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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

.What Does it Mean to be One Flesh.


I was hit with a nasty cold/bug yesterday. I sat down to write my post for today, and I just could not think clearly. So today's Wedded Wednesday is all on my hubby who requested I just post his response here. I think he did a great job answering the question. What do you think?

What does it mean to be one flesh? In being one flesh do I lose my identity as an individual?


Can I have this be a one word post?

Here is my rationale:

Individualism is not a Biblical concept. In all the ways that we see Christ characterize us, I just do not see the moment He says "you are like a silo..." Instead, we see Him constantly referring to us as a bride, a body, as members of one another, or some other part of a whole. He even implores us to ask ourselves how much we love ourselves, and to love others to that extent. {Matthew 22:36-40}

Now, in the context of marriage, we are told that we are to be "one flesh." {Genesis 2:21-24; Matthew 19:5-6; Mark 10:8; Ephesians 5:31} To me, there is no wiggle room here. There is not that point at which we say "yes but in that one flesh there is a form of individuality..." Mark 10:8 spells it out the best, "so then they are no longer two, but one flesh." Jesus is describing what marriage is and the reality that divorce is not in God's playbook.

Paul gives us another picture of this in I Corinthians 6:15-17, "Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a harlot? Certainly not! Or do you not know that he who is joined to a harlot is one body with her? For 'the two,' He says, 'shall become one flesh.' But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him."

In articulating for us our need to flee from sexual immorality, he is saying that simply by engaging in sexual immorality, whether porn, or adultery, or lust, we imply that our spouse, in this case, Christ is involved. This is not to say that Christ is held responsible for our sinful choices... however, it is to say that when people look at us, Christ's bride, they presume that we reflect Him and that He reflects us.

I feel as though this is getting extremely muddled. Partly because I do not want to communicate that we are responsible for the sin of our spouse or that somehow Christ is responsible for our sin. What is biblically relevant here is that in joining in marriage, we have bound ourselves to one another. We are no longer independent beings, free to choose whatever we want without implications for our spouse. However, even apart from marriage, our lives are not to be individualistic.

I suppose there is another issue: One of personality and preference. In that sense, you are not bound to "like" what your spouse "likes." For example: My wife enjoys seafood, I do not. This does not attack our "one-fleshness" {I just made up a word}. In the same vein, I am outspoken, while Tiffany is not... and this does not counter the idea of being "one flesh."

It [being one flesh} is a matter of identity and unity. We, Tiffany and I, are to be united on the front of godliness, purpose, and execution of those things, because in those things, we reflect one another.

Wow. I feel like this is more confusing than helpful...

What are your thoughts?


PS Thank you so very much for all of the encouraging comments on yesterday's post and prayers being lifted up for my family and specifically Jamesy. I will post details of the MRI as soon as I can on Thursday or Friday. I appreciate you all!


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