Monday, May 02, 2011

Rudiments of Marriage

With the ongoing public debate on the RH/RP Bill, it might be good to review marriage as God conceived it. This, of course, we can derive from a reading of Genesis and the Gospels which give us a clear, fundamental picture of marriage.

Much of the confusing arguments thrown about in media, in courts and in churches come from people’s misconceptions regarding the origin of marriage. When institutions enforce inordinate marital laws, society gets caught in the proverbial Gordian knot. Today, the moral and economic health of our nation will depend upon our unravelling this knot for us to experience the freedom and prosperity that God wanted us to have in the first place.

When marriages end up becoming mere playgrounds for the perverts and the depraved, it is time to get serious. Let us then review the Rudiments of Marriage:

A – Marriage is an ACT of God.

God established and defined marriage in the beginning. He “made them male and female” and made them “one flesh”. No, in reality, He made them first “one flesh” (one kind of flesh) in the person of Adam from whom Eve was taken. Having formed Eve from Adam’s flesh, God “made them one” (one united flesh) in marriage. Thus, He declared them to be husband and wife. There, the simple definition of marriage from the Author of Life Himself.

One man. One woman. One flesh. One union. Can there be anything more elegant than that?

Today, people pervert the equation: One man. One man. One flesh.... Bang! It blows the mind of God and sensible people. But people don’t know any better and violate the Law of Marriage, making it into a mere act of humans.

B – Marriage BEGINS with the physical union of man and woman.

One flesh, at the start, then there were two different flesh forms (male and female). God meant the two to be reunited -- a physical and loving union. Adam and Eve loved each other. Their union was uniquely and directly physical since Eve came from Adam. They became husband and wife when they consummated and celebrated their entrance in marriage.

Since all of us came from the union of Adam and Eve, we can consider ourselves of the same flesh nature. We also have the privilege to enter marriage.

It is important to see and understand that the pattern of Adam and Eve is our only model for marriage. They entered their union by the physical act of coming together as “one flesh”. The act of God was to make male and female out of one flesh and joining them in marriage. The act of humans in subsequent marriages is to unite in the same manner. That is marriage the way it should be seen and done. From the beginning till the end of time.

In short, the wedding or the pronouncement by any institution does not establish the union. It is two persons following the law and word of God and keeping that union pure before Him.

C – CLEAVING to one another

What God has joined together, let no one separate. But why do we have laws that allow separation? Because we have taken over God’s authority. We change the equation, distort and extend it to satisfy inordinate carnal desires.

To cleave means to be joined with. The initial intense desire must remain, as much as possible. It is a responsibility of married people as well as of society to keep that union everlasting. Of course, this is hard to attain in our fast-changing times. But if it was generally possible in the past to remain married till death, why can’t we do it again? So many reasons to remain one and only excuses not to.

D – DISSOLUTION of marriage is through death or divorce.

Only God can separate what He united. Through death of a spouse, He allows a person to marry again. Or when one becomes unfaithful by uniting with another. Why?

Since marriage is a union between two bodies, a married person who joins with another different body destroys the original union. 1 + 1 = 1, is the formula. But we have changed it into (1 + 1) + 1 = 2. There are now two unions, one from God and one from humans. One holy, one evil. But people still do it! Why? Because they are driven by their carnal desires, not by the Spirit of God.

From the previous illustration, we can see how population explodes and society’s morals disappear. Why? Because people abuse the privilege. Hence, (1 + 1) + 1 + (1 + 1) + 1 + 1 = 5. Both husband and wife have other partners at the same time. But wait, even the young have made their own equation, thus: (1 + 1) + 1 + 1 = 3. What?

Let us make it clear that two who are joined in the sexual act enter marriage as defined by God. Male and female, in the beginning, remember? Even if you are only 13, once you unite with someone, the union is established. Same flesh, same act, producing the same union. You are bound to keep that union or suffer the consequences of entering an adulterous union. But, of course, people have found ways to go around God’s laws.

Now we have “legal separation” because “there was no marriage in the first place”. That is like saying, God made a mistake in defining marriage and, therefore, we can allow two persons to be free to marry again. Divorce -- legal or not, right or wrong -- has become a prized status which brings big profit to many. But the law of God remains and will make us accountable in the end.

Friends, hope you learned something new from an old teaching. So, when you go and multiply, make sure you use the right equation. We don’t want anyone losing the soul for not knowing and understanding the simple Alphabet and Arithmetic of Marriage.

(Painting above: "Tampuhan" (Lovers' Spat) by Juan Luna)