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Thursday, June 16, 2016

Marriage as an Institution of God

Marriage as an Institution of God


As it is written “It is not good for man to be alone,” said the Lord, after He created man. Indeed, man's road through life and the execution of his true destiny requires of him to participate with other people in mutual efforts and cooperation. For this purpose the Lord established marriage sacrament  and blessed it, as is written in the Holy Scripture:“And God created man in His image, in God's likeness He created him, as male and female He created them. And God blessed them and said to them, Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and have dominion over it” (Genesis 1:26-28).
While animals also received God's blessing to multiply the union of man and woman in holy matrimony received from the Creator a more profound and religious meaning. During the joining of man and woman, a mystery of the union of two opposite sexes takes place as if they are blended into one living being, one body. Thus a physical unity is begun from which stems human society. The earliest biblical writings state regarding this unifying side of marriage sacrament :“A man leaves his father and mother and cleaves to his wife, and the two become one flesh” (Genesis 2:18-24).
Here it is important to note that because marriage sacrament  was instituted by God in the Garden of Eden when people were still innocent and immortal, it follows that the marital union between man and woman into one body, in the Creator's plan, was to be everlasting and indissoluble.
As we know from the Bible, the later disobedience to God of our first parents brought corruption into human nature, and since then all their descendants have been born with a predisposition to sin. This damage to human nature had an adverse effect on all forms of private and social life, including the marital relationship. Thus, natural attraction between individuals sometimes becomes disordered, taking various forms of perversion in sexual instinct such as harlotry, polygamy, homosexuality, marital unfaithfulness and so forth.
Nevertheless, the ideal of a true marital relationship was not completely lost, and the Old Testament prophets were concerned about the purity of marriage sacrament . Among the Jews a happy marriage sacrament  was considered to be God's blessing:“Home and wealth may come down from parents, but a sensible wife is a gift from the Lord” (Proverbs 19:14). ”Who can find a virtuous woman? Her price is far above jewels. The heart of her husband safely trusts her … Attractiveness is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a wife who fears the Lord is worthy of praise” (Proverbs 18:22). Marriage prayers, which the reader will find in the second part of this pamphlet, show examples of happy marriages blessed by God.

Orthodox Church Pakistan

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by: Fr. Cyril Amer