Love the One You’re With
The world says, “If you can’t be with the one you love, then love the one you’re with.” They mean you might as well fornicate with the nearest one of the opposite sex. When we use the words, we mean that we should love the spouse that God has given us in His sovereign providence.
Providence of Love
Story: Robert and Kelly on Island – With nothing in common, these two stranded survivors learned to love each other out of need and no other options.
Scriptures: Gen 24:27; 29:1-20; Proverbs 18:22; 19:14; 31:10.
- God matched Isaac and Rebekah, and they were a sporting couple (Gen 26:8)!
- God matched Jacob and Rachel, and Jacob was very passionate for her.
- God matched Ahasuerus and Esther, and he loved his wife very much.
- Your marriage IS God’s will for you, even if you married foolishly.
- His favour brought you together by a billion different coordinated events.
- Robert & Kelly had no other choice, so they chose to help and love each other.
- Need and no options generated love, by their mutual investment in each other.
- You now have no other options either; God has set you with your spouse!
- His word limits and directs your love, so you are stranded with your spouse.
- Contentment is crucial, for covetous thoughts breed discontented frustration.
- Fantasy or lust brings sin and bitterness.
- Contentment loves God and finds joy in Him in spite of marriage (Heb 13:4-5).
- Contentment trusts a sovereign God, Who chose your spouse (Job 1:21).
- Conviction obeys God, who told you how to maximize your happiness.
Choice of Love
Story: Arranged for Happiness – Abijam and Jeshua, arranged by their parents to be husband and wife, learn to love each other after the marriage!
Scriptures: Deut 24:5; Prov 5:19; Song 8:1-3; Col 3:19.
- Arranged marriages were used in Israel.
- Love came after marriage, so there was no disappointment after dating.
- They understood the choice of love, which is what they had to do to survive.
- Note the girls of Shiloh and this bizarre way of finding a spouse (Jdgs 21:16-23).
- Marital love depends on the man, for it was his duty to cheer up the wife.
- The duty implies its ordinary success!
- Men do know how to cheer up women!
- Love is a choice … and a command!
- Love is a choice … and planned action.
- Love is not chance or special feelings.
- Love can and must be taught (Titus 2:4).
- Mothers teach daughters, for true love can and must be taught (Song 8:1-3).
- Christians do not wait for love to come, because they know it is not a feeling.
- Christians do not quit when love wanes, because God expects them to love again.
- Feelings following choice = love.
- Feelings driving the choice = lust.
- Dating usually leads to disappointment, because it is unreal and for short bursts.
- Doctrine/training produced marital love when arranged marriages were popular.
Action of Love
Story: Back to the Dating Game – All men and women know how to seduce the opposite sex, and they should use this knowledge in their marriage!
Scriptures: Gen 34:3; Deut 24:5; Song of Solomon.
- Saints do not wait for love: they make it!
- Love will not happen unless you provide your contribution to the relationship.
- Shechem knew what Dinah needed, but most men stop giving this to their wives.
- The Song of Solomon gives a position, which shows how practical the Bible is.
- The year at home was not waiting for something, but for doing something!
- What is love? Sacrificial desire and effort for the profit and pleasure of another.
- Love is not what you can get or take from another person as so many think.
- Other than a few technicalities, every person knows how to date and seduce.
- If your spouse was taken away, you would know exactly what to do again!
- Seduction is an inborn trait, and it is pleasant both to give and to receive.
- “How to Seduce a Woman” outline is a good tool for the men. Get a copy.
- Women want affection, desire, words, touches, embraces, and what else …?
- Men want loyalty, submission, reverence, availability, and what else …?
- What hinders you from giving the action of love? Confess your sin and do it!
Recovery of Love
Story: Let’s Start Over Again – Marital love can be rejuvenated! And God will even help to recover lost years and ground. Why not start over today?!
Scriptures: Jer 3:1-4; Ezek 16:60-63; Joel 2:25; Revelation 2:5.
- The great God forgave Israel and renewed love on several different occasions.
- And He promised that He could restore lost years to estrangement and chastening.
- If love is a chance event or just a feeling, it can be lost forever or go up and down.
- If love is an action, it can be restored at any time a person wishes to do so.
- Remember, repent, and do the first works!
- What are the first works? What you did instinctively when you first fell in love.
- Investing in another person will cause you to grow in feelings for that person again.
- This simple formula will work for your spiritual relationships and your marriage.
- Remember the best days in the beginning, confess your sin to God, and begin doing the dating things you once did.
- What would help convict you to try?
- Loving your spouse is God’s command.
- Not loving a spouse is cruel treachery.
- A loving marriage adorns the gospel.
- A dead marriage justifies blasphemy.
- A loving marriage forms great children.
- A dead marriage will crush your soul.
- A believer can and must win-win-win!
- You will give account for wasted days.