It is written in Deuteronomy 11:18-21 (KJV) “Impress My words upon your heart so that your days may be as the days of heaven upon earth." What an expression that is: "That your days may be as the days of heaven upon earth". Think what the days of heaven are like. There is no strife or conflict in heaven, but only peace and joy. And above all, love - everywhere. We can have a home like that - where every day is like a day of heaven upon earth. That is the way God intended every home to be.
\The Bible begins with the marriage of Adam and Eve and ends with the marriage of Christ to His people, the Church. When God conducted that first wedding - of Adam and Eve - He wanted their days to be like days of heaven upon earth. Their first home was a paradise - Eden. But Satan came and made their home into a hell. And now we have homes like hell all over the world, today. But praise God that was not the end of the story. The Bible tells us, how right there in Eden, as soon as Adam sinned, God promised to send His Son to solve the problem Satan had created. That's where we see this great truth: That God is always on our side against the Devil. Before God cursed the earth for Adam's sin, He told Adam and Eve that a seed would come through the woman, Who would bruise the head of the Devil. It was only after that, that God pronounced their punishment. Even though the Devil had come and messed up things, God wanted Adam and Eve to know that He was on their side against the Devil. No matter what the Devil may ever do in any home, God is in the business of redeeming homes. He wants to bring our homes back to His original plan where our days will be as the days of heaven upon earth. And now that Christ has come and the work of redemption has been accomplished, this is a real possibility for every one of us. I want to say three things about loving one another.
1. Love expresses appreciation: There is a whole book on married love that God has included in the Bible - the Song of Solomon. All married couples should read that book - to each other! It's amazing to see there how Almighty God expects a husband and wife to talk to each other! And that book is inspired Scripture just as much as the other books in the Bible! Let me read you a few extracts from this book, so that we can all learn to appreciate each other as husbands and wives. We are all misers when it comes to expressing appreciation. We are quick to criticize, but very slow to appreciate. We look at people and find so many faults in them. That is human nature. And that is how the Accuser, the Devil gets a foothold within us. On the other hand, God gets a foothold within us, when we look at others and find something to appreciate in them. Each of us can examine our own conduct here.
See what the husband says to his wife here in Song of Solomon (from the Message Bible): You're beautiful, my dear love, from head to toe - beautiful beyond compare and absolutely flawless. You're as lovely as the ravishing visions of my ecstasy. Your voice is soothing and your face is ravishing. Your beauty, within and without, is absolute, my dear friend. You're a paradise. You've captured my heart. You looked at me, and I fell in love. One look my way - and I was hopelessly in love! My heart is raptured. Oh the feelings I get when I see you and the stirrings of desire I have. I'm spoiled for anyone else! There is no one like you on earth, there never has been, and there will never be. You are a woman beyond compare. And now listen to what the wife says. This is her response: “And you, my dear lover are so handsome! You are one in a million. There's no one like you! You're golden - you're a rugged mountain of a man. Your words are warm and re-assuring. Your words are like kisses and your kisses are all words. Everything about you delights me. You thrill me through and through! I long for you and I want you desperately. Your absence is painful for me. When I see you, I will throw my arms around you and hold you tight. And I won't let you go. I am yours alone and you're my only lover and you're my only man”.
2. Love is quick to forgive: Love is slow to blame but quick to forgive. There will be problems between husband and wife in every marriage. But if you put those problems on the back-burner, they are sure to boil over. So be quick to forgive and be quick to ask for forgiveness. Don't wait until the evening to do that. If you get a thorn in your foot in the morning, you will take it out immediately. You won't wait until the evening. If you hurt your spouse, you poked him/her with a thorn. Take it out immediately. Ask for forgiveness immediately and be quick to forgive.
3. Love is eager to do things together with one's partner - and not alone : How different the history of man would have been, if when the Devil came to tempt Eve in the garden, she had just said "Let me consult my husband first before I take a decision". Oh what a different story it would have been then. Remember that all the problems in the world arose because one woman took a decision on her own, when God had given her a companion whom she could have consulted, before taking that decision. True love does things together. Two are always better than one.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon