Marriage and the Purposes of God

{mosimage}Lately, all across Canada, there has been a lot of debate about the same-sex marriage issue. Recently many of us attended rallies across the country to show our opposition to the proposed changes in legislation coming from the courts and our places of government. The arguments on both sides have at times been heated. As I've listened and watched I have cringed at some of the invective that has been increasing and I pray that we Christians will remember that Jesus, above all, was a minister of grace.

We have heard that marriage is the foundation block of our communities and our country and none can argue that it has been so for centuries. We have heard that we must preserve the sanctity of marriage. This begs the question, why? We have heard that God created man and woman to be joined in a bond of love that He ordained and blesses. Again, we might ask, why?

The Westminster Catechism states that the chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. John Piper, respected author, speaker and theologian has asked another intriguing question ? what, then, is the chief end of God? What is God's purpose? Is it to love man, to provide for him, to make sure he is comfortable and happy? Is it to do battle with evil? Although God does all those things, and more, according to His will, John Piper suggests that the chief end, or purpose of God is to glorify Himself. And this is where we seem to have missed something in regard to marriage.

God ordained marriage, not just to make us happy, not just to ensure the stability of our societies, but to glorify Himself. That's why marriage is said to be sanctified. Marriage is used as a metaphor in scripture, for God's relationship to His people. He is the bridegroom, we the bride. Marriage is not just a social institution, nor even just a good thing God wants us to do for our own benefit. Marriage is a picture of God's love, a picture of His very character. When we allow marriage to be corrupted by allowing the word to be attached to something He did not intend, we are allowing the very character and name of God to be slandered and corrupted.

Unfortunately we live in a fallen world where that happens every day, and no doubt will continue, but those who are "called according to His purposes," (Romans 8:28) have a responsibility to stand against the corruption of that name. For Jesus has said, "If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father's glory with the holy angels." (Mark 8:38)

Marcia Laycock is a pastor's wife and freelance writer living in Alberta Canada.  Her devotional book, The Spur of the Moment has been endorsed by Janette Oke, Phil Callaway and others.  To order, and to view more of Marcia's writing, see her web site - www.vinemarc.com
Copyright Marcia Lee Laycock, 2000, 2001,2002,2003,2004

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