Enjoy our glossary of biblical definitions and explanations of important marriage terms. (Proverbs 3:5 NIV states, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding”)

Acceptance – if you never change, I would still love you unconditionally. How? By Agape, the God-kind of love or redemptive love. Romans 5:8 NLT - But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Blessing – the blessing or grace or favour is yours legally but becomes your vitally as you walk in faith. In the marriage relationship, you have the potential to experience the blessing in multiplication because of the power of two. Genesis 1:28 KJV - God blessed [them] and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground”. [emphasis ours].

Courage – his is a heart condition that faces down adverse circumstances until it sees the manifestation of victory. You are the whelp of the Lion of Judah; handle your life and marital issues with courage. Deuteronomy 31:6 -  Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

Friend – Friendship in marriage is an emotional connection that transcends the physical. Couples that are friends look forward to spending time together, and genuinely like one another. Proverbs 18:25 NKJV - A man who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother

Love – There are different kinds of love in the bible (eros – sexual or emotional love, philieo – brotherly or friendship love, Storge – dependent or motherly love etc.) and they are all based on emotions. The problem with emotions is that emotions are subject to change and will always change with the circumstances. There is however one other kind of love that the bible talks about and that is Agape or the God kind of love. The God kind of love is constant, faithful and true and holds fast through every season of life. Agape is the only kind of love that is unbreakable because it is love that never fails. God’s design was for Agape to be the foundation of marriage a love or foundation that never alters with the circumstances. God never intended for us to love from our emotions but from our spirits. The only form of love that has its roots in the spirit is Agape, the God kind of love; the love that never quits. It never gives up. Agape is based on a quality decision or a choice. The bible says in Jude 1:20 that we keep ourselves in the love of God. Agape stands up to the pressures of life because it is not based on what your spouse does or does not do; what your spouse gives or does not give. This love is not earned. It is based on what you choose; it is based on what you choose to give your spouse. It is not based on how you feel, what you are going through, what he or she deserves or does not deserve. God’s kind of love is a choice that you make on the basis of what God says in His Word, what Jesus did from the cross to the throne and then you act on it in faith until it becomes a reality in your spirit, soul, and body. What that means then is that Agape is an unconditional love to an imperfect person. Agape love is redemptive love and you are capable of it because you are born of God who is Agape. Read1 Corinthians 13: 4-8 to understand the characteristics of this love.

Agreement - The power of agreement is most effective in marriage – there is a common purpose and the decision of each one’s life impacts the other. Matthew 18:19 NLT - “I also tell you this: If two of you agree here on earth concerning anything you ask, my Father in heaven will do it for you.

Communion – the Lord’s supper is about remembering the finished work of Jesus, all that He obtained for us, all that the blessing contains – health, wealth, wholeness, preservation, protection, etc. When a husband and wife come together to take communion they do so on the basis of two covenants – the covenant between God and Jesus that we are partakers of and the covenant that is between them as husband and wife. 1 Corinthians 11:25 NKJV In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”

Family – The family is God’s idea. It is the first institution and most important institution created by God. Through the family, God intends for His righteous rule to be propagated into all nations. Psalm 68:6 KJV - God sets the solitary in families; He brings out those who are bound into prosperity; But the rebellious dwell in a dry land.

Heart – the only kind of heart we should have towards one another in marriage is a right heart, an open heart and a servant’s heart. Matthew 23:11 NKJV - But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.

Husband – The term husband is an agricultural one and that means that the husband is God’s partner to bring his wife to her fullest potential. When a man tends to his wife as God intended, it shows in her; if he does not tend his wife as God intended, it still shows in her. This is because the woman is the man’s glory. 1 Corinthians 11:7 NJKV - For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man.

Humility –This is freedom from pride and pride is when we insist on our own way and our own standards. We are all required to submit to God by following His standards as expressed in His Word. The one who submits or is humble is the one who walks in grace. 1 Peter 5:5 NKJV - Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

Servant – It has been said that the greatest marriage is two servants in love. The God kind of love which we have in us, is love that serves – Remember Jesus’ promise? “He who is greatest among you shall be your servant.” How do you serve your spouse? Supply what your spouse needs in spite of what you need, want or understand and do it with a joyful attitude. Matthew 23:11 NKJV - But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.

Thankfulness – the prayer of faith always ends in praise because the prayer has caught a glimpse of the answer, it has caught a glimpse of the future. 2 Corinthians 2:14 KJV Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.

Anger – the marriage relationship is the relationship with the most opportunity to hurt you and offend you because it is the relationship you are most vulnerable in but offence is a choice; your choice. Ephesians 4;26 NLT - And “don’t sin by letting anger control you.” Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry,

Companion – a companion is a person with whom one spends a lot of time or with whom one travels. Your spouse is your companion for the journey of life. Your travel companion through life is a strong predictor of your success in life. Choose wisely and once married pray for your companion-spouse. Proverbs 13:20 KJV - He who walks with wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.

Forgiveness – Forgiveness is not saying that what the offender did was right. True forgiveness says that what they have done or are doing is wrong, but God’s love and power in you is far greater than this offense against you. You decide that you will not allow this offense to contaminate you with bitterness. You may have been affected by what your spouse did, but you will not be an ongoing victim by retaining the offense. Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does change the future. Ephesians 4:32 KJV - Be kind to one another, tender hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. 

Helpmeet – God made the woman for man because He said it was not good for man to be alone and He made Him a helper, meet or suitable for man. Helper did not mean lesser in purpose or position, after all she was made in God’s image and likeness and also received the blessing. God actually describes Himself with the same root word for helper in Psalm 33:20(Our soul waits for the LORD; he is our help and our shield). Genesis 2:18 KJV - And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.

Initiator – The bible refers to the husband as the head or the leader or the initiator of the marriage relationship. It is often said that everything rises and falls on leadership. The quality of a home (the marriage, the children etc.) correlates directly to the leadership of that home. Leaders give direction and make decisions in consultation. Husbands, everything God calls us to, He equips us for; you are equipped for leadership men. He expects you to lead spiritually, financially, emotionally etc. This does not mean that you don’t utilize your wife’s strengths and gifts, but it means that you initiate and that you have the ultimate responsibility. A responsibility that you will give account to God for. 1 Corinthians 11:3 KJV - But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

Testimony – this only comes as you trust God, take Him at His Word and step out in faith. It may not make sense, but it will make faith. Matthew 14:28-29 KJV - Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”  “Come,” he said.

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