Marriage – 2

In today’s society, there many types of relationships.  Marriage between a man and a women tends to last the longest where it is worked on.

With there being many sexual scandals exposed recently that have involved ministers of religion, it shows that in many cases there has been a lack of balanced teaching about relationships, including sex within marriage, at theological colleges and in churches.  Most of the people accused have been single, especially when it involves the Roman Catholic Church.  It is interesting that in the Church of England, the so called ‘Anglo-Catholic’ wing, most ‘priests’ are married and often are more ‘Catholic’ than their counterparts in the Roman Catholic church.  It is also noticeable that there are only rare cases of sexual misdemeanours.  So,, I urge the Roman Catholic church to allow priests to marry, so that their sexual urges can be released within a loving and caring marriage.  Apart from the sexual side of things, I also believe it would encourage more people to become priests if they can marry (the number of priests applying to join the Catholic church is slowly reducing each year).  It is up to the Church to show the way and model relationships to the world.  Sexual abuse continues to rise and is becoming more disgusting in its methods as people, mainly men, get bored with the old ways.  But, teaching on sex needs to be done in the context of sex within marriage, self-identity (including being secure in their identity to say ‘no’) and seeing that relationships involve more than sex (there needs to be encouragement for depth in relationships).  ‘Going out’ should be taught that they need to do enriching activities together with other people so that they have many different things to talk about, apart from, sport, soaps and sex.  Young people need to be challenged about ideas they get from the media.  The media also needs challenging about thinking that they know what is best , when they do not.  They need encouraging to use writers who have a better imagining for exciting scripts that still stay with the boundaries of moral decency, including better use of language.

Marriage provides an ideal model in which to bring a balanced upbringing of children.

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Marriage – 1

Marriage is a union of a man and a woman becoming one.

In Ephesians 5, there is much on the Church with the relationship between a husband and a wife as an illustration of what it should be like in terms of leadership.

The word ‘submission’ used in many translations has a very bad press and is a source of much disagreement between Christians.

These verses in Ephesians say that Jesus is ‘head of the body’. A ‘head’ seeks to serve the ‘body’ in making sure it functions properly. And for the ‘body’ to work together, it needs the ‘head’ to provide it with the information it needs. Therefore the husband should take the lead in bringing out the best in their relationships and the wife should allow him to do so. All this is based on love, not control.

Hence, the use of the words ‘husband’ and ‘wife’ are two sides of the same coin. It is more about working together, rather than who is in charge. Jesus came to serve, not control. For elsewhere in Scripture, it says we are all equal under God, and we are His children. To me, that means a woman can be a leader in the Church, as much as a man. For we all can receive the Gifts of the Spirit. Our hang-up is because of the non-biblical division of priest and laity, and also over who can give communion. There is nothing in the New Testament limiting as to who can or cannot do things. It is all about character.

And that character should be reflected in a marriage. As we see from above, marriage is about bringing out the best in each other in the context of a loving relationship. But, it is also for the purpose of naturally creating children, and only a man and woman can do that within a loving, permanent relationship, sealed before God in a covenant before His people. Therefore, I don’t believe we can re-define marriage to include any other form of relationship. Children need to understand their sexuality and the limits of when sex can take place ie within a marriage of a man and a woman, for them to grow up as reasonably balanced adults.