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The word integrity has to do with a person's principles or values of life and choices pertaining to life. The word translates into righteousness or uprightness or that which one considers to be holy. If a person has no integrity then that person is not covenant capable. As we look at the word righteousness in our spirituality, we know that righteousness comes from above. We accept the righteousness of Christ because of His substitution death on the cross for us. Therefore, His righteousness is ours by substitution or trade-off .

  • Then is there a secret to successful relationships?
  • Why do some people succeed and others fail?
  • Is it all just a matter of chance?

Let's just look at one aspect the relationship of marriage.

If there is a secret that ensures a successful marriage, millions of couples in our contemporary culture have never found it. In almost every country in our Western Civilization, the divorce rate has soared in the last few decades. Sociologically in the 60's, when Humanism became a religion, man began to believe the lie instead of the truth. In our own culture alone, we have reached a situation where there is approximately one divorce for every two marriages. Forty years ago, this was inconceivable in America.

While this is a known truth, it does not tell the whole story. Many homes are surviving the "no marriage" marriage and either dealing with the hopelessness of no restoration and/or living in open strife and disharmony. If there is strife between the parents, there will be strife between the parents and children.

A result of the breakdown of the family, though many homes appear to be calm on the surface, underneath are the festering sores of bitterness, unforgiveness, and self-centeredness. These relationships will sooner or later erupt into some form of mental or emotional breakdown and the cause may never be precisely diagnosed.

Those in the mental and physical health industry deal daily with the ramifications of these core problems. We sedate our society and talk through endless session about situations that will never get any better until they are addressed. Denial holds man in a state of passivity because he just can't see! Psychiatric wards in hospitals are overflowing because that is the only place of treatment for the tension and disharmony in the home which is a result of the marriage relationship. This is why the symptoms in our society have reached an urgent point and it all goes back to the breakdown of the relationship of marriage which affects a core need of man and that is a sense of belonging.

One of the lies that affects our contemporary society is the belief that the concept of marriage was a "mistake" in the first place and that there are alternatives to this relationship. Again we have exchanged the truth for a lie. This reality is given to the Church by Paul as he addressed their heart condition a most pagan infiltrated society .

Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever." Romans 1: 24-25

We as a society believe that we have advanced beyond what God intended and this passivity has reached into the contemporary Church and infiltrated it's ranks.

However, I would have you know that in the face of this confusion and conflicting opinions, that there is a secret that can ensure a successful marriage. Furthermore, I believe that this secret is revealed in the pages of the Bible and is hidden in our relationship with Christ to be revealed in that relationship first. Scripture gives us this documentation in Ephesians 5:30-33,

"for we are members of His body; of His flesh and His bones. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the Church. Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself; and let the wife see that she respects her husband "

added 7/31/02