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Christian views on marriage.

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Introduction

AO1: Marriage is a life long commitment and is not to be seen as something you do spontaneously or without thought. Many couples get married for many reasons, and this union of two people is seen as a very important thing in the Christian church. Every Christian sees marriage as something not to be taken lightly, and every Christian believes marriage is a total commitment for life, but the many Christian denominations are divided on their opinion of divorce and remarriage. The Catholic Church places such great importance on marriage that for them it is a sacrament. A sacrament is an outward religious act, with a spiritual meaning. In marriage, the outward religious act is the exchange of rings and the vows. The spiritual meaning in marriage is; the love of the couple mirrors God's love for us. In the Catholic Church marriage is also a covenanted agreement, which is a two-sided agreement. In the Catholic Church marriage has key themes of; permanence, exclusiveness and life giving. ...read more.

Middle

The Pope is telling us that, marriage is permanent in the eyes of the church and God. Another key theme in Catholic marriage is; exclusiveness. This is shown in one of the three questions the priest asks the couple in the greeting, "Have you come to give yourself to each other freely and without reservation?" The question is saying, that the couple should give themselves to each other, no one else. The vows say, " to have and to hold from this day forward." No one else can have them, so the marriage is exclusive. The wedding rings are blessed as a sin of the couples' love and fidelity. Fidelity meaning faithfulness, this also shows how marriage is exclusive. In the Gospels Jesus says a lot about exclusiveness and not committing adultery. In Mark's Gospel Jesus says, "If a man divorces his wife and marries another woman, he commits adultery against his wife." This shows Jesus was anti divorce and believed in exclusiveness within marriage. ...read more.

Conclusion

But, the differing in Christian groups' opinions appears because of what is said in Matthew's Gospel, "if a man divorces his wife, for any other cause but her unfaithfulness, then he is guilty of making her commit adultery. Matthew's gospel is telling us divorce is acceptable in the case of adultery. These differences in the Gospels, has resulted in the differences in beliefs of different Christian groups. The Church of England does not, in principle, accept divorce. But an increasing number of vicars are offering the remarriage of divorcees in a civil ceremony. Many Free churches, on the other hand, accept divorce. They believe marriage does not end at the physical death of one of the married couple, but at the death of the love shared between the couple. The Catholic Church though does not accept divorce in some cases grant an annulment. An annulment is the cancellation of a marriage, done by the Catholic church, when a couple admit that the marriage was done either under the influence of something or someone, or the couple admit that one of them had no intention of keeping to the marriage vows. Therefore, the marriage is effectively considered void. ...read more.

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