Is Marriage Beneficial for Radical, Godly Obedience?
by Patrick Roberts 12/31/2007 / Marriage
I wonder about this, especially after reading Paul's writings (in 1 Corinthians 7 he says, he wishes his readers would stay single as he is, because being married divides a man's affections between his wife and God) . Whenever I read about radically Godly men they tend to be single. I used to think to myself, "How could I wander off into the wilderness to obey God if I wasn't single?"
It must be true that a married man can obey God 100% and a single man can obey God 100% or Christianity is too irrelevant to bother with. God made people to pair off, one man to one woman. He did this for practical reasons: for companionship, for procreation and to illustrate the perfect community He enjoys with Himself. When two people join together, they become an inseparable team. A godly, married couple represents two life energies working as one to advance God's kingdom.
If itinerant ministry were an end in itself, then being single would be a huge advantage in God's kingdom. But, by and large, God designed Christianity to be neighborly, from one house to another, from one family to another.
Everyday life is mundane. It is eating, sleeping, going to work, putting the groceries away and mowing the lawn. God designed His gospel accordingly. Christianity needs no religious guidelines. It thrives in the context of everyday life.
As Christ-followers we should incorporate gospel-preaching into our daily living. We preach what we truly believe by how well we live. This is a general rule for humankind in general. CEOs are zealously dedicated to their jobs to the point that they make money and success look good. Movie stars make looking good look good. Christians are called to make Christ look good.
Marriage is a necessary part of God's kingdom. For encouragement's sake remember that we're not called to be superstars for Christ, but rather we are called to demonstrate why Christ is the Superstar. We tend to imagine self-glorifying ways by which this might work out, but God's idea of obedience tends to make us invisible so that Christ alone is visible through us.
God designed marriage to reflect Himself. This is Awesome. Besides that, by excelling in our marriages we will preach a powerful gospel to the 98% of the world that desires relational fullness in the form of a "significant other."