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Religious Studies

Christianity: marriage and divorce

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Christians see marriage as vows taken before God, and divorce is not encouraged.

Marriage

In the marriage service of the Church of England, the couple getting married make vows to each other. The traditional marriage vows are:

I, take you,to be my wife [or husband].to have and to holdfrom this day forward;for better, for worse,for richer, for poorer,in sickness and in health,to love and to cherish,till death us do part,according to God’s holy law;and this is my solemn vow.

Marriage is important for Christians because:

  • it's a gift from God; it's part of God’s plan for creation that men and women should live together
  • it provides a relationship through which husband and wife support each other; this relationship is built on love and faithfulness
  • it provides a secure environment for the bringing up of children

The importance of marriage is emphasised by Jesus

But from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.

Mark 10:6-9

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