THEME: The Family Church Vs The Kingdom of God on Earth.

BY: Benedict Agbo (Rev Fr).


* Eph 5: 21 – 33, Lk 13: 18 – 21.

There are 3 hard but simple scriptural laws mearnt to protect our marriage and make it look like heaven on earth but unfortunately many Christians do not obey these laws. Let me clearly restate them in today’s homily as follows:
*1. Couples, be subject to one another;* You must reduce yourselves to halves so that half + half becomes one. Even nature cooperates in this halving process before any marriage bears the fruit of the womb through the processes of meiosis and mitosis. That is why the man contributes 24 chromosomes and the woman does the same but nature reduces and removes what is less required in your Children to finally make them have 24 not 48 chromosomes. Couples must of necessity cooperate in this structural adjustment programme as soon as marriage begins. For example, the husband who had a smoking habit that irritates the wife must drop that habit before they can live well.
*Marriage is not a place to practice selfish love. Agape love is not a selfish love. It is not a love with selfish motive (lust) as Tobit confessed, Tob 8: 7. It is a selfless kind of love that must be patient and kind, 1 Cor 13: 4f. The family is therefore not a place to behave anyhow and do whatever we like otherwise we end up harvesting a basket full of sorrows.*

*2. Wives, be subject to your husbands:* Feminists don’t particularly like this one but it is just true – that women are particularly expected to submit more to their husbands. This is because they are the higher stake holders in the marriage business (the 1st recipient of the vows, the ring, and the first to leave her father’s house, name, possessions, etc). In every societal organigram (eg the family), there must be a superordinate and the bible says it is the man (all things being equal).
*The husband is the head of the family Church, all things being equal. Any woman disrespecting her husband, especially before the outside view is only planting a recipe for future discord and cacophony.* The law is simple: Women, never you take to the altar a man you are not prepared to respect all the days of your life.

*3. Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the Church;* For me this is even a higher demand. Do you know what it means to love somebody as Christ loved the Church? Agape love is what we are talking about here. ‘For this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one flesh’. It means to give yourself up for that person. And that is what most good husbands suffer. They keep toiling and toiling to make their wives happy until they die off. By the time the wife begins to enjoy the children’s wealth, the man has gone away (caused by death, sickness or quarrel). *The law is simple again: Men, never you take to the altar a woman you are not prepared to keep loving and admiring for ever.*

‘A well founded marriage’ says Fr Emma Onuh of blessed memory, ‘is heaven begun on earth while a shattered marriage is hell on earth’. As the kingdom of heaven is compared in today’s gospel to the mustard seed and the leaven that grows rapidly but gradually, so does the institution of marriage. The love and union of husband and wife grows gradually if they follow the above laws and principles to the extent that 1 + 1 becomes 1. The resultant effect is indissolubility: What God has joined together, no man can put asunder. The kingdom of God is not eating and drinking but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, Rom 14 : 17. It can be likened to a growing Christian family full of love and peace. *The successful establishment of every ideal Christian family is the establishment of the kingdom of God on earth.* The devil knows this and that is why he has launched a big war against Christian families. May we work towards a peaceful family in order to grow God’s kingdom on earth.

May God bless you today!

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