Which god? God or god?
“Thou shalt have no other god before me.” (Exodus 20:3 KJV)
November 11, 2010
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.
That's from the Apostle Paul's letter to the Romans -
So I was on my way to have a rare weekday breakfast out with my wife, when I had this thought that the next part of this series was to be about juice. Seriously -
Just to be sure we're on the same page, here's the kind of juice I'm talking about -
1. the natural fluid, fluid content, or liquid part that can be extracted from a plant or one of its parts, esp. of a fruit: orange juice.
Speaking of orange juice -
I came to this sad conclusion several years ago when I tried to actually make my own pineapple-
But then -
After all -
Let's say that -
a. the social institution under which a man and woman establish their decision to live as husband and wife by legal commitments, religious ceremonies, etc.
b. a similar institution involving partners of the same gender
Down at number 10, we see:
Obsolete . the formal declaration or contract by which act a man and a woman join in wedlock.
Going to another source, just be sure -
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found. Such a union, often formalized via a wedding ceremony, may also be called matrimony.
People marry for many reasons, including one or more of the following: legal, social, emotional, economical, spiritual, and religious. These might include arranged marriages, family obligations, the legal establishment of a nuclear family unit, the legal protection of children and public declaration of commitment.
Wikipedia also has a reference to matrimony, which they define as -
Marriage, union of individuals that creates kinship.
Let's say that the two oranges represent two Christians.
And let's say the cranberry and the grape represent two non-
Finally, let's say the pineapple and the grape represent a gay or lesbian couple.
What 1 Corinthians says is -
Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders.
The reason for following these references all the way to 1 Corinthians -
As much as we may like to choose our own definitions of things -
Furthermore, given the Apostle Paul's reference to inheriting the kingdom of God -
Many Christians will argue that it's not marriage -
Before coming to the conclusions -
Think about the cran-
For that -
Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.
For the answer to that -
Orange juice -
But that pineapple-
It's just so obvious that bananas don't have juice. But we still call it juice. BTW -
And so it is with marriage.
The Christian marriage -
The movie star type marriage -
The gay / lesbian marriage -
C. S. Lewis has an interesting view of the world in this quote from Mere Christianity -
And that's pretty much what I think is happening here.
We know that a lot of what we call juice isn't juice -
In the case of the marriages -
What's also clear is that we've already taken this path with the movie star type marriages. We're already well on the way to removing anything special about the Christian marriage -
I believe I've made my position clear -
Does that mean it's OK to call the gay / lesbian marriage a marriage? Again -
One final thought from the New International Bible Dictionary concerning marriage -
Marriage was often a means of strengthening and promoting the fortunes of the family, quite aside from the prospect of producing children. A bride was more likely to be chosen because of the desirability of union with her family, or for her healthy physique and suitability for family life, rather than for other considerations. The father was responsible for finding a suitable bride for his son, and the wishes and feelings of the young people were largely irrelevant to this decision. On some occasions the bride’s consent was asked for after the actual marriage arrangements had been made. Thus Isaac’s marriage was arranged between his father’s servant and his future wife’s brother. She was then consulted (Gen 24:33-
In general, marriages were arranged with relatives or with those of the same clan. One might marry a member of the same tribe or possibly move outside this circle to marry within another Israelite tribe. Marriage to a foreigner was generally discouraged, though some Hebrews took wives from among those women captured in war, while others, such as Samson, received permission from their parents to marry a foreigner, Samson marrying a Philistine woman (Judg 14:2-
Because marriages with close relatives were common, limits of consanguinity are recorded for the Israelites to follow (Lev 18:6-
In the ancient world the primary purpose of marriage was procreation rather than companionship, and, as a result, large numbers of offspring were regarded as an asset. But an important secondary objective of marriage was the maintaining or increasing of family property, and in royal circles many marriages constituted the seal to what in fact were really political alliances. From the time of the patriarchs, wealthy and powerful people were able to indulge in polygamy, but because of the bride-
Quite clearly -
From Romans 12:1-
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
And from Matthew 22:21 -
“Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”
Do not conform to the ways of the world.
And don't mix what belongs to the world with what belongs to God.
Juice is a word -
Marriage is a word. In the world today -
Maybe the problem isn't so much that we need to define marriage to be the way we want it to be -
For us as Christians -
Maybe what we need is what juice already has: an adjective -
a word whose main syntactic role is to modify a noun or pronoun, giving more information about the noun or pronoun's referent.
We can't define words for Caesar -
Maybe all we need to do is what we're actually called to do -