Biblical Marriage Homework Session Nine

Over the last eight sessions we have discussed the high valve of marriage. Marriage is magnificent, not because of a husband or wife or the earthly benefits received in a loving marriage, but because of where marriage comes from and what marriage points to. Marriage comes from God. Created on the sixth day, marriage is God’s design and holds God’s purpose…marriage points to Christ loving the church; the Gospel. That is the reason marriage is magnificent.

As a grandfather, I know how easy it is to focus on the earthly aspects of marriage and family. I know how easy it is to be thrilled with wife, children, and grandchildren. I absolutely love my family. I love the family my wife and I have built together. So much so that it is easy to lose focus on the eternal aspects of family by valuing my relationships with wife and children and grandchildren only on the here and now.

Marriage and family, though precious, are temporary for this age; the church is forever. Being in a human family is no guarantee of eternal blessing; being in God’s family means being eternally blessed. Relationships based solely on family are temporary. Relationships based on faith in Christ are eternal. Therefore the most important aspect of our family and marriage is how well they reflect the Gospel.

Read Matthew 22:23-33

On what relationships were the Sadducees focusing? (hint: temporary or eternal?) How was their thinking affected by their value system?

 

 

Why did Jesus say they were wrong in the way they thought? (verse 29)

 

 

 

When Jesus said “God is the God of the living” (verse 32), what did he mean to convey to the Sadducees?

 

 

 

How do these words of Jesus teach us to think about our marriage and family relationships?

 

 

 

Biblical Marriage Homework Session Seven

Biblical Marriage Homework Session Seven 

Read 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12:

Last week we learned that Grace is what marriage is about. This week we examine how Grace is an agent of change. Every Christian is called to a life of sanctification. Simply stated, sanctification is changing from our old selves and becoming conformed to the likeness of Christ.

This idea has everything to do with marriage. A marriage should never be static. So often we read Scripture like 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12 and never think about our marriage. However, this passage has everything to do with how you are growing in Spirit and faith in relationship to your spouse. (And everyone else)

Read commentary:

Popular discussions of the “will of God” often center on the major decisions of life. The choice of a vocation, the choice of a spouse, and other pivotal moments in life certainly are times when divine guidance is needed. But seeking the will of God ought not be relegated only to such momentous and occasional events. I sometimes wonder why people would seek the will of God at a pivotal moment in life if they have been ignoring God’s will in their daily lives. Should God speak, would such a person listen? I rather doubt it. One who is not faithful in the small moments is unlikely to be faithful in the great.[1]

 

In verse 1 Paul is urging you to toward something. What kind of lifestyle would you live in your marriage if you were obedient to Paul’s instruction?

 

 

(Verses 2-3) Three questions:

Do you ever consider that God has a “will” for your ordinary every day life?

 

 

 

What is God’s will for every Christian? Are there any exceptions?

 

 

 

Is this “will” of God in daily life more or less important than “major” (one time) life choices?

 

 

(Verses 4-6) Two questions:

 

How would you be treating your spouse if you were living in “passion of lust” like the Gentiles? Who would be the “center” of this relationship?

 

 

 

How would you be treating your spouse if you were living in holiness and honor? Who would be the “center” of this relationship?

 

 

(Verses 7-8)

 

If we are withholding grace from our spouse, who are we fighting with, our spouse or God?

 

 

(Verse 9-12)

 

Let’s say today your marriage is doing very well; you are loving your spouse and extending grace and your spouse is happy. Have you made it? Can marriage now ride life out in status quo? Should tomorrow be filled with more grace?

 

 

 

[1] D. Michael Martin, 1, 2 Thessalonians, vol. 33, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1995), 121.

Biblical Marriage Homework Session Six

Biblical Marriage – Session Six Homework

 

Read Matthew 5:43-48

 

Can this passage relate to your relationship with your spouse?

 

 

Specifically, can you relate verse 46 to your relationship with your spouse?

 

 

In verse 48, how is Jesus instructing us to love our spouse (and others)?

 

 

Paul states in Philippians 2:3 – Do nothing out of vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.

 

Question: Do you love your spouse expecting (deserving) something in return?

 

It has been said that the foundational definition of manipulation is “giving to get”.

It has been said that the foundational definition of honor is “giving, demanding nothing”.

 

Loving your spouse because they are making you happy is a sure sign of manipulation. Loving your spouse in spite of their attitude toward you is a sure sign of honor.

 

Check your love for your spouse by the following list. Place a check mark by the attitude you have right now regarding your love for your spouse.

