(see the Chart below)
We highly recommend premarital counseling for every couple who are planning on getting married. Premarital counseling has clinical issues which are beyond the expertise of the pastors. Pastors assume falsely that they are anointed by God and thus whatever they do, is sort of infallible. They cause many latent problems, but no one dares to complain. They are NEVER anointed by God. Did they replace Moses, or Aaron, or David? Premarital counseling needs to be offered only by clinically licensed Marriage, Family and Children psychotherapists as long as it is conforming to the strict Biblical principles.
Satan and his fallen angels (demons, principalities, authorities, powers of the air) are working hard to destroy the lives of the Called and Redeemed children of God. They use many strategies to destroy godly homes and marriages, even before the start. Some chosen children are attacked viciously in rape or sex slavery, other are traumatized with severe family problems or abuse, then during the middle and high school years they are pressured and forced to prostitute themselves. We will not discuss here the different Satanic tactics and strategies.
But, we need to understand the pagan Christian culture in which we are living. In America and in Europe boys and girls are under extreme pressure to become prostitutes in the form of boy-girl friendship hookups. They are faced with: (1) Peer pressure, (2) Parental pressure and expectations, (3) Christian pastors pressure and expectation. For example, young innocent girls are told in many ways that unless they are popular and have a boyfriend, they are losers and unloved. Girls move from one boyfriend to another. The more boyfriends they have the more popular and beautiful they feel.
Sadly, a boyfriend is not a husband, but a temporary monogamous prostitute, i.e., a friend with benefits.
By the time they are married, some women had had many boyfriends (with benefits), i.e., prostitutes whether for a few months, or a few hours. College life increases such pressure to a maximum and it is assumed by all the students that they MUST be active sexually to be normal. This is the society we live in.
A true born-from-above believer in Yeshua Jesus, separates herself and himself from this society even they are called losers or other demeaning horrible names.
For those who are faithful and want to build a healthy solid home, marriage and family, I designed the following Chart. It has thirteen foundations. Each lower foundation must be solid in order to build other upper foundations.
We will have a very brief discussion of each.
1 - FOUNDATION ONE: The Bible says, “Do NOT be unequally yoked,” which means for true believers: Do NOT marry fake believers or nonbelievers. Also, remember that there is no union or communion between God and Baal (the body which belongs to Yeshua Jesus and the body of the nonbelieiver which belongs to Baal).
Marriage is a real union, spiritual and also flesh union. Adam said prophetically: “For this reason the man shall leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his wife and the two (husband and wife) shall become One Flesh.”
Most people do not know that the majority of confessing believers are not truly born from above, but rather they are social or nominal believers who are committed to the Church or to the Messianic synagogue, but NOT to Yeshua Jesus the Messiah. If the churches teach true repentance and true obedience, then the majority of the good Christians will leave the churches thinking that the church is too harsh and not loving anymore.
It is very easy to fall in love rich and attractive people who may not be true-believer, i.e., who are not born from above.
If perchance you marry a fake believer, or a sincere but not a true believer, do not break up or regret your marriage, just continue and honor the Lord for the rest of your life as a faithful spouse. Faithful women who are true believers oftentimes do win their husbands by their love and good works toward their husbands.
2 - FOUNDATION TWO: A husband and wife must without any exception be faithful sexually, physically and emotionally to each other.
Feminists hate such faithfulness to the husband. They teach openly that women must be faithful to themselves only. This means that if they feel like having an affair or just enjoy an hour of loving sex with another man, then they must follow their desire and intuition. Their emotional and physical happiness is of highest order. Such teaching is simply Satanic and aims at destroying the sanctity of marriage.
Women and men must be faithful to each other under every and all circumstances without exception.
Some people say that emotional involvement is not adultery. But, adultery normally occurs after emotional involvement. It is the first step that opens the door to such sin.
Some pastors, elders, and deacons who are unfaithful to their wives teach forgiveness and tolerance of human weakness. This is opposite to the Seventh Commandment of God. And this leads to the fragmentation and even the destruction of marriages.
I teach forgiveness and restoration of the adulterous wife (or husband) only if there is true repentance. Most of my patients follow their feelings and believe strongly that everything is perfect upon hearing an apology or a verbal affirmation or promise. This proves false because, almost always, the adulterous (adulterer) returns back to their way. Sadly also, most pastors teach a superficial kind of repentance which promotes repeated adultery.
3 - FOUNDATION THREE: Trust is of absolute and essential value. Without trust, all other upper foundations will be fragile and weak. In marriage the man and the woman place their lives in the hands of each other day and night. A marriage without trust is marked with high conscious and subconscious anxiety which is destructive and prohibitive to any growth and enjoyment of life.
