Today’s readings.. (1 Kings 10), (Jeremiah 36), (Mark 10)
    A feature of our godless world is the minimising of the value of marriage.  How few exchange vows that their union is taking place in the sight of God!    Those who still do so must be fully conscious of the all-seeing, all-hearing and all-knowing presence of God; read Psalm 139. 
    After Jesus said that in marriage a man must “hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh,” Jesus added, “What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate” [Mark 10 v.8,9] His disciples were provoked to “ ask him  again about this matter.  And he said to them, ‘Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her, and if she divorces her husband and marries another; she commits adultery.” [v.10-12].
    Adultery is an obsolete word today – as is the word ‘sin’ – we live in a world in which nearly everyone does what is right in his (or her) own eyes.  Of course, we all do that – but what influences our eyes and heart in making decisions? Does God’s word have real influence on us?  Remember Solomon’s proverb, “Every way of man (or woman) is right in his own eyes, but the LORD weighs the heart” [21 v.2]  The more we fill our minds with God’s word, the more conscious we are of what is lacking in our hearts – and try to change it.
    The situation was desperate in Israel in the days of the prophet Joel.  Note the text in Ch. 2 v.12,13. “ ‘Yet even now’, declares the LORD … rend your hearts and not your garments’  Return to the LORD, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love …”
     Jesus was conscious of the children and it is they who also suffer in broken marriages – they will be the ‘next generation’ – and what is the next generation presently showing itself to be like!
     Our chapter next tells us “they were bringing children to him that he might touch them, and the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, ‘Let the children come to me, do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God.” [v.13,14]  Think about the ingredients of a real marriage where both are convinced that God has brought them together; this means that both fully accept what Jesus says – that to “receive the kingdom” one must be child-like before God (v.15).    Are you making progress in receiving the kingdom?