God is a master builder. We’re told in numerous places in Scripture that redemptive history is, in many respects, the story of God building His house. Eden was a garden temple, a house for God and man to dwell together in joyful fellowship. Hebrews tells us that Abraham longed for a city who’s “builder and architect was God (Heb. 11:10).” The Psalmist declares that the Lord “built his sanctuary like high palaces, like the earth which he hath established for ever (Psa. 78:69).” The Bethlehemites bless Ruth & Boaz with a benediction that Ruth would build up her house like Leah & Rachel; this reveals that the house of Israel, the house in which God had determined to dwell in was always intended to be a house of people.
In the New Testament, Paul tells us this about the house which God has been building: “And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit (Eph 2:20-22).” The Old Testament is all about the scaffolding which was erected to assist in the construction of the house. But the New Testament is the removing of the scaffolding that we might clearly see the glorious foundation stone, Christ Jesus, and the house of living stones which He has completed. The church is that house. The saints are those stones. The Spirit dwells in us, as we rest upon Christ the cornerstone.
When we witness a marriage, we are witnessing the history of the world in miniature. God is building a house, and He’s always done it through people He has covenanted with. His grace was revealed to actual humans. His purposes were accomplished by the mysterious working of His Spirit in and through His chosen servants the prophets and the faithful saints of old. Each marriage is the making of a new household, and thus is a reminder that the whole of history is about God making preparation for the marriage of His Son and the Bride, the Church.
This, then, should shape how a man erects his own house. James, God has set you as the head of this new home which He has built. As such, you are charged to build your home in keeping with how God has built His home. This is as much to say that your home must be ruled with wave after wave of sturdy grace. You are to be the rigid framing and the well insulated walls to keep out the frost of fear, the heat of bitterness, and the flood of envy. In a day when such rigidity is mocked as toxic, harmful, dangerous, a threat to democracy, you are called to remain steadfast, and immovable for the sake of your bride and children. When the corruptions of the world meet with you, they must meet with a hardened buttress; but within the four walls of your strength, your wife & children should experience only warmth, protection, and safety.
The waves of depravity crash into the strong walls of a godly man and are turned away backward. While those who dwell within meet with daily joy as your beaming favor rests upon them. The lies of our culture would convince you to be malleable to the lusts & kinks which it insists should be guests in your heart & home. This lie must be slain on sight. They’ll say you should be more open, accommodating, and welcoming to the fiends of carnality. You must shutter the windows, raise the drawbridge, sound the alarm, and rain down a hail of arrows upon such temptations which would assault you and your household. You are to be impregnable; and yes the pun is intended.
Solomon warns that a certain type of woman can pull down the whole home into ruin (Pro. 14:1). There’s a sort of mysterious power which a woman possesses. It can either be used to make the home shine with splendor, or it can be used to make it a smoking crater. So Rebekah, the charge to you is this. Be as the holy women of old who built their house by a meek faith in the Almighty. A faith which cannot be rattled by the winds & storms outside. Your husband is to stand between you and those storms, so that within you might be all glorious. As the Psalmist described the bride of Christ: “The king’s daughter is all glorious within: her clothing is of wrought gold (Psa 45:13).” Fill this home with glory after glory. The first glory which should be found is the glory of reverence for the Almighty. This alone can bring about all the other glories. From that fountain flows the secondary glories. The glory of being the joy & delight of your husband. The glory of bearing & rearing oodles of babies. The glory of sumptuous meals, unfeigned laughter, music, and lots and lots of dancing. The glory of late night talks with your husband. The glory of facing sorrows with Christian courage. The glory of supporting your husband in all the tests & trials which he will face. The glory of being faithful until death parts the two of you. Rebekah, as the Spirit fills the Church with the cloud of glory, so you must fill this household with the glory of godliness, meekness, fruitfulness, industry, and above all faith in Christ.
Christ has been set down as the cornerstone upon which the Father has built the church, and has filled that house with glory. This marriage is a small picture of how history is unfolding. God has come to dwell within us, as we dwell in Him. So, James & Rebekah may your house be a sort of history book; telling the world how history has unfolded, and how it will end, a house built upon Christ, and filled with the glory of Christ.
In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, amen.