What Is Marriage?

A new book, “What Is Marriage?: Man and Woman: A Defense,” by Sherif Girgis, Ryan T. Anderson, and Robert P. George, explains the reasons why marriage should only be between a man and a woman.

As Matthew Franck, National Review columnist, said in his Amazon review of this book, “[The authors] went to the core of the philosophical, moral, political, and legal debate over same-sex marriage, by asking the simple and disarming question, ‘what is marriage?’ And then they answered it, with cogent arguments that the word--and the institution it names--lose all their meaning if we no longer say that marriage is the union of a man and a woman. So far no one has come up with a convincing rebuttal of their arguments.”

As the debate continues to rage about same-sex marriage, it appears this is a timely book that will help bolster the arguments made by those who believe that marriage should only be between a man and a woman. It will also require those that think otherwise to come up with a reasonable and direct rebuttal to these arguments.

I haven’t read this book myself yet, but it is on the top of my reading stack, and I hope it goes to the top of yours as well.


Also, if we are going to say that "the term marriage varies from culture to culture"(in fact it doesn't; almost every culture is monogamous or polygamous and only aristocrats can afford polygamy), the logical thing for a Christian to do is to interpret it as meaning "What it would have meant to Jews and/or Greeks in St. Paul's time."

The reason for that is that when the Bible talked about marriage, it would have been talking about it as it was understood by the hearers and by the writer. To say otherwise would be to manipulate language.
In all those arrangements, whatever they be someone is at least claiming to abide by the terms of those marriages. It has been claimed that "marriages are different in different cultures". But in all cultures the one who has married has bound himself to an aggreement. A Moslem is allowed four wives but he must take proper care of them. If he fails in this, or if he takes five wives he is a bad Moslem. A Christian is allowed one wife. If he takes three more he is an adulterer.

If there is to be "gay marriage" then there must be terms upon which the "marriage" is aggreed upon. These terms have not been made clear.
I am now 3/4 of the way thru this book and still highly recommend it. They not only say that marriage between a man and a woman is better than same sex marriage they also say it is better than any other arrangement including living together, polygamous marriage, etc.
Just to start with, an honor that has no minimal requirements is no honor at all. What ever else marriage means, it is an honor, and if it is an honor it must be possible to fail to live up to it.

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