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November 11, 2020 1:00 am
When marriages break up, many couples have prenuptial agreements to divvy up their possessions. Few take seriously the covenants they enter into. Let’s go back to basics, and why marriage, in God’s eyes, is a lifetime deal, come what may.Click here to listen (Duration 25:02)
Rain forests looking to Jesus when marriages break up. Many have prenuptial agreements for the you take seriously the covenants they enter into today. Back to basics and why marriage in God's eyes is a lifetime deal, come what may, church in Chicago this is wanting to win sir. Teaching helps us make it across the finish line. At what point did society begin to agree that marriages are disposable when things get tough. You know Dave, I think that that happened over a period of time as society began to drift away from the Bible, as we became more secular commitment to marriage became optional. And that's really where we are today, and sometimes even Christians go into marriage without a deep settled commitment that this is for life and there are many sad stories not only for the marriages but of course for the children.
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Now let us listen once again, till death do us part.
Just look over my shoulder for a moment, tend let me read you this letter. We've been married for 20 years with small children in the past few years we fell into depth. I spent a great deal of time away from home making money now that we are doing better.
My wife wants out of the marriage because she feels that I neglected her emotionally, which I have because I was so focused on work.
What troubles me is that she wants to put space between us. She wants to get out of the home.
To quote find herself. I'm afraid what this might mean because she's on the Internet.
A lot of her time corresponding with a man she dated before we were married.
She is helping him with his issues. I'm afraid that the old relationship might be revived if she doesn't want to go for marriage counseling and she's quite defensive about this in her decision to leave change some of the details and it's a story that could be told thousand times a man leaves the marriage because he finds someone else because he is looking for a connection and he's in a marriage that he doesn't enjoy and wives. Apparently mothers if you please are leaving their marriage is just as much as the man and the intention of the message is to discuss the issue of marriage. But in such a way that believe me it will apply to those of you who are single for sure but it will most assuredly will apply to all of us who are married or who are thinking about being married. I'd like to begin today by giving you five myths that I think we believe these are myths that I've come up with. I'm sure that they exist elsewhere, but that this is how I see it five myths that we believe that really is devastating our homes and our marriages as people walk out of relationships. First of all, my happiness is number one.
My happiness is number one I'm miserable in this desert. The man told me and now I found an oasis I found another woman with whom I have this connection and you are telling me to go back into the desert. My happiness is more important than faithfulness. By the way, let me simply say this, that, according to God's faithfulness is more important than happiness. And if you happen to be happy while you're being faithful so much the better. But can you imagine Jesus saying to himself while I'm interested in my happiness. The Bible says that he did not please himself.
Faithfulness is more important than my happiness my happiness more important than God. My husband and my precious children my happiness. I need fulfillment submit second finding the right person will give me real fulfillment. Finding the right person will give me real fulfillment. Finally I found somebody I can connect with. It's as if there was a piece of the puzzle that was missing and now I found the missing piece. It's not sexual.
We can just talk for hours and somehow he is tapping within me something that I never even knew existed. I need to think about this.
I need to leave the marriage to get my act together, which in reality, usually a step number one for the divorce that is being contemplated. It's no wonder that we need people that we can connect with. By the way, David Carter, who has written a couple of books and spends his life counseling couples and getting them back together after infidelity said that the average marriage is like a person is on a the world on the earth.
And when you look at the moon.
You'll always see the same side of the moon. Sometimes you see part of it. Sometimes you see all of it but always the same side and there's a back part of the moon that we never see in the very same way. There are many marriages that never tap into the other side of their part. Here's a man who is very busy. He doesn't give his wife the time of day.
She can't talk to him when she's talking.
He's not listening anyway and suddenly she meets a man who just adores her and who loves to listen and enjoys her accent and takes care of so many details. Finally I have found the man of my dreams. I have found my soulmate. She says of course after she divorces and remarries she discovers something very very bitter. If it is true that 40% of all marriages today end in divorce. It is also true that more than 60% of second marriages end in divorce.
And suddenly this wonderful connection turns ugly know the man who used to be here at the Moody church 20 or 30 years ago a long time ago told me I'm leaving my wife, because I'm in a desert and I found an oasis. He wrote me a 10 page letter. Years later. What a letter I still have it to this day detailing the fact that his oasis turned out not only to be worse than the desert, but it was actually a poisoned oasis and many of these relationships that begin so well when you get to know the person, and now suddenly you're working through.
They turn out and spiteful, but you can't see it at the moment because that person is meeting my needs in a way that my needs have never been before.
It's a myth.
