***** and ***** request that cell phones be turned off and that there be no flash photography during this ceremony.
We are gathered here in the sight of God, and in front of this congregation, to join together ***** and ***** in holy marriage; which is commended in the Scriptures to be honorable among all men; and therefore is not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly; but reverently, discreetly, advisedly, and in the fear of God. ***** and *****. I require and charge you both, as you will answer at the coming day of judgment, when the secrets of all hearts shall be disclosed, that if either of you know any reason why you may not be lawfully joined together in marriage, you do now confess it.
Into this holy estate, ***** and ***** come now to be joined. If there is anyone who can show just cause why they may not lawfully be joined together, let him speak now, or forever hold his peace.
Of the world’s three great institutions – the home, the church, and the state - the home is the oldest and most sacred. God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. It is composed of persons related to one another by marriage, blood, or adoption.
Marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. It is God's unique gift to reveal the union between Christ and His church, and to provide for the man and the woman in marriage the framework for intimate companionship, the channel for sexual expression according to Biblical standards, and the means for procreation of the human race.
The husband and wife are of equal worth before God, since both are created in God's image. The marriage relationship models the way God relates to his people. A husband is to love his wife as Christ loved His church. He has the God-given responsibility to provide for, to protect, and to lead his family. A wife is to submit herself graciously to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits to the headship of Christ. She, being in the image of God as is her husband and thus equal to him, has the God-given responsibility to respect her husband and to serve as his helper in managing the household and nurturing the next generation.
In the consummation of the first marriage, the woman whom God made as a helpmeet for man was not taken from his head to rule over him, nor from his feet to be trampled by him, but from his side that she might be his equal, from under his arm that she might receive his protection, and from his heart that she might own and command his love.
The relation of husband and wife is most sacred when it is that of “two souls with a single thought…two hearts that beat as one.” It is the blending of two lives and, the union of two natures.
Peter reads Genesis 2:18, 21-24
Jennifer reads Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
“Threefold cord” to explain Christ’s involvement in marriage to transition to worship.
“The Love of God”
1) The supremacy of love
2) The quality of love
3) The permanence of love
To Groom: Do you take this woman to be your wedded wife, to live together after God’s ordinance, in the holy estate of marriage? Will you love her, comfort her, honor, and keep her, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto her, so long as you both shall live? (Groom: “I do.”)
To Bride: Do you take this man to be your wedded husband, to live together after God’s ordinance, in the holy estate of marriage? Will you obey him and serve him, love, honor, and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto him, so long as you both shall live? (Bride: “I do.”)
(Minister takes the bride by the right hand & taking the groom by the right hand, brings the hands together and instructs the couple to join hands.)
We read in the Scriptures that when God made a covenant with Noah, He set a “bow” in the sky as a token thereof, and said, “I will look upon it that I may remember the everlasting covenant.” From this we may learn that it is well for us, when we enter into a solemn agreement, to set apart some reminder of the promise we have made.
Addressing *****: *****, what token do you give as evidence that you will keep your marriage vows?
***** states, “A ring” (The minister takes the ring from the groomsmen and says: You have selected a ring for this purpose. This ring is the token of your marriage covenant. It is made of precious and enduring metal, and thus fittingly represents the ties which bind husband and wife. The ring, an endless circle, until broken by some outside force, is a symbol of the unbroken “union” that should continue until broken by death.
*****, take this ring and place it upon the ring finger of your bride, and say after me:
I, *****, take thee, ***** to be my wedded wife,,…..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 God separates us by death,…. and thereto I pledge my faith.
*****, what token do you give as evidence that you will keep your marriage vows?
(***** states “A ring” Groomsmen hands ring to minister)
You, too, have selected a ring with its symbolism of enduring ties and unbroken union.
*****, take this ring, and place it upon the ring finger of *****, and say after me:
I, *****, take thee, ***** to be my wedded 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…., and to obey till God separates us by death,…. and thereto I pledge my faith.
Explain symbolism of being a servant and humbling yourself.
Prayer of Blessing (from my heart)
***** and ***** will be praying together following their lighting of the candle. They invite the congregation to listen to the song that will be playing, "When God made you" which expresses their sentiment in God's blessing of bringing them together as one. Perhaps you've come with your life's mate and can rejoice personally in God's blessings upon your union as well.
"When God Made You” by Newsong (CD)
To congregation: "Please stand"
You have witnessed these vows of sacred marriage between ***** and *****. "Will you do everything in your power to support and uphold them in their marriage?" If so then say, “We will.” Please be seated.
Declaration of Marriage
Now let me speak to your hearts ***** and *****. I charge you both as you hope for happiness in your married life, to be true to these vows you have made to each other. With your marriage, from this day, you begin life anew, with larger responsibilities.
*****, guard well, *****, your bride who now commits herself into your keeping, and strive to live for the Lord so that no word or deed of yours shall cloud her heart with grief, or dim her eyes with tears.
*****, it will be your part to strive to retain by your virtues the heart of ***** which you have won by your graces.
And to you both, I would say: Do not let your voices lose the tender tones of affection nor your eyes forget the tender ray with which they shone in your early years of dating. And, greatest of all, let Jesus Christ be at the center of your marriage and family at all times.
(The couple shall be instructed to join right hands. Then the minister shall lay his hand upon the joined hands, and say:)
And now, having heard you make these pledges of your affection, and take these vows of commitment, I do, by the authority conferred upon me as a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and by the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, pronounce you husband and wife, no longer two, but now one, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
(Prayer for the couple as husband and wife –the minister places his hand upon them and prays for God’s blessings upon their marriage)
Our loving Father, thank you for this newly married couple, ***** and *****. Thank you for their commitment to one another witnessed here in this marriage ceremony. Protect the solemn vows they have promised. Help them to be good to one another. Remind them to be concerned more about understanding than being understood. And thank you, Father, that You understand them even when they fail to understand one another. May their marriage be a true reflection of Your love toward the Body of Christ. May Your Spirit inhabit their marriage and fill it with abundant joy. Amen.
“Those whom God has joined together, let no man separate.”
*****, you may now kiss your bride JJJJ
Presentation of Couple
I would like to present Mr. & Mrs. *****. (I'm done at this point!)