The Real Heart of the Matter:
Rebuttal to Shawn McCraney's Erroneous Notion that
Let God speak for Himself! Push aside pre-determined religious dogma and go straight to the words of Jesus; Bible teachings are consistent with the idea of Eternal Marriage. The power Christ passed to Peter represents authority that can "bind" a marriage on "earth" and in "heaven"—hence, a power capable of "binding" a marriage beyond mortality and into eternity.
Shawn McCraney asked this question during his Heart of the Matter TV show:
The Bible is the inspired, authoritative word of God. The Bible teaches that Jesus Christ gave power directly to the Apostle Peter, and that authority is described as follows:
“And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven" (Matt. 16: 19).
If Peter performed a marriage on "earth," that ceremony of being "given in marriage" would be "bound in heaven"—how could it be otherwise, in light of the power that Jesus gave to Peter: “whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth, shall be bound in heaven."
When a marriage is "bound in heaven," that marriage is eternal—hence eternal marriage is not merely an idea dreamed up "in Joseph Smith's imagination." But, let me explain why many Bible believers incorrectly conclude there are no marriages in heaven.
"For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage" (Matt. 22: 30).
The correct meaning of this passage is that there is no marrying in heaven.
The words "marry" and "given in marriage" describe the ceremony of marrying—a couple "bound" together in marriage initially, a couple being "given in marriage." The Bible has spoken true: the ceremony of marriage is not performed in heaven; instead, holy matrimony is an ordinance that is performed on earth.
Two other Bible Teachings are consistent with the idea of Eternal Marriage. First, consider the words of Jesus:
"For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder" (Matt. 19: 5-6)
The interpretations of "man" have "put asunder" what "God hath joined together," by falsely concluding that Marriages "bound" by the authority of God do not continue in Heaven.
Second, from the very beginning of the human family, God said to Adam:
"And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. . . . and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a woman, . . . And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh." (Gen. 2: 18, 20-24)
It is inconsistent with Bible Teachings to imagine that God would want man and woman to return to being "alone"—a condition that is "not good." Once husband and wife "cleave" together and are made "one flesh," it it is inconsistent with Bible Teachings to conclude that man-woman oneness should UN-cleave at mortal death, and not continue in Heaven.
Again, the wording of Matt. 22: 30 speaks of the ceremony of being "given in marriage"—the Bible establishes that couples cannot "marry" in Heaven. Bottom Line: All marriage ceremonies performed by the power and authority that Christ gave to Peter, will absolutely be "bound in heaven"—those marriages will continue into eternity.
Matt Moody, Ph.D.
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