Marriage is not a construct of society, but of God. Marriage brings us companionship, is a spiritual revelation of Christ, and grants us co-dominion in the heavenly kingdom. There comes a time when it becomes impossible to complete our destinies alone. When it does, we are not called to change our spouse, but to accept him or her as a gift given to us by God. Attacks on marriage are bound to come for the enemy hates when couples operate in unity and love. Strife is the foothold that keeps the door open for the enemy to freely enter marriage. We must evict it. Boundaries are intended to bring freedom, not limitations to marriage. We must set them. There must be no hint of sexual immorality in marriage, and we must always practice accountability, for although respect is free, trust is earned.
Kevin Wallace: I want you to stand and go with me to the Word quickly. I'm going to let you sit down and you don't ever have to stand up again today unless you want to. Come on, Deven, stand up with me for the reading of the Word. Give honor to the Lord, honor to Jesus Christ who is the head of my life. All right.
Kevin Wallace: Genesis 2. Today I'm going to talk about, Deven and I are going to talk about love and marriage. All the single people are going to get some stuff too. Let me see. Where are my singles at? If you're a single and ain't ashamed of it, holler at me. Come on.
Kevin Wallace: Wave your hand. Make a mating call. Do something. Okay. Start rubbing your antlers together or something. Okay. All right, sorry. Jesus, help me, Lord. Genesis 2. My Jesus, come on here, Wallace. Verse 18, "And the Lord God said ..." Genesis 2:18.
Kevin Wallace: I'm bringing Deven in. Number one, she's a much better teacher than I am. Number two, she has revelation on the book of Genesis and especially the first three or four chapters. It's just phenomenal. We'll never get through all that's in her brain and that God has downloaded to her about this. This may take a week or two. I don't know. Maybe three of four. With Deven, it could take seven or eight, because when we start diving into the depth of this it's heavy and it's good.
Kevin Wallace: But today, I want to talk about love and marriage, and I want to start a conversation that I pray is an ongoing one. God has really been speaking to my heart about the health of relationship in our church, especially the marriage relationships. I do not speak from the perspective, and I want you to know this, I or we do not speak from the perspective of one having arrived. We're not marriage professionals. We're on a journey as well, relatively young. 39 years old, married for 20 years, 19. Girl! It's still a process for us.
Kevin Wallace: One of the things I want to come out of this, and I shared this with the staff in pastor's meeting this week, is I want to come out of this some marriage resources. One of the things, and we'll talk about other resources, one of the things I really want us to come out of this with as we begin this help, and therapy, and strengthening for marriages is some marriage coaches in our church that can help younger couples who might be struggling. Because how many know if you're struggling in marriage, you don't need to hang around people and get advice from people who are struggling in marriage?
Audience: That's right.
Kevin Wallace: You need to get around people that have been married 50 years and learn how to deal with it. I mean they learn how to have a healthy marriage.
Kevin Wallace: The first thing that I want you to know that we prayed about last night at prayer is that the walls that always go up when we talk about marriage in the church, we've already prayed the Holy Spirit disarm those. You can sit up there and look funny if you want to, but God's still going to deal with you, because the Spirit of God loves you too much and loves us too much to allow us to walk through marriage and the journey of marriage always broken, always upset, always hating marriage. How many know God intended for you to enjoy marriage?
Kevin Wallace: Okay. If you don't believe that, that's one of the things we want to talk about today. I don't know how far we're going to get, but I do know that we're going to come out of this with some resources for marriage, coaching for marriages. Some of our seasoned, established marriages in this church, I want them to be at times available and accessible for people who need some help. I wouldn't call it counseling. I would call it encouraging and advising. That's something that we're going to bring out of this.
Kevin Wallace: Genesis chapter 2, verse 18. "And the Lord God said, It is not good that man should be alone. I will make him a helper." Somebody say helper.
Kevin Wallace: "Comparable to him. Out of the ground, the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. Whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. Adam gave names to all the cattle, to the birds of the air, to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him. The Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept. He took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and he brought her to the man." Thank you, Lord.
Kevin Wallace: "Adam said, This is now bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh. She shall be called woman." Say woman.
Kevin Wallace: The word woman is literally the combination of two words, womb, man. A woman is a wombed man. She has the womb. How many know men don't have a womb? It's the sisters. All the ladies in the house say yeah.
Kevin Wallace: Y'all the one that got the womb, because you are the wombed man. You're the woman. God gave you the womb. That's important. "Because she was taken out of man. Therefore, a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh."
Kevin Wallace: Verse 25, "And they were both naked." Uh-oh. "The man and his wife, and they were not ashamed." Somebody say not ashamed.
Audience: Not ashamed.
Kevin Wallace: We're going to talk about marriage, and we're going to talk about relationships, and we're going to do this today because I believe God spoke to my heart and said he's going to touch, strengthen, heal, and cause marriages to go to a place in him they've never experienced before. If you need that, want that, desire that to happen in your house, say amen.
Kevin Wallace: Jesus, would you help Deven and I today. Would you help every marriage, every married couple in this place today, and all the single brothers and sisters in the house today, God, would you give them wisdom and would you give them revelation to help them from making the greatest mistake of their life. I pray, God, you'll give them direction and speak to us by your Spirit through your Word. In Jesus' name, and the people of God said amen.
Kevin Wallace: You may be seated. Now, whatever we believe and teach about marriage, I believe it must flow from and lead back to the revelation of Christ and the church. Something happening right there, yeah. The creation of marriage I believe was three fold. How many know that marriage was not a societal evolution, it wasn't something that Adam thought about one day? It wasn't like Adam was living and then he saw Eve and was like, "Oh, let's see how this'll work out." How many know God created marriage?
Kevin Wallace: Marriage was God's idea. It was his creation. It was his invention. First of all, you need to recognize that marriage came from God. I believe it came for three reasons. That was not one of them. No, it's not that. I'm telling y'all, this is supposed to be said today. I'll throw that thing in the Tennessee River before it hinders what God wants to say today, amen. Okay.
