Free Essay About Marriage According To
Type of paper: Essay
Topic: Marriage, Relationships, Love, Social Issues, Jesus Christ, Family, Women, Wife
ST. PAUL AND JESUS TEACHINGS
Religious Studies, Marriage, Jesus-Paul Paper
ST. PAUL AND JESUS TEACHINGS
In this academic assignment the focus on the St. Paul and Jesus paper is about marriage according to the gospel of Mathew Chapter 19 and Mark Chapter 10, Jesus refers directly to the old testament and is quoted in the new specifically talking about marriage. In the book of 1 Corinthians 7:28 Paul has some extremely definite ideas about marriage. The following discourse provides a comparison and contrast of the two teachings in narrative form in the first two sections. The next section provides a critical personal analysis of the two and finally provides a conclusion whether the teachings of Jesus and Paul have any value in the 21st century.
Jesus on Marriage
The Pharisees test Jesus by asking him specific references to the old law and one of them was about marriage. In doing so they found Jesus ready with his answer and knowledge of the old Hebrew law. And He answered and said to them, "Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate." It is clear in this passage from the Bible that Jesus’ view of marriage from the onset held to the old traditions of the Hebrew law.
Further, “His disciples said to Him, ‘If such is the case of the man with his wife, it is better not to marry.’ But He said to them, ‘All cannot accept this saying, but only those to whom it has been given: ‘For there are eunuchs who were born thus from their mother's womb, and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake. He who is able to accept it, let him accept it.’” Here we see the conversation of Jesus with his disciples, talks about those among the people unable to become one with a wife and that is it better they do not marry.
Paul on Marriage
Anyone reading the Bible finds Paul’s point of view about marriage much different from that of Jesus. He even goes so far as to say that it is fundamentally better that a man should not have sexual relations with a woman except his own wife and wife with her husband as a part of the marital duty one to the other.
Paul’s view was abstaining from sex between married couples was preferred so they could devote their time to prayer and only come together for this function to keep the temptation of Satan because of the lack of self-control. Paul made it clear he had no interest in marriage or sex and wished that the followers of the Lord were as him in this manner.
Paul talks to the unmarried in specifics as well.
“Now to the unmarried[a] and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do. 9 But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion. 10 To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. 11 But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife. 12 To the rest I say this (I, not the Lord): If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her. 13 And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him. 14 For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy. 15 But if the unbeliever leaves, let it be so..
The fundamental aspects of Paul’s view of the unmarried in contrast to that of Jesus in the same light looks at anyone existing as such because of a calling to serve the Lord must be holy in both spirit and body. This was Paul’s view about eunuchs making peace with their celibacy for the sake of the kingdom of heaven so that it was never a torment to them in either respect.
In review and analysis of the two perspectives on marriage provided in the scripture quoted in the above between Jesus and Paul there is a genuine difference that emerges from a subjective point of view. Jesus clearly took the position of the old Hebrew law on the subject and made it apparent he had no other view of the issue. In reflection on this, the position maintained by Jesus connected to the old established Hebrew Law on marriage makes sense as it has a fundamental value for the relationship between man and woman as established in the creation of Adam and Eve.
The fact is, Jesus was a humanitarian in contrast to the position of Paul as a zealot when it came to Christianity. Remembering that with the resurrection of Jesus He became Christ fulfilling the prophecy of the Old Testament of the messiah. Also, remembering the first Christians were basically Jews looks at the difference in Jesus and Paul about marriage as Paul having the task of changing a way of life for the Jewish converts to Christianity moving beyond the Old Testament into the new teachings as “interpreted” by the apostles.
Reading the scripture according to the view of Paul on marriage there emerges two primary things that include understanding how marriage in this historical time was completely different from the views of modern people. Those days as told in the Bible both New and Old Testaments never speak of a ceremony about marriage or even an enduring bond. It was more of a partnership as analysis of the scripture reveals. Other converts of the non-Jewish persuasion also had different marriage norms and this brought other considerations into the situation facing Paul in particular as it seems he was very against marriage from his perspective and his commitment to being a servant of the Lord.
When one understands the scripture of the New Testament and that Paul believed the return of the Lord was coming soon and the end of the world then in Paul’s letter to the Corinthians about marriage it is easier to understand his message of distress, persecutions, and other disasters that the Church itself faced and how this moved his view of marriage in contrast to Jesus’ more pragmatic one. Therefore, with Paul’s wholesale advice against marriage, then it is necessary to understand why he preached the virtues of remaining virginal as linked to the distressful conditions the church faced in the harrowing times under the Roman Empire. The view of Paul also talking about Christian men only marrying Christian women confirms his view of believers and non-believers marrying.
Review of the sections discussed above in this scholastic consideration of Jesus’ and Paul’s view of marriage and its value in the 21st century does indeed hold merit in theory. Pragmatically, the fact emerges that conditions exist in the world where someone becomes a believer after marriage and the partnership becomes flawed with any number of undesirable realties affecting both people. Therefore, there is no sin in dissolution of marriage when there exists unchangeable realities as too often occur in this complicated world humans now exist.
Ideally, indeed, two believers go into a marriage with the same values and desires living a Christ-filled life is the desired reality for this day and age but that is not the reality of the human experience in the 21st century. With a focus on individual personal relationship with the Lord the question of honoring the institution of marriage becomes part of this relationship and the lessons of the teachings of Jesus about agape or unconditional love in the marriage relationship. At the same time, the intention of the love of Christ as unconditional does not insist that marriage have specific rules that must be adhered to enter the kingdom of heaven.
1 Corinthians. King James Version
Mark. King James Version
Mathew. King James Version