Everybody looking for happy without being underneath God's covering properly. Dr. Tony Evans says there's more to marriage than living happily ever after. Happy is the result, and when we get aligned properly, then we will begin to see all that God can do. This is The Alternative with Dr. Tony Evans, author, speaker, senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, Texas, and president of the Urban Alternative. When your car is out of alignment, your wheels are actually pointing in slightly different directions.
Eventually, your tires either wear out or go flat. Today, Dr. Evans talks about why so many marriages have the same problem and what men should be doing about it. Let's join him. When God created the human race, He created the human race to act in history from His vantage point in eternity. It's called, in theology, the Dominion Covenant, the agreement that He made with mankind.
To understand what the male's role is, you have to understand the Dominion Covenant because that's key to understanding what you are about individually, what marriage is about, and what purpose is about, all lined up in this one agreement that God made with history through mankind. In Genesis 1, verse 26, we read, Then God said, Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness. And let them rule over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the sky, and over the cattle of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. God created man in His own image. In the image of God, He created him.
Male and female, He created them. God blessed them, and God said to them, Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth, subdue it, and rule over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth. Three words establish the covenant. Let them rule. That means dominion.
To rule over is to exercise dominion. He says, I want to create men, and I want to create men, mankind, in my image. An image is a mirror. When you went to the restroom, and when you looked in the mirror, you saw a reflection of yourself.
You looked at your image. God says, I want to have lookalikes, images, image bearers, on earth, who reflect us, let us, the Trinity in heaven. So God created man to mirror from the invisible realm what God is like in the visible realm. God created mankind so that earth would get a reflection of heaven through mankind.
God did not create man and woman at the same time. It says He created Adam first. And the reason He created Adam first was that He was supposed to be the foundation.
He was to be the stabilizing force on which everything else that God made would be built. So God created the man, did all this for the man, gave the man instruction, and put him in, here it is, the garden, the place of delight, the word Eden, the place of delight. Let me say a word about Eden and the man, because there is no woman yet.
We're going to get to the ladies in a minute. But the ladies are not here yet, because God knew that He didn't want a woman coming into a messed up man. So He held off on the woman till He could get the man straight. And that's always God's process, and that's always our headache.
Because God can't get men straight, women are in trouble. So He created the man first, and He put him in the garden. The garden was the place of God's abiding presence. So everywhere He went, all day long, the Bible says He walked with God during the cool of the day. In other words, He and God hung out together.
It was a dynamic relationship, not an event. It wasn't going to church. No, it was living in church.
That is, living in God's reality. So that was Adam's responsibility before there is an Eve. God says in verse 18, then the Lord God said, it is not good for man to be alone.
I will make him a helper suitable for him. Before Adam realized he was alone, God determined he was alone, and said, I'm going to get him a helper, a helper suitable for him. So let's get this straight. I'm sure we have a lot of singles here.
So let me explain something. Adam didn't need Eve to become complete, because we mix up being single and being alone. He's single and being alone.
Those are not the same thing. It's assumed if I'm single, I'm alone. No, if you are single, the word single, if you look it up in Webster's dictionary, means unique or whole.
That's what it means. But we have stitched it into being alone. If you are a single, like Adam is right now, and like Eve will be before she's introduced to Adam, you are supposed to be a complete single.
Marriage should be a bonus, not a necessity. You are to be complete. So now, God brings out all the animals. He brings them out to see what the man would call them, and the man names all the cattle, verse 20. Naming in the Bible is a big deal, because naming in the Bible has to do with claiming authority over that which you name. So it's not just giving a word, it is to own it.
To name it is to own it. Now, for those people who are worried about a name-it-claim-it theology, let me clarify. Adam could only name what God brought him.
He couldn't go out naming stuff. No, God had to bring it first, which is why a man must be in relationship with God, because if you're not close to God, he either won't bring it or you won't see it when he does bring it. Because you don't carry operating God's presence, I don't operate in God's presence, we don't see what he's bringing. I'm sure many of us as men have missed out on a lot of stuff God brought right in front of our eyes, but we didn't see it because we just visited him.
We're not operating in Eden, that is, in his ongoing presence in relationship. It says God brought it, and he named what God brought. Dominion is seeing God bring things before you and seeing that that is being brought before you by God, and you're giving it an identity. So it is to exercise whatever you name you are now responsible for.
You own it. God didn't name it, he just brought it. It says, and what he wanted to see what Adam would call it. So Adam is naming all the animals from A to Z, from aardvark to zebra.
That's a big job. But for Adam, that was not suitable help. Ah. So the Lord God caused a deep sleep, verse 31, to fall upon the man, and he slept, because if God put you to sleep, you go sleep. So God put him to sleep, and he slept, and God took out one of his ribs, closed up the flesh of that place, and then God fashioned to a woman the rib which he had taken from the man and brought it to the man. Adam gets Eve while he's snoring. He ain't at the club.
He ain't at the club. Adam is snoring. So God takes his time and takes this rib, and he turns it into this magnificent creation called woman. God takes her hand, and it says God brings her to Adam. So if God brings Eve to Adam, that means Eve is in fellowship with God to even take his hand to be led by him, because he knows where Adam is located.
