Ephesians 5:15-21 (ESV)
Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.
New Hope Baptist Church desires to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ through our family relationships.
The Marriage Relationship
The biblical family model is a representation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This relationship of marriage is a picture of the relationship between Christ and the church. The marriage picture is not an arbitrary expression of comparative value differences between men and women, as modern culture suggests. The modern cultural explanation undermines this unique Christ exalting picture of the gospel. This marriage picture displays value to both men and women by allowing both to take part in sacrificial roles highlighting the gospel. The roles of husband and wife as described within the Bible are not merely a cultural issue invading the early church as some say.
The Husband’s Role
The role of a man within the marriage relationship is a picture of Jesus and his love for the church. As a picture of the gospel, the role of the man and the woman within marriage is a picture of the relationship between Christ and the church. The man is to care for his wife in a fashion that pictures Christ’s sacrificial love for the church. This means that within a Christ exalting marriage relationship, a man sacrifices his desires and needs to promote his wife’s well-being, especially spiritually. One way men can fulfill this role is to sacrifice the time required to lead their family in worship within the home. This is not just a love in word, but a love in deed as Christ performed the ultimate deed (undeserving death for death deserving sinful creatures).
Ephesians 5:25-33 (ESV)
Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
The Wife’s Role
The role of a woman within the marriage relationship is a picture of the church’s submission to Jesus Christ. As the church submits itself to the Lord Jesus Christ, so also the woman represents a picture of this submission to Jesus Christ in her relationship to her husband.
Ephesians 5:22-24 (ESV)
Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
The Marriage Sacrifice
Both the man and the woman in a relationship are giving up their own self fulfillment in a representation of the gospel that is ultimately fulfilling for both.
We desire to be used of God to raise a generation that will carry forth the Gospel in word and deed. Since the family is the primary institution ordained by God to train children to follow him, we desire to support families as they seek to train children to follow Christ. This means that New Hope’s mission as it relates to the family is to promote a Christ exalting model of family as described in Scripture – and to provide support for families in their efforts to accomplish this goal.
Malachi 2:15 (ESV)
Did he not make them one, with a portion of the Spirit in their union? And what was the one God seeking? Godly offspring. So guard yourselves in your spirit, and let none of you be faithless to the wife of your youth.
1689 London Confession – CHAPTER 25 – OF MARRIAGE
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.
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.
It is lawful for all sorts of people to marry, who are able with judgment to give their consent; yet it is the duty of Christians to marry in the Lord; and therefore such as profess the true religion, should not marry with infidels, or idolaters; neither should such as are godly, be unequally yoked, by marrying with such as are wicked in their life, or maintain damnable heresy.
Marriage ought not to be within the degrees of consanguinity or affinity, forbidden in the Word; nor can such incestuous marriages ever be made lawful, by any law of man or consent of parties, so as those persons may live together as man and wife.
Member Covenant – Paragraph 3
We also commit to maintain family and personal devotions; to spiritually guide our children; to seek the salvation of our family and friends; to walk cautiously in the world, to be just in our dealings, faithful in our promises, and exemplary in our business; to avoid all gossip, slander, backbiting, and excessive anger; to shun every form of evil; to be zealous in our efforts to advance the Kingdom of our Savior.