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From the editor: June 19, 2015

Magnificently Obsessed

Marriage Pledge
The Marriage Pledge. defendmarriage.org

Traditionally-minded Christians are often accused of being obsessed with sexual morality. I can grow weary of the topic, but I mustn't. If I have any obsession regarding it, it is in the same sense that British citizens in 1940 were obsessed with German airplanes during the Battle of Britain. You must pay attention to where you are being attacked. They started it. You have something worth defending.

Christians are defending a long-standing moral tradition, which includes clear teachings on sexual practices. Sex is a divinely created good, given to mankind as the marital bond for the purposes of family formation. Family formation involves both the begetting of children and maintaining the unique bond between the husband and wife realized in the sexual union. Sex is not only for procreation but also for family formation in binding the husband and wife together—for welcoming children.

The bodily and spiritual union of man and wife is the welcoming communion into which a child is born. The child needs both parents and their mutual love. So forming a family is more than making a baby. Otherwise, impregnating a female would create a family; without a true marital bond, it does no such thing. We see the truth of this all around us increasingly in out-of-wedlock births.

When any aspect of family formation is abused or undermined or devalued by members of the family, neighbors, friends, or cultural or societal forces, family erosion may ensue. When the family erodes, society as a whole is threatened, even if cultural leaders cannot or will not acknowledge the destructive power of revised sexual philosophies.

Christian Scripture—including the Old Testament interpreted in Christ—stands against today's sexual revisionism. Leviticus 18 addresses forbidden sexual relations, including various sorts of incest, homosexual acts and bestiality. These are beyond ritual purity codes for Israel; they apply to all nations:

24 Do not defile yourselves with any of these things; for by all these the nations are defiled, which I am casting out before you. 25 For the land is defiled; therefore I visit the punishment of its iniquity upon it, and the land vomits out its inhabitants. 26 You shall therefore keep My statutes and My judgments, and shall not commit any of these abominations, either any of your own nation or any stranger who dwells among you 27 (for all these abominations the men of the land have done, who were before you, and thus the land is defiled), 28 lest the land vomit you out also when you defile it, as it vomited out the nations that were before you.

As long as sexual revisionists—inside and outside the churches, well-intentioned or otherwise—press for a reconfiguration of the God-given channels of sexual expression and family formation, it behooves Christians to resist them and bear witness to the good of marriage in word and in deed.

A number of good people and good friends signed this ad defending marriage in the Washington Post. These resisters include Catholics, Orthodox, and Protestants. More than 50,000 have signed the statement here. We know that it takes more than statements, but this is one way to take a stand. And we are not alone. You are one of a majority on this issue, as Allan Carlson points out in the new issue of Touchstone.

We are in this world to embrace the truth, live it, and defend it as needed—in Christ, who saves us from sin and death for life eternal, and who sees his Church as a bride, made ready for her husband. Such a vision and such readiness is a very healthy obsession, worth defending.

Yours for Christ, Creed & Culture,

James M. Kushiner
Executive Director, The Fellowship of St. James