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Marriage, Divorce, and the Single Lifestyle

Leading the Way / Michael Youssef
The Truth Network Radio
February 15, 2019 3:00 am

Marriage, Divorce, and the Single Lifestyle

Leading the Way / Michael Youssef

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I'm fascinated by those who will truly enjoy the life and live a fulfilled life of single people and the lady by the name of Harriet heartburn died at the age of 87. She was a spinster and she wrote in her will. She said I don't want anyone to write to put the word Mrs. M ISS on my tombstone for I haven't missed as much as some people might think it was that of William Jennings Bryan but when he went to ask his future father-in-law for his daughter's hand in marriage, knowing that his future father-in-law is a preacher he thought he will impress him, and by quoting the Scripture so he he went over since he said the Proverbs 1822, said that whoever finds a wife finds a good thing or the preacher was going to be outdone, not only in terms of quoting Scripture better fathers. Don't let go of their daughters were easily so I said the is a young man.

The apostle Paul said that this is a passage of our day. He said the that he who marries does well, but he who does not marry does better when all the young guy were just scratching his head and didn't know what to say and finally a moment of inspiration came. He said yes sir. I know Paul did not have a wife, but Solomon had 700 wives reasonable to judge about matters important. One of the most important principles in this chapter. Chapter 7 turned to it with me.

Please of first Corinthians is found in verses 12 to 14 Paul is saying that if your spouse is a nonbeliever.

If you are a believing spouse and you have an unbelieving spouse, and your unbelieving spouse is contented to live with you respect to honor you in your walk with God stay with him. Don't dump him. Don't dump her stay with why because God always works with and through families. You see it throughout the Scripture, because when the unbelieving spouse expresses willingness and respect for your walk with God.

It means that God somehow has a plan for his or her life. It might take a much longer time than you would like it might be frustrating at times it might be hard at times and maybe at times you wish that you had a godly spouse but don't despair. God has a blessing in store for your unbelieving spouse because of you and because of your faith God has a plan for him or her. Verse 14 tells you why. Otherwise, he said, your children are unclean was at me, God looks upon the family unit as a unit, even if they are spiritually divided the entire family is graced even was only one member of the family is a believer. God makes covenants with families and in his sovereign plan when one member of that family comes to the kingdom of God under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

Somehow, somewhere, sometime God is going to bless the whole family. That's what he say remember Abraham interceding on behalf of Sodom and Gomorrah. It was a good Middle Eastern or he knows how to bargain. So he started bargaining with God.

He said Lord.

He said there are 50 people in Sodom who are righteous will you save the city.

God knew what Abraham was heading for but he said yes Abraham. What about 40 Lord, and you have also find Abraham I know you going, but that's all right. What about 30 Lord.

He said yes if there were 30 righteous spare the city.

The 20 is it our spirit for 20 is it okay this is my last video 110 righteous people in Sodom well you spare the whole 70 and God said Abraham I want to tell you I will spare the city for the sake of 10 SR God is our God, he will bless your family because of you. God will spare your spouse God will bless your spouse God is going to spell your children.

God is going to bless your children if you are a believer that if you are not the believing spouse and you're listening to my voice.

Listen carefully, God has blessed you. All of these years because of your believing spouse turned to the Lord today.

That's what he wanted to do. I know I often think of only the Corporation, if only the business world is only the government if only these people realize that they are being blessed because of the Christians were on the boards because of the believers who are in the staff because of the believers were in their offices if they only can comprehend what a blessing God gives this nation simply because of the remnant that is never about the bail he said, but if the unbelieving spouse decides to leave if he or she is adamant to leave let them leave with your blessing. And at that point he said that you are not under bondage in such case to the marriage bonds in the sight of God. A broken spouse dies all the unbelieving spouse leave or committing adultery. This is a very important passage in his very clear about it.

