God’s design for marriage was first recorded in the biblical story of Adam and Eve. Adam was living happily in the garden of eternal life. Our Lord saw that Adam needed a wife. So while sleeping, as if in a dream, Eve appeared to Adam. He instantly fell in love. He literally saw Eve as part of his physical being. All was good between them.
Sadly, we all know their goodness did not last long. They both ate the forbidden fruit from the tree of knowledge. Evil entered their thoughts. Before the fall, they felt guilt free. But now, they felt shame in their nakedness and hid from God. With evil came death. The promise that they would live happily ever after was gone. And the first to die was their beloved son Abel, killed by their firstborn son Cain.
Death is the consequence of sin. Once Adam and Eve invited evil to enter their minds, they lost sight of their goodness. They lost their innocence. Immorality entered the garden of immortality. The Garden of Eden was bountiful. It included the tree of knowledge and the tree of eternal life. But God desires for only goodness to live eternally. So sadly, sinfulness had to be expelled from the Garden and thrown out into the world where evilness will eventually die.
God’s original design for marriage is fertile and earthy. The Garden of Eden is located in present day Iraq, in the same area where Father Abraham was born. The Fertile Crescent is like no other in its ancient wealth of agriculture and livestock. It’s bewildering that Adam and Eve would risk giving up such a good life for the temporary pleasure of eating the forbidden fruit. But that is what they chose to do.
I cannot judge Adam and Eve. For even now, our view for marriage differs from what Our Father originally intended. We still lack the maturity and independence to leave our earthly mother and father in order to live under the will of Our Father in heaven. Too many marriages begin with the couple focusing on their childhood home as models to follow and/or avoid. It is almost impossible to forget the ways of the past and focus completely on God’s plan for the married couple.
But even if the couple was raised to follow God, challenges come, and the couple will be tempted to try to walk alone without Our Lord. They might become like the two disciples on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-35). Feeling downcast and hopeless, the two disciples left Jerusalem in search of a new life without Jesus. But once they realized the resurrected Lord was with them on the way, they hurried back to Jerusalem to spread the good news.
The married couple should therefore realize that love, especially the love between husband and wife is a gift from Our Father in heaven. Only God’s love can fill us with the joy that is witnessed by the bride and groom on their wedding day. So if the married couple hopes to live happily ever after, they must stay focused on the will of Our Father. For only the goodness of the Lord can lead to the joy of eternal life.