Kevin Wallace: Marriage was God's creation, and I believe he created marriage for three reasons. You're just going to have to flow, because I know you get these bombs and you just drop bombs on us. I want you to let them rip whenever you see them and hear them in your heart, okay?
Kevin Wallace: Number one, God gave us marriage for companionship. Number two, to produce revelation of Christ and his love for the church. Number three, to operate in co-dominion. Take your notes, and you need to take notes today and however long we talk about this.
Kevin Wallace: Number one, on the personal and relational level, God created marriage so that we would not be alone and so that we could have companionship on the personal and relational level. Number two, on the spiritual level, say spiritual level.
Audience: Spiritual level.
Kevin Wallace: Marriage was created to produce and give revelation of Christ's love for the church. In the Old Testament, the marriage of Adam and Eve in the Old Testament is used by the writers of the New Testament because they recognized that what happened in Eden between Adam and Eve was really a prophetic picture of what would happen in the future with Christ and the church.
Kevin Wallace: How many know that when the first Adam came, the first Adam in the garden, the Bible said God went into Adam's side, took a rib out, and from the side of Adam he took a rib and created woman? In other words, woman was created out of the side of the first Adam. If you fast forward to the New Testament, hanging on the cross, the last Adam is hanging between heaven and earth. The Roman soldier didn't understand the prophetic implication of stabbing him in the side with a spear. When he stabbed him in the side with a spear, out of his side came water and blood. With the blood that came out of his side, he purchased the church. With the water that came out of his side, he washed and cleansed the church.
Kevin Wallace: See, what Adam did in the Old Testament with Eve in the Garden of Eden, what God did through Adam and Eve was give us a prophetic picture of what the church and Christ and their union and covenant would look like. I want you to understand that this is all about love and intimacy from creation to revelation.
Kevin Wallace: Look at this. The first chapter of the book of the Bible in creation, first and second chapter, first book of the Bible, there's a wedding between Adam and Eve. First miracle Jesus ever worked in John's gospel, the second chapter, was at a what?
Audience: A wedding.
Kevin Wallace: A wedding. The book of revelation, the last book of the Bible, what's going to happen in the end between the Lamb and the bride?
Audience: A wedding.
Kevin Wallace: A wedding. It's all about intimacy and covenant. From the beginning to the end, it's all about intimacy and covenant. We see that on a personal and relational level, marriage was created by God for companionship. On a spiritual level, marriage was given so that we could have a prophetic understanding and revelation of Christ and his love for the church. Then on a kingdom level, marriage was given so that we could operate in co-dominion. There's a kingdom implication of man and woman coming together. "Be fruitful and multiply." How many know you can't be fruitful and you sure can't multiply without having a spouse?
Kevin Wallace: Okay. Y'all are not talking to me today. This is one of the reasons I taught this before, and I don't want to offend nobody, but it's true. This is one of the reasons that the lifestyle of homosexuality is such an issue for us to deal with. It's because if you follow that out to the Nth degree, there is no reproduction and remultiplying of sons and daughters on the earth.
Audience: Amen. That's right.
Kevin Wallace: It's one of the greatest lies concocted in hell is that it's just an alternative lifestyle. No, it's not. Satan is nervous about the reproduction of sons and daughters. Why? Because it would always be through the reproduction of sons and daughters that authority from heaven would invade the hearts of humanity and keep the devil in place. You better say something in here.
Audience: Come on! Preach!
Kevin Wallace: There's this issue of the reason of marriage. Now, before I get into the details of marriage, let me say something to all the single people in the house. One more time, all the single people holler at me real quick.
Kevin Wallace: Okay. Let me suggest several things for you to consider to the single people in the house. Number one, singleness is not a curse.
Audience: That's right. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: Singleness is not a curse. It's actually an opportunity, because so many times I hear precious young people who say something like, "I'm waiting on my spouse because I'm looking to complete myself, and I want to find my identity." Well, listen. Shante and Bubba are not going to help you find your identity, okay. Identity must be discovered in the person of Jesus Christ. Singleness is not a curse, so quit walking around going to weddings droopy and down all the time that you ain't found yours yet. You ought to bless the Lord that you hadn't settled for something that didn't belong to you and understand that your singleness is an opportunity to serve the Lord.
Kevin Wallace: I believe the greatest fuel for the engine of revival in a local church ought to be the ability to tap into the free time that single people have to serve, and to fast, and to pray. Y'all not saying ... All the single people backed up on me right there. Did you feel that? When you get married, you do not have as much time.
Audience: Amen. Preach!
Kevin Wallace: When you have kids, I need some witnesses in here, because I've got religious people looking at me funny. When you get married and have kids, it's a whole nother level of time.
Kevin Wallace: Say something for the Lord. Okay, okay. Number one, singleness is not a curse. Number two, you ready for this? Don't hate on me. Fulfill your purpose in singleness as long as you can. Listen to this. Adam ruled the planet for God, named all the animals and the creatures, and established the animal kingdom before Eve ever came. He had something to do before he got married. Part of the reason you can't have your spouse yet is you ain't busy doing what God wanted you to do before he could send you ...
Kevin Wallace: Okay, okay, okay. Okay. Number three, I'm moving along. Single people, where y'all at?
Kevin Wallace: Number three, your mate comes while you're resting.
Audience: Amen. Preach. Come on.
Kevin Wallace: Your mate comes while you are resting. Resting in what? Resting in God's pleasure in you and your life, resting in your identity in him. Please hear me. Adam ruled for God in the garden doing what God called him to do before he ever knew God had Eve in mind. Can you serve the Lord and enjoy it before you ever meet the woman or the man of your dreams?
Deven Wallace: Yes.
Kevin Wallace: Go ahead, baby.
