Saying “I Do” to Marriage
Updated: Jan 2
Marriage between a man and a woman is Biblically correct, regardless of whether or not it is politically correct. As Jesus affirmed:
“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Matthew 19:4-6 NIV).
Because of the aggressive LGBTQ movement today, marriage and family has been largely dismissed and pushed aside. The result is that sexuality apart from marriage is on the rise, especially cohabitation. Up 29% in just one decade, cohabitation is now considered “the most common first co-residential union among young adults.” NPR even states that it has become a rite of passage among Millennials. Weddings no longer symbolize lifelong commitments to forsake all others and be sexually faithful to each other. Instead, they have devolved into lavishly expensive cohabitation parties, averaging $44,000 per couple in 2018.
This month, Texas pastor Bryan Carter bravely decided to address this issue head on, explaining:
“I preached on cohabitation and we invited cohabiting couples to accept the challenge of stepping into marriage. We paid one month’s rent for those who want to move out, and will marry those who desire to get married with a free wedding dress, tuxedo, rings.”
Fifty couples accepted his challenge—but how far has society come that pastors need to incentivize cohabiting couples to marry! Nevertheless, the courage shown by Pastor Carter has become far too rare today.
Throughout the Scriptures, we are exhorted to “set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity” (1 Timothy 4:12 NIV). But with the Supreme Court having legalized same-sex marriage, and with the flood of gender identity laws that are inundating states and communities, many pastors avoid the topic of relationships and sexual purity altogether.
Historically, marriage and family were not controversial, and previous generations understood the generational impact of faithful marriages. As Founding Father John Adams affirmed:
“[T]he foundations of national morality must be laid in private families. In vain are schools, academics, and universities instituted if loose principles and licentious habits are impressed upon children in their earliest years…How is it possible that children can have any just sense of the sacred obligations of morality or religion if, from their earliest Infancy, they learn that their mothers live in habitual infidelity to their fathers, and their fathers in as constant infidelity to their mothers?”
As the morality of American families has changed and become more non-Biblical, those impacted most adversely have been children. Forty percent are now born outside-of-marriage (compared to just 5% in the 1960s) and four in ten unintended pregnancies are now aborted. LGBTQ communities celebrate their own Pride Month, but traditional marriages receive no such honor or recognition.
Pastor Bryan Carter set a different example, exhorting cohabiting couples to heed the call to God-honoring relationships. He also honors and celebrates couples who are living and loving according to the Scriptures. We all should do this.
“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, Who is in you, Whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NIV).
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 Geiger, A. W. & Livingston, G. (2019, February 13). 8 facts about love and marriage in America. Retrieved from https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/02/13/8-facts-about-love-and-marriage/
 Nugent, C. N. & Daugherty, J. (2018, May 31). A demographic, attitudinal, and behavioral profile of cohabiting adults in the United States, 2011–2015. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhsr/nhsr111.pdf
 Park, A. (2019, January 13). Here's how much the average wedding in 2018 cost—and who paid. Retrieved from https://www.brides.com/story/american-wedding-study-how-much-average-wedding-2018-cost
 Goins-Phillips, T. (2019, May 21). Texas pastor challenges cohabiting couples in his congregation: Get married. Retrieved from https://www.faithwire.com/2019/05/21/texas-pastor-challenges-cohabiting-couples-in-his-congregation-get-married/
 Adams, J. (1778, June 2). Retrieved from https://www.heritage.org/political-process/report/the-true-origin-society-the-founders-the-family#_ftn25
 The American family today. (2015, December 17). Retrieved from https://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2015/12/17/1-the-american-family-today/
 Induced abortion in the United States. (2018, January). Retrieved from https://www.guttmacher.org/fact-sheet/induced-abortion-united-states