What is the wedding ceremony?
It is when a couple swear on solemn oath before God and many witnesses that they bind themselves in holy matrimony til death part them.
Ceremonies develop for a reason. You just don't throw it out for the sake of throwing it out.
In the old days, the solemnizing of oaths before God and many witnesses was designed to protect the family, especially in regard to the woman and any product of the civil union (i.e., God's blessing of children) who might otherwise fall into crippling deprivation should the man run off. The man swears that whatever is his is hers, and vice versa, and to be responsible for the welfare of their children.
This solemnizing of oaths was done publicly. It was a matter of public record, so that if someone broke their vows, the greatest shame and reproach was brought down upon the guilty party by the entire community.
We should retain these good things as much as possible. Thus, if you are one of the groomsmen in a wedding, and the man subsequently abandons his family, you should be personally insulted and grieved and should hold the groom accountable, and give every measure of aid and comfort to the bereaved wife and children.
Marriage counseling should include a full explanation of ceremony. Pastors should tell the couple that they are swearing on oath before God and many witnesses, and that they are putting their highest honor on the line in making such vows. If they break such a solemn vow, then their word in regard to anything else is meaningless.
Tough stuff. Right stuff.
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