I heard a story on the radio this week where a lady referred to her current husband (# 3) as her first. She claimed that her previous two marriages were only trial runs and that you have to try spouses on until you find the one that fits.
The story immediately rubbed against my Christian values (especially since I was still thinking about the whole friends with benefits fallacy). After the story was over and I turned off the stereo, I had to ask myself, “Why is this such a big deal? Why do I get so defensive when I hear stories like this one?”
As a believer, I care deeply about what God’s Word instructs me to do. On account of this, if God tells me that marriage is forever or that I should only have one wife, I seek to obey what He has commanded. But on what grounds has He commanded me? Why would God ask such things of me? Has God given us rules in an arbitrary manner, or is there purpose behind them? I think the correct answer is the latter of the two, and I think that is why I get so defensive when I hear stories like the one above.
As I stated above, I am a believer. This means that I have placed my faith in Jesus. I have publicly affirmed my belief that 1) I am sinful, 2) God is just, 3) Because of this I deserve to spend all of eternity separated from God 4) But God, in His infinite love sent Jesus to pay the penalty for my sins, and (4) that because I believe this – because I place my faith in Jesus – I know that I can now spend all of eternity with God. This belief that I have is huge. It affects every aspect of my life. One primary aspect that it affects is my belief in God’s wisdom. How can I place my faith in Jesus but not trust that what He has commanded me is of equal importance. Let me bring this diversion back to our case in point.
God has designed marriage in a certain manner (to be a lifetime commitment between one man and one woman – Genesis 2). His commands that I marry once, that I refrain from sexual activity outside of marriage, and that my marriage must be a lifetime commitment is based on His knowledge of what He has designed. There is wisdom in obeying God’s commands for more than the fact that He is God. We should obey His commands (like the ones above) because He is looking out for our own good when He gives them to us. Not obeying God’s commands is like ignoring the rules at the pool. If we fail to follow the instructions provided to us my by the creator, we are putting ourselves in risk.
That is why I disagree with this lady’s testimony. I think it is unwise ignore God’s clear instructions. He knows what is best for us.