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Re: Inter-"racial" marriage, when it is justifiable...

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  • Whit
    Thank you so much, Edgar! These posts are very useful since a few people in my family believe in racially segregated marriage. (The only segregation I
    Message 1 of 5 , Nov 30, 2005
      Thank you so much, Edgar! These posts are very useful since a few
      people in my family believe in racially segregated marriage. (The
      only segregation I believe is that marriage should not be between a
      believer and non-believer.)


      --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Edgar A. Ibarra
      Jr." <puritanpresbyterian@y...> wrote:
      > Inter-racial marriage: is it biblical?by Ken HamWhat if a Chinese
      person were to marry a Polynesian, or an African with black skin
      were to marry a Japanese, or a person from India were to marry a
      person from America with white skin—would these marriages be in
      accord with biblical principles?There are a significant number of
      Christians (particularly in America) who would claim that such
      `inter-racial' marriages directly violate God's principles in the
      Bible, and should not be allowed.But does the Word of God really
      condemn such mixes as those above? Is there ultimately any such
      thing as `inter-racial marriage'?What constitutes a `race'?
      > New Zealand Caucasian husband and Malaysian-Chinese wife on their
      wedding day; both fervent Christians and Biblical
      ial.aspIn the 1800s, before Darwinian evolution was popularized,
      most people, when talking about `races,' would be referring to such
      groups as the `English race,' `Irish race,' and so on. However, this
      all changed in 1859, when Charles Darwin published his book On the
      Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection or the Preservation
      of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life.Darwinian evolution was
      (and still is) inherently a racist philosophy, teaching that
      different groups or `races' of people evolved at different times and
      rates, so some groups are more like their ape-like ancestors than
      others. The Australian Aborigines, for instance, were considered the
      missing links between the ape-like ancestor and the rest of
      mankind.1 This resulted in terrible prejudices and injustices
      towards the Australian Aborigines.2 The leading evolutionary
      spokesperson, Stephen Jay Gould, stated that `Biological arguments
      for racism may have been common before 1859, but they increased by
      orders of magnitude following the acceptance of evolutionary
      theory.'3Racist attitudes fueled by evolutionary thinking were
      largely responsible for an African pygmy being displayed, along with
      an orangutan, in a cage in the Bronx zoo.4As a result of Darwinian
      evolution, many people started thinking in terms of the different
      people groups around the world representing different `races,' but
      within the context of evolutionary philosophy. This has resulted in
      many people today, consciously or unconsciously, having ingrained
      prejudices against certain other groups of people.However, all human
      beings in the world today are classified as Homo sapiens Sapiens.
      Scientists today admit that, biologically, there really is only one
      race of humans. For instance, a scientist at the Advancement of
      Science Convention in Atlanta stated, `Race is a social construct
      derived mainly from perceptions conditioned by events of recorded
      history, and it has no basic biological reality.'5 This person went
      on to say that `Curiously enough, the idea comes very close to being
      of American manufacture.'5Reporting on research conducted on the
      concept of race, the American ABC News science page stated, `More
      and more scientists find that the differences that set us apart are
      cultural, not racial. Some even say that the word race should be
      abandoned because it's meaningless.'6 The article went on to say
      that `we accept the idea of race because it's a convenient way of
      putting people into broad categories, frequently to suppress them—
      the most hideous example was provided by Hitler's Germany. And
      racial prejudice remains common throughout the world.'6In an article
      in the summer issue of the Journal of Counseling and Development,7
      researchers argue that the term `race' is basically so meaningless
      that it should be discarded.Personally, because of the influences of
      Darwinian evolution and the resulting prejudices, I believe everyone
      (and especially Christians) should abandon the term `race(s).' We
      could refer instead to the different `people groups' around the
      world.The Bible and `race'The Bible does not even use the word race
      in reference to people,8 but does describe all human beings as being
      of `one blood' (Acts 17:26). This of course emphasizes that we are
      all related, as all humans are descendants of the first man, Adam (1
      Corinthians 15:45).9 As Jesus Christ also became a descendant of
