There have been tremendous forces acting in opposition towards the institutions of marriage and the church. Both of these two globally recognized entities are as old as the history of the people who live in the communities where they are found. I believe over the years that man as a living being has missed the key characteristic that is responsible for the continued successful operations of marriage and of the church.
When and how did marriage start? All evidence agreed upon will indicate the first union of man and woman in Eden when God brought Eve to Adam. That was a defining ceremony for all of human kind to follow. It is important that God as Creator set the pace for His creation. Humans were then to follow the pattern of coming together with the one person of the opposite sex who would become a life partner. The words “till death do us part” in the modern marriage ceremony indicate a God dependent covenant.
So, clearly, marriage was put in place by God.
But what about the Church? How was it started? The life of Jesus as recorded in the gospels hold the answer. The last night Jesus spent as a free man before His arrest is recorded as the night of the Last Supper. In a period of sombre agony and fulfilment of His purpose, the Saviour established officially a new covenant. Earlier in His life He had indicated to Peter that His church will be built upon the “rock” of Peter’s steadfast life and faithful contributions to the Kingdom. One of the last orders Jesus gave to His followers before ascending was to stay together and wait for the Holy Spirit. The Spirit came at a time we call the Day of Pentecost. The church as we know it was born.
So, clearly, the Church was put in place by Jesus who was and is God.
This is the point being delivered to readers. The survival and successful functioning of the Church and of marriage will only happen because God is their creator and sustainer. In other words, so long as man continues to try and take charge of these two institutions the result will only be more of the same: failure and sad ineffectiveness.