Christian views on marriage - Wikipedia
But I would like to explain why a spousal relationship with Christ is so special, Marriage is a sacrament, and consecration in a lay movement such as for those who are consecrated, this takes on an even deeper meaning. Marriage is the legally or formally recognized intimate and complementing union of two people . Christian Egalitarians (from the French word "égal" meaning " equal") believe that Christian marriage is intended to .. The marriage relationship simply reinforced this dominance of women by men, providing religious, cultural. The eternal quality of consecration to God pervades a truly sacred marriage, eternally It is, in its deepest meaning, a spiritual bond, built out of the depth of love cannot reveal the full measure of what a sacred relationship is meant to be .
They know that the more they turn their lives over to God, the better their lives become. The ultimate joy is to surrender completely to God. We turn everything over to Him and life gets inexpressibly good. Elder Maxwell underscores this irony: It brings release from the raucous, overpopulated cell block of selfishness and emancipation from the dark prison of pride.
Only the vines connected to the roots will bear fruit. Only that part of the car driven into the carwash can be cleaned. Only those train cars hooked to the engine can be pulled up the mountain. Only that which we bring to the altar can be sanctified and perfected. To offer everything to God requires great faith.
Joseph Smith said For a man to lay down his all, his character and reputation, his honor and applause, his good name among men, his houses, his lands, his brothers and sisters, his wife and children, and even his own life also—counting all things but filth and dross for the excellency of the knowledge of Jesus Christ—requires more than mere belief or supposition that he is doing the will of God; but actual knowledge, realizing that, when these sufferings are ended he will enter into eternal rest, and be a partaker of the glory of God.
A religion that does not require the sacrifice of all things never has power sufficient to produce the faith necessary unto life and salvation; for, from the first existence of man, the faith necessary unto the enjoyment of life and salvation never could be obtained without the sacrifice of all earthly things. It was through this sacrifice, and this only, that God has ordained that men should enjoy eternal life.
He will answer every experiment with the same result: The people were so totally devoid of light that they turned to sacrificing their own children. They sacrificed virgins and even attempted to slay Abraham. Nevertheless, over the years Abraham grew in faith and heavenly power. Abraham was years old when he and Sarah had the yearned-for son, Isaac.
Growing Christian Resources: Consecrating your marriage
How they must have cherished their boy! According to tradition, Isaac was 30 years old when Abraham received the commandment to sacrifice his son. Imagine the soul-stretching pain of being asked to participate in a ritual he loathed, and to lose his cherished son!
The story is both poignant and instructive. There are rich details in the Book of Jasher account that may or may not be fully doctrinal but is fully instructive.
My comments appear in brackets. At that time the word of the Lord came to Abraham, and he said unto him, Abraham, and he said, Here I am. And Abraham went with Isaac his son to bring him up as an offering before the Lord, as He had commanded him. And whilst Abraham was proceeding with his son Isaac along the road, Satan came and appeared to Abraham in the figure of a very aged man, humble and of contrite spirit, and he approached Abraham and said to him, Art thou silly or brutish, that thou goest to do this thing this day to thine only son?
And Satan was terrified at the voice of Abraham, and he went away from them, and the place again became dry land as it was at first. And Abraham went with Isaac toward the place that God had told him. And Abraham took wood for a burnt offering and placed it upon his son Isaac, and he took the fire and the knife, and they both went to that place. And when they were going along Isaac said to his father, Behold, I see here the fire and wood, and where then is the lamb that is to be the burnt offering before the Lord?
Many of us would suspect our fathers of being unhinged. But Isaac responded with magnificent grace. Even when his father probed his resolve, he was unflinching. And Isaac said unto his father, I will do all that the Lord spoke to thee with joy and cheerfulness of heart. And Abraham again said unto Isaac his son, Is there in thy heart any thought or counsel concerning this, which is not proper? And Isaac answered his father Abraham and said unto him, O my father, as the Lord liveth and as thy soul liveth, there is nothing in my heart to cause me to deviate either to the right or to the left from the word that he has spoken to thee.
Meaning and Purpose - For Your Marriage
Neither limb nor muscle has moved or stirred at this, nor is there in my heart any thought or evil counsel concerning this. But I am of joyful and cheerful heart in this matter, and I say, Blessed is the Lord who has this day chosen me to be a burnt offering before Him. Then Isaac showed the depth of his humility and resolve with his request of his father. And Isaac said to his father, Bind me securely and then place me upon the altar lest I should turn and move, and break loose from the force of the knife upon my flesh and thereof profane the burnt offering; and Abraham did so.
The spirit of total submission is shown in the battle between their hearts and their eyes. And the hearts of Abraham and Isaac rejoiced at this thing which the Lord had commanded them; but the eye wept bitterly whilst the heart rejoiced. And Abraham bound his son Isaac, and placed him on the altar upon the wood, and Isaac stretched forth his neck upon the altar before his father, and Abraham stretched forth his hand to take the knife to slay his son as a burnt offering before the Lord.
At that time the Lord appeared unto Abraham, and called to him, from heaven, and said unto him, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him, for now I know that thou fearest God in performing this act, and in not withholding thy son, thine only son, from me. And Abraham lifted up his eyes and saw, and behold, a ram was caught in a thicket by his horns; that was the ram which the Lord God had created in the earth in the day that he made earth and heaven.
For the Lord had prepared this ram from that day, to be a burnt offering instead of Isaac.
CONSECRATION AND MARRIAGE
Just as Isaac was willing to give his life as the ultimate expression of commitment to God, so we are invited to dedicate our lives, our talents, our weekends, and our weaknesses to the sacred enterprise of sanctifying our marriages and ultimately perfecting our souls. In the day-to-day struggles of marriage we may fail to see that this ultimate sacrifice qualifies us for the ultimate reward.
It is in loving him that I become more like him. I become more of the person I am meant to be; it is in loving him that we all become more authentic, no matter what our vocation is. Love can be expressed in many ways, and it is the union of hearts and wills that is the essence of love. It is the spiritual union that stands the test of time. Even physical union with Christ is made possible through the sacrament of the Eucharist I receive every day, and it is more intimate and mysterious than any other union on this earth, whether physical or spiritual.
Whenever we receive holy Communion we participate in it body and soul, and for those who are consecrated, this takes on an even deeper meaning. The Mass is indeed the marriage supper of the Lamb, the union of Christ and his beloved Church.
Recently the Holy Father spoke about St. Clare of Assisi in a Wednesday audience on September 15th of this year, and when I read his words, I thought it was a perfect summary of what consecrated life is, and what my consecrated life is in Regnum Christi. I understand perfectly that consecration is not a call for everyone; but wherever marriage is denigrated, so is consecration.
And wherever marriage is upheld and preserved, consecration is more valued.
The two vocations stand and fall together. Both vocations have their great difficulties and great joys. Who could possibly fill my heart more than the most perfect of men, the most beautiful of the sons of men? At this point I will just let the Holy Father and St. Clare of Assisi speak for themselves: Over the course of history innumerable women like Clare and her companions have been fascinated by Christ who, in the beauty of his Divine Person, fills their hearts.
And the entire Church, through the mystic nuptial vocation of consecrated virgins, shows what she will always be: In one of the four letters that Clare sent to St. Agnes of Prague, the daughter of the king of Bohemia who wished to follow in her footsteps, she speaks of Christ, her beloved Spouse, with nuptial expressions, which might be surprising, but which are moving: His power is stronger, his generosity loftier, his appearance more beautiful, his love gentler and all grace finer.