In many 3rd world countries, the societal values favor marriage as people are encouraged to remain in
their marriages to make them work. They do this because they do not want to lose their reputation and
honor in the eyes of the society. The present situation in the place of our divine assignment (Canada
and North America at large) is very different. Some of the existing values in the society as presented
below are very hostile to marriage.
1. Self-centeredness: Destructive lifestyles such as infidelity, extra-marital affairs, secrecy and
non-transparency in personal finance and many others have their roots in self-centeredness. Personal
interest is exalted to the detriment of the interest of the spouse, children and most importantly the
interest of God concerning the marriage.
2. Women liberation/Feminist movement/Feminism: A key motivation for this movement was
a desire for reforms on issues of reproductive rights, domestic violence, maternity leave, equal pay,
women suffrage (right to vote and to be voted for), sexual harassments etc. The afore mentioned
objectives of the movement are noble. However, many have hijacked, corrupted and remodeled these
objectives to suit their personal selfish desires. The pursuit of equal social rights for women and gender
equality has crossed safe boundaries into major misconceptions that fight and destroys God's
foundation for marriage. These misconceptions are:
i. Men and Women are equal and same in all ramifications - (Response) As regards our
rights as humans, we are equal. In the sight of God, we equal. However equality does not mean
we are the same. By God's design, a woman is distinctly different from a man (physically,
mentally, emotionally etc.). This difference in turn affects the role a man and woman plays in a
ii. Gender roles should be eliminated - (Response) This misconception comes from the idea
that male and female are all the same. Our different design by God was not a purposeless act of
variation. We are designed differently (male and female) to help us fit into our roles in marriage
and in the society. A wife cannot reject her role as wife and decide to become the husband and
the husband cannot do likewise without destroying the divine order of marriage. God makes it
very clear the place of gender roles particularly in marriage (Titus 2:1-5, 1 Timothy 5:8)
3. Gender Summarization: A word coined by me to reflect the extreme case of feminism: an
ideology advocated by some people that there should not be gender. Women are obtaining medical
procedures to become like men and vice versa. Godly marriage cannot even exist with such a perverse
4. Independence: I see this value system almost everywhere I go. People feel happy that they can be
and have all they want without having to depend on other people. Independence is sure better than
dependence. However, interdependence is the way of God. It is the very essence of marriage. Two,
originally independent people choose to work together to fulfill a common purpose. When all a person
sees is self and lives in the illusion that he or she can become what God wants him or her to be all by
one's ability then such a person cannot succeed in marriage. Sure! We need each other.
5. Single parenthood: People, due to their misconception about gender roles fail to understand that
there is a role a mother plays in a child's life that a father cannot totally fill in. Likewise the mother
cannot totally substitute the role of the father. Many fail to realize that irrespective of how determined
they are, they cannot be a mother and father at the same time. Every child needs both a male figure
(primarily the father and could also be a respectable male mentor) and female figure (primarily the
mother and could also be a respectable female mentor) to have a balanced emotional formation.
6. Financially motivated divorce: It is amazing how something as sacred as marriage can be
converted into a tool for making money. Imagine young women, who about to get married, asking
lawyers what they stand to gain (or not loose) in event of divorce. They are already preparing a way of
escape for themselves. This mindset is a very fertile ground for divorce.
7. Disregard for spiritual authority: The same lie of "we are equal and also the same" has also
been brought into the Church and marriage as regards spiritual things. A pastor is a man like any
member of the congregation he or she leads. However, they are not the same. There is a role of spiritual
leadership the pastor plays that must be understood, respected and supported for the whole Church to
benefits. Likewise marriage, a husband plays a role of a spiritual leader that needs to be understood,
honoured and supported, else the home will be negatively impacted. People today have no regard for
spiritual authority and as such they imagine after all "We are equal and the same . . . you are not any
different from me? Why should you talk to me like that? Why should you question me?" This value
system breeds confusion and problems in marriage.
Having explained briefly the different values that are hostile to marriage in North America (Canada and
US), the questions we should ask ourselves are:
1. What must we do to secure our marriage from this hostile value system?
2. How do we ensure that we who are meant to influence the society for God do not get influenced by
One thing is certain, if we as a couple are to live victoriously and have a fulfilling marriage, we, as a
matter of necessity need to seek and acquire divine knowledge and insight to expose and conquer the
lies that underlie these destructive values.
In this series "Marriage and Vision", I will be writing a number of articles to stress the dependency of a
fulfilling marriage on a common-vision shared by a couple. Come to think of it, what is the most
important requirement for the success of any relationship? Is it love? Is it vision? Is it finances? While
many people will say love, the actual answer is vision. It is vision that makes a radical Muslim,
conservative Christian, an avowed Buddhist, a Hindu and Atheist to all work together in a corporate
environment to fulfill a commonly shared organizational vision. The uncommon bonding among
several nations that led to the building of the tower of babel - a building that caught God's attention -
came about because the people had a common-vision.
"If as one people, speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do
will impossible for them" Genesis 11:6, NIV
"If as one people" - That was their secret. Oneness is a function of a common-vision, a common
objective a people have set out to achieve, a commonly shared divine purpose a couple has set out to achieve.
The series will comprise of the following articles:
The crucial place of a common-vision in sustaining a fulfilling marriage
Preserving a common-vision in marriage
Threats to a common-vision in marriage
Keeping the vision alive - the place of consistent intimate communication