Today our Parliament gets to debate the first reading of proposed changes to our law on marriage. Around the world, and our country, debate over the theology of marriage rumbles on. One challenge for Christians on such a matter (as on any matter) is how we read Scripture as we do theology. Paul challenges Timothy to rightly handle the Word of God (2 Timothy 2:15).
One thing quite noticeable in the i-world of Anglican discussion is an approach which cuts, slices and dices Scripture on marriage. In some ways I am not quite sure to what purpose. At a minimum this approach highlights the challenge of elucidating a biblical theology of marriage. But, at risk of making a hasty judgement, this approach does raise the question of whether it is pressing at a maximum for the impossibility of saying anything sensible, let alone authoritative about the use of Scripture in expressing a theology of marriage.
A recent example of such an approach (at least regarding the challenge of developing a biblical theology) is near here Down Under on Bosco Peters' Liturgy site (which should be read in conjunction with an earlier post on the Bible here). Interestingly my figuring in the comments following has led to the charge that I am "cherrypicking." I am contemplating exploring that charge in a future post here. But, in the meantime, I want to commend John Richardson at The Ugley Vicar for offering a different approach to Scripture than cut, slice and dice. In three posts Richardson offers a classical evangelical exposition of Scripture in respect of Genesis 1-3. Whether we agree with his conclusions or not, we might consider whether his approach has merit. Post One, Two and Three.
Or, is he just a sophisticated cherrypicker?
If so, I am glad to keep company with him!
ADDENDUM: I'm with Ms Domingues. In a church of many biblical theologies of marriage (and don't you dare cherry pick which is the plum), and in a society cheerfully making up what it means by 'family' as life goes along, I cannot see any objection at all to a three person marriage. Can you?