Deven Wallace: Let me just say too to the single people, I did an exercise when I was a teenager. If you've done it, it's totally fine. I'm not trying to knock it, but we made a list. I don't know if anybody ever made a list of what you thought your future mate should be or you wanted them to be. Don't raise your hand and incriminate yourself, because I'm about to bust the list.
Deven Wallace: So many times, we don't trust God with that decision. If we look at the book of Genesis, I can't imagine what Eve would have turned out like if God had allowed him to help create her, but he didn't. If Adam had been awake and had been active in the process, we don't really know what Eve would turn out like.
Kevin Wallace: Lord, have mercy.
Deven Wallace: In this story, we find out that God knows what we need more than we do. He just put Adam on to sleep, and he made Eve according to his fashion, not Adam's fashion, and presented her as a gift. Just crumple your little list and say, "God, I trust you." I promise you, sometimes what you think you need God knows you don't, and sometimes what you don't want God knows it's exactly what you need. You've got to trust God to bring your mate to you. Is that okay?
Kevin Wallace: What are you trying to say? No, no, no. It's exactly right. This is why it's just so good when she comes up and teaches that, because the reality of it is this, family. How many know that sometimes your flesh wants something that your future don't need?
Audience: Come on. Come on. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: Come on. Touch your neighbor and tell them, "Go to sleep."
Audience: Go to sleep.
Deven Wallace: Let God have his way.
Kevin Wallace: Do you know when Deven and I ... This is a true story. When Deven and I finally got together is when I let go of it. I don't mean like I let go of her. You could never forget her. Lord, she must be tired, because she's been running through my mind all her life. I could never forget here, but there come a time when I said, "This is not happening like I thought it was going to happen, and I'm just moving on." The problem is God didn't want me to move on and I didn't want to move on. I just wanted to make it happen in my time and my way.
Audience: Say that!
Kevin Wallace: Something in me had to go to sleep until it was God's timing for us to come together. Amen?
Deven Wallace: Yeah.
Kevin Wallace: Go ahead, baby.
Deven Wallace: Yeah. Let me just say something else, just prompted to say it. Even those that are married or maybe you're already engaged or you're dating, remember that God is the former, God is the creator. You don't need to put your hands on his creation to reform it into what you want. We have to love the image of God and how he's made it. When you find yourself in a pattern where someone is trying to form you for God or you feel pressured to be formed by the hands of a person, a change comes. We've been married since we were really young, and we've changed, but it's been the hand of God that's changed us, not our hands on each other.
Kevin Wallace: We tried that.
Deven Wallace: Yeah. It's not the way to go. You've got to let the creator form them in the image he's created them to be. Yeah? Is that okay?
Kevin Wallace: Yes, Lord. Okay. That's good. No, that's good.
Kevin Wallace: Number four, there comes a point when God said it isn't good for single people to be alone. Until that point, it's good for single people to be alone.
Audience: Amen. Amen. That's good.
Kevin Wallace: Do you understand this? I read it to you in Genesis. I know this is simple, but catch it. Genesis 2, Adam names the whole animal kingdom. He's running the entire Earth for God. There comes a point in all that where God said, "It's not good for you to be alone." Until God said it's not good for you to be alone, it's good for you to be alone. God knows when it's not good for you to be alone anymore. Come on. Look at your neighbor and tell them, "He'll let you know."
Audience: He'll let you know.
Kevin Wallace: Because some people in here need to hear that, because they think it's not good to be alone. Until you can discover the purpose in singleness, you're not ready for togetherness.
Audience: Amen. You're right.
Kevin Wallace: Number five, I'm done here. Where all the single people at?
Kevin Wallace: I'm getting a lot of echo and stuff over here. I feel like there's some activity happening in the Spirit over here. Number five, Adam lost a rib to have his wife. Marriage will cost you something.
Audience: Yeah. Come on. Come on. Amen. Preach.
Kevin Wallace: It may not cost you your rib, but I know it will sure enough cost you your pride. I wrote down here if you can't say, "I'm sorry," and if you can't say, "My bad," you are not ready for marriage. That's good preaching, Pastor.
Kevin Wallace: For many of us who didn't know that marriage cost us something, now we're beginning to understand why marriage is so challenging sometimes, because it often costs something we're not willing to pay. Marriage will always cost you something. For those who are single in here, know that before you get into it and take consideration of the cost marriage costs to make sure you're willing to pay it.
Kevin Wallace: For those who are married already and say, "I wrote a check on my marriage day with my mouth that my heart can't cash," you say, "Pastor, what do I do if I'm in marriage now and I'm finding out I'm not willing to pay the price?" Let me help you understand. There is a revelation of God's love in this thing called marriage that you're struggling through that is going to be the greatest revelation of love that ever came to you, and it's going to come out of your greatest struggle. Go ahead, baby.
Deven Wallace: Yeah. The greatest cost of marriage is pride, but it's also a wonderful gift. When God said it was not good for man to be alone, and that's a joke, but woman was the first solution to a problem, and we continue to be the solution to every problem.
Audience: Yeah! Woo!
Kevin Wallace: See here. The flesh.
Deven Wallace: Sorry. It's just what God did. He had a problem and he thought, "Woman." What happens is we find that God is painting the picture of his bride and himself, and that it was never his purpose for us to accomplish very much alone.
Kevin Wallace: That's good.
Deven Wallace: There is a point you can be productive, but you'll never reach the full potential of who you're all to be alone. That's why pride has to die. We get an independent spirit. We get an independent spirit and we think, "Well, I don't need him," or, "I don't need her. I'm God's daughter. I'm God's son. I can do it all by myself."
Kevin Wallace: That's so good.
Deven Wallace: That is why God made marriage. It's just the same way in the church, even with your own ministry, your own calling. We want to get an independent spirit. We don't think we need the church. We don't think we need that, but God made us a body so we would work together. We see that in the book of Genesis. The first thing that has to die is that independence, and we have to realize our destinies are tied together.
Kevin Wallace: That's good.
Deven Wallace: We actually need each other to accomplish what's in our heart. We as a church, we actually need each other to accomplish what's in our heart.
