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The Bible Teaching Commentary on Genesis: The Book of Foundations

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Waiting Upon God

Waiting for a Wife

Genesis 6:1-3, Ezra 10-11

Paul J. Bucknell

Waiting Upon the Lord | Waiting & Planning | Steps to Waiting | Fail to Waiting
iblical Perspective on Waiting| Waiting for Ministry |Waiting for Revenge
Waiting for a Wife | Trusting through Treachery | Waiting for Christ's Return
Study Questions | Testimonies on Waiting Upon the Lord
| Godly Man Index


Biblical Perspective of Finding a Spouse is found here as we discuss 'Waiting for a Wife' from studies on both Genesis 6 and Ezra 10-11. What kind of wife should men look for? Also a word to single women. Included is a chart, "What kind of wife am I looking for?"

Enjoy life with the woman
whom you love all the days of your fleeting life
which He has given to you under the sun;
for this is your reward in life ...
(Ecclesiastes 9.9)

The Biblical Perspective of Finding a Spous

There is no doubt that waiting on God for the right wife is crucial to living a godly and good life.

There are many women out there. Many are attractive. A good many are talented. Some are rich.The Godly Man: When God Touches a Man's Life These traits are trivial to our most basic question. Will we wait for God's woman for us?

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We will see in our following discussion that once discretion is lost in choosing marriage partners, then the whole society quickly deteriorates. Whenever the selection process of spouses is minimized, then the society reaps the consequences. It heads full steam into a world of sensuality.

One Crucial Question

Several scriptures highlight the problems that occur when a man recklessly chooses a woman as a wife. When a man is quick in making a decision after his desires, then he shows that his understanding of marriage is shallow. He is not thinking of preserving or establishing some heritage but fulfilling his desires. The godly man must wait upon God for the wife God has for him. The opposite of this occurred in two different passages that we will now look at. Let us first look at Genesis 6.

The Selection Process (Genesis 6:1-3)

Now it came about, when men began to multiply on the face of the land, and daughters were born to them, that the sons of God saw that the daughters of men were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves, whomever they chose. Then the LORD said, "My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh; nevertheless his days shall be one hundred and twenty years." (Genesis 6:1-3, NASB).

Their decisions for choosing their wives were faulty for several reasons.

  • When the eye focuses on beautyThe sons of God were markedly different than the sons of man.
    Up to this point there was a special distinction between the men who sought after God and the ones who had forgotten God. They were known more by their commitment to God than their father. This tension to preserve our godliness is the very same tension we face in our secular world today. These men should have paid more attention to their heritage and preserved their distinct vision. Without a vision of godliness, they got lost in other things which they saw.

  • These God men "saw that the daughters of men were beautiful."

They were not careful enough to govern what they saw. Some might think this is unstoppable but it isn't. If we are going along fine and then just start gazing at the women that cross our paths, whether in a magazine or on the street, we are in extreme danger. We will start comparing them and being subtly enticed by these women.

The only way that we are able to compare is to notice their different parts and gauge what pleases our eyes. Once we notice their beauty, we deliberate on it, and our minds are influenced. This is the reason we can not look at any pornography or any programs that entice us to pay attention to women's physical features. Remember that these women are paid a lot of money because they do entice!

  • Once beauty became their focal point, then this is what their decisions of life were made upon.

    They lost the ability to reason and reflect.

    The flesh seized control, and they never got it back.

    They lost it all.

    "They took wives for themselves."

    Let us assume here that each man just took one wife, but I doubt it. Notice here once beauty became their focal point, then this is what their decisions of life were made upon. They lost the ability to reason and reflect. The flesh seized control, and they never got it back. By the way, we are not saying that a beautiful wife is bad! Sarah was beautiful.

    The issue is that beauty controlled them. The way she talked, looked, walked, simply enticed his attention. Reason and God's guidance took a far second place to the woman's beauty. Women became too compelling for him to think otherwise.

    They became indiscriminate in their choices.

    "Whomever they chose." This is a clear statement that the men of God took wives that did not share similar perspectives. Genesis goes on describing the headlong fall of the society after this point. Not much dirt is needed to make the clean dirty. This is true with holiness too. It stands as the highest priority to train our sons and daughters to spiritually judge things rather than physically or emotionally 'feel' things.

