Divorce in the Context of Christian Marriage

Marriage is one of the best things that can happen to a man or woman. This is why in almost every culture; the celebration of the marital vow is cherished, honoured and filled with joy.

God designed marriage to give mankind magnificent joy and fulfillment. After He created Adam, He said, "I will make him a helper comparable to him" (Gen 2:18).

But how many marriages truly stand the test of time? Why do people who vow to live together for ever suddenly wake up and break that commitment? The truth is, as long as people live outside the plan of God for marriage, they would continually have marital difficulties serious enough to contemplate divorce. But is this what God wants?

Though divorce was mentioned in the Bible, it was never God's desire or intention for man. God's original intent was that marriage would last a life time. This is why His word expressly states in Matthew 19:6 that, "So then, they are no longer two but one flesh; therefore what God has joined together let no man separate."

God emphatically said He hates divorce - "For the Lord God of Israel says that he hates divorce." (Malachi 2:16)

Among all other problems and vices, divorce is one of the most impacting negative influences on a family, society and even within the Church yet it is growing at an alarming rate. Why is this so? If God hates divorce, and He planned marriage as a life-time union for man, how come we seem to like and indulge in it?

Please note that though Moses initiated laws of divorce in the Old Testament due to certain circumstances, it did not mean God changed his mind, but rather it was because of the sinful hearts of man. He still hates divorce. Jesus said, "Moses permitted divorce as a concession to your hard-hearted wickedness, but it was not what God had originally intended" (Matt 19:8, NLT).

The Circumstances Allowing Divorce Include:

1. Adultery:

"And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery" (Matthew 19:9, NKJV)

Infidelity is a ground for divorce. But it argued that this negates the place of forgiveness. Infidelity is a sin, yet the bible urges us to forgive the wrongs of others so ours may be forgiven by God. It did not say infidelity is an exception to this rule. But this not reduce the negative impact infidelity brings to a marriage. Besides, forgiveness is not easy to achieve when the hurt is deep and requires grace.

2. Abandonment:

This happens when ones spouse, especially who does not believe in Christian values, deliberately abandons the marriage and abscond or abdicates his/her responsibilities.

"And a woman who has a husband who does not believe, if he is willing to live with her, let her not divorce him. 14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy. 15 But if the unbeliever departs, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace" (1 Corinthians 7:13-15).

Why Marriages End in Divorce:

Outside these grounds mentioned above, many people still find many reasons to break their marriages, essentially because divorce (which means putting away) is usually a result of little putting away or put offs, which could be caused by resentment and feelings of dissatisfaction with one's spouse.

"If my husband/wife would be this or that, I would be happy!" "If my husband/wife could only stop arguing when he/she is wrong, we would be happy!"

Indeed there are so many ifs that trouble peoples' minds that ultimately culminate in separation and divorce for things to be better. But is this usually the case? Perhaps the greatest reason why Christian marriages fail is because couples fail to govern their homes according to Christian principles!

If people have biblical convictions God's perfect will for marriage, it would become easier to reject divorce. This is where Christian leaders must strive hard to steer couples away from the thought or prospect of divorce, and encourage them to stay together and work things out by God's grace. But how many of these leaders' have sound marriages or biblical foundations to champion this goal?

Divorce For Other Reasons:

Simply put, divorce for reasons other than those named above here is going against God's plan, which is a sin. But God is a God of grace and forgiveness. Repent and ask for His forgiveness and He will.
  • But what if my husband is violent and repeatedly abuses me physically? Should I continue to live with a wife-beater who has beaten me to the extent of losing two separate pregnancies?
  • Must I stay with a wife who brazenly attacks me with charm and fetish substances?
  • My husband is a choir master but his wickedness to me and the children is unbearable; should I continue with him?
  • My husband is an elder in church but he refuses to take care of the family financial. Should I die here?
  • My wife is highly paid and is richer than I; but she does not want to drop a single kobo to support the home. Should I continue with her, knowing she is wicked and evil?
The list of reasons why people want to divorce is endless. So what must you do if you fall into anyone of these categories?

In my candid opinion, when a Christian is not sure on this or any subject, he or she should choose to take the high-ground of principle over preference. Your choice should not supersede the word of God. This is a wise and safe approach.

When we insist on following the word of truth backed by sincere prayers, it will help us to come to agreement with the principle of strict and literal interpretation of the bible that marriage is God ordained "unto death do them part" (which applies to both believers and un-believers).

If you are not divorced yet but considering it, do everything you can to prevent divorce. Don't give up on the power of prayer. Don't give up on God too soon.

Remember too that the divorce rate for second marriages is 70% high! And for third marriages, it is even higher. This simply means divorce makes your chances of happiness get worse not better. If you want to quit your marriage and move to another presumably better one, you might just be courting more trouble for yourself.

This is also true, because the key to succeeding in marriage, which Marriage Alive preaches, is not finding the right person. It is you becoming the right person. Think about this!

Ben Efe is an author, motivator and publisher. He is passionate about helping people become the best they can in marriage and life. He is the president of Stay Alive Int'l, an organization committed to promoting right living. His blog and books offers tips that would empower you to fulfill your potentials.

