• Is Marriage “by Nature” Heterosexual?

    Over at the blog Thinking Christian, Tom Gilson defines marriage:

    As marriage is by nature a certain kind of comprehensive and life-giving union between man and woman for their joy and unity as well as for the good of the next generation, and as it has been placed under great stress over recent decades by failures in heterosexual views and practice, and as our society has been enormously damaged by those failures, to continue that same damaging trend forward by re-defining marriage would add immeasurably to that continuing damage.

    The definition above represents a slight change from what Gilson had earlier, which featured an ambiguous notion of intent:

    As marriage is intended to be a certain kind of comprehensive and life-giving union between man and woman for their joy and unity as well as for the good of the next generation, and as it has been placed under great stress over recent decades by failures in heterosexual views and practice, and as our society has been enormously damaged by those failures, to continue that same damaging trend forward by re-defining marriage would add immeasurably to that continuing damage.

    Obviously, the definition comes with a call to action opposing the same-sex marriage.

    Equally obviously, there’s lots to disagree with in both definitions. Yet, I wonder–I’ve always wondered–why the definition of one word is such a contest for the (ahem) defenders of marriage. Every other word in the lexicon is open to expanded definitions, changed meanings, and re-definitions. That’s how language works.

    Most everyone familiar with linguistics understands that definitions are established by usage, not etymology. If in use the word marriage includes same-sex marriage, that’s what the word means.

    But now I want to open for comments on the “by nature” part. To what extent is marriage natural? To what extent is it naturally heterosexual? To what extent is it exclusively naturally heterosexual? To me, the self-evident answers are some-some-none. I think it’s Gilson who is re-defining marriage.

    Thoughts?

    Category: What's Happening

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    Article by: Larry Tanner

    • I gave up on Tom a few months ago. There’s no mileage in him.

    • Tom Gilson really needs to watch the Betty Bowers video on “traditional” or “Biblical” marriage. It’s heterosexuals, not homosexuals, who have changed the definition of marriage. In Biblical times, it was an exchange of property (the woman) from father to husband. It often involved many women and, among the great Biblical patriarchs, dozens or even hundreds of sex slaves (“concubines”) in addition to their many wives.

      Now, marriage is between consenting adults. It may or may not be for life. It may or may not involve children. It may or may not be monogamous. It may or may not involve religion. The point is, it’s up to them. Heterosexuals did all this long before gay marriage became the issue of the day. And research shows that gay couples are every bit as happy and well-adjusted as straight couples, as are any children they raise.

      Christians simply have no argument on any rational ground. All they have boils down to a personal objection based solely on a narrow interpretation of an archaic religion.