Where is God’s love better lived out, or more clearly seen and/or revealed than in interpersonal relationships? Because God wants a personal relationship with each one of us, He also wants for us to radiate and live out His unconditional love in our relationships. This includes normal friendships, work relationships, professional relationships, parent and child relationships, and of course the crown of all relationships in God’s eyes, the marital relationship. No aspect of our lives or any relationship MUST be without God’s love. Paul says this clearly in 1 Corinthians 16:14:

“Let ALL your things be done with CHARITY (love).”

Well, ALL, dear friend, means ALL, including ANY type of relationship.

No relationship can achieve total success if the love of God is not experienced and lived out in full. There are numerous friendship and marital relationships where one of the parties welcomed God into his/her life and gave him/her all to God, but, the other party still chased after the worldly temptations and urges and as a result the relationship did not survive. In the same way I think of partnerships and/or many business relationships where the one partner chased after the love and peace of Christ and His Kingdom, while the other partner wanted nothing to do with it and as a result that business relationship did not survive either.

Here I immediately think of the words in 2 Corinthians 6:14:

“Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness?”

This is then very clear from God’s word that no relationship can survive in the long run, UNLESS  BOTH parties in that relationship have the love of God in him or her, and both chase after the same love and peace. This tells us that both of them must be true, professing Christians, children of God asking the Holy Spirit for His guidance in their relationship on a daily basis and then they must truly LIVE according to His guidance.

The Word of God is very clear regarding the crown of all relationships, the marriage. Without the love mentioned in 1 Corinthians 13, there is NOTHING. We find one of the most beautiful verses in the Bible about the marriage in 1 Corinthians 11:3, where Paul writes and says:

“But I would have you know that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.”  (Did you note the order? (1) God, (2) Christ, (3) the man (4) the woman).

Also in the verses of 1 Corinthians 7:1-11, of which I will only quote a few, namely:

“Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence (Take note, as spouse I OWE my husband/wife this benevolence. [According to the dictionary benevolence also means “friendship” or “goodwill”] (Yes my friend, you have to show it – and not to me, not to the world but to your spouse),and the wife must also show benevolence to the husband.”The wife hath no power over her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath no power over his own body, but the wife. And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, let not the wife depart from her husband…”

Ephesians 5:22-33 also has the following beautiful verses regarding this aspect:

“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it…So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself”.

According to this verse, a man can’t do anything other, but to love his wife as he loves himself.

“For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church..Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband”.

The dictionary also describes “nourish” as “nurse”. If I, therefore, “nurse” my own body, I should “nurse” my husband or wife’s body as well.

I would like to give a last quotation from 1 Peter 3:7, namely:

“Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered”.

Ouch! Can we read the last sentence once again? …”that your prayers be not “hindered” … In other words, if I do not honour my wife and do not love her with the same love that Jesus Christ loved us, my prayers might be “hindered”. No wonder it sometimes feels that my prayers do not go further than the ceiling! Could it be that the problems in these cases are sometimes found in a problematic or broken marriage? Dearest reader, once again it is not me saying this, but the Bible. God might not listen to us when we pray to Him, BECAUSE, we do not live in peace with our spouse, because we brake him/her down – not just verbally but also physically and/or spiritually and abuse or assault him/her….

Why is the love relationship in marriage for God so important? Firstly because He created us as man and woman, as referred to in Genesis 2:22-24:

“And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made He a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, this is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave onto his wife: and they shall be one flesh”.

This last verse, namely: “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave onto his wife: and they shall be one flesh”, is repeated almost word for word by Paul in Ephesians 5:31. It was thus God’s plan from the beginning that spouses will leave their father and mother and become ONE in the flesh. Why? Because the ultimate sign of love in God’s eyes, is the integration of the flesh in marriage (sex).

This is indeed the precise moment in God’s eyes when that man and woman are married to each other. Why do we ask? Because the moment the man breaks the woman’s hymen during physical intercourse, the man and woman enter into a blood covenant, the same way God entered into a blood covenant with us when He tore the temple/church’s “hymen” (veil) when entering into the new blood covenant when Jesus’s blood was shed for us on the cross.

That is why it is so heartbreaking that people today do not realise what a blood covenant is. Our school children have sex with each other left and right, without knowing, that, in God’s eyes they are entering into a blood covenant with that person. The moment when a man and a woman have sex, they are married in God’s eyes and the moment that they split up, whether they were married by human laws or not, they commit adultery. “Adultery” does not only take place in human divorce courts, no! It takes place more regularly than any one of us wants to, or do realise…

I recently read an interesting article on the internet, under the heading: “THE DEVIL HATES SEX”. The writer was of the opinion that, because God created sex to be beautiful, as the crown of His marital relationship between husband and wife – that is the reason why satan tries his best to make sex into something ugly or perverse! Satan hopes that through making sex so vulgar or through clouding it with controversy or secrecy, to make it so perverse or cheap, that this part of God’s initial plan will suffer permanent damage. The writer’s view definitely makes logical sense and I agree wholeheartedly with him.

The second reason why the marital relationship is so important to Him, is because He, HIMSELF stands in a marriage relationship with us. Isn’t it general knowledge from our studies of the Bible that He is the Bridegroom and each one of us who is willing to grow in holiness and spiritual maturity, the bride?

That is why He wants a personal relationship with us. He doesn’t just want a normal relationship with is, no, like in any marriage, He wants an intimate, personal relationship with us. So intimate, that He wants to pour out His seed (His Word) into us, so that it can grow to maturity in each one of us, and because of this seed that grows within us, we can give birth to thousands of new children of God, ONLY in His honour and for the expansion of His Glory and Kingdom (reign) here on earth!

In this way God wants His initial creation plan, as contained in Genesis 1:28, namely:

“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the flesh of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth”.

…to also be brought forth on a spiritual level in each one of us. God wants each of us to become fruitful in His Spirit, we must multiply His children in order to fill the earth with His image and glory, so that His children can rule over the earth in all its dimensions, namely, the earthly (animals), subterranean (fish) and above ground (birds) dimensions! And they must also rule over the spirits in the air, in the spiritual dimension (Ephesians 6:12).

As soon as each one of us that are part of His church (the true, spiritual church of Christ, irrelevant of denomination, theology or dogma), give life to new spirit filled children of God around us, because of the Holy Spirit in us, the world will simply be filled with more of God’s image and glory. With this method, God’s ancient plan will be fulfilled through each one that asks for His will and lives it, through growing in and walking in the Spirit.

I praise the Name of the Lord for this wonderful privilege to be part of His great plan!

tiaan gildenhuys