Paperback, 116pp. Published by Evangelical Press, Faverdale North Ind. Est., Darlington. DL3 0PH. Price £6.95, ISBN 0 85234 577 1.
This is an unusual book in that this reviewer has seen very little written on issues so vital in today’s society. In his introduction the writer gives a chilling catalogue of the impact of the decline in moral standards and traditional family structures resulting in death and disease, divorce, single parents and children and shows the importance of biblical teaching for believers today. It is in his first chapter, entitled ‘Some Definitions’, that the writer considers what he terms ‘different sorts of marriage’. This is an area where, rather than giving clarity to the background of his subject, the writer spreads confusion, raising more questions than the scope of his little book can cover. He takes a clear stance on homosexual ‘marriages’ stating that ‘both the Old and New Testaments specifically condemn homosexual practices’. However, in relation to cohabiting heterosexual couples, he considers them to be married but states on the same page that ‘the sexual act itself does not create a marriage’.
However, from Chapter 3 onwards the book develops some helpful guidance. The writer’s answer to the question ‘But what is love?’ is worth reading in its own right as he dispels the view that being ‘in love’ alone is a secure basis for marriage. Society’s stress upon the emotional and sexual is contrasted with the biblical definition and description of love. He is equally clear on leadership, responsibility and authority within the marriage. Overall, this is a book that could provide much of benefit and blessing to those who are prepared to carefully consider the biblical view of marriage or who offer counsel to those believers considering marriage.