There's 1/3 myth and that is something I can still be a caring person, even though I got this thing going on on the side like a letter I read this week had occurred in the newspaper. I think it was were a brother said that his brother confided in him that he was having an affair and saying whatever you do don't tell my wife because I just love my wife and children how many lies can you talk yourself into received another letter some time ago from someone who said you know that the guy want to marry is a wonderful Christian, but he continues to keep in touch with the with other women and always talks about how beautiful they are and he knows that it hurts me, but he keeps doing it and tells me that he adores me alone all, isn't that sweet listen, if he adores you he'd be glad to say no to those other women. I would think it's a myth. We love these myths. These lies another one is son I can manage the consequences.
I can manage the consequences God will forgive me. First John 19 like some students who say you can first John 19 you can. 19 God will forgive you number talking to a pastor many many years ago he left his wife for another woman and I hung never forget these words he said to make sure I'm doing wrong I'm sinning. But remember, even David got his Bathsheba. Yeah, that's true.
David did get his Bathsheba, and along with that he got ready for his family and grief for his whole kingdom. Yes, God did forgive him because God is gracious, but I'll tell you, you know how long the consequences of a broken marriage go on not just on earth, but the consequences have ripples for all eternity. You can manage it.
God won't let you manage it. There are certain built in consequences that are way beyond your control in the lives of your children in the life of your wife and the life your husband whatever and those boomerang forever. Well, so that another one is that nothing will ever change. Nothing will ever change.
David Carter says that many marriages are like a windshield wipers everybody. Each of the partners plays their dance. They never are really intimate. There never really on the same page. They argue about the same things year after year after year the same issues come up. There never resolve and everybody knows what the rules of the game are you stay on your side, you stay on your side. I push your buttons you push my buttons and like windshield wipers. They just keep going on and on and on and on and that he will never change, and she will never change.
Some if people have changed if I have time today when I get to the end of this message.
I'm going to tell you about a couple that I had given all hope up for and they changed God does change people. It costs something about it costs a sense of honesty and humility.
And it's a price. Most people aren't willing to pay, but because they don't pay it.
They miss a tremendous blessing.
That's why there are two parts to this message. Next time when I preach on the topic I'm going to talk about the rewards people miss because they don't work through a difficult marriage. If you're in a difficult marriage today. God has rewards for you that you are going to miss if you bail out. That's why it's absolutely necessary that you be here next time to hear part number two of this very brief series of messages.
Now you say well I pastor Luke's.
What are you going to speak on today I'm to speak about the common termites that destroy marriages and were going to be turning to the word of God. To see this, you know, whenever you hear about tire that blew out you say well you know the tire just blew out well. The experts will tell us that there have been cracks in that tire for years and then suddenly there was a blowout when a wife leaves the marriage. When a husband leaves the marriage. There have already been a series of sins that have been committed and a series of sins that have been justified before it gets to that. So were going to talk about those termites today.
Those sins that lead to the dissolution of a marriage is that we are there times when somebody should divorce well, you know, one could say that there are times when divorce is allowed. One could even say that perhaps sometimes in extreme cases, it's a necessity, but there are two things that should never be done prematurely. One is involving and the other is to get a divorce.
I know what I want you to do today is to take your Bibles and turn to the fifth chapter of the book of Ephesians Ephesians chapter 5 where we have some words from the apostle Paul. Ephesians chapter 5. Like everything else, there are answers in God's word. Ephesians chapter 5 the apostle Paul says therefore be imitators of God is beloved children. First of all number one we should live a life of love. Write that down live a life of love. That's what we should do and you say well how do we do that we should be imitators of God, men made to us. What does that sound like the Greek word, it is really from which we get the word mimic. We should mimic God godliness is to mimic God. It's to be like him in those attributes of his that are communicable as theologians tell us now. We should imitate God and how do we do that as beloved children and walk in love, show how you walk in love two things. First, notice it says therefore be imitators of God, that therefore is therefore therefore a purpose. You look back and it says in the previous chapter, verse 30 do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice, the kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake.
For gave you notice you want to be like God. It says therefore be imitators of God, you have to learn the lesson. First of all, undeserved forgiveness, undeserved forgiveness. About two weeks ago Rebecca and I were in the airport in Minneapolis. We had flown to Canada to visit my parents and we are sitting there at the gate terminal lounge there and that we were eating together, and a woman came and she never sat beside us, but she kind of sat opposite us in fact, I don't know if she was even sitting on his seat. She may have been sitting on a radiator along the window, she looked at us and she said I can tell the two of you have been married for a long time.
I said let's interesting. What makes you say that she said because I can see that your wife knew exactly what you needed and the way in which the two of you are relating and we said yeah you know it's 39 years and after 39 comes 40 and we've been around a while and so we began to talk and she said you know I'm older and I'm getting married the first time and I'm marrying someone for the first time and she's dead. She said what advice you give me for a happy marriage and I'm so glad that when I married I married up because II wouldn't know exactly how to answer that quick is a quick is a whistle. Like I said learn the art of forgiveness will thank you very much Rebecca that's that's really a wonderful word of advice and that you want to thank you the opportunity of implementing that so many times in our relationship, but you know she was right. You want to be like God, you have to learn the lesson of forgiveness. We talk to that woman and we discovered that she and her husband to be, though they've never attended Moody church attended our premarital counseling here at the Moody church and absolutely loved it and praised it and talked about Pastor Bill Bertschi who did such a good job of leaving it and I'll thought what you know and when she recognized my voice.
