Marriage in Proverbs - Proverbs 18:22

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Marry for Good!

Someone has said we would be better off, if instead of marrying for better or worse, we would marry for good. The book of Proverbs gives several truths to consider, if we wish to make our marriages last a lifetime instead of just seeming that way.


Include God!

First, we need to realize that God is involved in our marriage. Proverbs 18:22 says: "He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor of the LORD."  God has a purpose for every trait in our spouse. We are to encourage and challenge one another to grow in the Lord.  But so often, we try to change one another rather than leaving it to God to transform him or her.


Love and Friendship

Second, when our spouse is not only our lover but our best friend, we can sail through the troubled waters that plague every marriage. Friendship in a marriage must be preserved in the same way every friendship is preserved.


Proverbs tells us there are several things we must follow

if we desire friendship in our marriage



No Gossiping

We must not gossip about our spouse.  A humorous remark that lets every one know what an inadequate person we have married is nothing but gossip.  Proverbs 17:9 says: "He who covers a transgression seeks love; but he that repeats a matter separates the best of friends."  On the other hand in 15:23 we are told: "A man has joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!"


Treat our Spouse with Courtesy

We need to treat our spouse courteously.  We try to teach our children respect and to be courteous by our example. We say please and thank you to perfect strangers and even hold the door for them in public buildings. Courtesy should start at home and overflow to these other places. Proverbs 25:11 says: "A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver."


Work at Friendship

We need to work at our friendship if it is going to last in our marriage.  Friendship can tolerate any thing but neglect. We need to spend the time necessary to communicate on a feeling level rather than just on a fact level.  Evaluate the types of conversations you have had with your mate, and then schedule some time for your spouse and you to be alone and really talk. Proverbs 20:5 instruct us: "Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out." Take the time to draw one another out.


Share Responsibilities

We also need to recognize that we have shared responsibilities in marriage.  Too many times we want the privileges of marriage without the obligations. Nevertheless God’s word says in Proverbs 1:8-9, “My son, hear the instruction of your father, and forsake not the law of your mother: For they shall be an ornament of grace on your head, and chains about your neck.”  Both the father and the mother have to be involved for the job to be properly completed. This is but an illustration of our shared responsibilities.

Be Faithful

Every marriage begins with faithfulness.  Trust and stability are what a marriage is built upon. Proverbs 27:6 tells that even wounds of the faithful are better than the kisses of the deceitful. But faithfulness is not enough! Proverbs 5:15-19 tell us we must be enraptured with our spouses love. Passion is not wrong unless it is directed toward the wrong object: it is a God given emotion. Passion apart from marriage never delivers the happiness it promises.  Proverbs 5:20 ends this section with a penetrating question: “And why should you, my son, be enraptured with a immoral woman, and be embraced in the arms of a seductress?”


Love Our Spouse

Proverbs 30:21-23 brings us to the last point in this article, the need of loving our spouse. It says, “For three things the earth is perturbed, yes for four it cannot bear up: For a servant when he reigns; and a fool when he is filled with food; For an hateful woman when she is married; and a maidservant who succeeds her mistress.”  In the margin of my Bible the word hateful is translated hated, which fits much better in the context of the passage.  A woman who is unloved can certainly become hateful. When either spouse wanes in their love for the other, it becomes painfully evident without words ever being spoken. Men tend to be better at passion than love. We can be consumed by the momentary but fail to carry out the routine, day-by-day responsibility of caring for the woman God gave us.  Read Ephesians 5:25!



God wants our marriage to be great! What do we want?


-- Don Treadway, February 2002 --


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