I promise to try to be better about posting on this thing.
I've had marriage on the mind lately, as I'm preparing to wed four couples (and possibly a fifth) next year. With that in mind, I stumbled across an article in Christianity Today about modern trends in the church concerning chastity and marriage. The author, Mark Regnerus, a professor at UT-Austin, says that the American evangelical church has done a very good job of holding to a biblical sexual ethic. However, it has succumbed to a wordly understanding of marriage - one that fulfills self, rather than points to God - and as such, we are watching our ideas of chastity and marriage battle one another rather than complement each other. This constitutes a crisis for the average American Christian family, and is a challenge to the Church to consider what she teaches about marriage, and how she practices it in her communities. Regnerus writes:
"Most young Americans no longer think of marriage as a formative institution, but rather as the institution they enter once they think they are fully formed. Increasing numbers of young evangelicals think likewise, and, by integrating these ideas with the timeless imperative to abstain from sex before marriage, we've created a new optimal life formula for our children: Marriage is glorious, and a big deal. But it must wait. And with it, sex. Which is seldom as patient."
Its a long article, but well worth the read.