Marriage: 1 Man x 1 Woman 4 Life? Not in the New SA...
According to the Bible, marriage is a public, faithful union of one man and one woman until death parts them (Genesis 1:27, 2:20-24, Exodus 20:14). Marriage is unchangeable because it is the symbol of God's eternal purpose in Christ and the church (Ephesians 5:23-32). God gave marriage to provide stable families for children (Malachi 2:15), to satisfy sexual desires (1 Corinthians 7:9) and to provide companionship (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12).
Sadly, our government does not accept the Bible as the highest law of the land - instead, they claim that the hastily drafted South African constitution is. Since the constitution forbids discrimination on the basis of “sexual orientation” or “marital status”, the South African Law Commission has made a number of ridiculous proposals.
- “Care partnerships” (proposed Ex post facto Unregistered Partnerships Act) - any close personal relationship between two adults can allow an application to court after a break up or death to recognise the relationship and divide the property and/or pay maintenance accordingly!
- “Intimate partnerships” (proposed De facto Unregistered Partnerships Act) - anyone may apply to the court to recognise an “intimate” partnership, which will result in the “intimate partners” having similar benefits to married spouses (e.g. don't have to testify against each other in court, may inherit if no will).
- “Registered partnerships” (proposed Registered Partnerships Act) - any two persons may register a partnership, resulting in benefits almost the same as marriage.
- “Civil unions” (proposed Civil Unions Act) - any two persons may enter a civil union, resulting in all the benefits of marriage.
- “Same-sex marriage” (proposed amendment of the Marriage Act 1961) - any two persons may marry - they need not be of opposite sex.
The Law Commission is asking for input. Although the official deadline is 1 December 2003, submissions received after that date will be considered. You can get over 400 pages of more information from the Law Commission website www.law.wits.ac.za/salc/salc.html. Also check www.christianaction.org.za for our submission.
Please send your input to the Law Commission. Possible strategies include:
- Ask the Commission to rather propose that the constitution be changed, since it does not reflect the values of South Africans.
- Ask for Biblical marriage to be legislated in South Africa. This should include making adultery a crime, the courts only grant divorces on Biblical grounds and that divorce identifies the guilty party and awards neither money nor children to him or her.
- Warn the Commission against the abuse of their proposed legal free-for-all. Object to the cost to society as a result of giving benefits to all these relationships.
- Remind the Commission that if people want to legally regulate their relationships, they are free to draw up contracts.
- Pray that the Lord will confuse and delay the process, and in the meantime work for a new, Godly government.
by Jeanine McGill