She gave me a hug and she said I just can't believe this, and when we got on the plane. She said she'd already phoned her husband to be to tell him about the experience. Why do we have premarital counseling irritability church because we as a staff know something, and what we know is that many divorces already are in process before the wedding. We can see it ever told you this story know when you been around as long as I have got stories and I'll tell you one 20 years ago here at the Moody church. A woman comes to me an Asian woman. This is Wednesday and she's to get married Saturday and she begins to tell me about her husband to be that he's cruel and and she talks about this in.
I look at her with a smile, nice and guess what, you're not marrying him. She's what you mean. I said, I'm ending the wedding right here I sit it's all over and I called the person who is going to marry. It was not a pastoral staff member.
It was someone else in the community a religious leader and I said that you know what this is happening. He said on the basis of your word. I won't do it so I told her I said that.
She said I already have gifts and people have come. She said in my culture there so much shame. I said that's okay I said, here's what you tell them you say this is all Pastor Luther's fault. I should just blame me. Let take the rap for this but you know what you're not marrying this guy two or three weeks later she met me in the lobby.
She came to me with outstretched arms and said Pastor Luther, how will you ever help will I ever thank you enough for ending that married. She said I knew it was going to be bad, but I didn't have the strength to say no and ever since that time I told our staff that we have the responsibility of performing weddings and we also have the responsibility of stopping them when we can foresee that it's bad. That's not the only wedding that stopped here so just be warned.
Divorces already and if you're sleeping together that's a whole other thing. Now the sexual relationship becomes the predominant thing. All of the other issues about the personality of the person you stop growing. You've stopped understanding and that's why it is for many other reasons that you're headed for a lot of trouble. When will we know that God's way is best. It really is so first of all we have to learn to forgive and secondly, we need to learn to love and all talk about this more clearly in the next message and so we have to skip it for lack of time, except to say how did Christ love us what Jesus said you know I come to this earth and they reject me, and I my needs are unfulfilled. Gethsemane, what about my needs the cross. What about my needs. Where do I fit into this know the Bible says here very clearly that we are to love as Christ love and marriage gives you a wonderful opportunity to die to yourself and to love someone else selflessly and that's the lesson that you and I resist with everything that is within us. The first of all what we need to do is to live a life of love. Secondly, we need to live a life of purity. Notice what he says in verse three, but sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints.
Let there be no filthiness or foolish talk or crude joking which are out of place, but instead let there be Thanksgiving now.
The reason this is important and the reason that Paul puts it here is very clear. True love is entirely different than the perversion. All the love that comes to us from the world. The world uses the word love repeatedly, and it's the most misunderstood word you could possibly have because today love is immorality. People get married today and they don't marry a person they marry a body and when the body begins to deteriorate as it does, it ends the relationship because everything is based on sexuality and by the way these crazy reality shows that you can somehow meet somebody and just there, you can tell whether or not they are right for you and they have a connection for you and this type of stuff is being funneled into our young people today.
No wonder they don't have a clue whether they're making a good choice when they get married and that's why we as a staff have to help them along the way. It is a very confused world.
Yes, my friend. We here at the Moody church as a staff, it frequently given counsel to young people, help them to understand whether they are making a wise choice in this very confusing world and you know speaking about a confusing world I've written a book entitled, when a nation forgets God. The seven lessons we must learn from Nazi Germany. I wrote this book because Germany was a very educated country. They had great universities and yet is all of us know they were greatly led astray during the Nazi era. What are those principles and those lessons for us today. The title of the book when a nation forgets God.
The seven lessons we must learn from Nazi Germany for a gift of any amount. This book can be yours.
Here's what you do go to RTW offer.com that's RTW offer.com or if you prefer to call us at 1-888-218-9337. The simple fact is that even then educated nation as so-called enlightened nation can be led down the wrong path and sometimes that happens very quickly when a nation forgets God. Seven lessons. We must learn from Nazi Germany. Go to RTW offer.com that's RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337 thanks in advance for helping us financially because together we are making a difference and I hope that you tune in again next time for running to win. You can write to us at running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 running to win is all about helping you understand God's roadmap for your race of life. Some marriage partners see their mates. What car models, trade them in a better one comes along. The Bible tells us how to make beverages last and next time I'm going to win will hear more teaching from Ephesians chapter 5 and learn by living a life of love, purity and honor is the only way to keep a marriage together. Thanks for listening for Dr. Erwin lutes are this is Dave McAllister running to win is by the Moody church