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Repairing Relationships

Read Numbers 5:11-31

And the Lord said to Moses, “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel.

“Suppose a man’s wife goes astray, and she is unfaithful to her husband and has sex with another man, but neither her husband nor anyone else knows about it. She has defiled herself, even though there was no witness and she was not caught in the act. If her husband becomes jealous and is suspicious of his wife and needs to know whether or not she has defiled herself, the husband must bring his wife to the priest. He must also bring an offering of two quarts of barley flour to be presented on her behalf. Do not mix it with olive oil or frankincense, for it is a jealousy offering—an offering to prove whether or not she is guilty”
(Numbers 5:11-15)


This test for adultery served to remove a jealous husband’s suspicion. Trust between a husband and wife had to be completely eroded for a man to bring his wife to the priest for this type of test. Today priests and pastors help restore marriages by counseling couples who have lost faith in each other.

Trust is a fundamental bond in a marriage. Without it, the couple has little reason to invest themselves in it. The marriage will simply unravel. This test served to reestablish trust and prevent the marriage from breaking apart.

A thousand forces can tear at a marriage’s unity. Husbands and wives should work to strengthen the bond of trust in marriage. Oftentimes, building trust is a matter of practicing trust—being vulnerable, voicing needs or fears, inviting help, listening. Sometimes these are risks. But if they feel risky, then that’s evidence that there’s a lack of trust. Habits of trust are practiced. Good patterns develop only by repeatedly choosing to do these hard things.


Are there forces tearing are your relationships? It might be a marriage or a relationship with a friend or family member. Restoring those relationships may require you to take a risk. Whether you were wronged or you are at fault, what can you do to begin the process of rebuilding that relationship?

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