The God Who created us gave us a physical body, a soul (mind, will and emotions), and a spiritual nature. Our whole being – body, soul and spirit – is to become one with our spouse as we grow in marriage.
Our human sexual expression touches every part of our being. Becoming “one flesh” involves not only physical, but emotional and spiritual bonding and intimacy as well. This is why God intended for human sexuality to be experienced only within the safety, sanctity and permanence of the marriage union, with one other person.
God forbids sexual experiences outside of the marriage relationship. The Scriptures call such experiences “adultery” and “fornication” – sin! God never intended for people to have sexual experiences outside of marriage. The consequences of such experiences are very destructive to us personally and very damaging to our relationship with God. (Please read 1 Corinthians 6:15-20 for more insight.)
(Note: The importance of the sexual union in marriage is studied in more detail later in this article.)
Nowhere else do we see more clearly “two becoming one” than in the conceiving and bearing of children. Children are a direct product of the marriage relationship. They are a blend of both parents – two different people coming together to make one person. Children are a combination of both the appearance and personality of each parent.
Children are the precious fruit or “heritage” (Ps 127:3-5) given by God to bless the marriage union. The marriage relationship as God intended it – a man and woman being joined as “one flesh” for life – also provides a secure setting in which to bring forth children (Gen 1:28). They can be raised to know and love the Lord, His laws, and to relate properly to others (Deut 6:1-9).
ONE IN SPIRIT
A husband and wife are more than marriage partners. As Christians, they are also brothers and sisters in Christ. A Christian husband and wife, as believers, are related spiritually through the blood of Jesus (Eph 2:10-18). They are both members of Christ’s Body, and part of the family of God.
Scripture gives hundreds of exhortations as to how we are to treat one another in the Body of Christ. The bond of mutual love, care and consideration goes even deeper for a husband and wife. We must give great care to our relationship with our beloved spouse, who is also our brother or sister in the Lord.
E. THE COVENANT OF MARRIAGE
The same terms used to describe the relationship between husband and wife are frequently used in Scripture to describe Israel’s covenant with the Lord. This is not accidental, but a purposeful use of language. This is because the marriage relationship was to reflect the relationship between God and His people Israel.