What A Marriage! What A Gracious God!

When someone tells me that I “need” to experience something… or I “must” do such and such… or I just “have to” go somewhere… I often turn them off right away. I’m sure it’s a pride issue that I have. But my usual and immediate thought is… “I “need” Jesus… I don’t “need” this (whatever “this” is). Again, this is not something I’m proud of… it’s more of a confession than anything else.

So with that very clear caveat let me declare as best I can, you really ought to take 8 or 9 minutes to watch the following video. I received the following email this morning from DesiringGod which sets up the video…

The Story of Ian and Larissa

Dear Friends,

Desiring God exists to help people everywhere understand and embrace the truth that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him. And I would add, especially in suffering.

Being satisfied in God (or anything) always seems easier when all is going well. But when things you love are being stripped out of your hands, then the test is real. If God remains precious in those moments, then his supreme worth shines more brightly. He is most glorified.

The most meaningful testimonies I receive are when people tell me that it was a vision of the sovereignty and goodness of God that got them through the most difficult times of their life.

Here is one of those testimonies. I tremble with the glad responsibility of introducing you to Ian & Larissa Murphy in this video. Tremble, because it is their story and so personal. So delicate. So easily abused. So unfinished. Glad, because Christ is exalted over all things.

We have a big vision at Desiring God: we want to reach as many people as possible with our message of Christian Hedonism—the gladness of God in being God and in making people glad in him. We have at our disposal the amazing power of the Web. That is our main way of spreading.

But internet statistics can conceal as well as reveal. These are people. Each Website visit represents a real person with an eternal soul. What a responsibility! Pray for us that we would steward our influence well. And thank you for your partnership to make this ministry possible.

Love Ian and Larissa as you watch this amazing story. Pray for them. And us.

Your partner in the greatest cause,

John Piper
With Josh Etter

Here’s the video…

Heidelberg Catechism: Lord’s Day 41 (7th Commandment)

The Seventh Commandment

108. Question: What does the seventh commandment teach us?

Answer: That all unchastity is cursed by God.[1] We must therefore detest it from the heart[2] and live chaste and disciplined lives, both within and outside of holy marriage.[3]

[1] Lev. 18:30; Eph. 5:3-5. [2] Jude 22, 23. [3] I Cor. 7:1-9; I Thess. 4:3-8; Heb. 13:4.

109. Question: Does God in this commandment forbid nothing more than adultery and similar shameful sins?

Answer: Since we, body and soul, are temples of the Holy Spirit, it is God’s will that we keep ourselves pure and holy. Therefore He forbids all unchaste acts, gestures, words, thoughts, desires,[1] and whatever may entice us to unchastity.[2]

[1] Matt. 5:27-29; I Cor. 6:18-20; Eph. 5:3, 4. [2] I Cor. 15:33; Eph. 5:18.

New Marriage Study

Good Morning Brothers,

This week we begin our new Fall study on MARRIAGE. Not that any of us need to work on marriage. I know we’re all batting a thousand. But I bet you know someone who knows that they need work. Or, if they’re not married right now, they are planning on it one day and deeply desire to have a God-honoring marriage.

So, for the next few weeks we will be be watching videos, praying prayers, discussing Scripture, and talking with one another about marriage… and how we can become the godly husbands that God has created, redeemed, and called us to be.

There is no study guide for this. The only homework we’ll have is to put the  stuff we talk about into practice. So plan on coming this week… and invite a friend… or two…  or three… to join us.

I’m looking forward to learning from you. This is certainly a study where we very much need each other. The accumulated wisdom that we’ll have each week (that we’ve gained from our own successes and failures) is just bound to be a blessing to us all.

See you this week.

Your Brother,
Dale