The First Covenant

For the husband is head of the wife, just as Christ is head of the church, He Himself the Savior of the body.  Ephesians 5:23   

From the very beginning, in the very first family, to our own, we see God is orderly. He has consistent patterns and usually sticks with the created order. God created mankind out of love and calls him to love. Mankind is also created in the image and likeness of God, who is the very essence of love. Since God has created man and woman in His image, their mutual love becomes an image or a witness to the unfailing love that God has for all mankind.

So, a man leaves his father and mother and cleaves to his wife and the two become one flesh (Gen.2:24). This covenant, though tainted by the fall, is still God’s plan for society. As Jesus taught in Matt.19:6,”What therefore God has joined together, let no man put asunder.” Thus, Jesus by coming to restore the original order, gives strength and grace to live the marriage covenant through His cross, which is the source of the Christian life.

This is the “great mystery” Paul talks about here, how marriage mirrors the redemptive love of Christ. When Jesus said,” Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill,” (Matt.5:17), that pertains to every aspect of the law and of the created order. It goes beyond just ” right and wrong”, but to the whole of creation effected by sin (the curse).

We call ourselves Christians? How can we respect the new covenant in Jesus’ blood, and not respect the oldest of all God’s covenants, marriage? The nature of covenant is “to give yourself to,” when we enter the marriage covenant, we give ourselves to the other, through the grace of God.

Likewise, Jesus gave Himself to death to redeem the Church. Men, we ought to give ourselves to our wives in the same way. We know that Jesus will never abandon or divorce His Church and we should never abandon or divorce our wives!


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