The Wife of Thy Youth

"Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity, which He hath given thee under the sun, all the days of thy vanity: for that is thy portion in this life, and in thy labor which thou takest under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 9:9).

The writer recently had the privilege of taking a small part in the memorial services of a long-time member of the ICR Board of Trustees. This godly gentleman and his good wife had been married almost 77 years at the time of his homegoing! That was quite a record, especially in this day of easy divorce and sequential spouses. We are told that about half of all marriages in this nominally Christian nation end in divorce.

Most all couples at the marriage altar used to promise to care for each other "as long as ye both shall live." That ceremony is often caricatured these days by changing the promise to "as long as ye both shall love," which essentially means nothing. The wonderful couple mentioned above, however, took the original promise very seriously, putting it into beautiful practice for over three-quarters of a century!

Of course, there are many other Bible-believing Christians who practice it still, and the Lord Jesus Christ certainly taught it. When a group of Pharisees asked Him if a man could "put away his wife for every cause," the Lord replied: "Have ye not read, that He which made them" said that a man "shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? . . . What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder" (Matthew 19:3-6).

Valentine's Day, whatever may have been its original motivation, has largely devolved into a day glorifying romantic--sometimes erotic--love. It would be wonderful if Christians would make their "romance" a relationship of true Christian love--deep, lasting, self-sacrificing love. HMM