VIDEO The Emotionally Destructive Marriage Webinar – Advice for New Husbands: Build Your Marriage on Christ

Billy Graham’s Advice for New Husbands: Build Your Marriage on Christ

Courage Billy Graham


The key to a successful marriage is building its foundation on Christ, the Rev. Billy Graham says, giving advise to husbands embarking on one of life’s greatest journeys with their bride.

Graham, a 97-year-old evangelical leader and Baptist minister, shared his wise words in a post this week for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s “My Answers” page, saying that in order to have a successful marriage, such a union must be founded in a mutual love for Christ.

To have a God-focused and God-filled marriage, both spouses must “see [their] marriage as a gift from God.”

“God brought you together, and He is even more concerned about your marriage than you are. When you go through hard times as a couple (and you will), never forget that God gave your marriage to you, and He is with you,” the evangelical leader advises, citing Matthew 19:6 that explains how marriage makes two people one flesh.

Another key tenant to a successful marriage is learning how to selflessly put your spouse before yourself, Graham continues.

“True love means we want what is best not for ourselves but for the other person,” the Baptist minister writes, saying a good attitude is to wake up each day asking God how you can bless your significant other.

“Above all, build your marriage — and your lives — on Jesus Christ. Pray and read God’s Word together, and seek His will in all things. Help and encourage each other also, and seek your wife’s forgiveness when you’re thoughtless or insensitive. Christ gave His life for us; learn to give your lives to each other,” Graham concludes.

The influential religious leader, who is known for his international evangelical crusades, was married to his wife, Ruth, for 64 years until her death in 2007.

A Barna study from 2008 found that more born-again Christians tie the knot compared to non-Christians in the U.S., with 84 percent of evangelicals being married compared to 74 percent of those affiliated with non-Christian faiths.

The study also found that divorce is widespread in America, reporting that of all Americans who have married, 33 percent of them say they’ve had at least one divorce.

Those least likely to have had a divorce include Catholics at 28 percent and evangelicals at 26 percent, the survey found.

Several Christian leaders have differing opinions on divorce and whether remarriage after divorce is acceptable in the eyes of God.

In a September 2015 guest column for The Christian Post, Shane Idleman, founder and leader of Westside Christian Fellowship in Lancaster, California, wrote that he believes only God can answer the question if divorced Christians have the biblical right to marry others.

“I believe that God hates divorce; reconciliation is pleasing to Him. There are instances, in my opinion, when one is released through adultery and/or abandonment; however, reconciliation should still be sought. First and foremost, God’s will is that we walk in integrity, follow His principles, use wisdom, be patient, and seek Him during the journey. For some, reconciliation may result, for others it may not,” Idleman wrote.



The Golden River

In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
1 John 4:10-11

Recommended Reading: 1 John 4:7-19

Love is an emotion that’s hard to describe. It’s an emotional longing for another person and a deep satisfaction when that love is reciprocated. It suffers intense anguish when it isn’t.

Love is an attitude that operates more deeply than feelings. Attitudes are dispositions of the heart that anchor our emotions, just as the unshakable mountains support the trees on its slopes.

Love is a supernatural virtue instilled in us by God. “The fruit of the Spirit is love…” (Galatians 5:22).

Love is an action. It manifests itself in selfless service. When we love others, we do things for them. “Whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?” (1 John 3:17)

Love is a choice. We can determine in our hearts to love even the unlovely. This comprehensive, inclusive quality of love can only be experienced by opening our lives to Calvary. When we receive God’s love through Jesus Christ, it flows through us to others like a golden river.

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God (1 John 4:7).

A Single Thought: Just as God chose to love us, we must choose to love others. 


The Emotionally Destructive Marriage Webinar

Sept 17, 2014

Join RBC Ministries as we again offer one of our most popular webinars to expose the destruction that emotional abuse brings into the home. Featured guests Leslie Vernick, author of the book The Emotionally Destructive Marriage, and Chris Moles, pastor and certified batterer intervention group facilitator, share insights into recognizing behaviors that can lead married couples beyond the boundaries of a nourishing relationship.

Visit us at for more resources.

How a marriage can be revived – Words of Love



Pastor Greg Laurie interviews his wife, Cathe, during a message on marriage on May 1, 2016.

Pastor Greg Laurie of Harvest Christian Fellowship spoke on how a marriage can be revived, restored and resurrected, and especially how wives can have their own husbands become new men. Laurie also interviewed his wife, Cathe on the wife’s role in marriage and how women are different from men.