Yet there are so much confusion. There's so much of erroneous teaching that's going around. I even heard about a woman who ended up in a mental institution simply because some evangelist told her that what you need to do she need to leave her second husband was a believing husband and go back to her drunken husband. Her unbelieving husband is absolute foolishness ended up in mental institution because she couldn't understand that incredible demand of the Scriptures, not even making Lee to understand what Paul is saying I want to especially look at verses 18, 19 and 20. Please I wanted to hear me right. Sometimes friends and advisers can give you conflicting advice. Wonderful is that her friends are not substitute for the word of God. In fact, it was the advisor some well-meaning friends of literally ruined John Wesley's marital life. He came from England at the age of 32 as a missionary in Savannah, Georgia, and he fell in love with her Georgia peach and he wanted to marry her some well-meaning friends said to him, all it will be more pleasing to the Lord.

If you remain single fact one of them suggested fondling them for the need to do is to draw lots to discern the will of God. So they got three pieces of paper in the first one is that Mary and the next one said.

Think of it, not this year and the third piece says think of it never and they folded the paper in a container and Wesley agreed with that foolish idea, and then he put his hand down and pulled the piece of paper that says think of it never.

He broke his engagement. She was a daughter of a judge in Savannah and he left her behind and went back to England 15 years later, the age of 47.

He married a wealthy widow who turned out to be a poor companion for the ministry turned out to be a true hindrance for the ministry for 20 years. John Wesley lived in a marital misery until after 20 years she decided to leave him. Someone said he should've married the Georgia peach and factors repeated the John Wesley was asked one time, Mr. Wesley, have you ever met Satan face-to-face. He said no but on monitor sister love those preachers of yesteryears. They just call the spade spade friends are great.

They are wonderful but their advice is not a substitute for reading the word of God for yourself, for discerning the word of God for yourself, for discerning the will of God in your life for yourself what is the point of verses 18, all the way to 24 is saying be contented where you are in Christ learn that contentment be contented what God has called you be contented with what God has for you. Be contented in discerning and following the will of God in your life and live a life of discontentment all the time and you wonder what are you missing out on something. What what about this and what about that be contented and vague during Paul's time there were Jews who did not like to be called Jews and wanted to behave like Gentiles and there were talk like Gentiles. Act like gentlemen dressed like Gentiles like themselves to be Jews and we know from Galatians of the sun Gentiles who thought that do not really a good Christian until you become a Jew first so they began to act like Jews and behave like Jews and talk produce saying this is crazy in Christ to be somebody else is saying don't allow the external circumstances to push you around not allowed outside forces to mobile life. Don't allow the peer pressure to shape your moral dog. Let the popular culture squeeze you into its mold. Don't permit the television to be your guide for living don't allow the discontentment of your friends to infect your situation. Don't let somebody's unhappiness, somebody's malcontent, but in their own marriage to impact you and make you walk In your marriage.

Don't let my people tell you if you are single that you not fulfilled until you get married let them do that is with the possible say a long time to say but that's what he said be contented with what God has for you in your life right about the discontented husband who is always thinking of going to do this are going to do this are missing out on this and are missing on a poor wife just having a hard time with him and one day he was browsing through some travel brochures tomorrow. I'd like to do with this brochure said she so what is it say is all I like to travel to the holy land. Stand up on top of Mount Sinai, and shout the 10 Commandments she looked at him's is it honey you'll do much better to stay home and keep them. Finally, verses 25 to 40. Paul recites some practical advantages to being single. But I'm telling you what Paul is saying okay, I will make that disclaimer profit on the home for dinner tonight since spiritually speaking, the single person in the married person have no advantages over each other that since no one spiritually superior because of the marital condition.

Therefore, Paul is saying that single people have some practical advantages that many people do not have.

You know most of the books I read, or browse quickly or seminars. The material that I look at for single people that conducting for single people. I think you have a erroneous assumption in my judgment of my personal opinion, and it is this that single people are not quite normal certainly is not desirable.

I look to some material and all business of trying to help a single people to cope. What Paul is saying here is if you sing and rejoice in foreign serve the Lord.

Verse 25 he tells us clearly that this is his personal counsel another command from the Lord. But if you want to got the apostle Paul's office and seek his counsel.