Kevin Wallace: That's so good, baby, so good. That's so good. Okay.
Kevin Wallace: There's no real ... I struggled with how to present what I felt in my heart, because it comes from several different streams. I feel like one reason Satan attacks marriage is because it is the express purpose, plan, and revelation of God and his love and his idea of man and woman operating in co-dominion as kings and priests of the Lord on the planet. Satan hates when couples come together and operate in unity and love. It is why a number of precious people in this room are struggling in your marriage. It is not because he's type A and you're type B. It is because Satan seeks to exploit the differences, he seeks to exploit the failures and the weaknesses of each of you.
Kevin Wallace: If you hear this message today and you think, "Oh, thank God. Oh, praise God, Bishop and Lady are talking to him," you already missed what we said. If you're sitting there talking about, "Oh, he's going to get her. Praise the Lord. Today they're going to help her out," we're talking to y'all. Because the fact of the matter is both of y'all bring something to the table and have certain things you need to get off the table.
Kevin Wallace: What we want to do ... I can tell you that by experience, because there was a season in our life. You have to know this about me. I know some of y'all think I'm still churchy, but I was real churchy and very religious. Girl. When we first started in marriage, I got married the day I turned 20. She was still 19. I was preaching 270 times a year when we got married. I was a full time evangelist.
Kevin Wallace: She'll tell you this. Our first date was at a revival. I didn't even hardly know her. We're driving to preach. It's our first date. I look over at her and I'm like, "I don't know what you're going to do, but I'm fixing to turn the music up and pray in the Holy Ghost, because I'm getting ready to preach." She was like, "What?"
Kevin Wallace: Our first date, I'm holding her hand and I don't even know her daddy's name yet. I'm like [Tongues 00:24:38] and she's over there. It wasn't no A&W, wasn't no root beer, wasn't no hamburger. It was casting devils out, and healing the sick, and raising the dead. That was our first date.
Kevin Wallace: When we got married, when we first got married, the first revival we ever went to, I'll never forget this. You have to know, Deven is so not churchy and religious like I was. The first place we went, I made her sing a song.
Deven Wallace: Don't. Don't.
Kevin Wallace: I'm not going to. I'll tell them the song. It was an old, old, old southern gospel song called UFOs, "There's going to be a whole lot of identified flying objects." It wasn't even scripturally correct, but my God, they shouted all over the church that night. I mean we had church. She was singing and bitter. They were shouting and falling out.
Kevin Wallace: The real fallout happened when we got in the car on the way home. True story. She looked at me and said, "I cannot do that the rest of my life. That is not what you married." You know me. I'm like, "Oh, no, Satan. I bind you deceiving my wife. [Tongues 00:25:55]. She is going to be anointed to sing. Receive it, girl!" She looked at me like this.
Kevin Wallace: My point on it is this. Where were we at? My God, I got off. Hold on. This is good. This is good. Yes. Marriage came from God. Marriage came from God. Okay.
Kevin Wallace: All these different streams that attack marriage, all these different streams of attack come, and it's subtle. It's not like the enemy knocks on the door of your house and say, "Hey, I came in to wreck your marriage and divide your family."
Audience: Go ahead, preach.
Kevin Wallace: It happens right here. Most of us never address right here, which is why there's so much strife in marriage sometimes. I want to give you, if we can get to them today ... Yeah, we've got a few minutes. Number one, this isn't like a narrative sermon. This is more what we would call this is topical. There's different kinds of sermons. There are narrative sermons where you take a text and you preach the text as it's written in the Bible. There are other messages like topical sermons where you take a topic and you address things topically that are all over the Word. That's what this is.
Kevin Wallace: The first thing I want to encourage you to do, some of you are struggling in this house in marriage. Some of you watching by online, by livestream, you may be struggling in marriage. Some single people in here need to write this down and file it. Number one, evict strife.
Audience: Yes. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: Now, I'm going to read you some scripture and I want to talk about some things. I thought I would end with this, but it's so heavy I'm going to hit it and then I'm going to end with something happy, okay? Because this is a heavy one to end with. All right, James 3. Go to your Bible. Go to your Bible. Go to James 3 and then go to Ephesians chapter 4. Can you go to those two places please? Okay.
Kevin Wallace: James 3, verses 14 through 16 and then Ephesians 4:26. Okay, we're going to go to those two places. Let's look at this. Look at your neighbor. Tell them, "Evict strife."
Audience: Evict strife.
Kevin Wallace: If your spouse is the one that you just said that to and there's strife, you felt strife come up in you right when I told you to say it, right? Evict strife.
Kevin Wallace: James 3:14, "But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your heart, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, and demonic." Verse 16, look at this. Don't miss this. I'm going to put two scriptures together and I hope to give you a revelation of something that I pray will bless your life. "For where," say where.
Kevin Wallace: Where. Where is a word to describe a location. It could be anywhere. It could be in a local church, but how many know it could be in your bedroom?
Audience: Right. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: It could be in your car. It could be on your job. It could be at your house. "Wherever envy and strife are," or self-seeking. One translation, New King James, says self-seeking. King James says strife. "Where envy and strife exist, confusion and-"
Audience: Every evil.
Kevin Wallace: "Every evil thing." You mean you can get to every evil thing simply by opening the door of envy and strife? Now, let me put line upon line, precept on precept. Go to Ephesians 4. Baby, if you've got something, let it go. We've got to hear it. Let me go back while you're turning to Ephesians 4. Listen to the Passion Translation rendering of James 3. "Wherever jealously and selfishness are uncovered, you will find many troubles and every kind of meanness."
Kevin Wallace: You ever said that to your spouse, "You're so mean"? Have you ever felt like the kids in the house were all mean? Like the dog was mean. Like there was just meanness all in the house. Why? Because when you let strife in, all kind of meanness breaks out. I mean it just disrupts the entire ecosystem of the house, right?
