It’s astounding to review the requirements to be legally married in America. Even more astounding is the reality that Americans, and especially Christians, comply with them. Worse still— Christians continue to demand that the government regulate a predominantly Christian practice. (Monogamous heterosexual marriage is a unique New Testament Christian concept. Nearly all non-Christian faiths advocate polygamy and pedophilia as part of acceptable social marriage norms.)
America’s oligarchic-republican-democratic government currently requires citizens to receive government permission to be legally married—similar to requiring the Chinese to receive government permission to legally have a child.
Imagine living in a country where couples are legally required to give birth to only one child. In order to even have a child, couples are required to apply for a birth permit before starting a pregnancy. After the government legally grants permission to have one child the mother is required to be sterilized or use an IUD.
Imagine living in a country where government officials chart women’s menstrual cycles and women are required to undergo monthly pelvic exams to prevent pregnancies. And the government requires that all “unauthorized” pregnancies be aborted and one or both spouses be sterilized.
For the majority of non-wealthy people, a second pregnancy and any pregnancy without a birth permit, is called “out-of-plan” and is illegal. Illegal “out-of-plan” children are sent to government facilities.
These practices are not imaginary. They are enforced in 21st Communist China. Today, nearly two-thirds of all Chinese couples (approximately 900 million people, or the equivalent to three times the size of the U.S. population) must comply with China’s One Child Policy, which is regulated and enforced by 300,000 officials.
To be legally married in America applicants must pay for a license and receive the government’s permission to marry—if they successfully prove:
- Their identity and that they are not closely blood related to their intended spouse (some states required blood tests, including sickle cell tests),
- Their age (they must be at least 18 years old or “at least the age of consent”),
- Their mental state (they must prove they have sufficient mental capacity to understand the act of marriage), and
- They are not married to anyone else.
Depending on the state, if applicants present a certificate proving they attended the state’s “approved marriage education class” the state fee is waived and only the county fee payment is required.
After purchasing the marriage license applicants must select an authorized officiate to perform the ceremony, and depending on the state, can marry after adhering to a certain waiting period from the date of the license’s approval prior to its expiration date.
After the marriage is officiated, the government requires that information be submitted on the license and returned to the same county clerk’s office within a specified time period.
To clarify, Christians have been submitting to a government that requires them to:
- Apply to the government to receive permission to be married.
- Pay the government to consider their application.
- Comply with and prove numerous criteria to receive government approval.
- Only use a government approved officiant.
- Be married within the government’s specified time period.
- Record their information on a government approved license and submit it to the government within the government’s specified timeframe.
To suggest that marriage in America is a union between God and husband and wife is false. Marriage in America is a union between Uncle Sam and husband and wife. Marriage in America is determined by the government. The government grants permission and regulates whether or not, to whom, when, and how anyone can marry. In America, a license legalizes marriage, not anything else.
Why are Christians demanding that the government grant them permission to marry? If marriage is a solemn oath among two people and God why are Christians paying the government for a license?
By complying with the government’s regulation of marriage Christians have only participated in and advocated for the government’s redefinition of it.
Monogamous heterosexual marriage between one man and one woman—including celibacy of singles and faithfulness to one’s spouse— is solely a radical New Testament concept. As numerous historical records indicate, the culturally accepted norm even during Apostle Paul’s day among Romans and Greeks was procreational sex between one husband and one wife. Recreational sex for married men who actively engaged in sex with young boys, prostitutes, and slaves—was the norm.
Likewise, Islamic and pagan societies practiced polygamy, pedophilia, child sacrifices, child marriages, and marriages with slaves. Even Old Testament Israelite sexuality was largely polygamous. Abraham bore the entire Semitic race: Jews from Sarah; Muslims from Hagar. Jacob’s two wives (Leah and Rachel) and two servants (Bilhah and Zilpah) bore him twelve sons. David and Solomon had many wives and concubines.
It was not until the 16th century, largely because of the Protestant Reformation, that marriage became a government institution. It never had been previously—only churches and synagogues recorded and regulated birth, marriage, sex, and death.
The question is why are American Christians, five centuries later, still so deceived and confused by advocating marriage as a regulated government institution? Do they not realize that in doing so, they are actually validating the government’s authority to regulate childbirth and family structure?
Applying for a license to receive the government’s permission to marry is no different than applying for a license to receive the government’s permission to have a child.
American policies may slightly differ, but they largely replicate, those of Communist China.
This column was first published on Townhall.com.