Why Is Marriage So Important To God? — Dr. Voddie Baucham

We have lost sight of how important marriage is to God and to our people. For one: We’re not getting married as much as 50 years ago, and it was already bad then. 

gray check box icon In 1970, 35.6% of Black men and 27.7% of Black women were never married.
gray check box icon By 2020,  51.4% of Black men and 47.5% of Black women were never married. 

— US Census, 2020

Secondly, when we do get married, we rip our families apart through unbiblical divorces:

“During the last decades the rates of marriage in the black community have declined while the rates of divorce, separation, cohabitation, out-of-wedlock births, and children residing in female-headed households have increased.”

— National Healthy Marriage Resource Center

Despite all that our ancestors went through to secure the legal right to marry, too many Christians, especially men, think marriage is something you can take or leave…yet, we’re still having children.

Henry Bibb was born into slavery in Kentucky in 1815. He risked recapture to reunite with his wife and daughter.

 I presume there are no class of people in the United States who so highly appreciate the legality of marriage as those persons who have been held and treated as property. Yes, it is that fugitive who knows from sad experience, what it is to have his wife tyrannically snatched from his bosom by a slaveholding professor of religion, and finally reduced to a state of adultery, that knows how to appreciate the law that repels such high-handed villany.

— Henry Bibb, 1849, born into slavery in Kentucky in 1815, escaped to freedom in Canada

Scriptures: What Does Jesus Himself Say About Marriage

Matthew 19

When Jesus had finished saying these things, he left Galilee and went into the region of Judea to the other side of the Jordan. Large crowds followed him, and he healed them there.

Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”

“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

“Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?”

Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.”

10 The disciples said to him, “If this is the situation between a husband and wife, it is better not to marry.”

11 Jesus replied, “Not everyone can accept this word, but only those to whom it has been given. 12 For there are eunuchs who were born that way, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by others—and there are those who choose to live like eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. The one who can accept this should accept it.”

Matthew 5:27-32

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.

31 “It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.’ 32 But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, makes her the victim of adultery, and anyone who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

Christ-following men know that rejecting marriage is dangerous. But here’s why:

  1. It violates scripture. Jesus clearly points to marriage for any man who has been given the word to accept it.
  2. When we reject marriage, we are removing one of God’s most powerful tools—families. 

Here’s an excerpt from my wife’s upcoming first book in our Break the Cycle series, Patterns Black Women Must Unlearn from Our Single Mothers:

When God wants to transform humanity, his tool of choice is a powerhouse husband-wife team. There are certainly plenty of devoted singles, but he does have a pattern of using married couples consistently, especially when he wants to do something transformative.  

When he wanted to start humanity, he started with Adam and Eve. In Genesis 1:26-27, God even says that this specific design bears his image. Husband-wife relationships are part of how we’re like him.

When Adam and Eve’s descendants mess up, God drowns them all and starts over with four husband-wife teams: Noah, his three sons, and all their wives. He even repopulates the animals through one male and one female of each kind. When he’s ready to reveal himself as the one true God, he calls on Abraham and Sarah.

When he’s ready to lead his people out of slavery and into their own nation, Moses leads, with his quick-thinking wife Zipporah in the background, covering his blind spots.

Fast forward a few generations and the whole nation destroys itself because the kings dismiss the husband-wife design. Instead, they take on multiple wives who lead them to worship fake, satanic gods. They end up getting colonized, enslaved, and kicked out of their own country. 

When God is ready to transform humanity and fix the Hebrews’ mess with a new contract (aka the New Testament), he calls on two more husband-wife teams: Zechariah and Elizabeth give birth to the most powerful prophet who ever lived, John the Baptist. Then, he calls on  Joseph and Mary to give birth to Jesus. 

An all-powerful God could easily have had Jesus float out of the sky or something. But he didn’t do that. He pulled out his tool of choice, his hammer: A husband-wife team. The leader of that team is a husband on beast mode who unapologetically follows God’s instructions like GPS and a wife who’s all in, riding shotgun. Jesus even describes his followers as “his bride.” 

This pattern shows that marriage is a ministry tool.

Here’s a knock-out sermon by Dr. Voddie Baucham from back in 2006. He explains why husbands and wives — not churches and youth pastors — are mission-critical for the next generation of Christ followers. 

Dr. Voddie Baucham

Take Home Messages:
gray check box icon When we ask God to save our children but we’re not forming stable families, it’s like asking him to build a house with no tools.

gray check box icon Youth pastors and churches are not the priests of our children. Fathers are. As the priests of our household we have the number one responsibility to raising our children for Christ. This cannot be outsourced. 

gray check box icon If you’re a Christian couple on the brink of divorce, how can you work to restore your marriage so your role in the kingdom is not disrupted?

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