The Key to a Marriage That Lasts

In Mark 10, the Pharisees asked Jesus about marriage.  Here's how He responded.

Some Pharisees came to Him and tested Him by asking, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?"

"What did Moses command you," He replied.

They said, "Moses permitted a man to write a certificate of divorce and send her away."

"It was because your hearts were hard that Moses wrote you this law," Jesus replied.  "But at the beginning of creation God 'made them male and female.' 

For this reason a man will leave his mother and father and be united with His wife, and the two will become one flesh.  So they are no longer two, but one flesh."

Jesus said when a couple (btw - He said a man and woman) marries, they become one.  Picture it like this.  Two strands of rope being tied together to form one strand of rope.  You "tie the knot."

The phrase "tying the knot" comes from the custom of tying a couple's hands together during the wedding ceremony.  It has also been traced back to Sweden, where sailors would send a piece of rope to the girl they wanted to marry.  If the girl returned the rope with a knot tied in it, it meant she was accepting his wedding proposal.

As Jesus continues talking about marriage in Mark 10, He says, "What God has joined together, let no one separate."

God established marriage to be a permanent relationship that would last a life time.  He doesn't want the knot that was tied to be pulled apart.

But there is an enemy.  John 10 says, "The thief is come to steal, kill and destroy."  The enemy's desire is to snap the marriage union.  There are several ways he brings the pressure. 

-Lack of communication
-Abuse (emotional & physical)
-Feeling constrained
-Trust / jealousy
-Quick changes
-Spiritual differences
-Parenting disagreements
-Baggage from previous relationships

Every couple faces one or more of these pressures and the tension it puts on marriage.  And it is hard for any couple to stand up to the pressure by themselves.

The key to a marriage not being pulled apart is found in Ecclesiastes 4.  It says, "And if one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him.  A cord of three strands is not easily torn apart."
The key to a marriage that lasts is the 3rd cord...which is God.  When you wrap Him around your union, He will keep the enemy from pulling you apart.

The more you surrender to His will and way as a couple...the stronger the third cord will become around your union.

Matthew 6 says, "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you."

When a couple makes their decisions based on God's Word, treats each other like Jesus would and puts God first in every area of their life...the cord becomes strong enough to withstand the pressures that are trying to pull them apart...and their marriage lasts for a lifetime.