by Jeff Strite

This content is part of a series.

Faith and Family (3 of 4)
Series: What Made America Great
Jeff Strite
Malachi 2:13-16

OPEN: This is our last in our series: ''What Made America Great.''
Over the past weeks we've dealt with the Christian Work Ethic, the Godly Freedom we enjoy, and the influence of the Church in shaping the thinking of our early founders.
Today's sermon focuses on the role Marriage has played in making America great.

In Malachi, God told Israel how important marriage was to Him.
He said that when people get married ''…the LORD (makes) them one''. In flesh and spirit they are his.'' Malachi 2:14
AND He declared He is a ''witness between you and the wife of your youth.'' Malachi 2:14

Now, apparently, many in Israel had decided that marriage wasn't all that important.
They didn't think God's priority of a lifelong marriage needed to be honored.
And so God was angry.

''I hate divorce,'' says the LORD God of Israel… '' Mal 2:16

And because Israel had become so casual in its view of their marriage vows, God told them: ''… You flood the LORD's altar with tears. You weep and wail because he no longer pays attention to your offerings or accepts them with pleasure from your hands.'' Malachi 2:13

Essentially God was telling Israel:
I have no great love for you… because you have no great love for the sanctity of marriage.

God WAS bringing judgment upon Israel.
But… if God was bringing judgment upon Israel for their negative attitude toward their vows, just imagine what blessings He might bring on a nation that held marriage in honor.

APPLY: In early America, there was a time when divorce was easily obtained and living together was not uncommon. But then came the Great Awakening - where religious fervor swept across the colonies. And with that great Awakening came a overwhelming desire in many of the colonists to embrace the holiness and righteousness of our God. And with that desire to be holy and righteous marriage began to be held in much higher esteem.

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