Exposing Pagan Thinking On Marriage

“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

-Mark 10:45, NIV


When a spouse is constantly calculating whether he or she has a “good deal” with their partner, they have missed the true heart of Christian marriage.

To be Christlike in marriage is not to demand service from your spouse but to serve. This is something many cheaters either forget or choose to ignore.

They are all about being served.

The Shared Responsibility Lie“–the false assumption that both partners shared in sins of the one–feeds into this very pagan understanding of marriage.

The lie supports the idea if one partner is slacking on his or her side of the deal, then they ought to expect their partner to leave the marriage for a “more attractive” offer.

This is one of the many dangers of locating the reason for infidelity in marriage circumstances. It teaches–in practice–that the cheater is entitled to cheat if the marriage is a so-called “bad deal” for them.

That is not how God sees it.

I am so glad Jesus did not engage in this cold-hearted calculus in deciding about the Cross. Instead, he stayed the course and truly lived (and died) to serve.

Many of us understand this is the marriage ideal on a heart-level. We celebrate examples of it:

When we see a husband stick by his wife through cancer (a time when she is in no position to really “give back”), we see marriage as it “should be.”

When we see a wife stick by her husband through years of end-stage dementia, we see marriage as it “should be.”

Marriage is not about calculating how good or bad our “deal” is. Following Christ example is about honoring our vows and living like He did as one concerned more about serving than being served.

Sadly, the concept of a godly marriage is often beyond what an entitled cheater can grasp.