An Ice Cream Sundae Marriage

14417183 - art tree beautiful for your designAn Ice Cream Sundae Marriage

This is Part 4 of a five part series based on the “5 False Assumptions about Married Sex”.

False Assumption #4: We say sex is one of many elements that make up a happy marriage. God says sex is the first priority of a happy marriage.

Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2:24 ESV)

It’s easy to get the impression from the culture and the church that marriage is like an ice cream sundae made up of lots of good things like friendship, shared interests, careers, and kids with sex as the cherry on top.

God says sex is not the cherry on top, it’s the dish that holds the ice cream sundae.

We talk about communication, selflessness, perseverance, spiritual maturity, and other lofty elements as the essentials of a biblical marriage. God defines marriage in terms of a physical union.

God’s definition of marriage is “one flesh”. He could have described marriage as “one soul” or “one mind” as in “they shall become one mind” but he didn’t. Some experts tell us the Hebrew word means more than a physical union.

However, Jesus says, “‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two but one flesh.” (Matthew 19 5,6a ESV)

Jesus was having a discussion with the Pharisees about marriage and divorce. Jesus highlights the seriousness of divorce by revealing what God thinks about marriage. He seems to be saying, “How can you separate ‘one flesh’?”

He quotes Genesis 2:24 directly and then adds his own take, “So they are no longer two but one flesh” as if to remind the Pharisees of the essence of marriage. Whenever Jesus says the same thing twice in a row, he considers it important, very important. The Greek word “flesh” means “flesh, physical body, human nature”.

Is marriage more than a physical union? Of course, the mystery of “one flesh” extends beyond sexual union to leaving and cleaving and building a separate family. But “one flesh” is the picture of marriage God gives us and we ignore this divine emphasis to our own marital peril.

Bible Thought: Sex is the cup that holds the ice cream sundae. Drop the cup and you have a mess to clean up.

Prayer: Father, help me to make you my first priority with my spouse next. Help me to understand what makes up a biblical marriage for your glory. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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