In light of events today, I would like to state unequivocally that I am not now, nor will I ever be, ashamed nor embarrassed for my position on marriage. It is not a marriage when it is between two people of the same sex. I can never support that. Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God. Anything else is a cheap imitation. What I will be ashamed of is if it turns out I live in a country where the majority of voters would prefer that imitation. And I will do what I can to make sure that never happens. I encourage others to do the same.
There are those who say that they are in love and should be able to celebrate that love. I think love should be celebrated. Love is a wonderful thing. We need more of it in this world. I love many of my friends and celebrate that relationship with them. But marriage is not about love. Love does not a marriage make. The roots of marriage do not rest in love. Which means love is not a reason to allow marriage to those for whom it is not intended.
Now I’ve been thinking about this. When you look at the history of marriage, it seems that it is only recently in the history of the world that love has really started to play a part in the decision to get married. Just look at the Fiddler on the Roof song, “Do You Love Me?” They are married for 25 years before they even think about the fact that maybe there should be love in their marriage.
Tevye: Golde, I have decided to give Perchik permission to become engaged to our daughter, Hodel.
Golde: What??? He’s poor! He has nothing, absolutely nothing!
Tevye: He’s a good man, Golde. I like him. And what’s more important, Hodel likes him. Hodel loves him. So what can we do? It’s a new world… A new world. Love. Golde… Do you love me?
Golde: Do I what?
Tevye: Do you love me?
Golde: Do I love you? With our daughters getting married And this trouble in the town You’re upset, you’re worn out Go inside, go lie down! Maybe it’s indigestion
Tevye: Golde I’m asking you a question… Do you love me?
Golde: You’re a fool
Tevye: I know… But do you love me?
Golde: Do I love you? For twenty-five years I’ve washed your clothes, Cooked your meals, cleaned your house, Given you children, milked the cow, After twenty-five years, why talk about love right now?
Tevye: Golde, The first time I met you Was on our wedding day I was scared
Golde: I was shy
Tevye: I was nervous
Golde: So was I
Tevye: But my father and my mother Said we’d learn to love each other And now I’m asking, Golde Do you love me?
Golde: I’m your wife
Tevye: I know… But do you love me?
Golde: Do I love him? For twenty-five years I’ve lived with him Fought him, starved with him Twenty-five years my bed is his If that’s not love, what is?
Tevye: Then you love me?
Golde: I suppose I do
Tevye: And I suppose I love you too
Both: It doesn’t change a thing But even so After twenty-five years It’s nice to know
A lot of histories of marriage will say something to the effect that marriage was a way to exchange property or bind two groups together. Kings would have their children marry to unite their kingdoms. People would exchange property in exchange for exchanging children in marriage.
But I don’t think that goes far enough back in the history of marriage to explain the roots of it and what it is really about. You need to go back even further. Perhaps even to the first married couple, Adam and Eve.
Their marriage was not an exchanging of property. You can either look at it that they had no property and thus nothing to exchange, or that they owned the world so there was still nothing to exchange.
Did they love each other? I’m sure they did, eventually. But at the beginning, it’s not like there were a whole lot of fish in the sea for them to choose from. So what was the base of their marriage?
Their marriage was a covenant relationship. They covenanted with each other and with God. They covenanted to obey God and to bring children into the world within the family, to a father and a mother. Marriage is a union, not just between two people, but between two people and God. Marriage is based not on a love of each other so much as it is on a love of God. He must be a part of every marriage. He can, and has, set the standards for what a marriage is.42D
Politicians and lawyers can never change the roots of marriage. Marriage is too sacred. They can only create tainted and distorted imitations.
Yes, I hope some day to marry a man I love. But I hope more than anything else that our marriage is based on covenants with God.