20 Quotes from Date Your Wife

20 Quotes from Date Your Wife

I recently asked Justin Buzzard how he would sum up his new book in less than ten seconds. "If you want to change a marriage, change the man," he replied, "and Jesus changes the man."

Simple and straightforward, Date Your Wife (Crossway, June 2012) is a book to read for yourself and recommend to any friend. It's my wife's favorite book I've read this year. Here are 20 standout quotes:

"A dream is what drives a man. As a boy grows up, he gradually forms a dream for his future marriage. Some men are aware of this, some men are not. Some men form a healthy dream for marriage, some men do not. But every man approaches his first date and his wedding day driven by a dream." (23)

"The dream that drove you to that first date, that drove you to the altar, is likely still driving your marriage today." (24)

"This is a book for men. And this book is fueled by this conviction: if you want to change a marriage, change the man." (39)

"Cultivate it and guard it... This is exactly what the first husband failed to do. Adam failed to cultivate his wife—he didn't cause her to flourish. Adam failed to guard his wife—he didn't protect her from danger." (42)

"Central to Adam's calling as a husband was the call to cultivate and guard his wife so that she would flourish, so that their sacred union would thrive. God called Adam to date his wife." (46)

"The second he spotted the Serpent, Adam should've crushed the Serpent. He should've rushed straight toward the intruder and eliminated him, keeping his wife safe and sound. But Adam just stood there." (48)

"He defined "committed husband" as a man who isn't going anywhere. Again, this is good. We want to be husbands who don't go anywhere else, husbands who remain monogamous and faithful. But this is an incomplete picture of what it means to be a husband. Committed husband: a man who isn't going any- where. So, my friend's equation looked like this:

A man who isn't going anywhere = A husband who has done his job

Using this measurement, Adam was a good husband. Adam didn't go anywhere. He just stood there." (49)

"See, the problem with the modern marriage goes deeper than the husband. The source of the problem isn't the husband, the source of the problem is the husband's belief system." (49)

"What you believe will drive how you live. Every husband has a belief system that drives his life and marriage." (50)

"Most men think the mission ends after they marry the woman they love, that the most exciting and rewarding work is over... The reality is that the mission has only just begun." (57)

"Now let's hear the most important truth: Jesus makes men new — Jesus turns husbands like you and me into the best thing that ever happened to our marriages." (64)

"You crush a man if you only talk to him about responsibility. You empower a man if you talk to him about responsibility— about living life in response to the power and ability of God." (66)

"God gave Adam and God gave us a mission to accomplish. But God never told Adam and never told us to measure ourselves by the mission." (72)

"The measure of a man is not how successful or unsuccessful a man is at carrying out his mission." (72)

"The measure of a man is not what he says about himself or what other people say about him. The true measure of a man comes from what God says about him." (72)

"When I base my identity on my performance instead of on what God says about me, I'm putting myself at the center of my life instead of God." (74)

"The message of this book is not for husbands to start working hard at dating their wives and then to base their identity, marriage, and stand- ing with God on how well they do at dating their wives. That message would only lead to deeper idolatry in a man's life..." (74)

"Instead, the message of this book invites a man to discover a whole new identity, a whole new center to his life in the gospel of God, and for this new power to enable a man to relate to his wife in a whole new way." (75)

"The heart of the gospel is that Jesus, the second Adam, took responsibility for what wasn't his fault, offering men a new life driven by a new power." (78)

"Men, you should have a bigger dream for your marriage than your wife has for your marriage. You are the leader of your marriage." (92)

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Jonathan Parnell (@jonathanparnell) is a writer and content strategist at Desiring God, and is the lead planter of Cities Church in Minneapolis–Saint Paul, where he lives with his wife, Melissa, and their four children. He is also the co-author of How to Stay Christian in Seminary.