God Defines Marriage
“The Fourteenth Amendment requires States to recognize same-sex marriages.” So wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy of the U. S. Supreme Court in his edict issued by fiat on June 26, 2015. Judge Kennedy, along with four other judges, has attempted to tell the American people, and the world, that the U. S. Constitution clearly states that marriage is between two people of the same gender. There are two glaring problems with the notion: (1) the 14th Amendment says nothing about marriage, civil unions, same-gender relations, singleness, or family relations of any sort; and (2) the US Constitution says absolutely nothing about the definition of marriage. Chief Justice Roberts, in his dissent to Kennedy, states emphatically: “The Constitution itself says nothing about marriage.” Roberts goes on to accurately note that Supreme Court justices have no business redefining the meaning of marriage and then codifying it and foisting it on the masses.
The Supreme Court’s decision redefining traditional marriage, in a vote of 5-4, is a historic event, with countless ramifications, most of which are too numerous to delineate here. But a few priority thoughts stand out for Christians to consider in light of Scripture.
1. God Designed Marriage
Marriage is not a human convention and it does not evolve with time. It is a sacred institution established by Almighty God, the Creator and Judge of the universe. Scripture is clear. In Genesis 1, when God made the world and the first two humans, Adam and Eve, “God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness’...God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. God blessed them; and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply’” (vv. 26-27). The institution of monogamous marriage was simultaneous with the creation of the first man and woman. Traditional heterosexual marriage was the first institution God established in society—He created traditional marriage before He established government, before He created His special people, the nation of Israel, and before He even created the Church, His blessed Bride. God’s rendition of marriage is foundational to everything else in society.
2. God Defined Marriage
Genesis 2 gives the historic account of the first wedding in human history. God Himself officiated the wedding! God said that “it was not good for man to be alone” (2:18a), so He made a woman—the perfect complement for the man (2:18b). After the wedding God decreed that heterosexual monogamous marriage was to be the precedent for all humanity, for all time (2:23-25).
Six thousand years later, that remains true—the perfect and only marital complement intended by God for a man is a woman. That was by design. This was reiterated 3,000 years later formally by God in Proverbs when He revealed this great truth: “He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the LORD” (18:22). This is echoed 4,000 years later under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in the New Testament where God decreed, “each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband” (1 Corinthians 7:2).
3. God Defends Marriage
Because marriage is God’s precious institution, He will jealously protect its dignity. God made laws in the Old Testament to protect and preserve monogamous, heterosexual marriage including command number seven of the Ten Commandments: “You shall not commit adultery” (Exodus 20:14). Violating biblical, traditional marriage with deviant substitutes warranted the death penalty (Leviticus 18). Speaking of the inviolable sanctity of biblical marriage as God laid down in the beginning, the Holy Spirit gives this warning in Hebrews: “Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed [lit. ‘coitus’] is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge” (13:4). This verse in the Greek text clearly limits marriage to one man and one woman with its use of coitus. People of the same gender can’t have coitus.
These three foundational truths will prevail and outlast all rogue laws conjured up by fallen humans who try to undermine God’s creation of marriage. After all, heterosexual marriage serves as a living metaphor of the greatest wedding yet to come—when Jesus marries His Bride, the Church. This wedding will be the last and greatest of all, and everyone who believes in the gospel of Christ will be in attendance: “Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb” (Revelation 19:9).