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Theological Term of the Week 

The first human institution established by God, consisting of a lifelong covenantal relationship between one man and one woman, for the purpose of helping and comforting each other, rearing children, preventing sexual immorality, picturing the relationship between Christ and the church, and glorifying God.

  • From scripture:
    Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” Now out of the ground the Lord God had formed every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him. So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said, 

    “This at last is bone of my bones

    and flesh of my flesh;

    she shall be called Woman,

    because she was taken out of Man.”

    Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2:18-24, ESV)
  • From The 1689 London Baptist Confession
    Chapter 25: Of Marriage 
    1. Marriage is to be between one man and one woman; neither is it lawful for any man to have more than one wife, nor for any woman to have more than one husband at the same time. 

    2. Marriage was ordained for the mutual help of husband and wife, for the increase of mankind with a legitimate issue, and the preventing of uncleanness. 

  • From God, Marriage, and Family: Rebuilding the Biblical Foundations by Andreas Kostenberger: 

    In exploring the biblical teaching on marriage, there is no more important paradigm than God’s intended pattern for marriage presented in Genesis 1–3. Although the book of Genesis was originally addressed to Israel’s wilderness generation in preparation for entering the Promised Land, the early chapters of this book provide the parameters of the Creator’s design for marriage in every age. This is reflected in Jesus’ and Paul’s teaching and applies to our own age as well… . 

    … In Genesis 1–3, the God whom Israel had come to know as Redeemer and Lawgiver is revealed as the Creator of the universe, the all-powerful, all-wise, and eternal God who spoke everything there is into being. Marriage is shown to be rooted in God’s creative act of making humanity in his image as male and female. 

Learn more:

  1. What is the definition of marriage? and What is the purpose of marriage?
  2. Andreas Kostenberger: Marriage in the Old and New Testaments (pdf)
  3. Al Mohler: Marriage and the Glory of God
  4. John Piper: Marriage: God’s Showcase of Covenant-Keeping Grace
  5. Wayne Grudem: Definition and Encouragement of Marriage (Pt. 1) (mp3), and Definition and Encouragement of Marriage (Pt. 2) (mp3)

Related terms:

Filed under Anthropology

Do you have a a theological term you’d like to see featured here as a Theological Term of the Week? If you email it to me, I’ll seriously consider using it, giving you credit for the suggestion and linking back to your blog when I do.

Clicking on the Theological Term graphic at the top of this post will take you to a list of all the previous theological terms in alphabetical order.

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