But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night and said to him, “You are about to die because of the woman you have taken, for she is a married woman.” Then God said to him in the dream, “Yes, I know that you did this with a clear conscience. I have also kept you from sinning against me. Therefore I have not let you touch her. Now return the man’s wife, for he is a prophet, and he will pray for you and you will live. But if you do not return her, know that you will certainly die, you and all who are yours.”” (Genesis 20:3, 6–7, CSB)

If you do not return her, know that you will certainly die, you and all who are yours. Even if you don’t take your marriage seriously, God does. He watches every action and attitude. He knows every mistreatment and mean word. While we may seek to excuse our behavior, God knows that much of what we think and do should be refused and rejected immediately.

Marriage is sacred – holy – to be set apart as so specialthat nothing should bring even a stain on our union together. Paul put it this way, “[Christ] did this to present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or anything like that, but holy and blameless. In the same way, husbands are to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.” (Ephesians 5:27–28, CSB)

In other words, we men are to honor our wives and value them as much as we value ourselves. Never mind what the culture says or does. It’s not relevant that a majority of people practice this or that. The only opinion that is of significance when it comes to how men treat their wives – and how wives treat their husbands – is this: Do I hold my spouse at such a level of value that whatever happens to her is what I want to happen to me?

God holds our marriage so highly that He threatened to kill the man who innocently took Abraham’s wife – even as Abraham willfully did nothing to protect her. This should be a powerful warning to those of us who choose to treat our spouse with too little respect.

God is watching all. He keeps track of what’s happening. He hears all the words. He knows our attitudes and motives. And, in the midst of our daily choices, whether good or bad, He judges. When we honor and cherish our mate, He blesses.  When we don’t, well …

Magnificent Marriage Mondays are helpful hints, clues, ideas, and solutions for the child of God who is looking for a spouse, in a relationship with someone, or are already married. Each post seeks to bring help, hope, and honesty to your life and make the rest of your life, the best of your life. They are written by Dr. Matthew Lee Smith, Executive Director of Eagles In Leadership, and come from his 38 years, 5 months and 2 days experience with his wife, Melodee, who was promoted to Heaven on November 11, 2017. He is currently seeking God’s will for his new life partner. He welcomes your comments below.