,] is one body with her [or him...] He or she who commits sexual immorality sins against his or her own body. Do you not know that your body [must be] a temple of the Holy Spirit… If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him [or her.] For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are,” (Mt. 5:28.) God does not share His Spirit’s temple with demons, as He allegedly did under the Old Testament Covenant, (Ezk. 8:6-18.) Our human spirits, souls or minds and bodies must be completely holy unto God, (Ths. 5:23.)
Unconfessed and unrepentant sin, and other harmful behaviour have a tendency, while we simply sweep it under the carpet, to grow into a huge, immovable rubbish heap before we know it. Hence, God called us to be the salt and light of the earth, meaning, we must always be available to the Holy Spirit to bring exhortation, (persuasion,) through the God-given truth of His Word, to bring TRUE peace to our homes and lives. Blessing can only come out of chaos through repentance and obedience to the Moral Commandments of Christ. These commandments, (repentance and obedience) are the two-edged Sword of the Word, which always cuts both ways. As wise ones used to say, ‘What is good for the gander [the male,] is good for the goose [the female.]’ Should we neglect to become God’s vessels of love (because God’s truth and the truth of every situation is Godly love,) He will certainly hold us responsible. As the spiritual head of your home, husband, you must be God’s salt and light (meaning you must allow the Holy Spirit and His true Word to work in and through you,) in everything good, Godly and true. As the spiritual heart of your home, wife, you must allow the Holy Spirit to work in and through you. Of course the husband must refuse that his wife wears short dresses and other inappropriate clothing, or exhibit silly and bad behaviour. I say again, if there is nothing for sale, why advertise? I expect my husband to warn me of inappropriate behaviour, and I believe it is my right to do the same for him. Doesn’t God Word ask, ‘Can two walk together unless they first agree?’ (Amos 3:3.) Ethical behaviour under all circumstances is not an option; it is obedience to God's Moral Law of Love. It is obedience to Christ Jesus Himself.
The greatest compliment a man or woman can give his or her spouse is not to ‘check out’ and flirt with people of the opposite sex. Of course we have eyes and must see what is going on around us, but just a little leaven leavens the whole lump. Just a little flirtation with sin can lead to great apostasy from God and a marriage that ends in divorce. If something makes for arguments and sin, look away and run away before staring and becoming ensnared. Do not give the devil a foothold to destroy your relationship with God, your spouse and your family, (Eph. 4:27.) In other words, as much as it is in your power, do not give the devil any opportunity to pry on your weaknesses, or allow him to use others to bring anger, discontent and division between you and your spouse.
Watch out and “guard your own heart above all things,” (Prov. 4:23.) God commanded in Lev. 19:17, “Your shall not hate your brother [spouse/neighbour…] in your heart. You shall surely rebuke [him or her,] and not bear sin because of him [or her.] Do not allow unresolved conflicts to poison you (or other people,) while you can resolve it through obedience to God’s Word, (Eph. 4:26.) Don’t shy away from standing your ground if you know you are doing right, (Eph. 6:13.) Nonetheless, we must always repent from our own sin before trying to resolve the sin of our spouses and other people. However, we should never apologize for acting morally, or for expecting our spouses (and other people) to act morally towards us. May God have mercy on us all, for it is not to the glory of God to fly off the handle as soon as the pan gets hot. Calm, honest, and open discussion is all that can clear a bad atmosphere, because keeping quiet while grinding our teeth is bad for our own spiritual, emotional, and physical health, and for the health of all concerned. Using intimacy to manipulate your spouse is something all disgruntled partners should address. Let us always pray everything through and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal the “great and unknown things we do not know,” (Jer. 33:3,) because dealing with the causes of troubled behaviour and relationships can, by the grace of God, lead so a clean atmosphere and a holy and happy marriage relationship, if only we only do our part in the correct timing of God.
