Mary March Newell:)
Biblical Marriage... and the governments role...

There is a lot of discussion over having the government "define" marriage for us as being between one man and one woman, however they have us arguing over the wrong thing! The REAL question is should the government be in the business of marrying people at all?!
      When Adam married Eve and their children and their children's children married, there was no "legal" marriage. When the founding fathers of our country first came to our shores there was no "legal" marriage. When a couple wanted to marry, they either had a service in their respective churches or they covenanted to each other before their god, whichever god they served.
      In the Bible when Jacob wanted to marry Rachel, after his seven years were done of serving his father in law for the privilege, he went to Laban and said "Give me my wife, for my days are fulfilled that I may go in unto her..."(KJV Genesis 29:21) That was it. That WAS marriage. And it was so simple that he was unaware that he had the wrong one until morning! Their "marriage" took place in the dark. The consummation WAS the marriage!
     Later when Rachel saw that she had no children she gave him her handmaid to wife. Again there was no ceremony, just a TAKING of her as his. No big catered party or dresses or rings or decorations or any of those frills that spur on the economy but have NOTHING to do with "marriage".
    His father Isaac before him went in unto his arranged bride Rebecca, and was comforted after the death of his mother. No ceremony or fan fare. They simply joined together and became ONE.
    There is today a lot of scorn and ridicule of those who simply "Shack Up". However shacking up denotes a certain level of commitment! We're not talking about people who are sleeping around all over the place having one night stands. We are talking about people who have moved in together, set up house together and have joined their lives together. People who often share children together as well. People who in God's eyes (and after a period of time, the government's eyes as well, ie: common law marriage) ARE married!
    But our present day customs have got us to place a great deal of value on paying a fee and getting a piece of paper with the governments stamp of approval on it, or its a SIN??? Did the government BECOME GOD??? If they don't register and keep track of our committed relationships are they not valid?
    The Government began liscensing marriages in the US around 1850. The reason for the change was because there were those in the south who wanted to make interracial marriages illegal ( see the musical "ShowBoat") , then there were those who wanted to stop Mormon polygamous marriages.
   Basically it was people who wanted to FORCE others, and bend them to their desires. People who wanted to limit their neighbor's God given FREEDOM! Now there are people who are afraid of Sodomy, and people sodomizing .... Whether or not the government chooses to collect fees from them and give them a worthless piece of paper as well, will not change the fact that they ALREADY ARE!!! They already adopt children, WITHOUT being legally married!!! The Government CAN'T ENFORCE MORALITY!!! People will do what they will do regardless. Its NOT the governments business to be marrying people or ENFORCING morality!!! The only thing that will change people's actions is to change their HEARTS through LOVE. The government doesn't do that, and CAN'T do that well!!!
    By arguing about the wrong thing, Christians who want to prevent evil from being amongst them are going to CREATE even greater evils! If the government is given the power from the people to define marriage, they can define it and alter it as they choose! They will attempt to FORCE churches to perform, government defined legal marriages of whatever variety the government deems appropriate. That would be ever changing... Then they will assume that they ALSO have the power to liscense CHILDREN (China does it!) Would you like to have to pay a fee and have an exam and get permission from the government ( a slip of paper) to MEET your spouse. Their consent for you to procreate? Homosexuals will THEN have MORE freedom than heterosexuals! Because their unions don't produce offspring they won't be regulated!!!
     Do you really want to hand over a FREE GIFT from GOD into the hands of the government to dictate to you, because you are unable to allow your neighbors the freedom to make their OWN choices?!
     If the government got OUT of the marriage business altogether, then we would all be on equal ground. The gays would do what they do. Maybe they would form their OWN church to have their own weddings and call it what they will. Heterosexuals would have their weddings in their own churches or perhaps just exchange promises between themselves.... Everyone's actions would be the same. The labels would be gone, that's all. The government has no more authority than you or I to marry people. They get their authority FROM US !!! So if a couple of US choose to marry ourselves to each other, it is every bit as valid as a government official doing so!!!
    What if society collapsed (It COULD happen you know) What if there were NO government? What then would 2 young people in LOVE do? With no one existing to LEGALLY marry them? Do they wait 10 years for another government to be formed? Or do they simply join together and take each other as husband and wife and form a family? Like they did in Bible times?
      There are places in the world where what is required in order to obtain a LEGAL marriage IS IMMORAL, and horrifying... ( Try Saddam Hussein's Iraq, where in order to be "legally" married the groom had to submit to his bride to be first being RAPED by one of Saddam's worthless sons... If he did not submit, he would be killed and she'd be raped anyway! What would the moral thing be to do then? Shack Up?:) Hide your secret marriage or die!)
      Before we go off demanding that the government DEFINE marriage for us, ask yourself first what exactly it is.. Is it a piece of paper? A party? Living together? The consummation act? What about Quakers, who lived together as man and wife, yet NEVER consummated their relationship but remained celebate.... Are they married?
     Do we really want the government getting involved to the least degree in our interpersonal relationships? I used to be one up on the band wagon supporting the "defense of marriage" group. I went door to door collecting signatures. I see now though that the only thing marriage needs to be defended from IS THE GOVERNMENT! Marriage doesn't need the government to defend it. We are judged by the intents of our hearts... If we INTEND to commit to each other it is done!
     I'm on the side of FREEDOM first foremost and above all else.... All the gun laws in the world don't keep criminals from getting guns! Just law abiding citizens, who wouldn't commit crimes with them anyway..... LAWS don't change people's hearts! LOVE does. Quit asking the government to correct human nature, they can't even do the things they ought to do well ( like defend our country internally and externally and pave roads, that's really the ONLY thing that is really their JOB to do! They don't do that and suck at everything else, and DON'T HAVE THE ABILITY to change men's hearts! That's God's domain.... Quit asking the government to do God's job! If you want to know why God isn't doing it himself... well you didn't ask Him.... You asked the government to.)
     Drug laws don't keep people from doing drugs any more than prohibition kept people from drinking for the 14 years that it was tried! (They drank MORE!!!) Let people be free. Let them make their own choices. I used to think I was a constitutionalist, but I'm more of a Libertarian every day!!! Go Patrick Henry!!!
    If your neighbor's yard seems unsightly to you.... DON'T CALL THE HOA!!! Walk across the freakn' street and OFFER to help your neighbor with it. Maybe he has a lot on his plate! Instead of getting irritated, get to know him, be neighborly... Think about it...