IN THE BEGINNING…….
by Liz Sykes
Christian marriage should by definition be a union which is Christ-like and shows the kind of love demonstrated by Christ when he laid aside his status, humbled himself and became human. The very heart of Christian love is sacrificial and wanting the best for others, even to the point of being prepared to give up our own expectations and desires.
Christian ‘egalitiarian’ marriage one could expect to be just the same since the very nature of equality is treating others as you would like to be treated (a basic biblical principle) Any marriage system which is other than equal in function, gives occasion for abuse from the one perceived to have the power and a lessening of the personhood of the other.
So much is said in the New Testament about mutuality among believers, what we call the ‘one anothers’ of scripture. There is ample instruction about getting on with one another through many aspects of life and there is no reason to assume this should change just because two believers get married to each other. Learning to live with other Christians is made possible, even easy, if we practise the principles of caring for each other.
With the redemption available through the sacrifice of Jesus, we can learn to live in union with God and each other, just as the first couple did.
There are not many words to describe the union of Eve & Adam before they sinned, but the two which stand out are ‘naked and unashamed’. What a glorious existence without shame of any kind, a couple completely un-selfconscious in each other’s presence and enjoying each other’s company in the place prepared for them by God.
As we live in union with Christ and each other, it is possible to experience something of that first marriage, even though we live in a world tainted by sin and fallen-ness. The first couple were brought together by God which gave them a great start! Believing that God still brings a woman and a man together in marriage, gives them the best beginning for a lifetime of learning and growing together.
About the Authors:
Liz and Trevor Sykes have been married 44 years. Parents of 4 grown sons, 3 now married, the Sykes’ have 8 grandchildren, 2 girls and 6 boys. They love to have the family visit and stay over. Both Trevor and Liz made commitments to Christ in their pre-marriage life. They were in Christian ministry together for over 35 years and are now fully retired as Trevor draws on a war service pension. Nowadays they keep busy doing some writing and acting as administrators of the blogsite for CBE “The Scroll”