This argument was raised by several people against the gay marriage movement. Proponents of gay marriage denied that argument, saying there were no such logical implications. It didn’t take long to find out who was right. Last Friday Judge Clark Waddoups ruled in the United States Circuit Court in Utah that Utah’s anti-polygamy law is unconstitutional. Waddoups based his decision on a Supreme Court ruling ten years ago in which Justice Anthony Kenney wrote that the only opposition to any form of consensual sexual arrangement was religiously based and therefore unconstitutional. Crucial to Judge Waddoups ruling is the idea that opposition to polygamy did not stem from any compelling state interest. As seemed obvious when the Supreme Court ruled in favor of gay marriage the institution of marriage is essentially being deconstructed before our eyes.
However if one removes the Judeo-Christian worldview from the equation then suddenly the whole construct unravels. Who is to say that a traditional marriage is better for children and for society than any other arrangement? Shouldn’t people have the freedom to live and marry however they wish? Who says children raised in a polygamous family or by two same sex parents do not fare as well as other children? If when they grow up they have a confused sexual identity or happen to live promiscuously, so what? What’s wrong with that? Such things are only a problem for the narrow people who have that biblical worldview.
I suppose I could take comfort in the fact that many of God’s people in the Old Testament were polygamists, including Jacob and David for instance. But I don’t find that especially comforting. It appears to me that those situations resulted in a great deal of dysfunction in the families and the children they produced. Whatever the case, it is apparent that our society is intent on continuing an experiment in sexual and family relationships that throws out centuries of wisdom. I feel fairly confident it will prove in the long run to be a societal train wreck. Unfortunately there’s little I or anyone else can do to turn the tide. The decisions being handed down in courts are consistent with a worldview that rejects biblical thinking. They also accurately reflect the beliefs of an increasing majority in our culture.
That may seem a pessimistic position. It would be were it not for the fact that God is sovereign. What is happening in our culture is no surprise to him. It may be that this is part of the reason our nation does not seem to play any role in the events of the final days of this age. Perhaps this is what will weaken our nation to the point that it is no longer a significant player in world events. Still God’s plan for history will roll forward to its ordained conclusion. I can rest in the fact that God is bigger than what is happening in our society. It seems then that followers of Jesus should more and more focus on being light in the darkness. Our best response clearly must be to trust in our Sovereign Lord and to work ever more diligently on providing an alternative to our unraveling culture. We must show them what a powerful and good thing a truly healthy and loving marriage, a thriving family is like. In our love for each other in our families we need to let them see a better way. We need not panic or feel threatened. We simply need to trust our God, love our spouses and children, and to continue to also love all those around us who may disagree with us so they can see God’s grace at work in our families.