All right? So she's in fellowship with God because she doesn't know about Adam. So God makes a hookup. He takes Eve, brings her to Adam. Now, so he sees a coming, and he says she shall be called woman.
That's what it says. She should be called woman. What did he just do? He named her. He named her. Woman. That's a man with a womb. Let me take you back to Genesis chapter 1. We will make man in our own image, male and female.
He made man in his own image. She's called woman. She's a man with a womb, because a woman was made to receive. A woman receives the man's name. Adam names her. Any man who has a woman who won't take your name is not the woman you should marry. She was to take his name.
Why? Because whatever you name you're responsible for. Whatever you name, you own.
Whatever you name, you govern. It is the responsibility of naming to claim responsibility over that which you name, which is, by the way, why God didn't let Joseph and Mary name Jesus. He named Jesus, because Joseph and Mary wouldn't be responsible for Jesus. The father would be responsible for the son. So he named Jesus. Twelve years old, Jesus said, I've got to do my father's will, because he named me.
So naming means responsibility. So you must, ladies, claim that name and you must come alongside to expand the dominion that God has intended for the man once you enter into that relationship. She shall be called woman because she was taken out of man. So the man is to leave his father and mother.
Doesn't say anything about the woman leaving her father and mother until the man leaves his father and mother because he's responsible for setting up a new homestead. The Bible calls this relationship, the couple now, a covenant. A covenant is a divinely created bond that does one thing, it covers.
A covenant is a mechanism through which God's favor flows. If you are not covenanted, that is, operating under the guidelines and governance of God, if you're not doing that, you're uncovered. And if you're uncovered, that means the intervention, favor, blessing of God is not free to flow.
The Bible says in Deuteronomy 29, 9, I give you this covenant that you might prosper, that I might be able to do my thing through you. So the reason that the devil wants to make you miserable if you're married, if you're married, is he wants to keep you uncovered. And once he keeps you uncovered, God can flow. Once he keeps you divided, God won't flow. God says if the husband is mistreating the wife in 1 Peter 3 verse 7, if the husband is mistreating the wife, not recognizing her, appreciating her, diminishing her, physical or emotionally abusing her, tell that man, do not pray.
I will not listen to his prayer. That's how important the woman is and how she's treated and valued. And in fact, you should, ladies, accept nothing less than that, because your ultimate responsibility is to God. There's a lesson here for singles too, and Dr. Evans will come back to tell us about that in just a moment. Stay with us. Mark your calendar for August 6th to 13th so you can experience the majestic beauty of Alaska with Tony Evans and the Urban Alternative. Immerse yourself in the beauty of God's creation, hear great teaching from Dr. Evans and others, and worship God in an incredible setting. Plus, we're building in plenty of time for rest and relaxation on a cruise that will pamper you with luxurious accommodations, first-class dining, and a large variety of leisure experiences to choose from.
Those dates are August 6th to 13th, so book your trip today because rooms are filling up quick. Reserve your spot at TonyEvans.org. Before we get back to Dr. Evans, I'd like to tell you about our current featured resource. It's Tony's powerful book, Kingdom Men Rising, and it goes hand in hand with the message we've been listening to today. Far too many men have been weakened by the false definition of what it means to be a man, coming from a culture that's at odds with God's biblical blueprint.
Kingdom Men Rising looks beyond phony stereotypes, helping men understand who they were created to be and how they can rise up to the task and responsibilities God has given them. Get your own copy of this powerful book. We'll send it to you as our gift when you help support Tony's work here on the air and around the world by making a contribution to the ministry.
And as a special bonus, we'll include all 12 lessons on both CD and digital download from his current series by the same name. Get all the details at TonyEvans.org before this limited-time offer runs out. That's TonyEvans.org, or call 1-800-800-3222. I'll repeat that contact information for you after part two of today's lesson.
Here's Tony. Malachi chapter 2, verses 13 to 16. Here it is, and this is important for all the singles listening. He says, she is your wife by covenant, but it goes on to say, you are together, watch this, in spirit. Now, here's the way most people get together. They get together by attraction. That's the physical. You see somebody, they look good, she looks good, he looks good, and you're attracted.
And that's fine. Man looks on the outward appearance, so that's fine, but that's just phase one. Now we go to phase two.
Phase two is soulmate. That means we like each other. In other words, we connect. But Malachi says a whole deeper level, spirit. Spirit is your joint connection with God.
That's spirit. Because see, beauty fades quickly. And then, people who were soulmates, they thought, now they don't get along. They don't want to talk to each other, don't want to be in the same room. But wait a minute, you used to like each other. What happened? Real life set in, personality differences showed up, all that.
Now we don't like each other. But if there is no spiritual root, those two are enough to destroy you. The spirit must be put up top, because then it can manage the soul and the physical.
Now let's make it clear, dominion is not domination. First Corinthians chapter 11. Let me start with verse seven. For a man ought not to have his head covered, since he is the image and glory of God. The word glory means to advertise.
Stay with me here. The man is to advertise God, make God look good. But the woman is the glory of the man. Now I know some of you lawyers don't like that, but get mad at God, not me. The woman is the glory of the man.