Christian Affirmation for Women

A woman was created after God created Adam and can therefore be considered as an important creature because God saw that Adam could not live without her. In Genesis, God made man fall into a deep sleep and removed one of his limbs and gave it to Eve. A woman may happen to be a wife, mother, a daughter, a sister and therefore comes in handy in most parts of our lives.

Christians affirm women to be mothers and therefore, the world would not be full of human beings were it not the ability of women to conceive. Eve, the first mother, gave birth to the first children Cain and Abel. This in a big way can build self esteem in all women and thus they should adore motherhood. Women are known to show much love to their children unconditionally in which case the love is reciprocated. In the Bible, women were to be protected whenever there was war. Therefore, Christians emphasize that women are the two wheels of the universe, without which the society, our civilization, in fact the whole world would cease to exist.

Women are loving persons. They are womanly in presence, caring in attitude and loving in personality. When Jesus was thirsty, a woman offered him water to drink at a well. Women are known to cook for their husbands and children and therefore have to be concerned about the source of food. This is supported by the fact that they are hardworking and used to cultivate farms to gather wheat and other foods to feed their families. In the current times, women are still hardworking and are furthering their studies to get serious careers which were previously done by men. They have a slogan that what a man can do, a woman can do better.

Women are beautiful and they give uplifting feelings. In the Bible, when Job underwent temptations and persevered, he was rewarded with the most beautiful daughters which clearly shows that women are made of the best quality and one gets to be happy and proud being associated with a beautiful woman.

Christian affirmation for women is that women are holy and do things that make God happy. They stay away from sin, serve God in truth and from the early times, women devote themselves to God. In the Bible, women used to serve God in temples and upto this day, they still serve as nuns, sisters and even some have started doing missionary works of preaching and spreading the gospel. Therefore, all their actions, thoughts, words should be divinely guided. This is because everything happens for the good of them.

Ranches Lee Hall is a pastor. He's been online now for several years operating different blogs and online businesses and providing helpful information. He enjoy songwriting, reading the bible, playing the keyboard or piano he currently runs http://rancheshall.com

How to Become a Successful Christian Comedian

First I will start by telling you that I have and am living the life of a Christian Comedian so I will tell you what I have done and am having to do to become successful at what I do. The world of Christian Comedy is becoming more and more flooded with people who want to try to tell funny jokes to a clean Christian audience. Truth be told this isn't an easy task because not many people know about the business Christian comedy.

At first glance of the word Christian Comedy a lot of people assume they are going to hear about bible scriptures and churchy jokes the whole time but I beg to differ. As a Christian comedian I have experienced a few things that weren't quite so funny like not getting all the work I did when I was a secular comedian. Many venues didn't want to book me because they thought I was going to come in and preach a sermon but I had to prepare a show and put it on DVD so I could let them see the show I was going to do.

So you have to ensure you know what crowd you are trying to appeal to. My goal was never to appeal to a crowd who wanted to hear a bunch of ignorant material about sex, drugs and violence because there was so much more to talk about. I will now proceed to inform you on the steps to starting a successful career in the business of Christian Comedy.

Step 1) Know your target audience

-In the business of comedy you have to have a target audience in which you want to appeal to. This is important because in writing comedy material you have to know what people like to hear and what they will be able to remember most about you. A lot of comedians write for years and years before they finally come up with that perfect set that people will remember then by.

Step 2) Consistency

-One of the most important things to do is to remain consistent. When pursuing any dream it takes consistency to make things happen. If you only do one show a year it will be hard to perfect your craft so you must stay on stage and you must continue to write joke/material. You also have to realize the more people see you the more they will remember your face and your material so stay consistent.

Step 3) Networking

-Networking is very important in the comedy business because it's not about how many jokes you can write, tell or how many minutes you can perform. It's about who you know and who knows you! Many comedians use each other for work which is a good thing because no one person knows everybody. You have to stay around like minded comedians who believe in keeping a network of club managers, church group leaders and promoters in their contact list.

Step 4) Stay around positive people and develop Thick Skin

-You must stay around positive people in order to become successful at anything especially comedy because people will kill your dream before you even get started. Many people wish they could be brave enough to stand on a stage and tell jokes but because they can't they will try to tear you down and expect for you to be like them. If you stay around the right people they will encourage you and even help you out by giving you a story line or maybe even a joke or two to use on stage. Don't let critics comments phase you at all.

Step 5) Have products to sell

Lastly, you must have products to sell to your audience. These items should consist of but not limited to CD, DVD's, T Shirts, Hats and anything else that won't cost you a bunch of money up front. Your goal shouldn't be making a huge profit but it should be to keep your face in the eyes of your audience. Many comedians have learned this way of doing business and it works for many of them. Come up with unique concepts of marketing and advertising and you will be the comedian that stays booked.

If you follow these few steps that I have listed you will be well on your way to becoming a successful Christian Comedian.

Demoine Kinney http://www.demoinekinney.com

A Brief Order of Marriage in Christian Faith

Christians believe that the commitment of love and marriage must be taken in a rather religious setting. Christian matrimony involves the mutual acceptance of the couple in the church amongst friends and family. The wedding celebration is elaborate and follows a general set of protocols.

