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Love and marriage


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Part 2: Happiness in Marriage


A visitor to this page wrote,

"I read your message on love and marriage and I do understand it. However, I do think that God would rather us be happy in our marriage than just stay together and be unhappy."

(Content of this section: A look at marriage happiness and what the lose of the feeling of being in love signals)


I absolutely agree - we should be happy in our marriages. By applying the New Testament's teachings on living a spiritual - new creation, child of God - life in faith and love this is well within the reach of any two born again believers who are joined together as husband and wife.

The point of my message was that if there is a moment of time in your marriage where your feelings are telling you you are not "in love" (male-female love - eros) this is not a sign that your marriage is over or invalid.

On the other hand, it may well be a sign that your marriage relationship needs to be worked on - pastoral counselling may need to be sought or some kind of marriage enhancement program taken up.


Another visitor to this page wrote,

"I am a 20 yr old woman who just got married and I can honesly say that my husband and I are in love....I feel that if you are not in love with your spouse then there is nothing to bind the relationship together."

(Content of this section: The author makes recommendations about what to do if the feeling of being in love has gone)


It's great to hear you and your husband are in love. My wife and I are in love too. We think it's wonderful.

As I write on my web page "Marriage and Love" if a husband and wife do not feel they are in love at any given moment in their relationship then this is likely to be a sign that their marriage relationship needs to be worked on - pastoral counselling may need to be sought or some kind of marriage enhancement program taken up.

However, you write, "if you are not in love with your spouse then there is nothing to bind the relationship together". Well, this may be true if you're just living together outside of a marriage but once you have been married before God in a Christian service there are stronger things than "being in love" binding the relationship together.

(Content of this section: An explanation of what a spiritual Christian marriage is to be based upon)


By a spiritual Christian marriage ceremony a covenant relationship is set up for that marriage and there is a union of the two making one performed by God's Spirit. These two foundations of marriage are solid and sure foundations for marriage if they are understood and acknowledged.

On the other hand, if you establish your marriage relationship solely on the binding effect of being in love you are going to find extreme strains on that relationship when you hit a rough patch in life, or at the times when the pressure is on to the point where you hardly have time to feel in love. (Yes, those times come! Joh.16:33.)


A thirteen year old reader wrote,

"I think marriage and weddings are too highly thought of. Some people think that getting married is somehow going to prove that you have commitment, trust and honesty with a person, but what ever happened to just love? Love is all you need. Not the fancy wedding day and all the planning for it but just the time you spend with the person you love is a symbol of everything. Why do so many people need marriage? LOVE IS ENOUGH!"

(Content of this section: The author comments on why marriage may look overrated in modern society)


Here is the reply I sent her:

I relate to what you have expressed. The way many people have entered into marriage does give the impression that it is an overrated affair. I can tell you though something much better is available through marriage than most people are getting!

The trouble is most couples don't get the full picture of a marriage when they are starting out. Some think it is based solely on a legal document that you get, for example, at a registry office. This is called a civil wedding.

Other people think it's a social event. A big day is planned with a big ceremony and a big party for all the friends and relatives to attend. This is called a social wedding. Many people combine a civil wedding with the social wedding by going first to, say, the registry office and then to, say, a restaurant.

(Content of this section: An explanation of what a spiritual wedding is and what it results in)


Then, of course, a whole lot of couples go for a church wedding. Now a church wedding should be a spiritual wedding. Sadly, though, this is not always the case.

A spiritual wedding is a powerful spiritual event where God by the power of the Holy Spirit unites a man and a woman into a spiritual unit. This unit will have a spiritual power we call the power of agreement. It means, for example, that a couple so united can pray together over a matter and it is done for them by God. (For more on prayer of agreement see Matthew 18:19.)

Few churches, unfortunately, give the couple a spiritual wedding instead the church gives them just a traditional ritual and the couple - knowing no better - use the service as an extension of the social wedding. A church conducts a spiritual wedding when it acknowledges the miracle of marriage in the eyes of God and prays prayers over the couple that follow spiritual principles found in the Bible to unite them in marriage spiritually. (For more information on the miracle of marriage see Ephesians 5:15-33.)

(Content of this section: A look at how a spiritual wedding combines with the social and the civil to enhance marriage)


A spiritual wedding takes place when the power of the Holy Spirit is welcomed and God's plan for marriage found in the Bible is recognised. At the same time a covenant (a solemn allegiance) between the two people is made and entered into.

To put all those points together: the full potential of marriage is tapped into when a couple have a spiritual wedding and it is an enhancement to any marriage to also have with it the social wedding (for support from people who love you) and the civil wedding (to access the state's "blessing" on marriages.)

This reply continues in the next part...

Preview of content in next part:

  • A list of the different forms of love in relationships, with definitions
  • A look at the often transient nature of being in love, this is about the form of love called 'eros'
  • A look at the enduring form of love called 'agape' and how we can have it
  • The author tells how the presence of the enduring 'agape' can make 'eros' both deeper and an ongoing experience

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