"Let not your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in me" John 14:1
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Written by Kevin L. Howard   

What reasons does the Bible gives for marriage?  Although this list is not exhaustive, it sums up why people, without the gift of celibacy, should marry.


First, in no particular order, procreation is a good reason to marry.  God told Adam and Eve to reproduce and fill the earth.  There is something divine captured in reproducing.  How amazing!  Humans show God's creative powers by pro-creating life. 


Second, to know a God-like love is a good reason to marry.  People can experience God-like love, to some extent, in non-marital (and non-romantic) relationships, such as two men becoming best friends.  Loving and being loved isn't something that's just for married people.  Yet, married folks have more potential to share this kind of love.  If nothing else, a married couple has more potential to know love on a different sort of level than mere friends can ever know love.  The key element in biblical marriage (one man, one woman for life) is to love and to be loved.  While love extends beyond marriage, marriage is certainly a place where this type of love can and should flourish.


Third, people marry in order to have companionship.  Again, two mere friends of the opposite sex can experience companionship, but marriage provides a special atmosphere for oneness to thrive.  Although marriage will not make an unhappy person happy, it does possess the potential to provide the sort of fellowship that will help stave off some loneliness.  Marriage is not a cure-all, but the intimacy of marriage can provide companionship to another.


Fourth, Christians marry so that they can enjoy sex.  In 1 Cor 7: 9, Paul essentially says, "What's the point of being single if all you do is smolder in lust—get married."  In this verse Paul tips his hat to why he thinks people should get married—sexual fulfillment.  For some Christians, sexual fulfillment seems like an unspiritual motivation for marriage, but to the apostle, it seemed like motivation enough.  Granted, married people are still capable of lusting after others besides their spouses, but God created marriage so this need could be satisfied in marriage. 


Wanting to marry to satisfy sexual urges is good.  Actually, this is probably the main motive, and just about the only one, given in the New Testament for marriage (1 Cor 7:2, 9; 1 Tim 5:11-14).  The one exception is in 1 Tim 5:11-14 where Paul says that young widowed women prone to sensuality, gossip, and idleness should marry and bear children so they avoid idleness.


April 2003



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