Jesus Builds Permanently

Text: Mark 10:2-12 Speaker: Passages: Mark 10:2-12

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Mark 10:2-12

And Pharisees came up and in order to test him asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” He answered them, “What did Moses command you?” They said, “Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of divorce and to send her away.” And Jesus said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart he wrote you this commandment. But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife,1 and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

10 And in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. 11 And he said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her, 12 and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”


[1] 10:7 Some manuscripts omit and hold fast to his wife


I’ve got this coffee maker here. At least it used to be a coffee maker. Now it makes noises, hisses steam, but doesn’t make coffee. Found it at Goodwill a couple year ago. Earlier this year when it stopped working, I was able to go online and found a site that sold all the parts for it. You could just look through a chart and pick out the part that you needed replace.

The fact that you could find all the parts online is a good indication that this machine was not built to last. It wasn’t just mine that broke obviously lots of other people needed replacement parts as well.

The disciples think the same thing in our text. Look God provided rules for a broken marriage, clearly even God doesn’t expect marriage to last forever. Much to the surprise of the disciples Jesus answers NO. When God builds, he builds it to last.

Jesus tells us the rules about divorce were given “because of the hardness of you hearts. God knew that man in his sinfulness would destroy marriages no matter what he said. God gave those laws in the Old Testament to minimize the effect of man’s sin. He gave the rules to protect the victims. But it was not God’s intention that divorce should ever happen.

God builds things to last. Man builds things cheap and doesn’t expect them to last, but God builds forever.

Mark 10:9  what God has joined together,

You could just as easily translate that: What God has built let not man attempt to destroy

The disciples are shocked. The disciples and the pharisees don’t think that marriages can last. And of course if they were built by men there is no way they could. But they are not built by men. They are built by God. Therefore, we know that we are not getting a cheap piece of junk like this coffee machine. When we enter a marriage, we are getting the good stuff, the high-quality thing. This coffee machine is a DeLonghi but your marriage is a Jahweh, the one built by God. Jahweh quality is far superior to any human corporation.

This is a wonderful promise from God, “what God has joined together.” Many people see it as a negative, as an impossible standard. Many people complain, how can we make a marriage last a whole lifetime. But we know that it is actually a wonderful promise, God will build for you a marriage that will remain.

For those of you who are young and looking forward to marriage, you don’t have to fear. You can look forward with hope know that God will build for you a marriage that will last.

For those of you struggling in a marriage wondering if it can last. It can because God builds for good.

For those of you dealing with a broken marriage, know that God promises grace and every blessing even when we are surrounded by our own sin. He can even build a new marriage that despite the baggage of a broken past will last unto the end.

What God has joined together, God has built to last.

This coffee machine I’m going to have to throw away because it is broken. But how many coffee machines, toasters, tvs etc lie in the garbage pile not because they are broken but because someone just wanted something new?

Marriages built by God don’t break they are built to last. But people do sometimes throw them away simply because they want something new. They throw away that solid dependable model for something that looks shiny.

One of the best things for your marriage is to simply stop window shopping. Stop looking at other marriages and complaining that it looks better than your. Stop looking at what you think might be better spouses.  Stop comparing your spouse to unrealistic expectations you have built up in your head.  Stop looking for you think you want and look at what God gave you. Value what you have.

Your spouse is a person that God made and God does not make junk. Your marriage is a Jahweh marriage and is built to last.

There is only one reason God gives why a marriage out to be thrown away, sexual immorality. And even then, God can still fix it. So well is a marriage built by God, that even after man has torn it apart God can put it back together.

Even after I ordered the new part, I wasn’t able to fix this machine. There is hot pressurized water running through this tube here and I couldn’t get the thing to seal properly. I tried different kinds of glue nothing worked. Perhaps someone who knew what he was doing could have fixed it. I’m guessing the manufacturer almost certainly could have, but it isn’t worth sending in back.

We need to learn to take our marriages back to the manufacturer, back to the maker. We often think we can fix it ourselves. We can’t. But God can. No matter how good of a job you’ve done at destroying the marriage that God gave you, God can still fix it. People often wait till their marriage is hanging on by a thread to come to God, to come talk to their pastor. Even then God can fix it but it’s a lot easier if you come when there are just little cracks.

The real problem here is not the part but the glue, what can I use to seal that hose up. None of the glues I tried were able to hold. But Jesus is the glue of our marriage, and that is a glue that can hold.

Marriage is the joining of two defective people marred with sin. But it doesn’t matter how defective the bricks are if the glue surrounds them. Even two perfect blocks stack on top of each other will not remain for long. But a good mortar can hold any bricks together.

“What God has joined together,” Jesus is the glue. The glue that God uses, unlike the glue I used on this coffee pot, together is strong enough to hold. Those two people are not strong enough, but God is.

The bricks are not perfect but the glue that is Christ Jesus our Lord is.

Marriage is not the only thing that God built to last. Jesus shows us that God’s word is of the same high quality. From the beginning Jesus says this is what marriage is, one man, one woman joined together for life. That is what it was meant to be in the garden of Eden, that is what it was meant to be at Jesus day and that is what it is meant to be now. God’s word does not change. It was built from the beginning, and it was built to last.

Jesus quotes from the second chapter of Genesis. It doesn’t matter that these events were four thousand years old at the time of Christ. It doesn’t matter that they are six thousand years old now. God’s word is built to last, and it remains as true now as it was then.  

That is what the name of Jehovah means. It means the one who speaks and promises and does not change his mind. His word and promises do not change in a thousand years or 6 thousand years or forever.

Mark 13:31  31 “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.

What else does that word promise us? A salvation that was built to last. A pardoning of our sins that was built to last. Forgiveness that was built to last.

Just this last week I was sharing with our newest members here, one of my all-time favorite bible stories, Balaam and Balak. Kids love this account because of the talking donkey. But we that are older love it for the promises that God speaks.

Numbers 23:19-21 19 “God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?  20 Behold, I have received a command to bless; He has blessed, and I cannot reverse it.  21 “He has not observed iniquity in Jacob, Nor has He seen wickedness in Israel.

God built a plan for our salvation from the third chapter of Genesis. He built it brick by brick over four thousand years. He built a salvation that can and will remain forever.

People sometimes wonder why we need to read the Old Testament and learn those ancient stories. Because that is the story of God building your salvation. Every single brick means that you are forgiven and are going to heaven.

God built a salvation that lasts. God gave us a word and promises of his grace that remain. These are promises that we need. We need them for our marriages and for our relationships and for our lives. God builds marriages that last, but even better yet he built a salvation that remains through this life and into eternity.