Without trust, life is living in a constant mode of survival and defense from attacks. Without trust, a husband can never know if he is stabbed in the back and a wife will live in constant fear of her husband leaving her or hurting her.
Trust should not be blind, but rather it needs to be built up over a long time before the marriage. If you are already married, then work immediately on building or restoring trust.
4 - FOUNDATION FOUR: Love is bought and sold in Hollywood, in the streets and in brothels. But that is the false kind of love. Pastors also talk constantly about love, although few members receive such love from the church.
True love is similar to the love of Christ. It is unconditional. It can be simplified to its basic elements as:
(A) Accepting the other person as an equal human being, even when the difference in opinion or behavior is great. Accept the person and not necessary the behavior.
(B) Respecting the other person all the time.
(C) Doing good for the other person every day or as much as possible.
Hence, in marriage, no matter what differences there are, love must abide.
5 - FOUNDATION FIVE: The world teaches our kids that the only relationship between a boy and a girl is sex and that they cannot be true friends. Actually, our culture (Hollywood) claims that if a man and a woman are real friends while abstinent, then one or both is homosexual. Our culture expects and pressures everyone to be active sexually and in many other vice.
Young children believe in healthy friendship between boys and girls, yet their dreams and hopes are shattered quickly even before they complete High School.
In marriage, the man and the woman must build this deep intimate friendship by constantly talking and listening to each other.
When a man listens to his wife, it does not mean that the man must be obedient to his wife. Many women complain to me that their husbands are not listening to them, but upon further clarification, they actually expect their husbands to obey them.
Some pastors, elders, and deacons teach that sex before the marriage helps the couple to build a friendship. This is false and even a satanic teaching. Actually, from my twenty-four years of clinical practice, I attest that sex before the marriage kills the true friendship. The couple ends up being intimate physically, but cannot be open on a deeper emotional level.
Husbands and wives need to work hard to rebuild their intimate friendship by spending several hours everyday listening and talking to each other.
When a woman works to bring a supplemental income to the family, oftentimes, one or more of her co-workers become (or is called) her work-husband. People are not ashamed to call a sweet coworker a work-husband. According to some older psychologic research, 70% of adultery cases of working married women begin with a coworker. A working woman spends eight hours with her kind, caring and attentive coworker, and only fifteen to thirty minutes talking with her husband.
Many married people talk mostly about bills, chores, family and problems, but they do not talk about their intimate feelings. No wonder, when the children are grown and left the house, the husband and wife find nothing in common with each other.
Husbands and wives need to spend hours talking about their feeling in all safety without being attacked or slandered behind their backs by their spouses.
6 - FOUNDATION SIX: Money is a major source of conflict, anxiety and wrong decisions between a husband and a wife.
Each husband and wife need to discuss and agree on the minimum needed income for normal life. Also, the Bible encourages us to save. Saving is equal to gaining an income.
Most people follow Hollywood dreams of riches, abundance and extravagant living and they end up with major debts, disagreements, friction, blame, and fractures in their marriages.
Part of the premarital counseling is to discuss and to agree on guidelines between the future husband and wife on what are the real needs to live well. And also, what to do with any extra income they generate. Should they follow the luxury dream life of the culture? Or, should they plan for the future and save the excess money.
In a recent published psychologic research in California, they came to the conclusion that the majority of the Millennia, X generation and Z generation remain singles cohabiting without legal marriage, (which can be considered as prostitution for benefits). 80% of these single women stated that they cannot find a “Financially Attractive Men.” This means that those women feel entitled to a rich husband and high and expensive way of life. They are not ready to work hard side by side with their husbands to build their families and future lives together.
7 - FOUNDATION SEVEN: Physical touching is of extreme importance. Most people confuse the physical touch with sex. Actually, the two are very different. Physical touch is more important than sexual intimacy. This does not mean that sexual intimacy is not important, but it means that the most powerful effect in sexual intimacy is actually the physical touch.
Physical touch can be caressing or holding hands, touching the shoulders, the cheeks, the hair, or any part of the body gently. Any form of physical touch between a husband and a wife is most rewarding and a beautiful gesture of love for both of them.
In public, one or both may feel uncomfortable in touching or holding hands. But at home, touching is a gentle manner is expressing and receiving love from each other.
8 - FOUNDATION EIGHT: The parents of the husband or the wife can and will have a major influence and effect on the health of the marriage of their children.
Parents who think that they are helping and defending their son or daughter to have a better marriage, may be destroying the marriage. A husband and a wife need to “Leave Their Parents” and “Cleave to Each Other.” They need to honor their parents and support them, but not destroy their marriage in the process.
Sometimes, when a man or the woman had close friends for many years before the marriage, they tend to keep and allow these friends to influence them in their marriage. Such has fatal effect on the marriage.
