But did He not make them one, Having a remnant of the Spirit? And why one? He seeks godly offspring. Therefore take heed to your spirit, And let none deal treacherously with the wife of his youth.Malachi 2:15
The ancient prophet was warning the nation. Malachi whose name means “messenger” had just that.
At the time of his writing over a thousand years had passed since the days of Abraham, the temple had been rebuilt, the nation had ample time and opportunity to have seen and heard the hand and the voice of their Almighty God, but… when the pen of the prophet lifted from the parchment it would be another four hundred years before God would speak and a prophet’s voice would be heard.
Malachi does at least for a long period of time for God’s first covenant people represent God’s final words. We should listen.
The two messages significant to us both as second covenant people (AKA CHRISTIANS) and as a nation (religious OR secular) has to do with marriage, home, and family. Those with and those without.
In the second chapter of the prophet’s message, he speaks to marriage and the treachery of divorce. He writes in verse fifteen, the origins of two becoming one – man and woman. “Did He not make them one?” This bold, rhetorical question is immediately answered not only in the affirmative but with the transcendent reason behind it. “He seeks godly offspring!” Exclamation mine… Emphasis His.
As much as I love my happy marriage, like happy marriages generally and rarely the Hallmark Ending with a kiss followed by the holding of hands and walking off with romantic bliss into the sunset, marriage is SO much more significant, transcendent, and holy than this.
Marriage, and the typically subsequent home and family is the God designed, only functionally effective social context for everything, love, discipline, nurturing, punishment, immersive, lived out experience for “training a child in the way he should go” environment. It is God’s home and social construct for raising the next generation of God-fearing civil society. AND…
Any child born into the world without one experience’s the first and one of the greatest, most significant social injustices a person can have. God intended for every child to have a home… mother and father.
But… we do live in a fallen world.
How does justice fix this first and foremost injustice? In my opinion justice can’t. Only mercy and compassion can. That is where and why “caring for the fatherless” becomes the manifested hand of God…” the father to the fatherless, through His people. It is also why and how we promote and practice “pure religion” by caring for the fatherless through adoption.
It is also, in my opinion that adoption is one of the best examples of a “daily” and “living sacrifice” and why Jesus uses receiving a child in “my name” as the pragmatic, everyday example of being “the greatest in the kingdom” Mark 9:33-37.
Your home, your marriage and your family are tools-resources God needs and can use to provide the gracious and merciful solution to children born into fatherless homes or are born into no home at all. Not only do you have the home environment and structure you most likely also have a loving heart and parenting skills. That friends, brothers and sisters are somethings you can put to work for the kingdom.
I could go on… but I think you get the point of Malachi’s message. Your marriage is NOT your own, it belongs to God for a specific and original purpose. While that includes your personal happiness it isn’t the first, only or most important one. It is because GOD wants godly offspring.
I’ll close with this…literally Malachi’s last words and God’s last message for the next four hundred years.
Behold the day is coming…Malachi 4:1
And he will turn The hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.Malachi 4:6
Brothers, sisters, men, women, and families. Right now… we need you, your marriage, your home, and your family. God needs it, our nation needs it. “Whom shall I send?” Please answer “Here am I send me.”