Who gets to define marriage?
Malachi 2: God, not you, made marriage.
During the exile their ancestors clung together, maintaining their national identity even in a diverse society. Now that Israel’s been reestablished in it’s own land the people have let their guard down and are breaking God’s command that they be a people set apart as his very own. They’ve married outside their own nation. They shouldn’t be surprised that when they blatantly disobey God that he withdraws his blessings from them. Beyond that, even those who haven’t mixed with other nations are treating marriage differently than God intends, making it relatively easy to toss a marriage aside if it suits them. Through his prophet the Lord declares that he’s the one who designed marriage and he hasn’t given them the authority to redefine what it’s all about. He tells them that he “made marriage” and that “his Spirit inhabits even the smallest details of marriage.” Then he adds, “I hate divorce.” I think the Lord’s speaking to the whole institution here rather than to individual situations. He isn’t denying the possibility of divorce in a specific situation so much as he’s stating his opposition to a culture that takes marriage vows lightly. Also, it goes without saying that the Lord insists that he’s the one who defined marriage and, as this passage says, an outcome of marriage is to be “children.” While there are circumstances in which children can’t be the product of a marriage at least the potential is to be there. That settles it. Marriage is between man and woman and no majority of voters or federal court or anyone else can define it otherwise. Don’t ever doubt it: God takes this kind of stuff very seriously.
Take Away: If we want to understand what marriage is all about we need to start with the Creator of it.
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