Kevin Wallace: Watch this. Ephesians 4:26. When you've got it, say amen.
Kevin Wallace: "In your anger, do not sin." Now, that says several different things to me. Number one, it says, "In your anger, do not sin," but it also indicates you could be angry and not sin.
Audience: That's right. Amen. That's right.
Kevin Wallace: Sometimes you think and I think that when our spouse gets angry that that's necessarily a bad thing, but anger is actually an emotion permitted by God.
Audience: Amen. Amen. That's right.
Kevin Wallace: The issue is that there's a line God calls you to stop at in your anger, and if you cross that line you actually become guilty of being angry and sinning.
Audience: Amen. Come on.
Kevin Wallace: There have been times I did really stupid things in our marriage, and she got angry. The religious me rose up, "How dare you? I am the man of God. You see my belt buckle? I am the man of God in this house. How dare you be angry?" Actually, she was justified in her anger.
Kevin Wallace: You can be angry at time. The problem is not anger. The problem is when it gets out of control and you merge into the lane of now you go from being mad to envisioning how you could kill him. I see y'all acting holy. Y'all can't foll nobody. You start acting out the revenge in your mind. "I'm going to get him like this. I'm going to get her like this." That's where you begin to sin.
Kevin Wallace: Watch this. Let me keep reading, because I'm going to show you something. "Do not let the sun go down on your wrath." We can talk about that. Watch verse 27, "And do not give the devil a foothold." Now, I know that says in the New King James ... Put the NIV up, Chad. I don't usually take time to make you change the translation, but I want you to put the New International Translation up, the NIV, the nearly inspired version. Okay.
Kevin Wallace: "Do not give the devil a foothold." Now, this is an issue. What the Bible is telling us is that when you let strife and anger come into your house, it becomes like an open door for all manner of evil. Give me about four people. Yeah, come here. Come here, PJ. Yep, yep. Pastor Tobin, you sit down. You danced too much today. You're tired. Come on. Come on, stand up here, right here. I love you. You're my favorite.
Deven Wallace: They're all single.
Kevin Wallace: Okay, watch this.
Deven Wallace: Yeah. They're all single.
Kevin Wallace: Watch this. Watch this. This is the door in your house, okay. It's supposed to be a door that the blessing of the Lord comes in through. How many want your house to be blessed?
Kevin Wallace: How many know that the key for God to command blessing on your house is found in Psalm 133? "Behold how beautiful it is when husband and wife dwell together in unity. It is like the precious oil that come down the head of Aaron, all the way down his beard to the skirts of his garments, like the dew that rests upon Herman." I'm in Psalm 133. "Like the dew that rests upon Hermon, that falls upon Mount Zion, for there," where? "Where God has commanded the blessing is a place of unity." When you, sir and ma'am, walk together in love, and harmony, and unity, you actually open the door for blessing to come into your house and rest upon you, and your spouse, and your children.
Audience: Amen. Yes.
Kevin Wallace: But when you let strife open the door, you can't really see this. Let me see. Let me see here. See that little thing right there? See that? It's called a foothold. It's like a doorstop. Strife is that little kick stop on the door that keeps the door open for the enemy to bring in jealousy, depression, sickness, anger and revenge. Give me some more people. I've got some more sins. Come on. Come on. Come on.
Kevin Wallace: Then what happens is ... Tim, you're coming up here all swole and stuff. Come on. Then what happens is the kids don't want to go to church, live right, do good in school. Then you open up the door and nobody's talking, nobody's loving. It's just this atmosphere of anger and rage. That's who you are. You're rage.
Kevin Wallace: You would think ... Come back around the front. You would think ... No, no, no. Come back around this side, sweet girl. Yeah, yeah, yeah. You would think after the first indication that anger, and rage, and pain came into your house and started wreaking havoc, you would think that somebody would shut the door and be like, "Oh, no, devil." Where are the women at in here, the mama bears?
Kevin Wallace: "Oh, no, devil. You're not going to destroy my marriage, or my family, or my kids, my mama and them, none of us." You would think somebody would shut the door on the devil, but there's a problem. Strife is that one little kick stop that keeps the door open, and the enemy just keeps sending one attack. Y'all not helping me.
Audience: Preach. Yeah.
Kevin Wallace: Today, we've got to deal not with the door. We don't have to deal with the handle. We need to deal with that one little thing keeping you from, [Tongues 00:37:24], from shutting the door on the enemy. Y'all are the best.
Kevin Wallace: It's called strife. There have been times when I knew I did something dumb, and she was red flamingo mad. Now there are pink flamingos. Deven's never been pink. When she gets mad, it's red. Instead of going to her and saying, "My bad. I'm sorry," I walked around like, "How dare you?"
Audience: Amen. Go ahead, preach.
Kevin Wallace: Staying mad. Then the worst thing is that there's some people dumb enough in here to think that sex and intimacy are the way to get over it. All right, y'all can't handle this thing. This thing just went to like 0 to 20 like bam. You know y'all got strife, and you're actually trying to be like, "Girl, girl." Nope. The red flamingo, she's not feeling that one today. You understand?
Kevin Wallace: The thing to do when strife comes in is to acknowledge your part in the strife and to consider her point of view. I wrote a note down. This was so good. Say what you need to say, baby, while I'm looking for this. The Lord bless you with something? Okay.
Kevin Wallace: The Greek word for jealousy in verse 16 of James 3, the Greek word for jealously, listen to this, implies an obsession to promote one's self at the expense of the other person.
Audience: Wow. Amen. Wow.
Kevin Wallace: It's self promotion. When you get in a strife battle, you are promoting yourself and your agenda without considering that of your spouse. I told you before we started this journey marriage will cost you something.
Deven Wallace: Well, when the Word says for the sun not to go down on your anger, this is a really interesting scripture. For those of you that are Bible nerds like me and you like to just really dive into the Word, God's super smart and everything he does, science and technology, is only really mimicking what God has already done. One of these things is with this scripture. Psychology actually proves the thoughts you think before you go to sleep actually stick with you when you wake up the next day.
