February 6, 2011

Marriage 101: Lesson 1 & 2

So today was Mike's and my second class at Cornerstone on marriage. (geee!!!) Here's the run down on the last few weeks. I want to do an overview of what we're learning each week on here, if for nothing else, it'll be easy for me to look back on in the future. So here we go:

Lesson 1: Knowing Christ 
The first thing we did in class was to write out each other's testimony and write down our understanding of the purpose of marriage (see lesson 2).
We then discussed Matthew 7: 24-29 and the differences of marriage founded on Christ {1 man + 1 woman forever} or not {6/10 of IA marriages end in divorce, 80% if there is a trauma involving a child, and more than half of women say they wouldn't marry their husbands again} and how the most common form of idolatry today is a person desiring a relationship with another more than a relationship with God.
From there we went on to discuss the story of the woman at the well in John 4:4-42, in which Christ explains to a woman who had tried to satisfy herself with relationships (5 ex-husbands!) that HE is the only thing that can quench her thirst. Once she realizes what he is saying, her excitement is seen by all and many come to know Him through her. Because of this, we then practiced a basic illustration of the gospel to share with others, the bridge diagram:

Big message: Marriage must be built on a foundation of gospel of Christ

Lesson 2: God's Design/Purpose
Our homework before this week's class was to read chapters 1 and 3 of John Piper's book This Momentary Marriage. The main points of the chapters were that 1) Marriage is God's because He designed it, and 2) The purpose of marriage is to glorify God. He challenged us all to hold marriage to higher standard as it is meant to reflect Christ and the church.
One of the other things he mentions is that in Heaven there will be no more marriage (Matthew 22:30), which was one of those things about Heaven I always thought seemed almost... depressing. Not that Heaven could be depressing, but you know what I mean. Our teacher, Paul Sabino, said he and his wife had come to understand it this way: After the death of a loved one, you may keep a picture of them {side note: an incredible organization that helps parents who lose infants is NILMDTS), but when you get to Heaven with them, are you going to just sit and look at the picture or are you going to run into their arms?!? Marriage is supposed to be the image or reflection of Christ and the church. Once we're there with Him, why would we need the picture anymore, He's right there!
We read Genesis 1:26-28 and 2:18-25 and saw that God created and ordained the first marriage by making Eve the perfect helpmate {literally "power corresponding to" in Hebrew} for Adam. From there we read on in Ephesian 5:22-33 about the parallel of Christ and the church and man and his wife. In this passage we see that women are called to be respectful and submit (as the church does to Christ - following a good and true authority) while men are to love her and aim to sanctify her in leading both towards Christ.
Big message: The strongest gospel message we give should be the clear reflection of Christ's ^^mountainous^^ love and relationship with the church through your marriage.


Marty & Dale said...

Sounds like good stuff to me!

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