“Before you can convert your husband into a new man, maybe you need to think about becoming a new woman,” Greg Laurie said in his message, which was part of the Home Sweet Home series.

The Bible talks about the role of the wife in marriage, he added, and read 1 Peter 3:1-4, “Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear. Do not let your adornment be merely outward — arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel — rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.”

Laurie then shared three things the wife can do to get a new husband.

One, be the best version of you that you can be, he told the women.

A girl should want to be godly, and to “become a virtuous virtue,” he explained. But virtue doesn’t mean weakness; it means purity, strength, force and value, and speaks of a balanced woman who is good in every way, he clarified. “She is beautiful on the outside, also inside.”

However, the focus of culture today is only on the physical part of beauty, the pastor continued. But a godly woman would be more attractive even after losing some of her outward beauty due to age, he said.

“The godly woman focuses primarily on the internal, but does not forget the external,” Laurie stressed, explaining that the Bible does not forbid women to look attractive, but she should not be preoccupied with it.

Two, respect your man, the California pastor told wives, and quoted Ephesians 5:33, “However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”

“Wives need love and husbands need respect,” Laurie said, and explained that a woman needs to be affirmed that she is loved and appreciated.

“When a husband feels disrespected, it is especially hard to love his wife. When a wife feels unloved, it is especially hard to respect her husband,” Laurie quoted from Dr. Emerson Eggerichs’s book, Love and Respect, which also says that when a wife feels unloved, she tends to react in ways that feel disrespectful to her husband, and when a husband feels disrespected, he tends to react in ways that feel unloving to his wife.

“Here’s what you need to do. Just do your part,” Laurie told the congregation.

Three, submit to the leadership of your husband, the pastor said, and remarked that nobody wants to submit to anyone in the “narcissist, me-first” culture today.

However, he added, we are all called to submit to God, and husbands and wives are called to submit to each other in the reverence of God. Men and women are equal, he underlined, and added that the roles of men and women in marriage are different though.

“The husband has the God-given responsibility to provide for, protect and lead,” just as the Lord does to the Church, he explained. “The wife is to submit graciously to this servant leadership the husband provides, just as the Church willing submits to the headship of Christ.”

But there can be situations where a higher law supersedes a lower law, so a woman is not supposed to follow her husband when he demands something that is immoral or illegal, and nor is she required to submit to domestic violence or abuse, Laurie cautioned.

The pastor then called his wife, Cathe, to come on stage and they sat next to each other. He asked Cathe, are boy more like dogs and women more like cats?

Cathe said, “Women are interdependent… And guys are more independent… We’re the weaker sex, I think, that is mainly physically weaker… But we have strengths that guys don’t have.”

She added that social life and friendships are very important for women, and therefore they are more like dogs and men are more like cats.

We don’t need to see women as weaker as they can bring strengths and perspectives, Cathe continued, and added that women are very observant and have a higher emotional IQ.

On the husband’s leadership role in marriage, she shared that in their 42 years of marriage, only rarely has Greg had to say they disagree on a particular issue and that he is deciding to do what he thinks is right.

“By and large, he asks my opinion, we discuss things together, we make compromise and consensus,” she concluded.



Words of Love

Therefore comfort one another with these words. 1 Thessalonians 4:18

Recommended Reading: Ephesians 4:29

The phrase “one another” occurs 53 times in the New Testament epistles. That frequency of use indicates just how relational the Christian life is meant to be. We are continually to look out for the needs of others as well as for our own. And that applies to the “one anothers” in marriage—husbands and wives who encourage each other.

There are lots of ways to encourage one’s spouse. We tend to focus on things that require investments of time, talent, and treasure—gifts, trips, flowers, and date nights. And those are well worth the effort. But the tool of encouragement that is probably more helpful than any other is also the least expensive: encouraging words. When Paul wrote to the Thessalonians to “encourage one another with these words,” he was referring to truth about the Rapture and the future of deceased loved ones. It was just a word, but that’s all it took to provide hope and certainty. And the same can be true in marriage. A true word from a spouse can convey the certainty of love and hope in a moment.

If you are married, purpose to share an encouraging word with your spouse at least once a day. The right words can become building blocks to a strong union.

A Single Thought: An often overlooked and undervalued gift is a word of encouragement. 