Kevin Wallace: Wow.
Deven Wallace: They're the most prevalent thoughts in your mind. It's why child prodigies who are movie stars and they can't read, they read their lines at bedtime. That's how child movie stars learn to memorize their lines. What God is actually doing is pointing to his knowledge of the human psyche and the fact that if you go to bed mad, you wake up the next day mad.
Kevin Wallace: Come on.
Deven Wallace: Those thoughts go from just being ideas across your brain to then they begin to determine your next thoughts and they actually begin to shape your emotions. They begin to imprint your feelings towards someone. If we really actually just practiced the Word, you would pay for a lot less counseling.
Deven Wallace: He just really-
Kevin Wallace: What you're saying is if we go to bed happy, we wake up happy.
Deven Wallace: Yes.
Kevin Wallace: Girl, I just learned something up in here. I feel a breakthrough coming. Oh, my. I love y'all. See y'all next Sunday. Come on. I'm going to bed happy tonight. Woo! Okay, okay. Girl, woo. I need a fan next Sunday. Is that your red jacket? No, that's my red face, right?
Kevin Wallace: Okay, last one. I'm going to save the rest of this for next Sunday. I'm going to save the rest of this for next Sunday. This is very important. You have to set boundaries. Boundaries are ... Listen to me very carefully. Boundaries are not intended to be limitations. They are intended to provide freedom.
Audience: Yes. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: When God looked at Adam and said, "Don't eat the fruit off that tree," if you listen religiously you think, "Oh, God's trying to keep him from something," but you miss the fact God told him he could eat anything else he wanted.
Audience: That's right. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: Boundaries are permission to enjoy all that God has for you and to know what is yours. Boundaries are given so that you can know what is yours and know what is not yours.
Audience: Yes. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: Let me give you some practical things right here. There can be no hint of sexual immorality ever. Paul said, "Don't let it be named once among you."
Audience: That's right.
Kevin Wallace: Let me get real, real personal here and go into your business. You should never meet with the opposite sex by yourself.
Audience: Amen. Preach.
Kevin Wallace: You say, "Pastor, what about a lunch meeting?" I know that some of your jobs require that, and I understand that, but private one-on-one meetings where no people are around-
Audience: Preach it. Come on.
Kevin Wallace: Thank you. You say, "Pastor, I'm strong." I'm not questioning your integrity. I'm questioning your wisdom.
Audience: Amen. That's good.
Kevin Wallace: Joseph never committed adultery with Potiphar's wife, but he just got alone with her and she was able to frame him, and take his coat, and tell everybody in the kingdom, "He tried to rape me." Was that in Sunday school today? Yeah. You've got to be careful that you don't let your good be evil spoken of.
Kevin Wallace: We tell our children all the time, Billy Graham would never get on an elevator with a person of the opposite sex alone. If he was ever on an elevator alone and a woman got on, he always stepped off and waited for somebody to come, a multitude. There's got to be protection. Okay.
Kevin Wallace: I mean Christopher will tell you. Chris is my assistant and he runs the security of the church. He will tell you, I do not meet with ladies alone ever. You say, "Pastor, this is a new day." Nope. That's a new lie. That's a new lie. This has nothing to do with your integrity. It has to do with your wisdom.
Kevin Wallace: Number two, keep the marriage bed pure. Intimacy and love should only be expressed between you and your spouse. Now, why do I have to say that? Because we're living in a crazy day, church.
Kevin Wallace: I mean the wildest, most bizarre, lustful, kinky mess you can imagine is happening in church. Now, you think I'm kidding you and this is a holiness unto the Lord, this house. I pray it be a holy house unto God, and I want it to be known for being dedicated and consecrated unto the Lord, but we're living in a day where what used to shame people in the church, now they just talk about it like it's just acceptable everywhere.
Audience: Amen. Come on, preach.
Kevin Wallace: Pornography should never be brought into your marriage.
Kevin Wallace: Ever. "Well, she said she's all right with it." I don't care what she said. He said keep that mess out of your house, because the reason some people struggle with intimacy is that ... Oh, God, do we want to go here today?
Audience: Yes, preach. Go ahead.
Kevin Wallace: Is because we have men addicted to porn, and they want to turn their wives into the people they've been addicted to, and she'll never be what you saw on that image. I'm not being critical right now. I'm not beating up men or women, because if you think brothers are the only ones that struggle with pornography, you haven't been reading your news lately. This is a lust fight that we're all having to continually hit it right in the mouth, because the church is not immune from the effects of pornography, but it has no place in your house. No place in your marriage.
Kevin Wallace: Keep your marriage bed pure. No hint of sexual immorality even. Walk in the light. Confess and forgive. The enemy must be exposed so that you can walk together.
Audience: Yes. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: I'm saying so much, and this deserves to be unpacked. Maybe next week we can continue to unpack this more, but let me just say this to you on forgiveness. B.L. Kelley used to tell me all the time, "Respect is free. Trust is earned."
Audience: Amen. Come on.
Kevin Wallace: I respect everybody, but there's some people who've come into my life that have stabbed me in the back enough times, and when I turn around I look at you in my rear view mirror. Why? I'm not talking about people in here. I'm just talking about in life. Trust is earned. In marriage, you've got to be very careful that you don't expect your spouse to give you a trust you haven't earned.
Kevin Wallace: How do I earn trust? Transparency. If you're always hiding something, no wonder she can't trust you or he can't trust you.
Audience: Amen. Preach.
Kevin Wallace: Okay. Then number five, or four, practice accountability. Facebook ... I'm getting ready to make some people real mad right here. Y'all like, "Oh, it's chicken time." Listen. Practice accountability. Facebook, messages, texting, the enemy always hides in darkness. "But that's my account!" You lost that when you got married. Remember, I told you marriage costs you something. "But that's my account. She can't come into my account." Fool, listen. She can come into whatever you've got.
