Can we be married forever? This is a good question, a funny one, because in the west low estimates show that about 40% of marriages end in divorce, and the average length of those marriages is seven years. So the remaining 60% or so of couples must remain married right? The bigger question, sometimes the more romantic question is if marriages remain after death. I mean when you are in love, you can sweep your lady off her feet by telling her, “Baby if we ain’t married in heaven, I don’t want to be there. That’s how much I love you. “Of course you will end up with one hell of a marriage, Cue the drum roll, ” sh dun, dun”.
Is marriage possible in the after life? If so will our wedding rings be upgraded along with our bodies, to where 1 carrot diamonds are automatically upgraded to 100 carots. I mean if the streets of heaven are paved with gold, at least the wedding band has to be platinum, I mean when the streets are better quality than the wedding ring, you’ve fallen on hard times. I mean c’mon.
Well so what about people that go to hell? I assume if there were marriages after death and the wife was the good one who cooked for faithfully served her husband, loved him with all her heart, only to die of a heart attack after he cheated on her and left her. She then goes to heaven, while her husband burns his cheating butt in hell. In heaven is she free to remarry the tall dark and handsome man of her dreams? Because after all what better place to find the man of your dreams than in heaven. So her new husband that she now finds in heaven, if she can have one must literally be to die for. I apologize for all the bad jokes, but we can see that there could be a couple of complications when we think about marrying in the afterlife, or pretty much heaven, because in hell you have no options; you are stuck with the husband or wife from hell. Imagine being nagged, everyday …..forever! That’s enough to make any man get saved. Okay that was the last bad joke.
So what does the Bible say about marriage in the afterlife? I have two scriptures to show you. The first is from God himself, he is responding to a religious sect called the Saducees who don’t believe in an after life. In fact one the reasons that they refused to believe in an afterlife is because they found it hard to figure out how things like marriages would work in heaven. So they propose this riddle to Jesus and ask him about a woman who’s been married seven times, and all of her husbands have died. The question is whose wife will she be in heaven? This is what Jesus says,
Jesus answered and said to them, “The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage. 35 But those who are counted worthy to attain that age, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given in marriage; 36 nor can they die anymore, for they are equal to the angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.(Luke 20:34-36)
So from the mouth of Jesus, there are no marriages being performed in heaven. I can see some people say, well that means there are no new marriages, but what about old marriages, people who were already married? One, I would say that the phrase equal to the angels, rules that out. How so? The Bible says those who are resurrected will receive glorified bodies. If these bodies are similar to those of angels then those bodies appear to be without gender; they have the ability to manipulate forms here on earth but they do not appear to made for the function of procreation at least in heaven. Though there are passages that some scholars think hint to angels being intimate with humans ,there are no accounts of angels being intimate with each other. What are you telling me that there’s no sex in heaven? Yeah buddy there’s a strong possibility that there is none. But I am getting off track. Let’s focus again on the topic of marriages. So if there are no new marriages in heaven what happens to the old ones?
It is here that I have to interview my brother Paul. Paul is making a case how we are now dead to the law, so that we can be alive and married to Christ and he uses the metaphor of a marriage.
-3 You shouldn’t have any trouble understanding this, friends, for you know all the ins and outs of the law—how it works and how its power touches only the living. For instance, a wife is legally tied to her husband while he lives, but if he dies, she’s free. If she lives with another man while her husband is living, she’s obviously an adulteress. But if he dies, she is quite free to marry another man in good conscience, with no one’s disapproval.
The key concept to understand this passage is that the law only applies to those who are alive. You cannot charge a dead man with jaywalking, or stealing. He is dead. So how does that apply to marriages. First it is the law that legitimizes your marriage. This is why you can’t just cohabitate and say we are married in our hearts. No it is the law, the certificate that authorizes and validates your marriage. It makes it authentic. Without the law there is now marriage. So when one person dies, the law that binds the marriage is no longer in effect. So this is why Paul says a woman whose husband dies, is able to remarry without any concern of worry of committing adultery. Why? Because her marriage has been made void by the death of her husband. This implies that death is the end of our marriage; that marriages do not make it to heaven.They are not legal, not valid. I’ll use a contemporary example. One of the reasons that same-sex marriage advocates must eventually press for a national amendment is because states that legalize marriage in one state, can find that their marriage license is not recognized in another state. In the same way, our marriages don’t appear to be recognized in heaven.
Scripture does speak of one wedding however, and one marriage in scripture and it is the marriage of Christ with his bride.
my brethren, you also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you may be married to another—to Him who was raised from the dead, that we should bear fruit to God. ( Romans 7:4)
For your Maker is your husband,
The LORD of hosts is His name;
And your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel;
He is called the God of the whole earth.
6 For the LORD has called you
Like a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit,
Like a youthful wife when you were refused,”
Says your God.
7 “ For a mere moment I have forsaken you,
But with great mercies I will gather you.
8 With a little wrath I hid My face from you for a moment;
But with everlasting kindness I will have mercy on you,”
Says the LORD, your Redeemer.(Isaiah 54:5-8)
and of course the famous
25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. (Ephesians 5:25-27)
I love this. Were you reading these scriptures? God chose to marry us; a broken down harlot. A rejected and beat down woman, whom the world spit out, and mocked,God sees, he loves, cleans up and marries. You see the reason that the movie Pretty Woman, The Wedding Singer, and any other love story appeals to women is because innately God put a desire for love. People get excited over the royal wedding, that cannot hold a flame to the epic wedding of the King of Kings.
Don’t you see that the glories of this life; in its feasts, its weddings; its love; its emotions are just precursors, types shadows of that which is to come. The real thing is so much more; they can’t touch the real thing. So don’t sacrifice the real thing for the shadow. If your single and wanting to get married be patient, don’t sell out to any punk, or skank. I know that is hard language but someone needs to hear it; you are far more valuable than a late night stand. Here’s the kicker, and I know some people don’t want to hear it but I’ll say it anyway, even if you never get married in this life, what is coming is so much better. Do not lose faith. I repeat do not give up on God.
So what are the major implications of all of this. I want to highlight two things. As mentioned in a prior post, The priesthood in Marriage, our marriages here are a foreshadowing of the event that is to come when we are joined together with Christ our God forever. This is why God hates divorce, because it misrepresents and distorts the truth that is implicit in marriage.
The last thing has to do with the nature of heaven, of the kingdom, of the afterlife. You see there are many who will trip out on not being married in heaven, or possible not having sex in heaven, but the focus of heaven, of the kingdom of God, of the afterlife is Christ. The main reward or pleasure in heaven is God. We get to see him! We get to touch him! Talk to him and experience him in a way that man has never done before! This is why some people wont go heaven, and don’t want to go to heaven; because they do not want God. I want him, I miss him, and am longing to see him, just as a bride is longing to see her groom. You see every bride wears a veil. Today we wear a veil, but one day it will be taken away and we will see God as he is. Oh what a beautiful day that will be! What a party we will have, for all those who long for his coming! If you do not long to see Christ, you might not be his, and I will pray for you, but to all those who do let us echo the last words of the holy book.
Maranatha, Lord Come. The Spirit and the Bride say Come. Come soon Lord Jesus, Come soon!