Protecting the Family
by Tom Brown
foundation of society is the family. Before there were businesses or
governments there was marriage, and couples having children. God
established the family before he established commerce and governmental
2. The Mountain
of the Family
In the book of Genesis is told the
story of the first man and woman. It's common knowledge that the human
race started with a man and a woman. The Bible says that God made a
woman from the rib of Adam and brought her to him, "The man said,
'This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called
'woman,' for she was taken out of man.' For this reason a man will leave
his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become
one flesh" (Gen 2:23-24). Since families come before business or
government, neither business nor government has power over it. This
conflict of governmental laws and marriage is nothing new. One of the
most important debates Jesus had with leaders had to do with the tension
between law and marriage. "Some Pharisees came to him to test him.
They asked, 'Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and
every reason?'" (Matt 19:3). Notice, they were not asking if it is
morally right to divorce their wives for any and every reason. They were
asking if it is "lawful" to do this. They were dealing with law, not
with simple morality.
The way Jesus answers it is by
reminding them and us that marriage does not have its foundation or
origin in law, but with God alone. He reminds them of the first marriage
that God, alone, without judges, performed:
"Haven't you read," he
replied, "that at the beginning the Creator 'made them male and
female,' and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and
mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh'? So
they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together,
let man not separate." (Matt 19:4-6)
So Jesus takes marriage laws and
removes them from marriage and reminds us that "laws" or what is
"lawful" is not the real issue. The issue is what is "right", not what
is lawful. In most countries people are free to divorce their spouses
for reasons other than "marital unfaithfulness." Even though they are
lawfully divorced this does not make them "morally" divorced. They still
have vows they made before God, and no government can release people
from the vows they made before God.
The Pharisees understood the
ramification of Jesus teaching. He was turning laws upside down. He was
basically discarding them in favor of divine law. So naturally the
Pharisees wanted to debate Jesus on this by appealing to Moses, and in
essence, saying that Moses was close to God and God gave laws to him,
including laws about divorce: "'Why then,' they asked, 'did Moses
command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her
away?' Jesus replied, 'Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because
your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning'
Jesus concedes the point that Moses
indeed gave laws for divorce. But that his laws were not "commands" from
God, but "permission" by Moses. You see, Moses was both the spiritual
leader of Israel as well as the governmental leader of Israel. The
people put pressure on Moses as the governmental leader. They forced his
hand on changing the original plan of God. They made him give them the
rights to divorce. Jesus made that point clear: "Moses permitted you
to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard."
Jesus however counters Moses permission
to divorce with God's original plan: "But it was not this way from
the beginning." In summary: Government cannot redefine marriage and
its covenantal meaning. It can only cave in to pressure from society.
This is what is happening with government and marriage. Today, the more
hard-hearted people become, the more they will force legislators to give
them what they want concerning marriage and divorce. Not only has
society begged for "no fault" and easy divorce, but now they want
government to change the definition of marriage. Some segments in
society--namely gay activists, Hollywood, liberal theologians--do not
even understand the basic fundamental definition of marriage to be the
joining of one man and one woman together. They now are clamoring to
make marriage between a man and a man or a woman and a woman. They want
How would Jesus answer this? The same
way He answered about easy divorce: "But it was not this way from the
beginning." As Christians we have an obligation to teach the truth.
We must continue to preach what Jesus taught. He taught that marriage is
a covenant between a man and woman, and in a covenant you stay together
unless one breaks the covenant. And Jesus says that "marital
unfaithfulness" or another way to put it, sexual immorality, is the
breaking of the unique covenantal bonds between a husband and wife. "I
tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital
unfaithfulness, and marries another woman commits adultery" (Matt
Also in Jesus teaching, He does not
allow any marriage between people of the same sex. Anything outside of a
man and a woman does not constitute marriage. Now government can make
laws allowing two men to get married, but they are not married in God's
sight. God has nothing to do with that relationship, because it is
outside of what He founded in the beginning. God made Adam and Eve, not
Adam and Steve. So there is no point in trying to change the fundamental
definition of marriage.
I understand the gay-right's activists.
They are quite clever and politically savvy. We Christians however must
confront this mountain against the family. If we do not, then same-sex
marriage will become accepted, children will be forced to be adopted by
gay couples, and eventually it will be considered a hate-crime to speak
against such unions, even though the Bible teaches against
homosexuality. The government will then force churches to allow
gay-couples to get married in their church building with threat of
losing their tax except status. Then they will make the clergy marry gay
couples. Make no mistake about it; government is like a beast; without
them being tamed, they will try to devour the people of God. This is why
we must take a strong stand against same-sex unions.
You may feel that the gay activists are
winning. The mountain seems to grow larger day by day. It is because the
Church, by and large, have not confronted this mountain. Many pastors,
priests and bishops do not want to seem unloving by speaking out against
this mountain. So the mountain grows. Pastors then become even more
afraid as society becomes acceptant of gay marriage. Pastors don't want
to lose their congregation, so they refuse to fight the good fight of
faith by trying to move the mountain.
