"The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant." ~ John Stuart Mill
A Solution to Reclaim Holy Matrimony
Christians can easily point fingers and cast blame that a few men wearing black dresses have determined and given rise to homosexual marriage in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. I submit that Christians are ultimately responsible for this travesty. They gave up the high ground to the State in matters of Holy Matrimony decades ago by acquiescing to State licensing and forsaking the Church's First Amendment protections. In doing so, the Christians have effectively married themselves to another god, a god whom they still faithfully serve, and have yet to divorce from entirely. That god is the State.
A Christian's definition of what constitutes Holy Matrimony is the union of a man and a woman, under Christ's direction and authority. So in essence, the union of Holy Matrimony can be thought of as three before consecration; Christ being the Head of the husband, and the husband the head of the wife [see Ephesians 5:21-23]. Unfortunately, the Church has embraced a lesser definition over the years, a secular one created by the State. The State's definition of marriage, which is now subject to change, and the licensing procedure it uses is open to attack because it leaves the One True God, who created the institution of marriage, out of the equation.
The Marriage High Ground Vacated by the Church
Fundamentally, it can be said that whoever recognizes a marriage determines its validity within society. Who, if not the Creator, holds ultimate authority to validate and bless a wedding? Does the Christian God of the Bible recognize and validate all who perform a ceremony absent of Him? For the answer, see Mathew 19:5-6 and Mark 10:6-9. We know that non-believers reverently place their faith and legitimacy of marriage in the hands of State actors, imposters, who with self-proclaimed power of "vested" authority officiate blasphemous ceremonies. These impostors are commonly referred to as Justices of the Peace and execute wedding ceremonies absent God every day, replacing Him with the name of the State. Likewise, an extreme majority of State-licensed Church "Pastors" throughout the united States demand that their flock also obtain a State marriage license before he, or now she, can conduct a wedding ceremony. Instead of two being married, there are now three. The bride and groom who constitute one flesh and Christ make up the Biblical marriage. And then the other god the State is tacked on for good measure. But why, and more importantly, how did this unholy alliance with the State happen in a Christian nation that sought to extinguish a State Church at its founding? The Framers heeded the words of this French political philosopher at the nation's founding when crafting the First Amendment:
"A more certain way to attack religion is by favor, by the comforts of life, by the hope of wealth; not by what reminds one of it, but by what makes one forget it; not by what makes one indignant, but by what makes men lukewarm, when other passions act on our souls, and those which religion inspires are silent. In the matter of changing religion, State favors are stronger than penalties." ~ The Spirit of the Laws, Baron de Montesquieu - French political philosopher (1748)
The Christian, accustomed to accepting the propitious favors created by democratic rule and policy over that of guaranteed protections within a Constitutional Republic, yield their claim to exercise higher authority when they accept State favors that degrade Biblical foundation. The Christian's political voice becomes meaningless. This is especially true in instances where Christians continue to tightly guard State favors, the same State favors that Christians find difficult to disavow themselves for fear that they could not possibly survive without them. For example, some State favors of obtaining a marriage license include both federal and state laws that benefit married couples entrenched in the "hopes of wealth," as Baron de Montesquieu states. Having a State-recognized marriage allows couples certain benefits [i.e. favors] such as: tax, inheritance, entitlement, and retirement benefits, employment, medical, death, and family benefits [e.g. divorce protections], consumer, housing, and other legal benefits and protections. So you see, the lure to obtain mammon through a marriage license is appealing. The fruit of which has created an indignant minority and ungodly society that demands the same rights, protections, and benefits created by the State, and to be afforded to all who maintain the existence of civil rights. Case in point is the recent State recognition of "gay" marriage.
The Christian who believes that the State has some vestige of authority in matters of the Church, such as the defining, performance, and defense of Holy Matrimony, does not understand the limited role of government within our Constitutional Republic as exemplified in the First Amendment. Moreover, the Christian does not possess any political power to protect what God ordained as "marriage" when they themselves cede jurisdiction to that of the State by accepting a license to marry. Worse, they become hypocrites and deny that God is sufficient by capitulating to obtaining a State marriage license in order to wed, acknowledging the State to be the final arbiters of what is acceptable. Sometimes what is deemed acceptable comes at a price. The price being that Civil Government will not remain civil when God is mocked. The faltering within the societal framework of what constitutes Holy Matrimony occurred the moment Christians began to accept licenses to marry. As Jefferson once said, "It is error alone which needs the support of government, the truth can stand by itself."
When God is left out of the government equation, or worse, replaced with another, what is our forgotten Constitutional Republic to do but hearken unto the voice of an active democratic minority? The question is, what are Christians going to do now that they understand the problem? Will they do what is right and take hold of the solution?
The solution is plain to see and quite simple, actually. However, taking the steps to fix the problem comes at a worldly price. It is a choice between blessings and benefits. Do you believe God will bless you, or do you believe the State will benefit you? God said:
". . . Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." Revelation 18:4, KJV
How do we come out of her? We divorce ourselves from her, and return to our one true love, Christ. If that means forsaking the marriage license, and marrying without it to regain the high ground, so be it. If it means that Pastors must divorce their relationship from the State to perform those marriages without a license, so be it. If it means newlyweds must forgo State favors, so be it. If it means a mass movement of Christian couples taking existing marriage licenses down to their town hall and shredding it in the face of a public servant to remind them who is the master, and send government a message that marriage is God's place, so be it. If it means leaving a Sunday social club that chooses benefits over blessings, and starting a new free church, so be it.
We have a choice! We can reclaim the high ground or leave it for the State. What will Church leaders do? Will they remain complacent and assert that we need only press harder, call our Congressmen, and pass Amendments? We all know deep down it is too late for that. Pandora's box was opened decades ago. How long it will remain open will be decided by the salt and light of the earth, as it is their charge to reclaim the high ground.