A Caring Church

Luke 10:25-37

Do you realize that for believers, many types of needs should be met without going outside the church? We are meant to be a self-sustaining body. After several decades in ministry, I have seen only one way for the church to function as it should: Christians must commit to give of themselves on behalf of others.

For example, a man determines to pray and struggle alongside a hurting brother until a burdensome situation is resolved or peace returns. Or a woman makes herself available to answer a new Christian’s questions about the weekly sermon—the two ladies search the Bible and fill their minds with Scripture. And there are countless other ways to serve, such as driving an elderly member to the service, teaching a Sunday school class, or visiting a weary single mom and listening to her concerns.

Before you become overwhelmed by the variety of needs in your church, let me remind you that loving each other is meant to be a body-wide effort. One person cannot meet every need. But suppose you commit to serving a small group of folks whom God brings into your sphere of influence. If, in order to care for them, you surrender self-focused preferences about resources and time, the Lord will bless you with more joy and contentment than you’ve ever known.

To serve others before serving yourself is to practice authentic Christianity. I’m certain that if believers commit to meeting as many needs as the Lord brings to their attention, then a lethargic church can be transformed, becoming a true body of believers who function together for the glory of God.

The “Shall Nots” of John’s Gospel

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

There are many wonderful promises to the believer listed in the gospel of John. Many of these promises are things which “shall” happen, but let us consider seven of these which teach of things which “shall not” happen to the believer whose trust is in Christ.

Teaching of the indwelling Holy Spirit, Christ said, “Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life” (4:14).

Similarly, “Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst” (6:35).

Furthermore, He taught: “I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life” (8:12). Our deepest needs are met in Him.

Having once believed, we are placed into His family and He promises, “I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand” (10:28). In Him, we are utterly secure. Why? “He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life” (5:24).

Consequently, we have no fear of death. “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?” (11:25-26).

As the familiar verse in our text tells us, if we only believe “that he gave his only begotten Son,” we shall “not perish, but have everlasting life.” JDM

God’s Holiness

Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders? —Exodus 15:11

They say that when Leonardo DaVinci painted his famous Last Supper he had little difficulty with any of it except the faces. Then he painted the faces in without too much trouble except one. He did not feel himself worthy to paint the face of Jesus. He held off
and kept holding off, unwilling to approach it but knowing he must. Then in the impulsive carelessness of despair, he just painted it quickly and let it go. “There is no use,” he said. “I can’t paint Him.”

I feel very much the same way about explaining the holiness of God. I think that same sense of despair is on my heart. There isn’t any use for anybody to try to explain holiness. The greatest speakers on this subject can play their oratorical harps, but it sounds tinny and unreal, and when they are through you’ve listened to music but haven’t seen God.

I suppose the hardest thing about God to comprehend intellectually is His infinitude. But you can talk about the infinitude of God and not feel yourself a worm. But when you talk about the holiness of God, you have not only the problem of an intellectual grasp, but also a sense of personal vileness, which is almost too much to bear.

Make me that sensitive to Your holiness, O God, that I might indeed be aware of my vileness and fall before You in humility and confession. Amen.

Birth from Above

Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. (John 3:7)

This may sound like heresy in some quarters, but I have come to this conclusion—that there are far too many among us who have thought that they accepted Christ, but nothing has come of it within their own lives and desires and habits!

This kind of philosophy in soul-winning—the idea that it is “the easiest thing in the world to accept Jesus”—permits the man or woman to accept Christ by an impulse of the mind or of the emotions.

It allows us to gulp twice and sense an emotional feeling that has come over us, and then say, “I have accepted Christ.”

These are spiritual matters about which we must be legitimately honest and in which we must seek the discernment of the Holy Spirit. These are things about which we cannot afford to be wrong; to be wrong is still to be lost and far from God.

Let us never forget that the Word of God stresses the importance of conviction and concern and repentance when it comes to conversion, spiritual regeneration, being born from above by the Spirit of God!

The sweet influence of grief

It is often remarked that after soul sorrow our pastors are more gifted with words in season, and their speech is more full of savor: this is to be accounted for by the sweet influence of grief when sanctified by the Holy Spirit. Blessed Redeemer, we delight in thy
love, and thy presence is the light of our joys; but if thy brief withdrawals qualify us for glorifying thee in cheering thy saints, we thank thee for leaving us; as we seek thee by night, it shall somewhat cheer us that thou art blessing us when thou takest away thy richest blessing.