One Flesh or One Address?

            What we are seeing in culture at large is confirmed through statistical analysis:  more couples are living together prior to or instead of marriage altogether.  According to Census Bureau reports the percentage of cohabitating adults ages 25-34 increased from 12% a decade ago to 15% in 2018, while the percentage of 25-34 year olds who are married continues to decline.  Whereas 59% of 25-34-year-olds were married in 1978, only 30% are married today.

            Living together or cohabitating instead of marriage is not God’s design.  As we will see this week in our look at Genesis 2:18-25, God intends for a man and a woman to be united into the covenant of marriage.  They are to become one flesh not merely to share one address.  The two are not synonymous.

            This Biblical view of marriage and relationships is sadly alien to our culture.  More and more couples are having children outside of marriage.  What will be the long-term effects of these trends?  That still remains to be seen.

            In an online article published by the Institute for Family Studies the following differences between marriage and cohabitating were asserted based on their research:

  1. Married adults are more likely than cohabitating adults to report relationship satisfaction.
  2. Married adults are also more likely to report higher levels of relationship commitment than cohabitating adults.
  3. Married adults are more likely than cohabitating adults to report higher levels of relationship stability.

            God’s design for marriage is not simply that which brings Him the most honor and glory but it also results in our greatest good.  “Test driving” a marriage relationship by living together is not a proven strategy for a lifelong, happy commitment.  Let’s affirm God’s design and rejoice in His good gift of marriage.  Let’s pray for one another and for the marriages and future marriages of HLPC.