Learning to Avoid Unnecessary Suffering in Life (Part 4)

Learning to Avoid Unnecessary Suffering in Life (Part 4)

CHOICE OF HUSBAND AND WIFE

Apart from the obedience to the gospel, there is no greater decision one will make than whom he chooses to marry. God made male and female and said “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). Jesus expounded upon this ancient order adding, “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matthew 19:6). Originating from The Common Book Of Prayer (ca. 1549), the phrase “till death do us part” has been a fundamental wedding vow for English-speaking people for nearly 500 years (justus.anglican.org). Such was and is God’s plan for marriage. Thus is seen the importance of choosing a spouse.

Throughout the book of Proverbs, Solomon emphasized the blessings of making a good choice in a wife (or husband). Positively, Solomon noted:

A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband (Proverbs 12:4a). Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD (Proverbs 18:22). Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life (Proverbs 31:10-12).

From a negative perspective, Solomon graphically highlights that the wrong choice of a husband or wife will surely bring troubles and suffering.

She that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones (Proverbs 12:4b). The contentions of a wife are a continual dropping (Proverbs 19:13b). It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house (Proverbs 21:9). It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman (Proverbs 21:19).

Similarly, a woman whose choice for a husband is a drinking man will experience a life filled with sorrow and suffering. The wise man affirmed, “For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty” (Proverbs 23:21); “Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine” (Proverbs 23:29, 30). The misery of a woman whose husband is “married to the bottle” is beyond measure. Such suffering is not only unnecessary it is avoidable.

When it comes to wives, no man has the experience of Solomon: “And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.” (1 Kings 11:3). According to the word of the LORD, Moses commanded Israel “Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son. For they will turn away thy son from following me, that they may serve other gods” (Deuteronomy 7:3, 4a). One of the greatest means of avoiding unnecessary suffering in life is to choose a godly spouse. Not only will one find great assistance in their path to heaven, but life on earth be filled with joy.

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