By Miles McPherson
senior pastor, Rock Church in San Diego
Recently I was watching the rear bumper of a Mercedes nearly drag on the ground while pulling a U-Haul trailer. You might get away with it a few times, but towing is not the designed intent of a Mercedes. The driver didn’t read the owner’s manual. That’s where he would have found the boundaries of use compatible with the designer’s intent.
I believe that God’s owner’s manual — the Bible — also provides boundaries of use compatible with the designer’s intent. Let’s take marriage, for example. And let’s start at the beginning.
God created man and said that it was not good that he be alone. So He created a woman, out of the man’s flesh, as his compatible mate. That was the first marriage. Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2:24) But what is it compatible for? Let’s see.
Marriage as God intended it is compatible for fulfilling the Image of God, the Image we were created in. So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. (Genesis 1:27) Originally joined together and created in the Image of God, the one-flesh union we call sex brings men and women back to the original oneness from which we originated ( Gen 2:21-23).
Our attraction for what we call sex is actually a spiritual, God-given desire to experience and glorify the full Image of God found in a one-flesh union.
Isn’t it ironic that this one-flesh union could be considered our most pleasurable of human experiences? But of course, experiencing the Image of God would include pleasure. God is the creator and giver of all good things.
Marriage as God intended it is also the only life-giving union known to the human race. Gen 1:28 says…”Be fruitful and multiply…” As such, traditional marriage is the best environment to care for that life and validates the importance of having both Dad and Mom.
Though countless single parents do a great job raising children the reality is that children from fatherless homes in the US account for 70 percent of long-term prison inmates, 71 percent of high school dropouts, 85 percent of youth prisoners, and 90 percent of runaways. Daughters who live without their dads are 92% more likely to divorce. http://www.fathersunite.org/statistics_on_fatherlessnes.html
And that’s just kids without dads. Kids without moms–well, everyone knows they need a mom. Taking the position that traditional marriage is an option teaches kids that moms and dads are optional. Sadly this indoctrination is being imposed in many states on first graders, communicating to kids that their parents are bigots if they do not agree.
Marriage as God intended it models what should be our relationship with God. In the Old Testament God is described as His people’s husband. Jesus’ life is also a model for how marriage should work. While each spouse is to submit one to another, the husband is specifically directed to lay down his life for his wife just as Jesus laid down His life for His bride, the church. Jesus also claimed that traditional marriage foreshadows His future wedding in Heaven between Him, the Groom and His bride, the church: “Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready” (Revelations 19:7).
God’s design for marriage, if faithfully followed, would eliminate the destructive drama we see all around us, like adultery, disease, prostitution, pedophilia, rape, molestation, divorce and more. Maybe we couldn’t eliminate this completely, but it should be our goal, for the sake of society and our kids’.
But, truth be told – a person’s desire for spiritual fulfillment is actually their God given awareness to His marriage proposal.
1 John 5:3 says … “For this is the love for God, that we keep His commandments…”
Loving God requires that we live within the boundaries that result in honoring His Image, which is compatible with His created intent.
I am for traditional marriage as God designed it because it is the model that honors His original and eternal intent.
Miles McPherson is senior pastor of the Rock Church in San Diego, home church of former Miss California Carrie Prejean, and a former defensive back for the San Diego Chargers.