What do you know? Scots still think highly of marriage, but steadily declining numbers of them feel the need for a Holy Man to sanctify it. This, y’all will probably not be surprised to learn, has Albert the Pious in a regular snit.
Here is the fact: “Last year, Humanist Society Scotland conducted more marriages in Scotland” that is more weddings, “than any other religious group, including the Church of Scotland.” Now, I’m rather custom over time to looking at all the documentation of secularization and its progress throughout Western societies. I’m used to seeing the release of these reports, either from groups like the Pew Research Center or Norcare in the United States, or when you’re looking at Canada and Great Britain and the rest of Europe, similar kinds of academic research centers.
But when you’re looking at a report from a government concerning the conducting of weddings, then you were really looking at a fact that cries out for attention, and when you have a nation like Scotland, a nation historically connected to very high rates of church attendance and a very clear theological identity, especially when you think about the reformation and legacy of John Knox. When you’re talking about that nation now having a government that records more weddings conducted by humanists than by any other religious group, including the Church of Scotland, then you’re looking at one of those facts that simply tells us the world has changed, and this world has changed in the most incredible way in Scotland.
Heh — this begs for something snarky about rare sightings of Holy Men and the Loch Ness monster …
The decline of church weddings anywhere is seriously good news, for the plain reason that Christianity doesn’t actually approve of marriage; what people like Mohler approve of is animal husbandry, a cosmic grant of permission for (unprotected) sexual intercourse in order to procreate and grow his ridiculous club.
Albert Mohler, like virtually every other Holy Man in Christendom, affirmatively condemns — condemns — the mutual loyalty and shared ambitions that make a relationship a marriage. Those are presumption upon the absolute sovereignty of Our Invisible Friend — Don’t you know? — who alone is worthy of your loyalty and who will tell you what are your ambitions.
The third theological fact about the family is the continued affirmation of the family within the redeemed people of God – the church. As the Gospels make clear, loyalty to Christ exceeds that of any family commitment, even as the church becomes the family of faith, embracing within its life all who come to faith in Christ and into the life of the church. And yet, Christians are explicitly instructed to honor marriage, to raise their children in the faith, and to order their family according to the Scriptures.
The believer in Christ acknowledges him as Savior and Lord, with an allegiance that exceeds any earthly commitment. When two believers are married, they share this mutual commitment and are commonly dedicated to the Lordship of Christ.
Anybody who thinks that pleasing an Invisible Wizard In The Sky is more important than his or her wedding vows is a fool — precisely, a damn fool — who isn’t actually married at all.
Bruce Gerencser, a former pastor, offers an affecting, first-hand look at what Mohler’s teaching really means and does.
While these memories remind me of the fact that I did spend time with my beautiful wife and children, I find myself saddened by the fact that I should have spent a lot more time with them, but didn’t. Southeast Ohio is a place of beauty, yet I rarely took the time to enjoy the scenery. Enjoying life was for those who didn’t take seriously the commands of Jesus. As the Apostle Paul centuries before, I wanted my life to be a testimony of single-minded devotion to Jesus. Better to burn out than rust out, I thought at the time. Some day, I will enjoy the scenery of God’s eternal kingdom! Did not the Bible say, prepare to meet the Lord thy God? There will be plenty time later to relax and fish along the banks of the River of Life.
My children and Polly have long since forgiven me for not giving them the time they deserved. They understand why I worked like I did, but I have a hard time forgiving myself for putting God, Jesus, the church, preaching, and winning souls before my family.
Go read the entire piece.
And it surely is ironic that Albert Mohler, who has sent legions of preachers to every corner of the earth to upend people’s lives with gaudy, cult-like, anti-marriage nonsense, fails to recognize his own role in driving thinking grown-ups away from church. It’s not likely to happen, because I avoid pious idiots like the plague, but it would give me genuine, honest-to-god pleasure to be there when our smug li’l buddy realizes that he is the Dark Side.