By Ernest O'Neill

Was Your Marriage Long Ago God's Will?

By Rev. Ernest O'Neill

Maybe we should just comment for a moment on those loved ones here this morning, because I know some of you are here who have married years ago and are wondering, “But was that God’s will for me?  Was that God’s will for me?”  And you wonder that either because you weren’t Christians when you married, or because you didn’t know what Christian marriage was about and so you married in ignorance and you sit here this morning and wonder yes but was that God’s will for me?  And loved ones, there’s a clear word from God to those of you who are like that this morning because honestly I think that many of us wonder that at times and we allow Satan to get in with real doubt because of our wondering about what we did so many years ago.  And God has a clear word – now, I’d like you just to look at it so that you see it is from him.

1 Corinthians 7:27a, “Are you bound to a wife?  Do not seek to be free.”  That’s it loved ones.  At this moment as God’s word comes to you are you bound to a wife?  Do not seek to be free.  Why?  Well, because of Romans 8:28 if you look at it.  Romans 8:28, “We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.”  You remember the King James Version reads, “We know that all things work together for good to them that love God.”

You remember we said last Sunday that God never allows anything to happen in your life that he cannot redeem.  He never allows anything to happen that he cannot redeem and that he cannot work into his plan for your life.  And there’s just one other strong verse that it would be good for you to look at.  1 Corinthians 10 it is, 1 Corinthians 10:13, because I think many of us find ourselves in relationships that don’t seem ideal.  1 Corinthians 10:13, “No temptation,” and the Greek word means trial also, “No temptation (or trial) has overtaken you that is not common to man.  God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted (or tried) beyond your strength, but with the temptation (or trial) will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”  Not only endure it but redeem it and transform it.

And I know some of you feel, “Well maybe the way of escape is divorce?”  But do you see that God would never have you disobey him in order to obey him and there is no ground for divorce in the Bible that is based on the fact that the relationship is hard or impossible, or that is based on the conviction you have that you made a mistake way back.  There is no ground for divorce like that in scripture and so whenever you try to get out of a marriage by excusing yourself on the ground that you were not a Christian when you got into it, or that you did not know what Christian marriage really was supposed to be like, really you’re just retreating into the selfishness that is the heart of sin and you’re retreating from what God has allowed to come into your life in order to make you like himself.  And loved ones, you’re actually not only retreating but if you walk towards divorce you’re walking into further disobedience simply because there’s no ground for divorce that includes the idea that you made a mistake way back, or when you said, “I take you to be my lawful wedded wife,” you didn’t really mean it.

Then how is God going to know that you really mean it this time?  Do you look up and say, “Lord God, I didn’t really mean it this time but I’ll really, really mean it this time.”  No, you’re just taking his name in vain a second time.  That’s all you’re doing when you try to give up what he has allowed you to come into your life.