The first thing is going to ask if you can ask about marriage. You say you have the gift of remaining single if you say yes you so here's my advice to you.

Stay single. What are his reasons were the three of them.

First of all verses 25 to 28. Is it because of the present distress.

Don't forget that when Paul was writing these apostles in context he was writing them to a people or been persecuted for their faith. In fact, it was a matter of a few years from the time he wrote this epistle to the Corinthians, Nero started his crazy persecution that went around the Roman Empire, but specifically in Rome. It wasn't very many months, probably from the time they receive this letter when Nero was covering the believers with wax and letting them brewing as human candles in his gardens. It wasn't long before Nero was sewing up Christians with animal skin and throwing them the wild dogs to rip them up and devour them. Remember that has led the believers when true in the first century. And Paul is saying that the persecution is difficult enough for a single person is multiplied when a spouse and children of all I believe that Paul had a family probably would not have accomplished the great things that he has accomplished for the kingdom of God and he sees that intensity in his own life and he said I give you that advice is my advice to you is not a command from the Lord. It's an advice when we are in North Africa where the country would end with 20 million people in the population 1000 maximum 1000 Christians in the whole nation living on the ground so there was preaching in the Church of England Anglican church in Casablanca. They could not come in here because you're afraid the police will see them coming in last preaching to the English speaking congregation to the Westerners saw met with them last talking to somebody in another city I was saying. Are you married, is it well he said no I'm really not married.

Number one, we can find too many believing women in our culture. But secondly, most of us probably going to be thrown in the prison at some point we don't want to drag our children and our wives into this is the kind of language that we don't understand the comfort of the church in every corner the comfort of radio and television and books and seminars we don't understand that Paul is writing to people like that who understand what it is to be persecuted for Jesus sake Paul is telling the single person.

If you have the gift of celibacy cherish it if you have the gift of celibacy. Use it wisely. Use your time wisely. Use your freedom wisely use the resources that God has given you wisely for the kingdom of God because that's a gift from God. But he's saying really more than this, he is saying that when two people are bound together in marriage problems of human nature, a multiplied close living allows you to see your partner and your partner's faults with magnifying glasses far more when you have those dizzy heads the time when you were dating. You know on the top of the world and can see anything wrong. Many couples get united in a rosy fog of optimism always like to bring into reality in my premarital counseling almost telling the truth in the beginning of the courtship will all see each other's good points. You thought I made good points that are blind to the shortcoming. Sometimes I think that maybe the grace of God. When the excitement wears off, they can drift to the opposite extreme.

What happens, they begin to view their spouse, the very same traits that they thought were wonderful and God does of the same traits that they begin to criticize. Think about someone call that reverse reasoning.

I bet when I give you some examples. He can finish my sentence form here. Some of she mounted him because he was strong and masculine. She divorced him because he was very domineering mail. Not many Americans.

He married her because she was fragile and petite. He divorced her because she was so weak and helpless.

She chose him because he knew how to provide a good living.

And then she divorces him because all he can talk about is his business to mounted her because she was steady and sensible.

He divorced her because she was boring and dull. He noticed saying things as different words would play word games with our heads don't Paul is simply pointing out that marriage.

While it might solve some problems. It can cause a whole lot more. Think twice before leaping heard about the country boy who was never heard in the Elizabethan English before in his life and he went to get married and the preacher stood up there and he said well have this one. Learn to be your lawfully wedded wife and the poor boy said yes I will. I suppose he did. When you try to put two people together so that they become one, is impossible without the power of God in this grace of God and the power of God's Holy Spirit is like trying to put a knot deposit in the socks you try that two distinct personalities. Two sets of likes and dislikes sets of emotions. Two sets of characteristics two sets of temperaments and two sets of wheels at the second reason the apostle Paul is giving us for exercising the gift of celibacy. If you haven't, is the shortness of time versus 29 all the way to 34 and the focus of these verses is that the world is passing away.

Although God ordained marriage.

Although God blesses marriage but marriage is not an eternal relationship.

