Christian views of marriage

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Christian views on marriage typically regard it as instituted and ordained by God for the lifelong relationship between one man as husband and one woman as wife, and is to be "held in honor among all...."[Heb 13:4]

Civil laws recognize marriage as having social and political status. Christian theology affirms the secular status of marriage, but additionally views it from a moral and religious perspective that transcends all social interests.

While marriage is honored among Christians and throughout the Bible, it is not seen as necessary for everyone. Single people who either have chosen to remain unmarried or who have lost their spouse for some reason are neither incomplete in Christ nor personal failures. There is no suggestion that Jesus was ever married.

Divorce or dissolution of marriage is generally seen from a Christian perspective as less than the ideal, with specific opinions ranging from it being universally wrong to the notion that it sometimes is inevitable.

The New Testament holds that sex is reserved for marriage.[1] It says that sex outside of marriage is the sin of adultery (for the married person) if either sexual participant is married to another person. Voluntary sexual intercourse between persons not married to each other is considered the sin of fornication.

Ideas about roles and responsibilities of the husband and wife now vary considerably on a continuum between the long-held male-dominant/female-submission view and a growing shift toward equality (without sameness) of the woman and the man.

A small but growing number of Christian denominations conduct weddings between same sex couples where it is civilly legal. A few others perform ceremonies to bless same sex unions without recognising them as marriage.


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