      Adam, being called the `last Adam' (1 Corinthians 15:45), this is
      why the Gospel can be preached to all tribes and nations. Any
      descendant of Adam can be saved, because our mutual relative by
      blood (Jesus Christ) died and rose again.`Racial' differencesBut
      some people think there must be different `races' of people because
      there appear to be major differences between various groups, such as
      skin colour and eye shape.The truth though is that these so-called
      `racial characteristics' are only minor variations among people
      groups. If one were to take any two people anywhere in the world,
      scientists have found that the basic genetic differences between
      these two people would typically be around 0.2 percent—even if they
      came from the same people group.10 But, these so-called `racial'
      characteristics that people think are major differences (skin
      colour, eye shape, etc.) `account for only 0.012 percent of human
      biological variation.'7 In other words, the so-called `racial'
      differences are absolutely trivial—overall, there is more variation
      within any group than there is between one group and another. If a
      white person is looking for a tissue match for an organ transplant,
      for instance, the best match may come from a black person, and vice
      versa. The ABC news science page stated, `What the facts show is
      that there are differences among us, but they stem from culture, not
      race.'6The only reason many people think these differences are major
      is because they've been brought up in a culture that has taught them
      to see the differences this way.Real science in the present fits
      with the biblical view that all people are rather closely related—
      there is only one `race' biologically. Therefore, there is in
      essence no such thing as `inter-racial marriage.' So we are left
      with this—is there anything in the Bible that speaks clearly against
      men and women from different people groups marrying?Origin of people
      groupsIn Genesis 11, we read of the rebellion at the tower of Babel
      which resulted in people being scattered over the earth. Because of
      this dispersion, and the resulting splitting of the gene pool,
      different cultures formed, with certain features becoming
      predominant within each group. Some of these (skin colour, eye shape
      and so on) became general characteristics of each particular people
      group.11Note that the context of Genesis 11 makes it clear that the
      reason for God's scattering the people over the earth was that they
      had united in rebellion against God. Some Christians point to this
      event in an attempt to provide a basis for their arguments against
      so-called `inter-racial' marriage. They believe that it is implied
      here that to keep the nations apart, God is declaring that people
      from different people groups can't marry. However, there is no such
      indication in this passage that what is called `inter-racial
      marriage' is condemned. Besides, there has been so much mixing of
      people groups over the years, that it would be impossible for every
      human being today to trace their lineage back to know for certain
      which group(s) they are descended from.We need to understand that
      the sovereign creator God is in charge of the nations of this world.
      Paul makes this very clear in Acts 17:26. Some people erroneously
      claim this verse to mean that people from different nations
      shouldn't marry. However, this passage has nothing to do with
      marriage. As John Gill makes clear in his classic commentary, the
      context is that God is in charge of all things—where, how and for
      how long any person, tribe or nation will live, prosper and
      perish.12In all of this, God is working to redeem for Himself a
      people who are one in Christ. The Bible makes clear in Galatians
      3:28, Colossians 3:11 and Romans 10:12–13 that in regard to
      salvation, there is no distinction between male or female or Jew or
      Greek. In Christ, any separation between people is broken down. As
      Christians, we are one in Christ and thus have a common purpose—to
      live for Him who made us. This oneness in Christ is vitally
      important to understanding marriage.Purpose of marriageMalachi 2:15
      informs us that an important purpose of marriage is to produce godly
      offspring—progeny that are trained in the ways of the Lord. Jesus
      (in Matthew 19) and Paul (in Ephesians 5) make it clear that when a
      man and woman marry, they become one flesh (because they were one
      flesh historically—Eve was made from Adam). Also, the man and woman
      must be one spiritually so they can fulfill the command to produce
      godly offspring.This is why Paul states in 2 Corinthians 6:14, `Be
      ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what
      fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what
      communion hath light with darkness?'According to the Bible then,
      which of the following marriages in the picture at right does God
      counsel against entering into?The answer is obvious—number 3.