Jesus said in Matthew 2230 that in heaven, neither will married nor given in marriage, just like the angel hear people say marriage is met in heaven as they are sourced from the lightning marriage is made in heaven, they will not be carried on into heaven.

Marriage is designed only for this world. So Paul is saying if you marriage and put God first, if you're saying I'll put God first because Paul knew that being single is no guarantee that you will devote that spare time that you will devote that extra money that you will devote all that God has blessed you with for the kingdom of God, you knew that you can do it that way. That's what you should know it is not necessarily a guarantee that you will do that and therefore because he knew that he goes on to include all areas of our lives.

Both of the single and numeric in his lycée because life is short. Therefore let sorrow eat you up.

Don't go around complaining about the problems you have in life. Don't let your problems be the focus of your life that is lycée because of the shortness of time not only joy and happiness be the preoccupation of your life will jump from one experience. That experience will excitement the excitement from mountaintop to mountaintop… New York preoccupation line because of the shortness of time. Don't let your possessions possess you, but you possess them, you master them. You deal with them ruthlessly by giving it away because of the shortness of life. Don't let your physical need consume you don worry constantly about your aches and pains in about 2000 your knees in your that focus on the Lord Jesus Christ and men are safe. All of you. Thirdly, there is an underlying reason here that is not very clear in this passage without an explanation of the historical background to it.

But in the last verses 36 to 40.

He was talking about those who are virgins but not married or they really are engaged but not married and it's it's sort of confusing will give you the background to this in the Jewish culture also carried on in the Roman culture. Parents have a final say on who their daughters should marry and thus on fathers with the like. That privilege but is not in our day. Some historians actually credited the decline of the Roman Empire.

When parental rights were undermined and arranged marriages ceased an elegant touch that one a little move on. I'm just quoting it. But what happens all the Christian fathers because they saw the rampant immorality. They decided to dedicate their daughters as virgins for the rest of the lives when they were little and even when the group older and then married somebody got engaged to somebody they never consummated the marriage they lived together, but they never really consummated the marriage as we talked about the virgins here should marry, so there was a lot of guilt going on those who cannot withhold themselves want to get married and then the fathers worried about their vows they made the vow to the Lord for the girls growing up like Papa making the decision for them who blames him here's what the apostle Paul is saying that last message. Difficult as it is but a really simple is saying to the Christian fathers don't have guilt about their vows for your daughters to be virgins for the rest of the lines don't ever have the guilt because marriage is good, unwholesome, nothing wrong with it. He's telling those who have betroth each other, but remain separate, but to go ahead and get married if that's what God is calling them to do.

Don't live on the guilt you see the thing is that the Bible and the word of God and the apostle Paul never put us on the false guilt and he saying if you have the gift of being a celibate, fine. If you don't get married and that's okay to. Don't live under false guilt because of man made rules. The principal here that is repeated again and again, the believers must learn to be contented in whatever condition situation.

There are you happy in your job and having your marriage, remember God put you there. Here's a purpose, and has a plan for you figure out what is learned to love God and love his kingdom above everything else, and above every body else learn to put God first in your life that's really the point of Paul makes again and again at least half a dozen times in this particular chapter. He said when you do that you will be made and over, God will make you victorious God will bless you and will bless those who around you in ways that you have never thought possible.

You don't even understand whether it is discontentment in the home discontentment in the church discontentment wherever it may be, it is not of God, because it is the will of God for each of us to be contented to rejoice in the Lord in the midst of the circumstances in this part of the circumstances. If you have been living with the spirit of discontentment in your life.

I pray to God that you will let go of it today will you pray with me as we come to the Lord, even experiencing the spirit of discontentment you've been feeling really rotten on God is saying. I want you to rejoice in the midst of those circumstances because I'm using you despite of the fact that you don't see I am blessing you and I and blessing others, even if you don't see will you let go of the spirit of discontentment with the spirit of God fall upon you and give you his spirit of content. Thanks for listening to this message from Dr. Michael use that recently featured on leading the way. If you'd like to know more about us, please visit

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