Kevin Wallace: If you're single and you act like your mess is off limits, please do us all a favor. Don't get married til you lose that kind attitude.
Audience: That's right. Amen. Preach. That's good.
Kevin Wallace: Because one of the things that keeps you from doing something really stupid, not only the Holy Spirit working on your heart, but the fact that accountability is in place. I will tell you this. On all of my devices, my technology devices, the iPad, the iPhone, the iMac, everything we've got, me and my two sons, we all have what is called Covenant Eyes installed.
Kevin Wallace: Every time, Josh ... where you at, Pastor Josh? Is he still in here? He's probably getting ready for forage. Pastor Josh is my accountability partner. Every single week, he gets a report of every site that I went to. If I went to a no-no site, it has a red flag on it. I don't go to no-no sites, but one of the reasons I don't go to no-no sites is because I recognize I'm accountable to every one of you in this room and I'm accountable to this young lady sitting beside me. I'm accountable to my children, and I want to walk circumspectly, open before the Lord.
Kevin Wallace: I want to tell you this. I never shared this with you before. I never shared this with the church before. There was a time in my distant past I struggled with pornography. In fact, God gave me a book and I'm writing it. I'm working on it and I have been for some time. I don't want a ghostwriter writing it. It's taking me a long time because it comes to me in waves. But there are many people who've been torn by porn, and I believe there is coming a grace of healing on this generation, because I believe if you ever look at when the news released the most visited sites on the internet, you have ESPN, Fox News, CNN, all of those, but by far, almost three to one, the visits on sites are to porn sites.
Kevin Wallace: I recently read an article that said this. I couldn't believe it, but I imagine it is somehow true. Five in 10 people in the church claim that they monthly visit pornography. If that is the fact and the case, no wonder we're struggling to find authority in the Spirit and power in God, because with that spirit comes a shame that keeps you bound and always feeling like a prisoner. [Tongues 00:50:32]
Kevin Wallace: I want us to declare war on impurity in our generation, and to do it not only by staying in the altar til God changes us, but even having accountability mechanisms and measures in our life so that we know there is a council, there is a community, there are people who care about us.
Kevin Wallace: I want to tell you right now. Some of you are living to bondage to that. I want to tell you there is no shame, but there is a mandate for you to come to the truth and to come out of that. I want to go as far ... I feel like God is just nudging me to say this. Some of you, it happened because of something that happened very early in your life and a door got opened in your heart to something you should have never seen before. I want to tell you today, God can reach down and lay his hand on that place and that wound in your heart and heal you and set you free from that.
Audience: Amen. Yes, he can. Yes, he can.
Kevin Wallace: Anything you want to say? I want to pray for you today. I'm going to be done for today. I think that's a right place to stop right now. I want to pray for two groups of people, and one I don't want to bring any shame so I'm not going to say if you're struggling with pornography come to the altar, because that can at times ... At times and moments, it's right to do that. In other times, in a moment like this, I'm not sure that's the most pastorally wise thing for me to do.
Kevin Wallace: There are people in this room that can testify God can free you from pornography. I want you to know that it is not normal. Don't accept the lie that this is just who you am. You were created in the image of God. You were given the promise of dominion and authority. Nothing should have dominion over you. You are called to have dominion over it.
Kevin Wallace: The wound and the open door that some of you experienced even as an early child that impressed your mind in ways that it was not intended by God, that's why Deven and I try to be so careful. We've not always succeeded in our kids not being exposed and vulnerable to things that we were like, "Close your eyes. Close your eyes. You can't see that." Why? Because if they see it as a child, how many know you can't get that image back out of their mind?
Kevin Wallace: We have to be careful. God can heal that.
Kevin Wallace: The second thing I want to pray for today are married couples in this place who need to evict strife. Marriage was given by God. It was intended for you both to enjoy. You were never called to marry someone so that they could discipline out of you the craziness in you.
Kevin Wallace: I never will forget a season in our life. We were really struggling in our marriage, really struggling. I looked at her, and she said something, it cut me to the heart. I don't even remember what it was, but when she cuts you, I'm talking cut. I looked at her one day. I said, "You know what? I am so sick of feeling like I married my thorn in the flesh." She didn't know what to say. I thought for 30 seconds, "Boom!" Then I felt so bad. That ain't nice. That's mean.
Kevin Wallace: Because I'm going to tell you right now, all this in here, and all that happens in this community, and all that happens on this property, and all that happens with our sons and daughters, and our kids, and the administration of this church, it would fall apart without her. It would fall apart without her. True story. True story.
Kevin Wallace: My gift is preaching the gospel and being a visionary leader. I am not a great administrator. I am not a great details person. I'm not A, B, C, D. I love kids, but there are times I'm like, "Okay. It's time to go. I'll see y'all next week." Deven has a gift. She really feels like kids are an arrow that can be sharpened and formed, and she just pours her life into that. She poured her life and pours her life into our four and to many other students and leaders, kids in this church, in this community.
Kevin Wallace: I often, when the enemy tries to come in and say, "You know, Kevin, you can do this," there have been times the enemy tried to say, "You know." How many know the enemy will talk to you sometimes?
Audience: Yeah, amen. That's right.
Kevin Wallace: When you properly identify it as the enemy, you can shut it down, but there are times you think, "Man, are we right?" I mean there have been seasons in our life where I thought, "Are we really right for each other? We're so different." It's the differences that remind us of why God put us together, because she is a powerful preacher, but if she would have been a visionary leader and always saying, "We're going somewhere," and no details, we would have seven people in our church, because she helps get the job done. It's a help meet.
Kevin Wallace: I want to pray for you, because some of you, you're letting strife and pride ruin your marriage. You say, "Pastor, I wanted to go deeper. We need more principles." You need to get rid of strife today. Next Sunday, we'll give you some principles. Go home and kick it out of your house. It's a doorstop that's keeping the door open, and every evil work is allowed to come in. Stop rebuking the enemy you sent an invitation to.