      According to the Bible, the priority in marriage is that a Christian
      should marry only a Christian.Sadly, there are some Christian homes
      where the parents are more concerned about their children not
      marrying someone from another `race' than whether or not they are
      marrying a Christian. When Christians marry non-Christians, it
      negates the spiritual (not the physical) oneness in marriage,
      resulting in negative consequences for the couple and their
      children.13Rahab and RuthThe examples of Rahab and Ruth help us
      understand how God views the issue of marriage between those who are
      from different people groups but trust in the true God. Rahab was a
      Canaanite. These Canaanites had an ungodly culture, and were
      descendants of Canaan, the son of Ham. Remember, Canaan was cursed
      because of his obvious rebellious nature. Sadly, many Christians
      state that Ham was cursed—but this is not true.14 Some have even
      said that this (non-existent) curse of Ham resulted in the black
      `races.' This is absurd and is the type of false teaching that has
      reinforced and justified prejudices against people with dark skin.In
      the genealogy in Matthew 1, it is traditionally understood that the
      same Rahab is listed here as being in the line leading to Christ.
      Thus Rahab, a descendant of Ham, must have married an Israelite
      (descended from Shem). Since this was clearly a union approved by
      God, it underlines the fact that the particular `people group' she
      came from was irrelevant—what mattered was that she trusted in the
      true God of the Israelites. The same can be said of Ruth, who as a
      Moabitess, also married an Israelite, and is also listed in the
      genealogy in Matthew 1 that leads to Christ. Prior to her marriage,
      she had expressed faith in the true God (Ruth 1:16).When Rahab and
      Ruth became children of God, there was no longer any barrier to
      Israelites marrying them, even though they were from different
      `people groups.' Real biblical `inter-racial' marriageIf one wants
      to use the term `inter-racial,' then the real `inter-racial'
      marriage that God says we should not enter into is when a child of
      the Last Adam (one who is a new creation in Christ—a Christian)
      marries one who is an unconverted child of the First Adam (one who
      is dead in trespasses and sin—a non-Christian).15Cross-cultural
      problemsBecause many people groups have been separated since the
      Tower of Babel, they have developed many cultural differences. If
      two people from very different cultures marry, they can have a
      number of communication problems, even if both are Christians.
      Expectations regarding relationships with members of the extended
      family, for example, can also differ. Even people from different
      English-speaking countries can have communication problems because
      words may have different meanings. Counselors should go through this
      in detail, anticipating the problems and giving specific examples,
      as some marriages have failed because of such cultural differences.
      However, such problems have nothing to do with genetics or
      `race.'ConclusionThere is no biblical justification for claiming
      that people from different so-called `races' (best described as
      `people groups') should not marry. The biblical basis for marriage
      makes it clear that a Christian should marry only a Christian. When
      Christians legalistically impose non-biblical ideas such as `no
      inter-racial' marriage onto their culture, they are helping to
      perpetuate prejudices that have often arisen from evolutionary
      influences. If we are really honest, in countries like America, the
      main reason for Christians being against `inter-racial' marriage is,
      in most instances, really because of skin colour. (By the way—every
      human being has the same skin colour—it just depends on how much of
      the colour one has).16The church could greatly relieve the tensions
      over racism (particularly in countries like America), if only the
      leaders would teach that: all people are descended from one man and
      woman; all people are equal before God; all are sinners in need of
      salvation; all need to build their thinking on God's Word and judge
      all their cultural aspects accordingly; all need to be one in Christ
      and put an end to their rebellion against their Creator. References
      and notes`Missing links with mankind in early dawn of history,' New
      York Tribune, p. 11, 10 February 1924. Return to text. Carl Wieland,
      Darwin's bodysnatchers, Creation 14(2):16–18, 1992. Return to text.