Explained here is a brief order of marriage practised during a Christian wedding.

The Prelude

The music maybe rendered live or in recorded form. It is a practice that it is used on the set of the wedding celebrations. In some events candles are lit throughout the venue during the prelude.

Procession - Arriving at the venue

The procession indicates the arrival of the couple and important guests at the venue. The minister who is presiding over the wedding enters first. The groom arrives with his best men to the altar from a side door followed by the bridesmaids and ushers. The bride is then escorted down the aisle by her father to the altar where the groom is already waiting. The flower girls and the ring bearer follow the bride.

Greetings and Introduction

When the members of the event have settled in their respective seats, the minister welcomes the guests and states the purpose of the gathering. He briefly introduces the bride and the groom and goes on to talk about the sanctity of marriage and the importance of the vows. He offers a short prayer to God and gives the sermon.

The Pledge

The Pledge is typically a way of assuring that the couple, their parents, their children if any from previous marriages are in support of this union. The minister seeks the consent of every guest in the hall and they reply in chorus saying "We do".

Exchanging the vows

This event in the Christian matrimony is of utmost importance where the bride and the groom face each other and promise to love and support one another in front of God and the other witnesses present in the hall. While there is a standard set of vows, most couples choose to read out their own.

Exchanging of rings

The promise of the couple to stay with each other through all phases of life is symbolized by the exchanging of rings. The ring is believed to be an outward expression of their eternal commitment to their partner.

Announcement of marriage
The minister now declares that the bride and the groom are a lawfully wedded couple and the wedding venue fills in with happiness. The bride and the groom share their first kiss as the man and wife thus marking the official start of their life together.

The Unity Candle

The couple now seeks the blessings of God by lighting the central candle together. They chant their prayers and seek the holy blessing for a lifetime of happiness and togetherness.

The Holy Communion

Some couples prefer having the Holy Communion as their first act together after marriage. It refers to the act of giving thanks to God and worshiping him as one whole body.

Postlude Prayers

The minister offers the closing prayers to God on behalf of the couple and their families.

The Recessional

The couple, their family and other guests leave the wedding hall in an orderly fashion. The ushers at the wedding help guests exit one row after the other.

Christians believe that marriage is the highest domain of honor and love. A few changes in the order of the marriage may differ from one wedding to another, however the sanctity and the charm of a traditional Christian wedding remains untouched.

Jawad is a web enthusiast and a writer. Jawad has afforded his articles and write-ups autonomously and through various online forums.

Get more Information: Christian Matrimony

Overcoming the Challenges Christian Youths Face Today

The Christian youth are facing a lot of challenges. In a world which is increasingly becoming skeptical about anything related to God. A young Christian, for example, is unable to reconcile the ideas of evolution taught in school and the creation story they learned in church. There is also the pressure to conform to fit in a group. Preteen, teenage, and early adulthood years is the period when we strongly crave affirmation from our peers. The problem for the Christian youth is that conforming means abandoning Christian values in part or wholly. A sense of being untrue to our values may later bring regret or shame, which is detrimental to emotional well being. At this critical time, therefore, it is important for Christian youth to look for guidance to avoid problems later.

Christians are daily confronted by issues that pressure us to conform. When this happens, our initial reaction is to avoid the problem, but later, though, we start asking ourselves questions. For example, if all our peers are having intimate relationships, why not me? Why not smoke? Why should I go to church when everybody else seems to be having fun somewhere else?-and so many other questions. Asking these questions is the initial step in overcoming challenges. The second step, which is the most important, is looking for the right answers from a Christian perspective.

As true Christians, we are not called to conform, but to a renewal in Christ Jesus. That is what St. Paul told Christians in Rome in Romans 6: 3-4. The act of baptism is a sign of new life all Christians, including Christian youths, are called to. The bible says clearly that we should strive to be right with God, as opposed to pleasing our friends or striving for their affirmation.

As a youth who is under pressure do conform to sinful practices, the meaning of baptism should not be lost to them. But in a very fast world, it's easy to compromise. The solution lies in commitment to faith. One way of growing in faith and reinforce defense against harmful peer pressure is becoming a member of a bible study group. The bible itself contains answers to the problems that youths face. Studying the bible in a group is a useful way not only on learning the word as written, but also offers a forum where Christians can openly discuss the challenges they face daily, how they overcome them, or how one can overcome in reference to bible teachings.

Often, Christian youths think that the challenges they face are unique to them. The truth, however, is that all of us, including the older Christians, faced the same problems during their youth. Talking to them therefore, is a great way of learning how to overcome the challenges. Lastly, it is very important to keep the right company. Writing to Corinthians, St Paul said that "good company destroys good morals." While it is good to have non-Christian friends, hanging out with them all the time may cause more harm than good.

Samantha Gold is a writer with Gifts of Love and Devotion, an online store with a large selection of Unique Christian Gifts for every occasion including baptism, first communion, wedding, and memorials. Visit Gifts of Love and Devotion for gifts for Confirmation.

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