According to the statistics, Karen and I shouldn’t be married right now. We started dating when we were both 18—we met in high school biology class—and we got married when we were 19.
We were clueless about marriage, but I married Karen anyway. She was precious. Karen was wonderful. But I was not. I was a bad husband. I was dominant. I didn’t take care of her. Even worse, I was chauvinistic. I had grown up in a family where women were expected to be very subservient.
So it’s no surprise that our first few years of marriage led us to the brink of divorce. The only reason we survived was because God intervened. We spent three years in a rotten marriage but have spent the last 44 years in a wonderful marriage because of that supernatural intervention.
During that process, God showed me there were four laws of marriage as described in Genesis 2. When God revealed these laws to me, I finally understood that marriage was far less complicated than I’d thought.
I have learned that there are two other absolutely essential truths about marriage.
Marriage is the safest relationship on earth when God’s laws are honored. This is hard for our generation to believe, but that’s because we don’t understand it. Unfortunately, today’s reality is that people fear marriage. Back in 1930, 83 percent of adult Americans were married. But today, less than 50 percent of adult Americans are married.
What we need to recognize is that marriage isn’t just a legal status. It wasn’t created by a lawyer or a legislature. It was created by Almighty God. And God is a good God! He would never create anything to harm us or cause us problems.
Ignorance causes fear. People fear what they don’t understand. So when we are rejecting marriage, it’s not because marriage is inherently a bad idea, but because we don’t know enough to do it right. If we will follow God’s four laws of love, we will discover success in marriage. These laws promote and protect love. They make successful marriages possible.
You have a 100 percent chance in marriage when you do it God’s way. There’s no luck or mystery to it. God’s laws are universal and work for everyone. If you honor them, you’ll succeed every time. If you violate them, you’ll get hurt.
Imagine driving in a place without traffic laws. It’s a free-for-all. Intersections either become locked up because no one can decide who has the right of way, or they become incredibly dangerous because a reckless driver might come barreling through. Laws create order and safety and predictability. The absence of laws leads to failure.
That’s why God created laws for marriage. Marriage is orderly. It’s predictable. It’s the safest relationship on earth when you do it according to God’s plan. He made us for marriage. He gave us the tools to thrive in marriage.
We have been damaged by a culture that rejects the Word of God, but His Word contains the laws that will ensure our success in marriage. That’s why our marriage was revived as soon as Karen and I began to understand and follow God’s four laws of love. When we respected those rules, our love for each other deepened. Our marriage became stronger.