“The Two Become One” (Ephesians 5: 25 – 26, HCSB) by Carley Evans

A man “is to love his wife as himself.” (Ephesians 5: 31) A man is to love his wife “just as Christ loves the church and gives Himself for her.” A man is “to love [his] wife as [his] own body. He who loves his wife loves himself.” (Ephesians 5: 28) He is to “provide and care for” his wife as he cares for his “own flesh.” (Ephesians 5: 29)

“This mystery is profound,” writes Paul. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” (Ephesians 5: 32, 31)

When a man hates his wife, he hates himself. And “the Lord is a witness between [the man] and the wife of [his] youth.” God says, “‘You act treacherously against her, though she is your marriage partner and your wife by covenant.’

“Didn’t the one God make us with a remnant of His life-breath? And what does the One seek? A godly offspring. So watch yourselves carefully, and do not act treacherously against the wife of your youth.”

God says, ” ‘If [you] hate and divorce [your] wife, [you] cover [your] garment with injustice.’ ” (Malachi 2: 14 -16)

If you hate and divorce your wife, the wife of your youth; then you hate your own body, your own flesh. And this mystery is also profound. When two become one flesh, the tearing apart renders each less than the whole.

“You cover the Lord’s altar with tears, with weeping and groaning, because He no longer respects your offerings or receives them gladly from your hands.” (Malachi 2: 13)

A man is to care for his wife as he cares for his own body, his own self for he and his wife are one.

“Keep Her Because” (Proverbs 31: 10, ESV) by Carley Evans

A woman with noble character is worth more than rubies, says the wise man. When you find her, make every effort to keep her.

Keep her because “she does [her husband] good, and not harm, all the days of her life.” (Proverbs 31:12)

Keep her because “she rises while it is yet night and provides food for her household… She perceives that her merchandise is profitable. Her lamp does not go out at night.” (Proverbs 31: 15, 18)

Keep her because she is generous, opening “her hand to the poor.” (Proverbs 31: 20)

Keep her because “she opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.” (Proverbs 31: 26)

Keep her because “strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.” (Proverbs 31: 25)

“And this second thing you do,” warns the Lord. “You cover the Lord’s altar with tears, with weeping and groaning because He no longer regards the offerings or accepts it with favor from your hand. But you say, “Why does He not?” Because the Lord was witness between you and the wife of your youth, to whom you have been faithless, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant. Did He not make them one, with a portion of the Spirit in their union?… So guard yourselves in your spirit, and let none of you be faithless to the wife of your youth.” (Malachi 2: 13 – 15)

Keep her because God has made you one with her. Keep her because a wife of noble character is worth more than jewels. “So guard yourselves in your spirit, and do not be faithless.” (Malachi 2: 16)