Why should someone get married? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.
Something I have noticed is a lot of you seem to like it when I write something on divorce. I don’t want to talk about it every day, because frankly it’s still painful for me to talk about, but give the people what they want. If all of this can help prevent someone from going down this path or help to revitalize a struggling marriage, then that will be enough for me.
A major problem is that we don’t take commitment seriously enough and marriage is not just a commitment, but it’s a covenant. Our culture already doesn’t place much on it. Want to have sex? That used to be a big incentive to get a man to be married and to invest in the relationship. No more. Men can easily get sex outside of making an actual commitment to a woman.
Does a woman want to be provided for? Again, not a big issue since the feminist movement. Women nowadays can often work hard and care for themselves financially and usually only need a man around when it’s time to make a baby. Oh wait. Thanks to artificial insemination, now they don’t even need that. Add in also that the government is more than willing to do what they can to provide for mothers who are single and not in a marital relationship and they have even more incentive.
When this happens, the question then becomes why should anyone get married? If we consider the first option with men, women who give in to men before marriage are not really giving any incentive for a man to get married. If he can get it and he doesn’t have to risk any kind of commitment, well why not? He can literally have his cake and eat it too. It happens so much that no one really even bats an eye anymore.
Yet something is wrong with it. The breakdown of the family has led to a lot of social unrest in our society. Gangs are often formed when men have no real male figure around that they can call Dad. There are many single women who for whatever reason, even one like being widowed tragically, are raising single sons alone and doing admirable jobs, but the sons are best raised if they have at least some figure in their lives they can consider a father figure, such as an uncle, a teacher, or a coach.
Women themselves? Many women still do want to get married and have a firm commitment they can count on. Too often they are giving sex thinking it will help them get that commitment, but it isn’t working. Men much more easily bounce from relationship to relationship because it’s easy for them to escape the consequences, which is one reason abortion is seen as so essential for so many people. It’s a way to get to enjoy a sexual relationship without consequences.
So with all of this, some could be asking why someone like me would still want to get married again?
It’s because I consider myself a Christian realist.
I think reality is that sex is meant for a covenant relationship in marriage. I actually think it’s a great evidence of Christianity when I consider its sexual ethic when it’s so counter-cultural in every way, even from Roman times, and yet it’s consistent too. I think a man and a woman go together physiologically and in every other way.
I also think every person is worth a lifetime commitment and to get sex from a woman without making that covenant before God and man with her is to demean her and lower her. She is worth nothing less than that lifetime commitment upfront and then she is the exclusive person to be with. The same applies to men in reverse.
I do think a man should want to provide for a woman, no matter how much the woman can provide for herself. A man will still on some level want to provide and care for someone. A woman meanwhile will often still want to be a mother and still give a good home and raise her children well and bring joy to her husband.
Ultimately, I look at the fruit of the sexual revolution and see that it doesn’t work. Right now, I have high hopes that with abortion being removed, we will hopefully get to a place where we will actually start taking sex seriously and thinking about what it means and what role marriage has in our society. Our culture is not in trouble because we have a high view of sex, but it is because we have a low view of it. We have taken one facet of it, the pleasure of the act, and made that everything.
For the church, if we are to change, it starts with us. Christian marriages have to be stronger than ever. I say this as one who has been badly burned in a marriage, but I still uphold marriage 100% as a good gift from God and to be celebrated.
Those of you who are married right now are the ones who can best demonstrate that this is true. Those of us who are looking for marriage again can meanwhile honor it by how we live. For me, it is still abstinence until I remarry, no matter how painful that is. I trust that assuming I remarry again, God will honor what I have done and make it worthwhile.
If we want to change the culture, it begins with us.
(And I affirm the virgin birth)