Responding To Government’s Declaration That “Marriage” Is Merely A Social Construct: A Proposal To Reform The Wedding Service In Bible-Believing Churches -- By: Charles A. Clough

Journal: Journal of Dispensational Theology
Volume: JODT 18:53 (Spring 2014)
Article: Responding To Government’s Declaration That “Marriage” Is Merely A Social Construct: A Proposal To Reform The Wedding Service In Bible-Believing Churches
Author: Charles A. Clough


Responding To Government’s Declaration That “Marriage” Is Merely A Social Construct:
A Proposal To Reform The Wedding Service In Bible-Believing Churches

Charles A. Clough

* Charles A. Clough, M.S., Th.M., author, former pastor, scientist; chairman (governing board), Chafer Theological Seminary, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Due to a very successful crusade waged by certain activists, the traditional Judeo-Christian concept of marriage as a divinely designed relationship exclusively between one man and one woman has been virtually criminalized. Expression of that concept in the public square — whether in school, in government agencies (including the military), and in business — now meets with overwhelming disdain and even judicial punishment. Underlying this action by civil authorities is the assumption that marriage is merely a social construct that can and ought to be changed in response to public opinion. Therefore, two mutually contradictory notions of marriage — a mutable social construct and an immutable divine institution — appear in the wedding service when the pastor or other church officer pronounces the couple man and wife, while acting as an agent of both the state and the Lord Jesus Christ. The proposal put forth in this article is that Bible-believing churches in those civil jurisdictions which have written the biblical view of marriage beyond their law must now respond by separating the civil portion of marriage from the ecclesiastical portion and eliminate it from the wedding service. The wedding service itself must now include a robust public defense of one-man-one-woman marriage based upon God’s design. Appendices supply suggested topics to include in such a defense, a letter of official notice to the state government officials of the church’s new wedding procedure, and a sample exchange with government authorities regarding this matter of marriage.

Introduction

Activists for expanding the definition of marriage beyond that of one man and one woman have succeeded in convincing political leadership to employ their legal authority for forcibly imposing this new marriage concept upon society. They have skillfully employed adjectives like “fair,” “socially just,” and “equal” in indiscriminate fashion. Their arguments have been emotionally appealing in spite of their logical fallacies. The end result of their campaign not only intimidates many into silence but also sets up Bible-believing Christians who express their disagreement in public as “bigoted” and “self-righteous” and subject to dismissal from their jobs and/or liable for criminal charges.1

The wed...

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