Ecclesiastes bemoans the miserable conditions of earthly life (Eccl 1:2 et al.). Ever since sin entered the world in Genesis 3, the Creation groans, longing for better days (Rom 8:21-22), days like those in the Garden of Eden in Genesis 1 and 2. Those were the days before everything was destroyed by the curse. Those were days when everything was “very good”.
For example, before the Curse of Genesis 3, there was good, profitable, enjoyable work (Gen 2:15), but with the curse work became painful (Gen 3:17) and unfulfilling (Eccl 2:11). Ecclesiastes takes all the good things of life, and shows how all has become meaningless, unfulfilling, and futile.
But there is one thing that existed in the Garden of Eden that was not destroyed by the curse. By looking around in the world today you might think it too was cursed—perhaps more so than anything else—but you would be wrong. This one thing is elevated in Ecclesiastes as the one thing of meaningfulness and pleasure and joy above all the other futile things. This one thing gets an entire book in the Bible dedicated to it! This one thing even has the last word in the Garden of Eden before temptation to sin entered.
This one thing is marriage. A divine commentary on marriage got the last word in the un-marred Garden of Eden (Gen 2:24-25). Marriage is the only redeeming factor of joy in this otherwise depressing world (Eccl 9:9). Marriage is the only earthly topic that God dedicated an entire book to (Song of Solomon). Even the verse used to link a curse to marriage doesn’t mean what some want it to mean (click here for clarity on the supposed curse on women to want to rule over their husbands ).
Indeed, it is the Song of Solomon that shows us how perfect the parcel of marriage still is! You might disagree and say that marriage is severely messed up in this world, but that is where you would be wrong. According to the Scriptures, the problems in marriages are not because of a problem with marriage. Marriage is still as perfect as it was designed by God. Work got cursed, child-bearing even got cursed, but marriage was never cursed. Marriage survived the curse in its full glory. Song of Solomon testifies that a sinful man and a sinful woman stop using marriage to get love, and instead use marriage to express love, then marriage becomes like a Garden of Eden in a sin-cursed world (SoS 4:12-5:1).
The marriages of many people testify to the effects of sin, but that is because of the persons in the marriages, not because of anything inherent to marriage. Marriage is to be held up as a perfect diamond in the hands of sinful people (Heb 13:4). To remove the stigma of futility and vanity that the world has tarnished marriage with, let each man love his wife, and the wife respect her husband (Eph 5:33). Let each spouse give of themselves to each other (1 Cor 7:3). Let each pursue the other at all costs (SoS 3:1-4). Let there be a participation in each other’s pursuits (SoS 1:4). Let there be an exaggeration over love (SoS 4:7) instead of the typical quarrelling over faults.
Never entertain any thoughts about the flaws of marriage, for there are none. Instead, see the lack of expressing love as the great stain on an otherwise wonderful gift from the Lord.