In the space of just one lifetime we have moved from a culture that celebrated marriage and children to a culture of divorce and cohabitation. We have moved from a commitment to family as a place of instruction, protection, and nurturing, to Hollywood’s ideal of a lifetime serial quest for a soul mate. We have done this with no regard for the consequences to ourselves, to our children, or to the larger culture.

The consequences have been devastating. We’ve moved away from God’s design for the family, and the facts are clear. The studies overwhelmingly prove that our entire society suffers when we refuse to live up to scriptural patterns for marriage and family.

God’s design for the family

God made his design for the family clear in scripture. Genesis 2 is one of the most foundational marriage texts he gave us. The theology in this chapter is alluded to repeatedly in the teachings of Jesus and throughout the New Testament. This is what was “From the beginning.” This is the text Jesus appealed to when his opponents confronted him with a trap question about Moses and divorce. This is the text that sets the pattern for marriage:

Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.” Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them… The man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him. So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then He took one of his ribs… The Lord God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. The man said,

“This is now bone of my bones,
And flesh of my flesh;
She shall be called Woman,
Because she was taken out of Man.”

For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2:18-24)

Marriage is between a man and a woman.

Thus, by definition, scriptural marriage is a union of two persons who are not of the same gender.

The Bible also teaches that a man ought to leave his parents when he enters the covenant of marriage. This covenant is intended to lead to a life-long relationship between one man and one woman, with the wonderful possibility that they may have children. This is the foundational statement about the nature of marriage.

Homosexual “marriage” should not be called marriage because it mixes definitions. Homosexual liaisons cannot, by definition, be considered marriage. Marriage is between a man and a woman.

God intended for every child to have two parents, one of his or her own gender, and the other of the opposite gender. Those two people are supposed to regard the life of the child as more important than their own lives. Sad to say, our culture has moved away from this ideal and has embraced serial cohabitation and divorce.

The scriptures have a lot to say on this subject, and I’ll take a look at just a few of the many relevant passages in my next blog post.

Related marriage and family blogs:

The previous was adapted by Rachel Motte from a sermon Dr. Sloan gave at Houston Baptist University.

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