Monday, November 23, 2009

An American Marriage

Mars Hill Audio sheds light, in their latest volume, on why Americans want to marry more than Europeans and why Americans much more often than Europeans end up divorced, too.

It comes down to twin commitments--marriage and individualism--both of them uniquely dear to Americans, and incompatible over the long haul.

It seems like everyone in America wants to marry at some point in their life, even gays. Not so in Europe. But here it's still seen as a sign of the good life, regardless of whether it happens after co-habitation and children.

However, America is also the land of expressive individualism. If your marriage doesn’t fulfill you, you are almost obliged to leave it. What matters most is self-fulfillment.

It doesn’t seem to matter that we are such a religious nation; individualism trumps faith commitments. In fact, the churches that have grown the most are those that have learned to cater to the individual with a self-fulfillment message.

What should we do? Learn what marriage is for. To put it briefly, marriage is for the mutual help of husband and wife, for bringing up godly children, and for preventing immorality. (WCF 24.2)

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