A s stated earlier on in one of my write- ups in this column, marriage is a covenant, since it involves two persons, who publicly verbalize their commitment to the good of each other. Like any covenant, such a commitment agreed on by the parties, remains binding on the parties. Not only that it is binding, its violation, knowingly and unknowingly, has severe consequences on the basis of such violation, by the party committing the violation.
With reference to marriage, many people don’t know that marriage is a covenant, thus it is contracted and handled with such grave levity. This is why the marriage institution has been suffering a lot of adversity, as resultant effects of the violation of the marriage covenant. The problem with most marriages is mostly a self inflicted one, bothering on covenant violation.
Ingredients of covenant violation in marriage
For us to know how we can violate the marriage covenant, we need to take a closer look at the marital vow. This is because its contents are at the heart of violation. When we fail to keep to the promises embedded in the vow, dire consequences follow.
A typical marital vow:
“ I, M. take thee N. to be my wedded wife(husband), to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I plight thee my troth”.
This marital vow can be violated in the following ways:
- Infidelity: this is a case of not to “have and to hold” as promised in the vow. When you become involved in another love relationship outside your marriage, you have violated your marital vow. Thus, dire consequences ensure. Spouses have died suddenly as a result of infidelity. Others suffer from career failure, loss of jobs, promotion and health as well. With the increasing level of infidelity among couples, untimely deaths of spouses should not be strange to the discerning minds.
- Physical abuse: when a spouse is in the habit of physically abusing his or her spouse, which in most cases, husbands are the guilty spouse, it is a violation of “ to love and to cherish” portion of the vow. You can’t claim to love a spouse you are constantly giving the thorough beatings of his or her life. When you are guilty of this, you open yourself up for grave consequences.
- Emotional abuse: this includes verbal abuse, sexual denial, lack of care and the like. When a wife is in the habit of using abusive words on the husband, or a husband has become highly irresponsible in the care of the wife, and by extension, the family, violation of the vow is ongoing. When spouses deny each other the joy of sexual satisfaction, it is a violation of the marital vow. Any of such behaviours is the reason why many marriages are crumbling. Such endanger the lives of the victim, and in some cases, actual fatality has occurred. To engage in any of such acts is to break your marital vow.
- Blackmail or evil speaking: when you have formed the habit to blackmail your spouse to family and friends, or speak evil of his or her person, it’s nothing but a violation of your marital vow. Doing such means not to watch your spouse’s back. Rather, it’s a way to destroy him or her. You don’t do such and get away with it.
- Abandoning spouse in times of trials: a lot of spouses desert their marriage on the basis of sicknesses, poverty, loss of jobs or business failure. Such spouses are guilty of violating the portion of the marital vow of “for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I plight thee my troth”. Divorce and infidelity, which are fast gaining ground these days, are foreign to the marital vow. Let us retrace our steps.
The above are pointers to marital vow violation. There are others things which are not highlighted here. Anything done that is contrary to the well-being of your spouse is a violation of your marital vow. We all should avoid such as an insurance against calamitous occurrences.
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