 

Attitudes of Honor                                                    Attitudes of Manipulation

You belong to God                                                     You exist to serve me

You’re made in God’s image                                      You’re an object

I give without expecting a return                                I give to get what I want from you

I want you to be successful                                        I need you to make me happy

God is using you to make me like Him                       You’re the problem

I’ll love you even if you don’t respond with love      I’ll love you as long as it “works”

 

Pray that God would help you in any area where you placed a check mark in the manipulation column.

Biblical Marriage Homework Session Five

Homework – Session Five

In session five we focus on the role of wife and mother. When no other creature was found suitable for Adam, Eve was taken from his side and presented to Adam as helper.  (Hebrew – “EZER”) What does this helper look like in Scripture?  Focus on the dynamic description found in Proverbs 31: 11-14;

The heart of her husband trusts in her,

and he will have no lack of gain.

12    She does him good, and not harm,

all the days of her life.

13    She seeks wool and flax,

and works with willing hands.

14    She is like the ships of the merchant;

she brings her food from afar. [1]

Now read the following commentary on the same passage:

31:11–12 The husband has “full confidence” (v. 11) in her in every area of life; he trusts in her good sense, her fidelity, and her industry. Verse 11b emphasizes the latter: his house is full of the “booty” she brings in. Verse 12 similarly states that she is a continual source of benefits.

31:13 The large number of verses devoted to the industrious spirit of the woman establishes this as a major theme of the poem (vv. 13–19). In an age long before the industrial revolution, women had to work at spinning wool and making clothes in every spare moment; fidelity in this labor was a mark of feminine virtue. Rather than “with eager hands,” v. 13b might be translated somewhat more literally “at the pleasure of her hands.” The hands are semipersonified as taking pleasure in their creation and going about their work with a set purpose.9

31:14 She adds variety to the lives of her family by trading goods produced at home for food and merchandise the household cannot itself produce (v. 14). She has moved her household from a subsistence economy to a mercantile economy, and all enjoy the fruit of her enterprising spirit.[2]

 

For the women: After reading the commentary, write a brief description by example of what it is to be an ally.

 

For the men: After reading the commentary, write a brief description by example of what it is to have an ally.

 

[1] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001), Pr 31:11–14.

[2] Duane A. Garrett, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, vol. 14, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1993), 249.

Synopsis and Homework Week 21

This week our author details for us one of the brightest pictures for rejoicing in the entire book. The first portion of the picture shows the old. The Tabernacle frames the picture with its rooms and furnishings. Priests perform daily and once a year offerings and sacrifices. This portion of the picture reflects a never ending need to be cleansed. It portrays the distance between God and His people. Worshippers stand on the outside peering in longing for clean consciences and an end of burdensome work. In “this present time” the picture, mostly black and white with deep shadows, points to a time of a new order, a time of reformation.

For the first time we see a splash of color. Light dawns the canvas and shadows disappear. The picture is now framed by Christ. The rooms and furnishings are obsolete. Daily performance is replaced by once-for-all. External things move inside; the law no longer part of cold stone but written on warm flesh. The blood of goats and bulls no longer flow. The Blood of the perfect Sacrifice touches the conscience of the worshipper and the conscience is made perfect. Now, without burden, the worshipper serves the Living God. God and His people are one.

This is the account of every believer’s history with God. The picture is glorious!

HOMEWORK:

Read 1 Peter 2:9-10

 

In verse 9 Peter calls all believers a Royal Priesthood. How does this fit with the picture of the worshipper with a conscience made perfect by the Blood of Christ in Hebrews 9:14?

 

In verse 9 Peter makes the statement that those who are called are to “proclaim the excellencies” of God. How does this fit with Hebrews 9:14 saying with a conscience made perfect we are ready to serve the Living God?

 

 

How does verse 10 fit with the picture painted by Hebrews 9:1-14 of the transition from the old covenant to the new covenant?

 

Synopsis and Homework Week 20

To say that the New Covenant is established on “better” promises is like saying Niagara Falls is better than my garden hose. I know that the author of Hebrews is not making such a comment causally. I know from chapter one that our author realizes the majesty and glory of the Son of God. I know from chapters two through seven our author feels the Superiority of Jesus.

Sometimes I need to remind myself just how much better the promises of the New Covenant really are. Sometimes my idea of better isn’t what the author of Hebrews understands as better.

OK, so this is better…You are standing before God and He makes the promise; I will be your God, and you will be my child…forever. I am going to do for you what you cannot do for yourself. I am going to override your tendency of drifting away. I am going to write on your mind and heart so that you will be found faithful to the very end. And here’s the best part…Even though I am God and I know everything about you, in My courtroom I will not remember anything about you that doesn’t reflect My Son.

If that doesn’t find you singing at the top of your lungs this Easter Sunday, you still don’t understand “better”.

HOMEWORK:

Read your favorite Gospel passage to your family and celebrate!

Have a wonderful Easter Sunday!