      Steven Jay Gould, Ontogeny and Phylogeny, Belknap-Harvard Press,
      Cambridge, Mass. USA, pp. 127–128, 1977. Return to text. Jerry
      Bergman, `Ota Benga: The man who was put on display in the zoo!,'
      Creation 16(1):48–50, 1993. Return to text. Robert Lee Hotz, `Race
      has no basis in biology, researchers say,' Los Angeles Times article
      reprinted in the Cincinnati Enquirer, p. A3, 20 February 1997.
      Return to text. `We're all the same,' American Broadcasting
      Corporation News, 10 September 1998,
      <www.abcnews.com/sections/science/DyeHard/dye72.html>. Return to
      text. Susan Chavez Cameron and Susan Macias Wycoff, `The destructive
      nature of the term race: growing beyond a false paradigm,' Journal
      of Counseling& Development, 76:277-285, 1998. Return to text. In the
      original, Ezra 9:2 refers to `seed,' Romans 9:3 to `kinsmen
      according to the flesh.' Return to text. Ken Ham, Where did Cain get
      his wife?, Answers in Genesis, Florence, Kentucky, USA, 1997. Return
      to text. J.C. Gutin, `End of the rainbow,' Discover, pp. 72-73,
      November 1994. Return to text. Don Batten, Ken Ham, Jonathan
      Sarfati, Carl Wieland, How did all the different `races' arise (from
      Noah's family)?, The Answers Book, chapter 18, to be updated and
      republished in 1999. Rugby star `proof of evolution,' Creation 18
      (1):8, 1995. `Races very close,' Creation 17(2):9, 1995.
      `Modern "Stone Age" reconsidered,' Creation 15(4):51, 1993. Carl
      Wieland, `Shades of Babel,' Creation 13(1):23, 1990. Dennis and Lyn
      Field (translators), `Julmbanu: Aboriginal Babel,' Creation 8(2):11,
      1990. Jerry Bergman, `Evolution and the origins of the biological
      race theory,' CEN Technical Journal 7(2):155-168, 1993. Return to
      text. See note on Acts 17:26, in: John Gill, D.D., An exposition of
      the Old and New Testament; the whole illustrated with notes, taken
      from the most ancient Jewish writings (nine volumes), London:
      printed for Mathews and Leigh, 18 Strand, by W. Clowes,
      Northumberland-Court, 1809. Edited, revised and updated by Larry
      Pierce, 1994–1995 for Online Bible CD-ROM. Return to text. It is
      true that in some exceptional instances when a Christian has married
      a non-Christian, the non-Christian spouse, by the grace of God, has
      become a Christian. This is a praise point but it does not negate
      the fact that Scripture indicates that it should not have been
      entered into in the first place. This does not mean that the
      marriage is not actually valid, nor does it dilute the
      responsibilities of the marital union—see also 1 Corinthians 7:12–
      14, where the context is of one partner becoming a Christian after
      marriage. Return to text. See Genesis 9:18–27. Return to text.
      Examples of such `mixed marriages' and their negative consequences
      can be seen in Nehemiah 9 and 10, and Numbers 25. Return to text.
      Don Batten, Ken Ham, Jonathan Sarfati, Carl Wieland, How did all the
      different `races' arise (from Noah's family)?, The Answers Book,
      chapter 18, (updated and republished in 1999). Return to text.
    • jparnellm@usxchange.net
      Curiously, why is my post not getting through? - Parnell McCarter
      Message 2 of 5 , Dec 1, 2005
        Curiously, why is my post not getting through?

        - Parnell McCarter
      • gmw
        Patience, friend. Other duties called. Your post has gone through now. gmw.
        Message 3 of 5 , Dec 1, 2005
          Patience, friend.

          Other duties called. Your post has gone through now.


          --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, jparnellm@u... wrote:
          > Curiously, why is my post not getting through?
          > - Parnell McCarter
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.