There should be no loyalty higher to or equal to the husband to the wife and the wife to the husband.
9 - FOUNDATION NINE: Marriages in which the husband is not the head of the family are subject to many fractures and weaknesses. God established the structure. Man should not say it is democracy between the husband and the wife without God.
The headship of the husband does not mean superiority but rather responsibility.
The roles of the husband and the wife need to be clear and each needs to take on their responsibilities. The same for the children, they all need to have a role in maintaining and supporting the family.
Submission of the wife does not mean obedience like a scared child, but rather active obedience like Jesus Christ. This means that the woman chooses to be submissive to her husband and this does not depend on feelings, but it is a commitment.
A good father always listens to the needs of his wife and children and acts for their well being before his own.
Some women tell me that a good man must love his wife and die for her. This is a misunderstanding, because this would mean that all the good husbands are dead.
When it is crucial, the head of the family needs to be willing to give the highest priority to his wife and children before himself, even if this leads to his own demise. But, why would a wife allow the conditions to cause destruction to her husband if she wants to build her family and marriage? Our goal is to have good, healthy, and living husbands and wives.
10 - FOUNDATION TEN: Sexual intimacy is essential in marriage. But, we need to keep the right perspectives:
(1) Sexual feelings are intense. They are very difficult to diffuse once one is excited, although it is possible.
(2) Sexual feelings are triggered in the mind, the autonomic nervous system, but once triggered, they release hormones and para-hormones which affect the body for a short duration.
(3) Touching and caressing which should be part of every good sex are more powerful and bring a sustainable loving feelings and confidence.
(4) Abstinence from sexual relationship is difficult, but easily manageable when the commitment is obedience to the Law of God, the Seventh Commandment.
(5) Abstinence from sex does not kill anyone. Abstinence from food or water is deadly, but abstinence from sex is healthy with no negative effects. Hollywood culture lies to us claiming that everyone must have sex every day or else they die or have negative health effect. This is an absolute lie promoted by doctors who did not score 100% on their exams in medicine schools.
(6) God blessed sexual intimacy in marriage, read the Song of Solomon.
There is only one form of sexual intimacy which is honored by God, namely, one man one woman married before God having sexual intimacy.
Other forms of sexual relationships, such as porno sex, open marriage sex, cohabitation sex, boy-girl friendship sex, quick hookup sex, one night stand sex, bestiality sex, toy sex, and Spring Break sex are all sinful and also abominations, i.e., pollution before God.
The term pornia in the Apostolic writings makes no difference between the English words, adultery and fornication. They are one and the same. The Hebrew word which allows divorce in Deuteronomy 24, describes it as “nakedness” or “shameful nakedness” (Hebrew ‘Orah). Finally, Yeshua Jesus is clear that only sexual fornication (adultery) does break the covenant of marriage. Thus, the victim of divorce is allowed to remarry with honor.
11 - FOUNDATION ELEVEN: It is important for the husband and wife to discover everything about the other’s morality, ethics, visions, dreams, hopes and expectations prior to the marriage. Nevertheless, such journey of discovery does not end after the vows of the marriage, but rather continues on for the rest of their lives.
The husband and the wife need to share their thoughts and feelings and be ready to adapt to the other’s needs and dreams so that both can work together in the same direction.
12 - FOUNDATION TWELVE: When children are born the husband and the wife transition into a new life cycle in their marriage. It is usually a great experience for both the husband and the wife, although there is more work to be done for the children and many questions on how to manage all the details of caring of the little babies.
It is important also that the husband and the wife talk about having children prior to having them because sometimes, especially the woman, begins to reject the husband and become fused psychologically with the baby. This causes not only stress on the husband who finds himself without affection, but also it can build a wedge between the wife and the husband which can become bigger than life.
In some families where the wife does not love the husband, but needs his money, or if the man is not faithful, they will use the children as a cohesive element between them. Such is not healthy and they need to honor each other much more than the children.
13 - FOUNDATION THIRTEEN: The husband and wife need to live in an open system. An open system means that they need to have friends. Healthy friends will not be selfish. For example, selfish friends will demand the attention of the wife to them more than to her husband, or may use subtle gossip to destroy the trust they have in each other. Such is called in the Bible “the Little Foxes which destroy the vineyard.”
All relationships must be completely transparent and open between the husband and wife in order to prevent Satan from attaching their marriage.
Also, all relationship, a wife or a husband has with friends, should never have a romantic, or emotional dependence, or physical touching, or sexual sharing, or secrecy of any kind.
Both husband and wife need to defend and protect the other.
As a source for Professional and Biblical Premarital and Family counseling, Dr. David d’Albany is licensed in California and in Florida and he is in practice since 1989. He will be happy to help future husbands and wives.
See the Chart below.