Audience: Wow. That's good. Preach it.
Kevin Wallace: You sent him an invitation. You rang the bell. "We're in strife. Y'all come on, attack." You can't rebuke the enemy you invited.
Audience: That's right. Amen.
Kevin Wallace: You say, "Pastor, my marriage has been a wreck 20 years." Listen. I'm going to pray that the less 20 years as so good, you forget about the first 20.
Audience: That's right. Amen. Come on.
Kevin Wallace: Because here's what we believe. We believe God can touch and heal any marriage.
Kevin Wallace: Lord, first of all, God, I just sincerely thank you for Deven. The times, Lord, that I get frustrated, the times in our marriage when we forget how blessed we are, forgive us for those times. Let us be reminded of the fact that he that finds a wife finds a good thing. Thank you for my good thing, Lord.
Kevin Wallace: I pray for marriages today, God. Deven and I both pray for people who are living with strife in their house. This rage, this jealous envy, this boiling bitterness, this boiling frustration, always uptight, always on edge, it's an invitation to our enemy to bring every evil work in. Today, I pray that the foothold, the doorstop would just be removed. Let humility and forgiveness prevail in the mighty name of Jesus.
Kevin Wallace: The second thing, Lord, I pray for today are our brothers and sisters in this room who are struggling with pornography. Impurity has come into their house. Impurity has come into their life. I thank you first of all, God, for the grace to cleanse us and to forgive us, to break every chain over our lives. If the Son makes us free, we're free indeed.
Kevin Wallace: I pray now that sweet conviction yet holy conviction would come, that you would just begin to put your finger on these places in us that you are wanting more for us and from us. Lord, I hear the Lord saying this. For those who will just come to God today and ask him to cleanse you and forgive you, and you've got that person in your life that you can tell anything to that you trust, don't cast ...
Kevin Wallace: Listen. Listen to me carefully while your heads are bowed and eyes are closed. Do not go tell everybody your struggle. Don't cast your pearl before swine. There are people who would take that information and use it against you to harm you with. Find the person, a godly man or woman in your life, someone that you trust, that you know loves you. After you have asked God to cleanse you and forgive you, go to that person that you can trust to cover you, confess your faults one to another.
Kevin Wallace: I just pray for the church today, the body of Christ, that we would come into an accountability, God, that there would be an accountability in our lives. That we would not run from it or hide from it. That we wouldn't seek to keep our things private, and secretive, and separate. Let us live, Lord God, transparently, openly, and with unhiddenness in our hearts.
Kevin Wallace: I want everyone to stand today please. Bow your head with me and close your eyes for just a moment. If you're in here and you would just say, "Pastor Kevin, would you continue to pray for me, because I needed this today. We needed this today," I'm not going to ask you if it's for the marriage or for pornography, whatever it is, but if you just needed this today and it was for you, lift your hand right now.
Kevin Wallace: Lord, you see every hand that was lifted. I pray for them today. I pray for every marriage that it would begin to flourish and thrive, grow and multiply. I pray that bitter strife and envy would be kicked out of the house and that today they would become a development of your peace and your presence. In Jesus' name.
Kevin Wallace: I feel very strongly right now like somebody wants to give their heart to the Lord. You need an opportunity. I was going to close without doing this, but I can't close. Heads bowed and eyes closed. You're in this room and you'd say, "Pastor Kevin, I need to rescue me. Pray for me, Pastor." If that's you, when I say three, I don't care what you've been bound by, what you snorted, who you slept with. I don't care about any of that. If you need Christ to rescue you and you want to put your faith in God and be born again, changed and set free, when I say three, lift your hand. I want to pray for you. One, two, three. Right now. "I want to give my heart to Jesus today." Don't be ashamed.
Kevin Wallace: I see your hand, sweetheart. I see your hand, sir. God bless you. God bless you. Put your hands down. Everyone look at me. We're going home in a few minutes, but not before we go this. I want you to look at the person on your right side and on your left. You may have known them your whole life. You may have never met them before today, but I want you to ask them this question for me. Ask them this question, your neighbors. Say, "Do you need someone to go to the altar and pray with you today?" If you lifted your hand or you know you should have, when they ask you that question, come meet me at this altar and elders and pastors are going to pray with you.
Kevin Wallace: If you want to get saved, if you want to go to heaven, if you want to love Jesus, if you want to be born again and the shame to be lifted, come stand with us now. Anyone at all. I'm not going to come get you. I saw ... Thank you for coming, sweetheart. Thank you for coming. Thank you for coming, sir. Thank you for coming. Anyone else who wants to come, come on. Thank you for coming. Come on, there's room. Thank you for coming. They're still coming. Praise his name forevermore. Praise his name forevermore. There's room. It don't matter what you've done. It don't matter how long you've been doing it. Come on. This is a house of mercy. This is a house of grace. Come on. I need Jesus. Come on, baby. Come on. Come on. Thank you for coming. Thank you, Jesus.
Kevin Wallace: Stretch your hands towards them as they pray and touch God with their heart. This is not just a sinner's prayer. They're asking God to help them. They want to be born again by the Spirit. Come on, sweetheart. God bless you. God bless you. Thank you for saving people today, Lord.
Kevin Wallace: Listen, church. I love you. Deven and I love you. I believe that God's hand is moving in your direction, that he has great things in store for your life. Whatever you do, keep the faith. Don't lose hope. I believe great things are in store for every family in this church. If you receive it, say amen.
Kevin Wallace: Go in the peace of the Lord. They're going to continue to pray. We'll see you Wednesday night. We'll see you Wednesday night. Go in the peace of God. The Lord bless you and keep you. Be here at 7:00. Don't miss midweek service. It's powerful and we'll have a great time in God's house. The Lord bless you.
Kevin Wallace: Don't forget the open house of RKSM and RSM. If you want more information about the school, head on over to RKSM and RSM. Some of our teachers and leaders are there. We look forward to seeing you today. God bless.