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Marriage Articles

The Case for Traditional Marriage

Joseph Mattera
The presiding bishop of Christ Covenant Coalition and
Senior pastor of Resurrection Church of New York

We are presently living in a post-modern world in which truth is defined solely by the eyes of the beholder. Consequently, everything ever taught is open to redefinition, even something as sacred as traditional marriage.

Proponents of alternate views of marriage say that both traditional marriage and the nuclear family will become the new dinosaurs with the present 60% divorce rate and the fragmentation of the family. Furthermore, they do not believe gender should come into play but that the only qualification for civil unions or marriage between consenting adults is that they love and are committed to one another.

Opponents of alternate views of marriage and family (including this writer) believe that marriage is not a right but a privilege that should only be legally conferred and recognized as between one man and one woman. If, after all, the only qualification for marriage and/or civil unions is the feeling of love people have for one another, then whatís to stop a man from marrying his mother, daughter, sister, brother, pets, or entering into marriage with multiple partners?

I donít believe a society should ever experiment with something most consider the historical building block of civilization. (Poll after poll shows that the vast majority of the American public opposes alternate forms of marriage, including same-sex marriage.) After all, marriage and family predate all religions, laws, nations, and everything else that constitutes what we call a normal society and culture. Instead of doing away with traditional marriage because of heterosexual infidelity, we should do all we can to advocate for its preservation because it is not only a sacred institution respected by all major religious traditions, but also a quality of life issue that leaves us with no better option. (Do we see activist judges, elected officials and those in the media saying we should do away with all public schools because the dropout rate among students in inner cities is more than 50%? Or do we see elected officials say we are going to give away cocaine, heroin, crack and ecstasy because so many young people are substance abusers?)

Seven reasons why traditional marriage should be legally protected:

1. That same-sex marriage waters down traditional marriage is shown by the fact that in 1989 the Nordic countries legalized same-sex unions and in just 15 years, traditional marriage as we know it is almost extinct. More that 85% of their young people cohabitate without getting married and many of the small percentage of those who do marry hide their wedding rings in public for fear of being castigated by their peers.

2. Study after study has proven that two-parent households led by a male and female committed to one another in marriage creates the healthiest, most stable environment for children to excel in every area of life (emotionally, financially, physically, etc.).

3. That same-sex marriage is unnatural is shown by the fact that these unions cannot reproduce children that are genetically from both parents. (That older heterosexual unions cannot reproduce children doesnít alter the fact that they at least model the physical structure necessary for multiplication; plus, there have been known oddities wherein older couples have been able to have children.)

4. Married heterosexual couples statistically have better and more frequent sex, are happier, live longer, make more money and have less emotional problems.

5. Most of the adult population in prison come from broken, fragmented families.

6. Traditional marriage is a universal social tradition that predates all religions, laws, schools, and cultures; nations that have had a breakdown in family values usually donít last long because their ability to perpetuate stability ceases, e.g. Greece, Rome, Sodom and Gomorrah.

7. 65% to 70% of the American people oppose alternate views of marriage including same-sex marriage.


Seven ways to save the tradition of marriage:

1. Religious institutions should continually educate their congregants on the values of traditional marriage.

2. Religious institutions should not marry any couples without premarital and post-marital counseling, which should include marriage support groups.

3. Parents, religious institutions, educators and elected officials should work together to create a culture of traditional marriage and family values with a cradle-to-the-grave plan integrating home, church, and school.

4. We should enact the Federal Marriage Amendment that defines marriage as only between one man and one woman (to protect the states from activist judges and liberal special interest groups).

5. Elected officials and judges should make it more difficult to get married (e.g. make premarital counseling mandatory) and more difficult to get divorced (e.g. do away with no-fault divorce laws and ensure a process that includes adequate professional counseling so that divorce becomes the final, not the first option in difficult times).

6. Legally married heterosexual couples should take their vows seriously and invest as much or more money on their marriage relationship (including counseling, seminars, reading books, listening to tapes, and having marriage mentors) as they spend on their wedding day.

7. Push for more responsible media that lauds traditional marriage and family values as opposed to the current climate that lauds both heterosexual and homosexual sex outside of traditional marriage.

While all of the current presidential debates are centered on national security and the economy, history shows us that the greatest security a civilization can have is to respect the time-honored moral values handed down to us from our Creator, which includes honoring the most sacred and oldest institution in the world, traditional marriage.

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