A MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN
Text: Genesis 2:18-24
Service Video (sermon starts at 24:30)
The guests neatly and politely filed into their seats, wearing their best suits and dresses. The church was decorated beautifully in red and gold pew bows and freshly-cut roses on the altar that filled the air with their aroma. The bells began to ring through the building and into the streets announcing the start of the ceremony. The strings began to introduce Johann Pachelbel’s Canon in D as the bridesmaids slowly processed down the aisle in their red dresses, met by their corresponding groomsman halfway down the aisle. Everyone smiled and even chuckled politely as the bride’s four-year-old niece and the groom’s three-year-old nephew came down the aisle. Suddenly the crescendo in the music cued everyone to stand and turn to the back as the bride was escorted by her father, both smiling from ear to ear and holding back happy tears. They arrive at the front of the aisle, where dad gives his daughter a final kiss before placing her arm into the arm of her groom, as they make the final steps to the altar. The wedding service was stunning. Everything went off without a hitch—except the most important hitch: the couple getting married! The wedding ceremony could have been described as nothing short of divine. The day gleamed with so much beauty and the newlyweds beamed with so much happiness that it seemed like theirs was a match made in heaven.
Now fast-forward a few years. The baby cried from the nursery again—the third time so far, and the night wasn’t over. Their toddler was just getting over his cold that he brought home from preschool, and everyone else managed to get their share of it. Dad’s job had him working longer and longer hours, and neither mom nor dad felt like they could get on top of things. Mom dragged herself out of bed only to trip over some toys that had been left in the hallway on the way to the nursery. Then their toddler woke up early—the fifth time he had done that in the last week. They felt like they hadn’t slept a wink, and the exhaustion was making both mom and dad irritated at their kids, at each other, and especially at the telemarketer’s phone call that rang at quarter to seven. The day began badly before it had even started. What happened to the love and romance and excitement from their wedding day? Privately, in their own minds, each began to wonder if they were really a match made in heaven, or just another marriage mistake.
If there’s a mistake that many couples make, it’s that they spend a lot of time preparing for their wedding, but not nearly as much time preparing for their marriage. The wedding is a day—a special and memorable day, but still, just one day. The marriage is “till death parts us.” We can spend thousands of dollars on the wedding, but very little time and energy on the marriage. And then Satan begins to convince us that maybe this wasn’t God’s good plan all along.
Today’s Bible readings put the topics of marriage and family before us. We’re going to focus especially on the First Lesson from Genesis 2, where God not only created Adam and Eve but he also created the institution of marriage. Wherever you are in life, our study of the First Lesson will help us regain an appreciation for the fact that marriage by God’s design leads to a match made in heaven.
If you are at all familiar with the creation account in the first chapter of the Bible, you know each day ends with the same basic refrain: “God saw all that he had made, and it was good.” So when God says what he does in the opening verse of our reading, it should make us sit up and take notice: “The Lord God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.’” God was not only speaking about Adam, the first male, but he was also stating a general principle that is true in this world: “It is not good for the man to be alone.” God did not create humans to be hermits. God is not excluding the single life here, but he is saying that in general, men and women desire to be married and have a companion throughout life. So God carried out his plan to “make a helper suitable for him.” It is true and taught in Scripture that God wants the husband to be the loving leader of his family, but that does not mean that the wife’s role as helper makes her inferior or unimportant. The Hebrew word translated “helper” is a complimentary word, used in the psalms to describe God’s relationship to us. And the idea behind the word “suitable” is that God was going to create someone who would correspond with Adam. This was not a clone or replica of Adam, but another person who would complement him. They would “fit together” well as a couple. Read More…