God lives in the home of the God-fearing. He lives in the conscious lives of the members of that home. God is known in that home as the Sovereign Almighty God, the infinite One, the creator of heaven and earth. He is known as the Holy and Just God Who judges all men. He is known as the merciful and faithful covenant God of His people. God is loved in the home of the God-fearing according to who and what He is. The God-fearing in the home live in the profound consciousness that God is always present and that our whole life is lived before Him. God is sought in the home of the, God-fearing. He is sought continually in prayer and in His Word. His mercy and lovingkindness, His favor and blessing are known to be the highest good imaginable for man, His anger and displeasure the most terrifying evil. The God-fearing seek the direction and guidance of the Lord for all of their life in the home. The God-fearing know that they have a holy calling in the home, to love and to serve and to obey God and to live to His glory. The home of the God-fearing is the truly blessed home because it is blessed of God. The fear of God in the home is fundamental to the fear of God in all our life. That we fear God in our homes has tremendous implications for how we live in our homes.
We must establish our homes in the fear of God. This must be our objective from the very beginning. We as young people must be God-fearing as we begin to contemplate establishing our homes. Many of the most important decisions we will ever make in our life must be made in our youth when we begin our homes. Fearing God therefore is not something that can wait until later in our lives when we get older and after we are married for some time. It is urgent that from the very beginning we establish our homes in the fear of God.
To begin immediately to seek to establish our homes in the fear of God means something very concrete. It means that we begin with the Word of God and with prayer. Already when God-fearing young people date they speak with one another of the Word of God and pray together. Oh, this is entirely unheard of in the world, and even among most young people who go by the name Christian. But this is not something that can wait until marriage or even until we begin to think seriously about the desire and possibility of marriage. This must begin with our dating already. To fear God in our dating is to let the holy demands of the Word of God determine our dating. To fear God is to spend time from the very beginning to seek the blessing and favor of God, to seek His grace and His guidance in all that we do. God-fearing young people look again and again to the absolute standard of God’s Word and not to the wicked philosophy of the world in their dating and in their contemplation of marriage.
If we are truly God-fearing young people, our dating will be radically different from that of the world. We know that the holy God is ever watching over us, not only when men see us but even in the darkness of the night, for the night and the day are both alike unto God. We know that the Holy God hates and abominates immorality and fornication. Our knowledge of this will determine the places .we go to and the things we do on our dates. Our day more than ever is one of the grossest imaginable immorality. The world today sees nothing wrong with open and free fornication. Young people as young as early teens are told there is nothing wrong with indulging in the sacred act which the Word of God says belongs only within marriage. The philosophy of the world is that young people should be allowed to let their lusts reign free, they are to seek the gratification of every evil desire without restriction. As long as there is love (that is, what the world calls love), and as long as no one gets hurt, anything is alright. How urgent that God-fearing young people in our day flee youthful lusts that war against the soul. Their must flee them, not giving the slightest occasion that the evil lusts of their sinful nature might destroy their holy lives. In the heart and soul of the God-fearing young person must ring the words that we read in I Corinthians 3:16-17, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, Him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.” What fearful words these are. Not only is it true according to these words that we live our lives in the presence of God, but our very bodies are the temple of the Holy God.
In the fear of God we must seek our life partner. That life partner must be one with whom we can live in the fear of God and with whom we can fulfill our holy calling before God. We seek our life partner therefore among those who fear God. We seek not for the one who is fair in the eyes of men, or one who is popular and great in this world. We seek one who is beautiful with the beauty of holiness and righteousness and who is great in the sight of God.
As God-fearing young people we know that it is God who joins us together in marriage. In marriage we have to do therefore in a wonderful and fearful way with the work of God.
It is God who makes us one in marriage. He so unites us in marriage that two become one. This is a fearful thing. Then it is urgent that we understand that we can only be one with those who are one with us in the fear of God and in the desire to live our holy calling before God. We know from God’s word that we are warned again and again not to become one with the world, not to be unequally yoked with the unbeliever. Marriage is the most intimate of unions between two persons. It is therefore most terrible when in marriage we yoke ourselves with unbelievers, with those who are not one with us in the faith and love of God. It is true of course that we can all point to incidents where, by the wonderful grace and mercy of God, an unbelieving partner in a marriage became a God-fearing person. This is surely wonderful and reason for thanksgiving to God, for this is the Lord’s doing and not the work of men. However, it remains true that most often a union between a believer and unbeliever has terrible consequences. We may not tempt the Lord our God in marriage saying in our hearts that the Lord will bring our unbelieving partner into the faith.
The God-fearing understand that marriage is a sacred calling. We are united together in marriage that we might together fulfill the calling of God in the midst of His church and kingdom. Marriage is therefore not merely for self-gratification. Marriage is not merely for making us rich and famous in the world. It is not to satisfy our carnal lusts and pleasures. Marriage is a holy calling of God. It is God who tells us what we must do and how we must live in our marriage.
The God-fearing understand that marriage is an unbreakable bond, exactly because it is God Who joins us together, and what God joins together man may never put asunder. Marriage must be a bond of holy love between a man and a woman. Marriage is not something that can just be dissolved when the natural affection that once was fades away and when troubles and hardships come. Marriage is a lifelong calling which requires that we give ourselves completely in holy love and faithfulness to one another before God. With fear and trembling we are to live in marriage in such a way that we reflect the holy love of God for His church. As God never forsakes His church but ever remains faithful unto her, so we must live in lifelong faithfulness to one another.
God-fearing young people understand that it is. God Who has ordained the place that the man and the woman should have in marriage. That place is not determined by the standards of men, that place is not determined by what will make us the most wealthy in the world nor alone by what will give to the partners in marriage the most personal satisfaction and glory. God’s Word requires that the wife in marriage live in humble submission unto her husband. God’s Word says that the wife in the home must be adorned by a meek and quiet spirit. In the world today all the emphasis is on the career-minded woman, the woman who can live independently, the woman who can make her mark in the world in the eye of men. She who fears God knows that she cannot be guided by the world. She is guided by what the Word of God says is her holy and loving calling in the home. God’s Word requires that the God-fearing husband love his wife as Christ loved His church and gave Himself for her. The God-fearing husband understands that his calling in marriage is to dwell with his wife as with the weaker vessel, and as heirs with her of the grace of life. It is not his calling to give himself more to his career than to his wife and family. It is not his calling to be found constantly away from home enjoying the pleasures of the world. It is his calling to spend much time at home with his wife and family, to love and to support them, to rule over them, to guide and direct them in the fear of the Lord.
God-fearing young people understand from the beginning, as they contemplate marriage, that one of the chief purposes of marriage is to bring forth the children of the covenant. That is the holy calling as well as the blessed privilege of God’s people in the world. How urgent it is that we from the beginning stand in the fear of God in this matter. The world around us is saying that children are nothing but a burden: they limit the freedom of a young couple to enjoy the pleasures of the world; they make it difficult if not impossible for the wife in the marriage to pursue her own selfish ambition in a career in the world; they cost so much that they hinder financial advancement in the world. In self-sacrificial love in the fear of God we must bring forth the children of the covenant. There is no more blessed and wonderful calling for the people of God.