by Bethany Glock
When we hear the words “college” and “marriage debate” spoken in the same sentence, the mind tends to skip straight to the issue of homosexual “marriage,” as though there was no other debate to be had about marriage on college campuses. Over the course of my university career, I have noticed another serious problem: Many young people say that they do not want to get married at all.
The reasons I’ve heard for not wanting get married vary. Some don’t want to get married in order to have more time for a career or to avoid having to prioritize a husband or wife and children. Others wonder why they should bother getting married when they can just live together and not have to go through the trouble of a divorce later. Even as a Lutheran college student, I can’t claim to be innocent of this. I’m not sure I can count the number of times I’ve met a perfectly nice young man and wondered how dating him, let alone marrying him, would get in the way of my own aspirations. As all of the recent attacks on marriage as an institution are, this is rooted in the desire to serve oneself and one’s own desires instead of God.
However, God’s design for marriage, one man and one woman for life, is intended to be a blessing for us. Marriage is not a burden to be put aside to make room for ambition, a hindrance in the way of individual goals or a legal inconvenience to be avoided while the pleasures of it are enjoyed. Marriage is good in and of itself. God did not design man and woman to be alone (Gen. 2:18), and it is no accident that Paul compares the institution of marriage to the relationship between Christ and the Church (Eph. 5:22-33). It is one of the many gifts God gives to us. It is right, good and beautiful in His eyes.
Lately, marriage has been heatedly discussed in the context of homosexuality, and it is vital that we do talk about that. However, we should always bear in mind the reasons why we hold to the biblical view of marriage in all contexts. All people need to know that God did not establish marriage to be a burden, but to be a blessing for us, our families, and all of our neighbors.