What God Has Joined Together

These five words are a tremendous comfort: “What God has joined together . . . .” Jesus (Matthew 19:6) 1. These five words are a tremendous comfort for single people (including widowers and widows) who are longing for marriage (some have been waiting and longing for multiple decades). But “what God has joined together.” If God hasn’t joined you with anyone, then His intention is that you not be joined with anyone yet, no matter how long you’ve been waiting. God is totally and absolutely sovereign over who is joined together and who is not joined together and who is joined with whom. God reigns over this. You can trust Him. He is good. He knows best. He loves you with an everlasting love, and underneath are His everlasting arms. If you have lost your spouse and are a widower or widow, God reigns over this trial and loss as well. He loves you. He cares for you. He will provide for you and help you. Hear the words of Catharina von Schlegel: “Be still, my soul: thy Jesus can repay from His own fullness all He takes away.” Singles, consider Charles Spurgeon’s words: “Remember this: Had any other condition been better for you than the one in which you are, divine love would have put you there.” Or the words of Elisabeth Elliot: “God never withholds from His child, that which His love and wisdom call good. God’s refusals are always merciful. They are ‘severe mercies’ at times - but mercies all the same. God never denies us our hearts desire - except to give us something better.” 2. These five words are a tremendous comfort for single people in dating/courtship relationships. These relationships can be joyous and life-giving, and they can also cause great turmoil and anxiety. Heartache, nervousness, indecision, and fear may haunt you. You may have made foolish choices, walked away from relationships you should not have broken, and even acted sinfully. You may regret those breakups and struggle with jealousy when others get married to the one you, at one time, hoped to marry. But “what God has joined together.” God reigns over all of this. God is totally and absolutely in control of whether or not your relationships end in marriage. You can trust Him about that. If God wants to join you together, He will do it, no matter how badly you mess up in the dating relationship (And I’ve heard some pretty terrible dating stories where the couple still ends up married!) He will ultimately direct both hearts involved, like a river course, wherever He pleases, toward marriage or away from marriage (Proverbs 21:1), and He will direct what’s best for you both and for His glory. Meditate on these five words, and rest in His sovereignty, goodness, love, power, and guidance. (Note: Nothing in this article is meant to minimize human responsibility in seeking the LORD, obeying Him, and getting wise, godly counsel in relationships. But the focus of this article is on God’s absolute sovereignty). 3. These five words are a tremendous comfort for married couples. As a married couple, do you ever wonder if you married the right person? Do you wonder if your spouse is God’s best for you? Is this God’s chosen partner for you? The answer is a resounding yes! Because “what God has joined together.” God did this! It was all God’s will and God’s idea, and He is the One Who has done the joining. As John Piper said, if you ever wonder if you’ve married the right person, read the name on the marriage certificate - that person is the right person. And they are the right person because God has done it. 4. These five words are a tremendous comfort for married couples in very hard, difficult marriages. If you are in a hard marriage where there are lots of heartaches, tears, pains, sad times, and arguments. If you are in a marriage where little to no affection is ever shown, where insults abound, and life seems unbearable. If you are in a marriage in which your spouse has walked away from Jesus or never was a believer. If you are in a marriage where you face threats of divorce. If you are in a marriage that did not turn out like you had hoped but the exact opposite. These words are still true: “what God has joined together.” God has still done this. He has done it because He loves you, and He’s done it for your good and for His glory, even if you never understand why on this side of eternity. Through the suffering and through the pain, God has done this joining to conform you into the image of His Son, Jesus Christ. As one has said, when you can’t understand what God’s almighty hand is doing, you can still trust His good and loving heart. A heart that is, and always will be, 100% for you and for your good as you display His infinite worth in a hard marriage. God has done this joining, and what others mean for evil, God means for good (Genesis 50:20). And He promises that even this hard marriage will work out for your everlasting good: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). 5. These five words are a tremendous comfort for married couples in wonderful and most satisfying marriages. If your marriage is all you have ever dreamed of and more. If you are the happiest you’ve ever been and can’t imagine being happier. If your spouse is all you’ve ever wanted plus more than you ever knew you wanted. God has done this: “what God has joined together.” Every good and perfect gift comes from God (James 1:17). “He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the LORD” (Proverbs 18:22). God has done this. May you thank and praise His holy name for giving you such a wonderful gift! May you never love your marriage more than God, the One Who gave you this marriage. And may you never take God or your spouse for granted, and always remember with joy and thanksgiving that God has given you this very precious gift to display the covenant keeping love between Christ and His Bride, the Church. 6. These five words are a tremendous comfort for married couples in wonderful, satisfying marriages that experience hard times. If you are in a wonderful marriage where the love and satisfaction abound - where you are very happy and thankful - where life is good, but life is also hard - where you deeply love each other, but times are hard right now, and you are arguing more than usual, and there are greater tensions and challenges in your lives than ever before. Remember, “what God has joined together.” God has done this joining, and God will be with you and help you through these hard times. He will guide you and direct you. He will never leave you nor forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). You can trust Him with all the hard times in your wonderful marriage so that you can keep your vows, “for better or for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish; from this day forward until death do us part” by the power of the Holy Spirit, all for the glory of King Jesus and to display His covenant keeping love and loyalty to His Bride, the Church. God has joined you. He will help you. He will sustain you. And He will hold you together to the end. Meditate long and deep on these five words. They are a treasure chest of hope, joy, steadfastness, stability, love, and peace: “What God has joined together . . . .” Jesus (Matthew 19:6)