God’s Conception for a Family

In modern world, the topic of a family is in a very interesting condition. There are many discussions on this topic, family has always been in the centre of society attention, governments and state programs declare importance of family life problems solution, a lot of books have been written on this topic. But what do we see around us? Divorce statistics constantly grows, many formally married couples live in a state called «lonely together». Family institution is in a deep crisis, many people are prone to consider marriage to be a mistake of society - something like archaism which doesn't have a right and need to exist in the 21st century because it brings needless problems of instability, financial obligations etc.

None of the newest flows and directions of philosophy or psychology could offer some kind of structural decision or way out of crisis. In order to understand and find reasons for these problems, we have to consider where a root of marriage and family is. Who invented this kind of connection between people? What was its essence and setting? How often do we reflect over the question: what should a marriage between husband and wife be like?

The first book of Bible tells us about creation of the visible world and all that fills it. At the beginning God created human, "a man and a woman He created them". Adam and Eve didn't invent such form of common life themselves. God (perfect Mind) planned for them to be a family. After the first marital union between people had been created, God said that everything is not simply good, rather very good, which in biblical language means "perfect". It means that he wanted the Eden principle of union between people to be the only standard for all people who will live in the world. How did the first family live?

"And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed."(Gen.2:25).
They became one body and there was nothing that Adam wouldn't want or couldn't give to Eve, she was equal in rights owner of everything that he owned and vice versa. This absolute openness and reciprocity pertained also the world of their emotions, knowledge, and experience. There was nothing that they have hidden from each other - they were naked, they were not afraid to be ridiculed or rejected - they were not ashamed of each other. Adam had given names to all animals on earth, the Lord "placed him in the garden of Eden to till it and keep it" (Gen.2:15) - it means that Adam ruled the world, ran active and interesting business. All of this Adam shared with Eve because she had been created as the best helper and companion exactly for him. A family was planned by God as unity of bodies, spirits, and souls of husband and wife. The greatest joy for this family and a source of power which had given them possibility to reach such unity had been a direct communication with God, who «had been walking in the garden at the time of the evening breeze». Both Adam and Eve had personal communication with Him, they didn't hide anything from God, and in Him they found more than personal spiritual food. God conveyed His own knowledge about world which He created for them, He revealed Himself to them. In that unity with God and through Him- between themselves, they were in a state of absolute peace, complete blessing. Isn't this image of marriage the one about which every person dreams before getting married? Isn't the Eden family an ideal model to follow?

In the result of a fall, humanity lost not only eternal life. A human wanted to live without God's authority over himself, and by choosing evil and sin he automatically rejected blessing on a marriage. It had become far from the initial standard and fruits of this denial we reap even today. Farther history tells us about different married couples: Abraham and Sarah, Isaak and Rebeka, Tobijah and Sarah, Ruth and Booz, Anna and Zechariah, Mary and Joseph. Each of them had its trials and problems, but that was a happly marriage, because God was the basis on which it had been built. He had been their target, judge, master, authority, hope, and love. The mood of their co-existance was a threefold cord which is not quickly broken: God, husband, and wife (Eccl.4:12).

Later, the Messiah came to earth, took away sins of the world and punishment for them, and thus returned to human a possibility to have everything they lost in paradise. Jesus revealed plan for a marriage which Father had given to people at creation. In conversation with pharisses He says: "Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, 'Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'? So they are no longer two but one flesh."(Мt. 19:4-6а). Today, this conversation gives us, Christians, an answer to God's standard of marriage: it hadn't change with time, it is the same as it was in times of world creation. Thanks to what Jesus have done for each of us on the cross, we can live different, happy life, and He gives us everything we need for this, we only have to be attentive listeners and executors of His word. Declining from God's plan, His establishments, laws, and decisions, caused problems and lead to crisis, they may be solved only in one way - return to God and His standards. Today it depends on us what will be chosen.

©Milites Christi Imperatoris