Would This Marriage Work?

by Bobby Duncan

For some time the late brother G. C. Brewer wrote a series of articles in the Gospel Advocate in answer to questions received from readers of that journal. A number of these articles were published in 1941 in a book entitled Contending for the Faith. As would be expected, some of those questions brother Brewer discussed concerned marriage, divorce, and remarriage. In one of those articles the author was dealing with the idea someone had advanced that sometimes people should divorce for the simple reason they are not compatible. Brother Brewer wrote:

Let us suppose a case. A man is cast upon a lonely island after a shipwreck. At first he seems to be the only living human heing on the island. a true Robinson Crusoe. But later he finds that a woman from the same ship was also cast upon the island....They are strangers; they never saw each other before they met upon the island. They soon find that they are the only human inhabitants of the island. After a time, hope of ever being rescued dies and they become resigned to the idea of spending their lives together and alone, so tar as other human beings are concerned. Can anyone believe that a normal man and a normal woman would not under such circumstances become real companions and find consolation and comfort and strength in such a companionship? They might he very different at first. They might have come from different stations in life and might have entirely different ideas and views, but they would become adjusted to each other and each would help the other.

O, but someone suggests that necessity would be upon that pair and they would, of course, make the best of their situation. That is the point. Then, if we can make husbands and wives see that they must, by the necessity of God's requirements and the necessity of their family's needs and by the necessity of their soulís salvation, dwell together in mutual helpfulness and companionship, they will make the best of their situation also.

Can we miss the point of brother Brewer's illustration? Husbands and wives can make their marriages work if both are determined so to do. The reason one or the other is not so determined is not because that one no longer needs or desires marriage companionship, but because he (or she) desires someone else other than his present spouse. He has already become infatuated with someone else, or he is in love with some imaginary perfect person he expects to meet who will not have all the faults and flaws characteristic of that one's present spouse.

Marriages can work if we are determined to make them work. The necessity brother Brewer mentioned in his article will make marriages work. Unfortunately, too many married people feel no necessity for making their marriages work. Those who know and believe what the Bible teaches know there is a necessity to make their marriages work. Jesus said, "And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery" (Matthew 19:9).