Unfaithfulness: A Very Serious Problem
Jesus described some in His parable of the sower who would receive the word but not remain faithful (Matthew 13:20-22). The New Testament refers to, or prophesies, other departures from the faith (1 Timothy 4:1; Hebrews 10:25; 2 Peter 2:1-2).
Failure to maintain commitment to Christ is serious because of its consequences; not only will it cause the loss of one’s soul, but many other souls are lost as a result of the negligence and bad influence of the unfaithful.
About the most treacherous person one can think of is the adulterer. Yet, one’s relationship to Christ is described in terms of the marital relationship (Romans 7:1-4; Ephesians 5:22-33), and unfaithfulness to God or Christ is called adultery (Matthew 12:39; James 4:4; Hosea 1:1-11; 2:1-23).
The Parallel Between Marriage and the Spiritual Relationship
This parallel is instructive of the intense commitment involved in being a disciple of Christ. Both are permanent, life-long relationships (Romans 7:1-4). Violation of either covenant is very serious (James 4:4). The unfaithful have reneged on the most solemn commitment they have ever made.
Both involve the greatest intimacy – the oneness of different entities (1 Corinthians 6:17). Discipleship, like marriage, involves total commitment and trust. The disciple should strive to have his will submit to, and coincide with, the will of Christ (Philippians 2:5).
In both relationships the man, or Christ, is to love the woman, or church (Ephesians 5:25-30). Christ is an unexcelled, impeccable provider and He deserves the disciple’s love. In both cases the woman, or church, is to be subject to her husband, or Christ (Ephesians 5:22-24). Subjection is an integral part of commitment, and the unfaithful are not in subjection to Christ.
There is no justifiable reason for dissolving the relationship with Christ, for He is always faithful. It is more sacred than the marital bond.