Marriage and the Atonement
Update on the recent church dissatisfaction post: some Sundays are more devoid of the Gospel than others, and I'm happy to report that this past Sunday was somewhat better than usual. The worship was actually not entirely self-referential and our pastor preached a pretty fair sermon concerning marriage, based of course on Ephesians 5:21-33. I have no desire to criticise my pastor, who works dang hard for his pay, but this post from Ligon Duncan at Together for the Gospel reminded me of the often-overlooked connection between the Gospel and, yes, marriage. For those many who don't seem to "get" that the Gospel really is fundamental to every important issue we can preach about in church, please read this paragraph carefully:
Martyn Lloyd-Jones taught me something about Ephesians 5:25 that I had never before grasped. How many times have I read, and preached, this verse and missed it? Then I read his pastoral words of application: "How many of us have realized that we are always to think of the married state in terms of the doctrine of the atonement? Is that our customary way of thinking of marriage?. . . Where do we find what the books have to say about marriage? Under which section? Under ethics. But it does not belong there. We must consider marriage in terms of the doctrine of the atonement." (Life in the Spirit, 148)Well, so maybe I'm NOT just being snarky and peavish about church. Maybe the Gospel really IS missing (or at least significantly under-valued and under-applied) at my church and many others. In any case, finding oneself in accord with Martyn Lloyd-Jones gives one a warmly affirmed kind of feeling.
[Hearty Hat-Tip: Justin Taylor]