What is a Covenant Marriage?

Matthew 19:6 – “…So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

Regarding triangles, a covenant marriage has not just the husband and wife, but also the Lord. The Christian marriage ceremony includes prayers, Scriptures, and vows, which are intended to clearly recognize God as the authority over their covenant. 

This unique view of marriage revealed by God eliminates the tendency of a husband or wife to be domineering over one another as if either should be at the top of the triangle. Instead, covenant marriage places both the husband and wife as equals, side by side, as God made them to be life partners, under the authority of God. 

Therefore, the goal of the husband and wife is not to get their way and rule over their spouse but instead to worship God together, seeking His will for their marriage and family. This places the husband and wife in a position of humility and worship together under the rule of God. 

For me practically, this explains one of my favorite times every week – when Grace and I hold hands in worship at church, and raise our other hand in surrender to God. In those moments, I feel the presence and favor of God in a profound way while worshiping as one with my wife and best friend.

The Bible uses a variety of words to speak of “covenant” hundreds of times. English words like kindness, mercy, steadfast love, loyal love, devotion, commitment, loyalty, patience, and reliability are used to translate the concept of covenant. The Jesus Storybook Bible that I read to our kids when they were little calls covenant love the “Never stopping, never giving up, unbreaking, always and forever love.” In a covenant, there is singular headship and plural leadership. This concept is central to any right understanding of Christian leadership, especially in a family. 

How would you explain your understanding of marriage as a sacred covenant and a triangle with you, your spouse, and God? How has your level of understanding positively or negatively affected your marriage?

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