What advice would you give to a newly married couple?

1 Min Read

The first thing I would say is that you’ve begun a lifelong experience of getting to know each other. My wife and I have been married fifty years, and she told me something the other day, and I thought, “I did not know that about you.” So, the first thing to say is that marriage is a wonderful gift of God, in which you’re going to discover as long as you are married that you have the privilege of getting to know another human being with amazing intimacy, but you’re never going to get to the bottom of them. I think part of the reason for that is this: our marriages are intended to be a reflection of the marriage of Christ to the church, and we never get to the bottom, as it were, of Jesus Christ.

That connects to the second thing I would say: remember what your marriage is for. It’s not primarily about you, although there is much blessing in it. Rather, it is primarily about Christ. When we keep Christ central in our lives, we find that, yes, there will be struggles, there will be sadnesses, and there will be tensions because we are both sinful human beings, but we will also discover why the companionship of marriage was the first blessing that God gave to Adam. It’s not good that man should be alone, and it is a supremely great thing to have this blessing of marriage.

Thirdly, I would say that we should aim for mutual respect in marriage. I sometimes say to young people: “If you can’t respect him, you shouldn’t marry him. Don’t think that you will change him and then you’ll respect him. That respect has to be there from the beginning.” But the great thing is that marriage allows for companionship, friendship, mutual encouragement, and the common mind to serve Jesus Christ to the maximum ability we have.

This transcript is from a live Ask Ligonier event with Sinclair Ferguson and has been lightly edited for readability. To ask Ligonier a biblical or theological question, email ask@ligonier.org or message us on Facebook or Twitter.