Six Great Bible Verses for Married Couples
The partial list of marriage principles in these verses form the foundation for happy, healthy marriages. No matter who else claims to be an authority, God's principles and promises work best.
Since they are no longer two but one, let no one split apart what God has joined together. (Matthew 19: 6 NLT)
Two Wholes Become One
This is not two halves becoming one whole, but two wholes becoming one in a mysterious union. God, the mysterious entity, guarantees success (though not everyday happiness) of the relationship. Nothing and no one can split the couple apart unless one or both of the spouses allow it.
Marriage is an alliance between two people who commit to building a lifetime partnership for the benefit of each, as well as the benefit of the union. It is about helping each other achieve the best.
Two individuals who are clear about God putting them together have to remain together unless they become as clear that He (not anyone or anything else) wants them to separate. Without that clarity, they owe it to themselves to seek help for their problems from a source approved by both individuals.
Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance (1 Corinthians 13: 4).
This verse does not suggest that spouses will always be in a loving mood. It declares that no matter the mood, love endures. Disappointment, strife or any other negative situation may visit but love is always the host.
Inevitably, performances in one area or another will fall short of expectations. Love makes the offended see beyond the offense to the potential of stepping over the obstacle. It is so committed to the success of the marriage that it is willing to communicate, understand and forgive.
Nothing has greater spiritual, emotional and intimate benefits than enduring love.
What matters is not your outer appearance—the styling of your hair, the jewelry you wear, the cut of your clothes—but your inner disposition. (1 Peter 3: 3, 4 [MSG])
This verse primarily addressed to the wife, also has significance for the husband concerning his expectations of his wife. It cautions her to put as much emphasis on being good as on looking good. Elliott’s Commentary for English Readers translates the verse as follows:
Do not rely, for winning your husbands, upon ornamentation (which is but external), but upon character.
Barnes Notes elaborates on the same verse, stating that the husband prefers ornaments of the heart above gold and jewels.
The one can never be a substitute for the other . . . whatever outward decorations she may have, unless she have [sic] a gentleness of spirit, a calmness of temper, a benevolence and purity of soul, and a cultivation of mind that her husband can love, she cannot calculate on his permanent affection.
It helps if husbands admire the gracious qualities of their wives(and compliment) them as much as for their physical appearance.
Give honor to marriage, and remain faithful to one another in marriage. (Hebrews 13:4)
- Sexual Intimacy in Marriage: Christian Marriage Today
One couple's advice on how to make sexual intimacy in marriage better than ever.
Christian couples have the privilege of sex within marriage. They also have the responsibility to respect their marriage and each other by sharing their bodies exclusively with each other. However, there was another situation that warranted this verse.
It was written against the claim that celibacy was more honorable, and that marital sex was evidence of moral weakness. Barnes Notes comments:
This sentiment has been the cause of more abomination in the world than any other single opinion claiming to have a religious sanction. It is one of the supports on which the Papal system rests, and has been one of the principal upholders of all the corruptions in monasteries and nunneries.
Today, many religious sects in their quest for spiritual purity discourage sex entirely. Some are afraid that lack of self-control will lead to multiple sexual partners.
This verse emphasizes the rights of married couples to enjoy sexual pleasure. In a relationship which is daily committed to God for His leadership and continual involvement, fidelity is possible and satisfying.
For husbands . . . love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. (Ephesians 5: 25)
Here is a verse primarily addressed to husbands, emphasizing their responsibility to love their wives. It they want to know how, there is the example of how Christ loves the church always, despite her lapses in devotion to Him.
Gill’s Exposition lists several ways (among others) in which husbands display their love to their wives:
- in seeking their contentment, satisfaction, and pleasure;
- in providing all things necessary for them;
- in protecting them from all injuries and abuses;
- in concealing their faults, and covering their infirmities;
- in entertaining the best opinion of their persons and actions;
- in endeavoring to promote their spiritual good and welfare;
- in private, as well as in public;
- exceeding the love to neighbors, or even to parents.
The love of husbands for their wives is equal to the love they have for themselves. Their love is not a reaction to their wives initiating it or responding to it. They love the same way Christ loves them.
The wife must respect her husband. Ephesians (5:33)
Walking in Mutual Love and Respect
In Whitney Hopler's counsel to women, she writes,
Men’s greatest need in marriage is respect. When you withhold respect from your husband, it’s as painful to him and harmful to your marriage as if he is withholding love (women’s greatest need in marriage) from you.
Wives respecting their husbands are simply empowering the men to keep on loving.
Bible Hub Copyright 2004-2015 by Bible Hub:
Elliott's Commentary for English Readers, 1 Peter 3: 3, 4
Barnes Notes on the Bible, 1 Peter 3: 3, 4; Hebrews 13: 4
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible, Ephesians 5: 25
Hoppler, Whitney: Crosswalk, How to Respect Your Husband More (18/02/2013)
They show respect in the following actions, among others:
- expressing gratitude for the love the men show;
- complimenting their leadership and other skills;
- speaking kindly of them;
- extending courtesies no less than they extend to other people of significance;
- asking questions instead of denouncing their judgments;
- showing interest in and encouraging the pursuit of their goals;
- soliciting their help as a way of displaying trust;
- maintaining a clean comfortable home.
Respect is the right of husbands; they do not have to earn it. However, if at times they do not seem to deserve it, the apostle Peter suggests that “they may be won over without words (to faith as well as to good conduct) by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives.” (1 Peter 3: 1, 2).
Marriage is the lifetime process of helping each other become the person God wants him and her to become.
Scripture Quotations are from the New Living Translation except noted otherwise.
© 2011 Dora Isaac Weithers
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