So here it is. The man making God look good, the woman making the man look good, because he's making God look good, which means if the man is making God look bad, she can't make you look bad, she can't make you look good. So a lot of men are getting mad at their wives for not supporting them while the men are not supporting God. So all you're getting from her is what God is getting from you. So God is saying, when I get what I'm supposed to get from you, then maybe you'll start getting what you want to get from her. All right, let's go on. For man does not originate from woman, but woman from man. Remember the rib. For indeed, man was not created for the woman's sake, but the woman for the man's sake.
Remember, I'm gonna make a helper suitable for you. So he made the woman to come alongside the man. Now watch this, ladies. Therefore, the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head because of the angels.
Let me pause, let me push pause right there. Every Christian has been assigned an angel, Hebrews 1.14 says. So when you go to God and you say, I need you to do this, I want you to do that, one of the ways he does it is by dispatching his message to your assigned angel to act in whatever way God wants to act in light of your prayer. He says, but when a woman is not operating under authority, he calls covering, if you're not if you're not operating under the legitimate, not illegitimate, but legitimate authority, if you step from under the umbrella, then what you just stepped out of was the covering of God, and your angel will not be dispensed to your benefit because you're operating in rebellion. So if you're giving your husband a hard time illegitimately, if you're disrespecting him illegitimately, if you're rebelling against him illegitimately, you are blocking God doing anything for you and it doesn't matter how much church you go to. So the man is to operate under the covering, the woman is to operate legitimately under the man under the covering, but he's not finished yet. He goes on and he says in verse 10, however, in the Lord, neither is a woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman. So he says, while there is a role that you play, it is an interdependent role, not an independent role.
You need her, she needs you, you all need God. For as the woman, verse 12, originates from the man, so also the man has his birth through the woman. So the woman exists because God took Adam's rib, but babies are born, men are born, boys are born, because they come out of the womb of the woman. Women have been made, here it is, women have been made to receive. So a woman receives the male sperm. When a woman receives the male sperm, she can get pregnant. When she gets pregnant because of what she's received, she produces something out of her womb that never existed before because of what she received from the man. What she received from the man produced something brand new inside of her that came from her that is beyond what the man could ever do without her. So what God is saying in physical birth, he's saying through all the dominion covenant, there's some things I will only do if you give her something to receive, but if you give us something to receive, she's gonna let that thing grow. And when she produces what she produces out of what you gave her to receive, all y'all gonna have more than what you started with because I am creating an expansion of my rule in history. And that's why Genesis 1 says, at the end of let them rule, he blessed them. That's where happy come in. Everybody looking for happy without being underneath God's covering properly. Happy, blessed, is the result.
It's not where you start, it's the result. And when we get aligned properly under God with each other, then we will begin to see all that God can do. You go to buy an appliance, they'll give you a warranty. Know what the warranty is saying? The warranty is saying, we manufactured this and we stand behind it.
We stand behind this product. If anything goes wrong, as long as the warranty is in effect, we'll take care of it because we made it and we stand behind it. Now, if you go take a hammer and start hitting the toaster or hitting the refrigerator or hitting the stove or whatever appliance it is, abusing it, the warranty is no longer in effect because you have abused what it was created to do. You've given it something outside of its design. What a lot of people do are calling on God to warranty their lives, warranty their children, warranty their relationship, warranty their future, warranty their finances while they put a hammer to God's program. And if you put a hammer to God's program, if men are operating out of alignment, women are operating out of alignment, kids are operating out of alignment, and you're putting a hammer to God's program while you're praying, oh God, you can fix it.
You can make a wheel, you know, a wheel in the middle of a wheel. You're bombing Gilead. You're a bright morning star. You're the rose of Sharon.
You're so wide you can't get over, so low you can't get under. While you're hammering away at what God's plan is, you can forget being warranted because He's not going to warrant something you're destroying. Dr. Evans will come back in just a moment with a final illustration to wrap up today's teaching. But first, I wanted to let you know that the message you've been hearing is available in its entirety on both CD and digital download, including portions we didn't have time to include in the broadcast.
You can get it as a part of that special double offer I mentioned earlier. All 12 full-length messages in Tony's current series bundled along with his powerful book, Kingdom Men Rising. We'll send them to you as our thank you gift when you help support this ministry with a generous contribution. Get all the details and make your request online at tonyevans.org, where you can browse through our huge library of resources and sign up for Tony's free weekly email devotional. Again, that's tonyevans.org. Or give us a call at 1-800-800-3222, where team members are standing by around the clock to help you with your resource request.
Again, that's 1-800-800-3222. A lot of times, when we try to size up our circumstances, the odds against us can seem overwhelming. But on Monday, Dr. Evans will offer hope, as he tells us about some important factors we may have left out of the equation. Right now, though, he's back with his final closing thought. In football, we ask it, how bad do you want it? How bad do you want it? That means we as men, from starting with me, but to all the men, we have to make a relationship with God, our dominant theme underneath His rule. And when that happens, you'll see more of God than you can handle, and others will benefit from it. you
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