(28) Then God blessed them, and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth."
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Immediately after He created humans as male and female, "God blessed them." The Theological Word Book of the Old Testament says that a blessing is "to endue with power for success," which is its essential meaning in just about every usage in the Old Testament. We can also define it by recognizing its opposite—a curse—the intention of which is "to bring great evil upon" to hinder success.
Thus, God gave the newly created couple a blessing to bestow power for success on them. We could also say that in this context, this divine blessing was their wedding ceremony. By this blessing, God gave Adam and Eve the right and the authority to enter this union, just as a marriage ceremony does today. It also gives them the authority and power to produce what God expected of them. With God's blessing given to the institution and to the individuals involved, the chances for success become significantly greater. In fact, with God's eager blessing, a married couple really has no excuse for failure!
The marriage ceremony used by the churches of God stresses that the bride and groom are making a covenant before God and man. The ceremony includes a laying on of hands that sets the couple apart in their union, showing that God Himself seals the contract—the marriage covenant—between the groom and the bride. In addition, in the prayer that accompanies the laying on of hands, the minister typically asks for blessings to come upon them—a blessing on their relationship, a blessing on their offspring, a blessing for their prosperity, etc.
The apostle Paul writes in I Corinthians 1:9, "God is faithful." When God gives a blessing, He follows through by giving what is needed for its fulfillment. God's Word is not empty: "So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it" (Isaiah 55:11). So a groom and his bride have little excuse for not producing what God desires to result from their marriage.
To provide godly blessings, therefore, is a significant purpose for this institution. Marriage is truly a blessed arrangement. Not only does marriage have God's sanction, but He also loads it with benefits from His own hands. He blesses a man and his wife with advantages that are in no other union because He is intimately involved, a party in the covenant. In a Christian marriage, the power needed to make it work is available from God.
— Richard T. Ritenbaugh