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Forever

Every love story begins with the thought of together forever. As engaged couples eagerly prepare for their wedding day, forever is a hope like marriage vows of “to death do us part.” FM Static sings about this special day in their song Moment of Truth. According to a 2021 study, 2.7 marriages out of 1,000 end in divorce so forever is not guaranteed.

Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and shall become united and cleave to his wife, and they shall become one flesh, Genesis 2:24.

Biblical marriage is designed around two key issues. First, the covenant of marriage was meant to be for a lifetime as two individuals become one flesh. Meanwhile, biblical marriage calls new couples to propagate the earth by having children. While some may not be able to complete this call due to health and medical conditions, the intent for newlyweds is to be together forever.

Let marriage be held in honor (esteemed worthy, precious, of great price, and especially dear) in all things. And thus let the marriage bed be undefiled (kept undishonored); for God will judge and punish the unchaste [all guilty of sexual vice] and adulterous, Hebrews 13:4.

The author of Hebrews calls couples to keep their marriage pure and free from temptation. To promote this position a disclaimer is used at the end of the passage above. Anyone who fails to keep their vows in the presence of family and friends will be judged and punished by God. In view of this warning, may the Holy Spirit fill you with a will to stick to your spouse forever.

by Jay Mankus

Engaged and Energized

While engagement is often associated with the process leading up to marriage, to be engaged refers to an active, engrossed and involved state. I’ve never thought of prayer in the context of being engaged. However, when the apostle Paul found an isolated spot to pray, Mark 1:35, his concentration was fixated on God. Paul wasn’t just hoping and wishing for an answer to prayer, he expected God to perform a miracle.

We are ever giving thanks to God for all of you, continually mentioning [you when engaged] in our prayers, 1 Thessalonians 1:2.

One verse later, Paul refers to being energized by faith. As Christians begin to pray with an unceasing desire, this is often accompanied with a sudden boost of energy. When you add and incorporate promises in the Bible to prayer, faith is strengthened. Prayer is an act of putting the needs of others before yourself as you pour out your heart to God. When prayer becomes a daily habit, a spirit of service is conceived.

Recalling unceasingly before our God and Father your work energized by faith and service motivated by love and unwavering hope in [the return of] our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah), 1 Thessalonians 1:3.

In the first century, there was a belief that Jesus would return in their own lifetime. For those individuals who witnessed Jesus rise from the dead, there was a sense of urgency to seize each day on earth, Galatians 6:9-10. This is the motivation that the apostle Paul refers to in the passage above. If you want to make the most of your life on earth, engage yourself in prayer so that your faith is energized to keep on serving Jesus.

by Jay Mankus

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