    The LORD responded to this right away.

    He did not have to wait for a generation to prove His thesis. Once the godly seed is lost among the ungodly, then there is no godly seed left. God had no choice but to shorten life expectancy in order to preserve man, otherwise the ungodliness would soon destroy the world.

    A godly person must marry a godly person. Balaam's big payload came about because of insight into this very principle. Godliness must be protected. A church must carry on discipline. A family must have rules. A government must have laws to preserve itself. If what distinguishes God's people is lost even for just one generation, then it is gone.

    Intermingling Unto Death (Ezra 9-10)
    (Marrying a Non-Christian)

    Ezra's response in chapters 9-10 all too clearly confirms the absolute finality of deadly compromise. There is no way to get it back. Once the seed of godliness is lost, it cannot be recovered. Whatever has been lost must be judged. Ezra heard it like this.

    "Now when these things had been completed, the princes approached me, saying, "The people of Israel and the priests and the Levites have not separated themselves from the peoples of the lands, according to their abominations, those of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites. "For they have taken some of their daughters as wives for themselves and for their sons, so that the holy race has intermingled with the peoples of the lands; indeed, the hands of the princes and the rulers have been foremost in this unfaithfulness." (Ezra 9:1-2).

    All of God's marvelous works of bringing His people back into the land was going to be made irrelevant if the people started to intermarry the people in the land. The leaders were accelerating this process by setting the terrible example. In 10:1 they said it might not be too late if they actually put these ungodly wives away along with their children. There was no "Let's convert them" campaign. Worship is influenced by heart love. They could not just say, "No more." They would all perish within a generation if they did not cut off this intermingling. Fortunately, they followed through with this.

    The scriptures say a lot about who we marry. It is not a trivial matter. Below are some other suggestions in finding the right wife.

  • What kind of wife am I looking for?

    A man must think concretely, "Is this the woman I want to sacrificially devote myself to all my life?"

    He should not marry a woman unless he is willing to bind himself to her. Once married, then he must remain dedicated to loving her no matter how bad she is. Here is a list to help us avoid getting married to the wrong woman.

    The right block amplifies the thought on the left.

    # Only marry a woman if your parents approve.
    # Parents' decision is scriptural dictate.
    # Learn to love the qualities that God loves.
    # You will choose what you like.
    # Get out of any pornography and lust.
    # Porno makes the physical compelling.
    # Stop watching the standard movies and programs.
    # Need to stop being trained by the wrong thing.
    # Pray regularly for God's provision.
    # God's pick is more important than your own.
    # Pay attention to character quality rather than beauty.
    # Her character shapes the quality of relationship.
    # Observe the way she responds (attitude) to her parents, especially her father.
    # Her relationship with her parents reflects how she will respond to her husband.
    # Grow in your own character so she will like you!
    # Are you what this woman deserves and likes?!
    We tend to go in the direction that we like. We will choose what we deep down are looking for. Unless we have changed our values to match with the Lord's, then we will be going after things that the Lord is not pleased with.

    Just think. If your mind wanders from woman to woman now, do you really think you are looking for a woman who is trained by God? No. The one that entices you will hold your attention. Use any pre-marriage time left to train yourself in self-control, obedience to parents and devotedness to serving others.

    A Quick Word to Single Women

    When the husband is committed to his wife with constant love, then she has no fear of abandonment. She grows from her anticipation in what next step of love the husband will show. The woman that is seeking a husband needs to think quite carefully about the man that she will in the future train herself to respond to.

    She should ask, "How mature is he? How much does he care about God's ways? Does he lead a spiritual life? Does he respect his parents? Do I like his leadership?"

    In Summary
    We need to do everything to instill a great vision for passing on godliness to our children. Our sons must be trained in areas of self-control or they will not have control over lust. Otherwise they will fall in with the world. Positively, when a godly man and woman are matched up, it becomes a beautiful place where more godly people will come from. Our eyes must be shielded from all the 'beautiful' women around us. They are made to entice us to look at women through the 'fleshly' eye. We are all susceptible. We all must be careful. By God's grace we will stand strong and raise a new generation of godly men and women.

    => Trusting Through Treacherous Times