The marriage institution is supervised in Courts, authenticating matrimonial relationships, including divorce cases. Culture and tradition have a role, but the courts have the final say. On the surface, this appears normal. But the world’s tragic relational flaws point to there being problems with this arrangement.
What is marriage? And how did it come to be embedded in society? Most people understand it being the formal union of a man and a woman, typically as recognized in law by which the two become husband and wife. This is necessary for purposes of handling disputes arising from procreation of children and acquisition of properties by those concerned.
What about the illegal marriages? Without other mechanisms to control such unions, anyone can speculate that this is from where horrific sins naturally snowball into known evils of the world. But a careful analysis reveals that problems also naturally germinate from the so-called legitimately good marriages.
Divorce cases choke the courts. Marital certification is currently not serving the intended purpose. But harmonious marriages also exist even in illegitimate marriages. Apparently, the legally constituted marriages are based on unsustainable grounds.
This dissertation seeks to show that Jesus, as creation authority, holds truthful information on the meaning and purpose of marriage. He clarified on marital purpose, before His extraordinary ascension to Heaven. Marriage has got nothing to do with religion. But it holds the basis of human survival, as Christ showed.
Unfortunately, the agents of religion came to steal everything that Jesus taught about human survival. The name ‘Jesus’ is now difficult to mention without being associated with religion, or being labelled ‘Christian’. But Jesus’ mission is about the survival of humankind, without regard of which religion the person subscribes to. In one of His confrontational bouts with the Law-keepers, Jesus clarified the meaning and purpose of Marriage:
“Some Pharisees came to him, to test him. They asked, ‘Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?’
‘Haven’t you read,’ He replied, ‘that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate’,
‘Why then,’ they asked, ‘did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?’
Jesus replied, ‘Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for reason of fornication, and marries another woman commits adultery.’
The disciples said to him, ‘If this is the situation between a husband and wife, it is better not to marry.’
Jesus replied, ‘Not everyone can accept this word, but only those to whom it has been given.’ (Matthew 19:3-11 NIV).
Interestingly, even some of His disciples, as shown in the above scripture, could not fathom the meaning of marriage, though having been committed to follow Him. They still held to the institutionalized meaning, as understood, even today. How could the two become one in marriage, for the separation to then become impossible?
Jesus, as author of human survival, provides a simple answer. This scripture has got nothing to do with religion, or any codes to govern the institution of marriage, just as Jesus dissolved all that at the cross (Col. 2:14). However, an ordinary person cannot understand, except those to whom it is given, as said by Jesus.
God has no problem with those disregarding what Jesus taught, as long as such people do not identify with His instruction. I also hold no problem with the Jews, continuously keeping such regulations according to Moses’ law. I have no problem with the Moslems doing the same according to the Koran. The same applies, even with those following cultural traditions. Just as goes with the regulatory guidelines from the courts of law.
My only problem is when observing those pretending to be Jesus’ followers, yet teaching the very opposite of what Christ taught. They conform to the world that subscribes to conditional love, and yet God’s love is unconditional. Marriage, as prescribed by Jesus, is the fibre of relational problems across the globe. Let alone our own troubles in Zimbabwe. The reason why there is intolerance—politically, religiously, racially, tribally, ethnically and socially, is due to failure to adopt the prescription of marriage, as proffered by Jesus.
The workability of marriage, according to Jesus, is not mechanical or religious, but it projects a divine solution that addresses the hitherto unsolvable world problems. In marriage, the two become one, just as human beings should be viewed as one, across the world. In other words, another fellow human being is just as good as me. That person’s flaws become mine. As characterized in marital failures, even among Christians, the meaning of: “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matt 5:44) cannot be fathomed.
The national problems cannot be addressed effectively, without first attending to the true meaning of marriage and how it transcends into providing solutions, not only on national spectrum, but also internationally.
Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, which lays down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into becoming a model to other countries worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing reliefs to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social instability. In a simple conversational tone, most Zimbabwean readers should find the book as a long awaited providential oasis of hope.