Facebook Post, September 2016, Why is a male, who has sexual relations with every woman he can find, complimented with names like Romeo, Stud, Bull — while a woman, who commit the same type of immorality, is called a “whore,” (even if she does not do it for money,) slut, harlot, etcetera? Society actually commends and never condemns promiscuous men – even destructive, soul-murdering serial adulterers - while promiscuous women are usually branded with the scarlet letter. In addition, it is allegedly always the female ‘slut’ who tempts the ‘innocent’ male – while seduction really cuts both ways. Many a good woman was ruined by a bad man, just as many a good man was ruined by a bad woman. In Scripture, (New Covenant Scripture especially,) both immoral men and women are “fornicators,” and if married, they are called “adulterers.” Under the Old Testament, such people were stoned to death to root out evil in marriage and society – although the evil Pharisees overlooked and commended male fornicators and adulterers because they also twisted God’s Word to suit themselves, just like New Testament Pharisees still do today. Jesus said in Mark 7:13, “You make the Word of God of no effect through your tradition, which you have handed down. And many such things you do.” If only society would also condemn the destructive actions of male whores and male sluts, just as they do with female whores and sluts, they would have alleviated the suffering and pain of countless wives and children through the ages.
More unacceptably, if a child is born to “such a woman” out of wedlock, (while “such a father” is hardly ever mentioned,) the names, which that innocent child is called are unmentionable. However, all little children are totally innocent and could never choose their physical circumstances. All little children belong wholly to Jesus, and He Himself laid His hands on them without ever thinking of cursing them, and blessed them unconditionally, (Mt. 19:13-15.) How does society then dare to curse those innocents, Whom God Himself has blessed? All those born out of wedlock must remember this. You can never be cursed because of what your parents did because God Himself has blessed you. The only way you can be cursed, is when you yourself choose the curses by choosing the sinful ways of the kingdom of darkness, (read Deut. Chapter 28.) Once you choose Jesus, you continue to occupy a constant spiritual place of blessedness in His Kingdom of Light. So, who is actually ‘out of wedlock’ when they conceive a child? The unmarried couple – both the father and the mother; but certainly not the child. God made it very clear in Scripture that both male and female, unrepentant adulterers and other types of fornicators, will not inherit the Kingdom of God, (1 Cor. 6:9.) Jam. 4:4, “[Spiritual, emotional and physical] adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the [sinful] world is enmity with God?” Heb. 13:4, “Marriage is honourable among all, [thus, keep] the bed undefiled, for God will judge [both male and female] fornications and adulterers.” God made one man and one woman and joined the two together through His marriage covenant. As soon as a third party, either male or female, enters this Godly union, it instantly breaks the holiness of His covenant, (not the lawfulness of this marriage.) Hence, adultery is the only ground for divorce, (if the offended so chooses and not by law) – which was never in God’s mouth when He joined them together, (Mt. 19:3-10.)
Yes, you may ask, but what about the Old Testament patriarchs? Can anyone think that God, Who, “in the beginning,” so seriously commanded both the male and female to honour their marriage vows, actually gave the old patriarchs permission to go after every woman they wanted? No, because in Deut. 17:17, God even forbade the king to have more than one wife. And in Mal. 2:14, 15, God warned the real robbers of His Old Covenant temple tithes, (not the blessed New Testament disciples of Christ,) the Old Covenant temple priesthood, “[I do not regard your offerings anymore,] because [I] have been a witness between you and the wife of your youth, which whom you have dealt treacherously; yet she is your companion and your wife by covenant...”
Let me assure you, the notion that both single and married men may fornicate because they are male, while women, who do the same are ‘adulteresses and sluts,’ is one of the greatest deceptions Satan has strewn through the world. Girls, if you meet a ‘Romeo,’ run your legs lame! If he checks out the girls before you are married, he will adulterate after you are married. If this ‘stud’ lays one violent finger on you before marriage, he will beat the living daylights out of you once you are married. If he likes to spend his time with wild friends and waste all his money on flashy cars; drinks uncontrollably and takes drugs, he will not surrender to you and play happy-hubby once you are married. [And the same applies to disorderly women of all kinds!] God never promised that our prayers and Christ-given goodness will change anyone else except ourselves. Yes, God has a million ways to lead sinners to repentance, but in the end, repentance still remains our own, personal choice. If another person rejects the True Savior, Jesus, we must not suffer from Messiah-syndrome, believing we can save or change that person if we just endure long enough; suffer enough, give enough... Every human being on earth is saved, redeemed and blessed by only One Person: the Lord Jesus Christ and His full atonement in our place. Everyone has to choose Jesus because we want Him as the Master of our lives. We serve Him because we want to glorify His Name. If that man or woman does not regard God and His blood atonement in his or her place, that male or female slut will not regard you, or any of the many empty promises they make to you.