"Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." Genesis 1:26-27
Marriage is arguably the most prominent issue in our culture today and will likely prove to be the most polarizing and divisive, possibly becoming the decisive issue for the direction and position of the church in this generation. It’s the sum total of the other issues we’ve studied this week: gender and sexuality.
The question lies at the heart of what amounts to a moral revolution in the time and culture in which we live. For millennia civilizations have defined marriage as an exclusive, permanent union of a man and a woman with each other. Merely two decades ago, politicians in our country voted against party lines to defend this definition of marriage in what was called the Defense of Marriage Act. Yet in 2013 the Supreme Court of the United States struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, paving the way for the complete redefinition of marriage across our culture. In the days that followed, states began officially defining marriage according to different terms, now notably identifying same-sex relationships as so-called marriages.
In reality, however, the court’s decision in 2013 represents only one part of a much larger trend away from traditional marriage across our culture that’s taken place over many years. Though it’s difficult to obtain precise data, census figures show that nearly half of all first marriages today end in divorce (a number that only increases with second and third marriages). That’s if men and women even decide to marry. The number of cohabiting couples in our culture has nearly quadrupled over the past 30 years as more and more singles postpone or put aside marriage altogether. Marital union is clearly on the decline. In the past 40 years the number of independent female households in our culture increased by 65 percent, and the number of independent male households leapt by 120 percent. Less than half of all homes in America today are inhabited by married couples. Marriage is under attack. But it’s too important to surrender. It’s not hateful to boldly defend what God has ordained.
(Source: copied from "Counter Culture", by David Platt, pages 112-113)