Thursday, September 8th, 2011

I’m always bothered when Christians speak of God “healing” someone through surgery, or when they call something a “miracle” that does not clearly bear the marks of supernatural intervention. While we should ultimately thank God for all good things, if a surgeon fixes your body, then it was not a divine healing–it was a medical healing.

We should thank God for giving the doctors the knowledge and wisdom to fix our body, but to attribute the healing to divine intervention cheapens the Biblical concepts of divine healing and miracles. When God performs a healing, surgeries are not necessary. When God does a miracle, His direct involvement will be obvious because the outcome will defy a naturalistic explanation. Did your headache go away? Great, thank God for it. But if you popped an Aspirin at the same time you prayed for the headache to go away, you should probably be buying shares in pharmaceutical companies rather than telling people God healed your headache.

Those who wish to change the historic definition of marriage so as to include couples of the same sex often argue that marriage is a fluid institution with an evolutionary history.  One of their favorite examples is polygamy.  Polygamy used to be an acceptable form of marriage, but such is no longer the case in most societies.  They think it follows that if the definition of marriage is flexible enough to change in this fashion, then it should be capable of including people of the same sex as well.

The problem with this argument is that polygamy is not an exception to the “male and female” understanding of marriage.  Rather, it is an exception to the concept of monogamy.  Polygamy did not involve multiple partners in a single marriage, but rather multiple, concurrent marriages.  This can be demonstrated by the following:

  1. Each wife entered into a marriage with the man at different points in time.
  2. It was possible for the man to divorce one wife without divorcing all his wives.
  3. The women in the relationship only viewed the man as their spouse, not the other women.