As leaders we are called by God to
speak the truth. Yes, we must do it in love, but we MUST DO IT. If you
are a pastor, priest, bishop or rabbi, and you do not speak against
same-sex unions, then let me tell you what you are: you are a coward!
You are afraid of what people might say about you instead of what God
thinks of you. We must have fear of God, and Him alone. Tell the truth
about marriage. Speak it in love. But speak against the mountain of easy
divorce and of same-sex unions. Stand up for the family. Now, more than
ever, is the time.
3. Mountain of
"Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain
worked the soil" (Gen 4:2). Business was set up. Abel exchanged the
products of his flocks--milk, cheese and clothing--for Cain's fruit and
vegetables. Thus was born the beginning of business.
Work is a blessing. It is not a curse.
The curse was fruitless and frustrating work. "Cursed is the ground
because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of
your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat
the plants of the field" (Gen 3:17-18). Some people misread the
curse as being "work." But work is not a curse, it is a blessing. God
gave Adam a job. He told him to work in the Garden. "The Lord God
took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care
of it" (Gen 2:15).
So work is a blessing given by God. In
fact it could be argued that work came before marriage. Adam worked
first, then God caused him to fall into a deep sleep, and then God took
the rib and made a woman. This teaches us that work provides the means
to make a family. A family without a job is frustrated. They can't live
together in happiness and peace when they have no means to take care of
Business's main role is provide us with
economic opportunity. It is wrong for us to demand government to do
this. You cannot tell government to take care your needs. Unfortunately
politicians are too afraid to tell you the truth, so politicians act
like CEOs and promise jobs. Then they become frustrated because they
can't produce the jobs. However, businesses create jobs, not government.
In the beginning there were only two
businesses: Abelton and Cainonton. They were privately
owned. Abel owned his company and Cain owned his. It was simple at the
time. But even then, Cain killed Abel. But since there was no
government, God banished Cain into the desert. Later, however, as more
and more people populated the earth, more and more businesses were
created. The growth created the need for government. Government came
together as a result of business and people needing law and order. So
Government's calling is to keep law and order. Government is not the
producers of wealth. It is their job to insure that businesses are
allowed to produce products and make money from it without others
stealing from them.
So it is the Churches duty to tell the
truth about the rewards of hard work. The Church must encourage hard
work. It must tell those that refuse to work that they are sinning. "For
even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: 'If a man will not
work, he shall not eat.' We hear that some among you are idle. They are
not busy; they are busybodies. Such people we command and urge in the
Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the bread they eat" (2
On the other hand, we must also remind
businesses that with their wealth they must give back to God. Cain and
Abel were doing fine until Cain refuse to give back to God what he owed
to Him. Businesses, as well as owners of businesses, must tithe to God.
They owe their prosperity to God; thus they must give to God the best
from their businesses. Businesses have failed when they make money but
do not give back to God.
The Church must tell the truth to
businesses that they must pay their employees what is fair. They must
not rob people of their hard work. They must not take advantage of
"Now listen, you rich
people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you.
Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. Your gold and
silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat
your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days. Look!
The wages you failed to pay the workmen who mowed your fields are crying
out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of
the Lord Almighty" (James 5:1-4).
Businesses must also not use their
power to destroy other businesses. They must not use unfair business
practices to hurt other businesses. Competition must be fair. Those
with more money should not be allowed to use their vast wealth to crush
smaller businesses. Crushing smaller businesses is not competition; it
is war. But sometimes big-businesses wants government to treat them more
favorably than smaller businesses. They use their wealth to buy
politicians, so politicians create an unfavorable environment for
smaller businesses. Government, in the pockets of big-businesses, create
expensive rules for businesses that smaller businesses cannot afford to
follow; so smaller businesses are driven out of business, so
big-business is the only one left standing. This is wrong.
Business also has an obligation to take
care of those who cannot take care of themselves. There are those that
are too weak, either in body or mind, to take care of themselves.
Businesses must give to them. They can do it by giving jobs to those
that are too weak to make money for business, but they do it for
conscience sake. I believe that business should hire those that are
handicap. Yes, it costs businesses to do this, but it is the right thing
to do. It is called "alms giving." They should give to the poor that are
too weak or old to work.
So charity is biblical. And charity
begins with those that make money. And those that make money should be
helping the helpless. Businesses can give directly to the needy or they
can partner with Churches to do this. Since the Church is not a business
it alone cannot help the needy. That is the job of business. The Church
however can partner with businesses to help the needy. And this is good.
In the next teaching we are going to
show the positive role of government and how God set it up to be a big
blessing to us. It is not a necessary evil; government is a blessing and
gift from God.
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