[Papercut Press Publishing]1999-07-26 - Love, Honor, Obey, Cherish, Poison...

1 Corinthians 7:9, "...for it is better to marry than to burn."

In Cherbourg, France a outlandish marital abuse case was discovered when an unhappily wed couple, Alain and Claudine Dubert checked in to a Cherbourg hospital complaining of intestinal pain. Tests revealed that the unfortunate couple both had traces of arsenic in their systems. How did it get there? Upon questioning, both parties confessed to poisoning the other for months. Both have been charged with attempted murder and will face trial when they are released from the hospital.

I picked up on this story, I guess, because I am getting married in five days. I want to take this opportunity to offer an invitation to anyone who lives near or in Philadelphia to attend my wedding on Saturday, July 31. It will be in the suburbs (Glenside) and with our devotional list the size that it is, there may be some of you who are live near, have the time to attend, and would like to help us fill up a really big church. Feel free to email me for directions at brutefact@hotmail.com.

An alternative title than the above story might be, do unto others, before they do unto you (or in this case, as they do unto you). The Christian must look upon such thoughts and practices as foreign to the example left to us by Christ, and the opposite of how we ought to treat one another. Christ did not come to poison, but rather to forgive and heal relationships.

The Christian marriage, while having its ups and downs, needs to focus on the mercy and forgiveness that each person has found in Christ. A Christian marriage has a chance of survival because both parties are resting in and trusting in the mercy of Christ to weed out their sin and are applying that forgiveness to each other. Rather than arsenic, a Christian marriage partners seek to feed their spouse with the application of the blood of Christ and the forgiveness both have in Him.

The Christian world view is so different than that of those who are outside of Christ's Church. For the Christian Christ is all. Christ is everything for the Christian and without Christ there is nothing. The center of Christ is His work and atonement on the cross. This was the phrase of Martin Luther that translated from the Latin Crux Est Omnia, "The Cross is All."

We need to remember this in our relationships. The cross is all. This is my hope and prayer for my relationship with Laurie as we commit to each other. I pray that the cross will be all for us. This is also my prayer for those of you who read these devotionals, that the cross of Jesus Christ would be your all. The cross, the empty tomb, and the resurrection of Christ are the center points of our faith. May the Lord make it our all.

Crux est omnia,