The Christian view of marriage is unique. It provides purpose and meaning to a relationship that is treated with almost contempt in mainstream society. Yes, Christians believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. But that is only a start, and a basic one at that.
Ephesians 5:21-33 deals with marriage. But the entire passage is paralleled with a the relationship between Christ and the Church.
Ephesians 5:31-32 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
From these verses we begin to see that the marriage is much more than we would suspect.
It is important for any married couple, or for that matter anyone who wishes to get married, to have a deep understanding of God's purpose for marriage. Without an understanding of God's intent it would be hard for any married couple to fully grasp the nature or the depth of commitment God is looking for in a marriage.
I cannot overstate the important of this. As we progress through life and in marriage, problems and issues will crop up. For the Christian a fundamental acceptance and understanding of God's intent and purpose for marriage is essential in dealing with these issues.
There is a premise, a starting idea if you like, that a Christian marriage revolves around. If someone has the premise wrong, they will miss the why and often the how of the nature of their marriage. Marriage is meant to be so much more than the physical union of two people. It is a highly spiritual and holy relationship.
Here is the premise:
A marriage is divinely chosen by God to represent, in human terms, our relationship with God in Salvation.
Due to our fallen nature, as well as our human nature, it is impossible to understand the depth of love or commitment that God has for each of us. We read about it in Scripture, we hear about it from behind the pulpit, and we experience it one-sided. Since God will never leave us, nor forsake us, nor let us down, nor cease loving us, we cannot understand God from His perspective...or His side.
This, then, is the purpose or intent of marriage. It is a way for God to allow us to experience things from God's side of the equation. Since our mates are not perfect, they will hurt us, betray our feelings, scare us, and worry us. In such times you will come to understand God more than is otherwise humanly possible.
It is impossible to love everyone to the degree that we are supposed to love our spouse. God is capable, but we are not. We just don't have that capacity. However, to understand the depth of love, mercy, and grace that God demonstrates to us, we need to choose someone to try and love like that. That person was meant to be your spouse.
God wanted you to choose one person, just one, to love so unconditionally, so absolutely, that as you experience the joys and pain of that relationship you may begin to understand God's love for you better. Only then may we understand God's joy when there is reconciliation, His disappointment when we sin, His jealousy over our time and love, His rejoicing when there is a "marriage" of a sinner that says, "yes!" to his proposal.
This is the main reason God is so against divorce. God will not leave nor forsake us, no matter what we do, and the only way to understand that is to choose someone that you are willing to do the same for. Divorce, therefore, is a rejection also of God's commitment to us. To choose divorce is saying that you do not understand God's depth of commitment to you. It is a denial of God's promises, and His love.
In effect, marriage is a picture of salvation that cannot be experienced any other way on this earth. Only through our marriages can we gain a true measure of God's love for us. Divorce, on the other hand, makes a mockery of this picture.
Therefore, even during the worst of times, God meant for you to remain married. As God keeps His vows and promises, so He expects the same level of commitment out of you.
But in having such an understanding, you will gain insights into God that will propel your spirituality and relationship with God beyond your wildest imaginations! And obtain a relationship through marriage that is unparalleled in joy, purpose, and fulfillment.