Today in my history class, we focused on The Reformation Family. Now, the family during the Reformation was pretty similar to the family after the reformation. Before the Reformation, men and women got married, had children, and did whatever line of work they were in, whatever it happened to be. The average marriage lasted fifteen years, and ended because one spouse died, either during childbirth, or of an illness, or war. In addition to this, chances are that the living spouse would remarry ASAP, especially if there were surviving children.
The biggest change to the reformation family was an increased light shown on the family. In Catholicism, the family was there, and the more children that there were, the less likely it was for all of the children to go off and get married. Because of this, there was a huge increase of people joining Monasteries, Convents, and the Sacred Priesthood. While this, in and of itself, is a great thing, they were entering for the wrong reason- because the family had too many children and thus not all were able to get married.
Following the reformation, there were many more marriages, because the reformers took the humanist ideals that marriage is good and celibacy is bad. This led to a huge number of priests and nuns leaving the priesthood and convents, respectively. This meant that there were many more people getting married.
So, more people getting married, yet Luther gets rid of marriage as a sacrament. Can anyone figure that one out??? I get that he is all for sola scripture, but can anyone show me how marriage isn’t a sacrament???? I mean, Jesus states that
But from the beginning of the creation, God made them male and female. For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother; and shall cleave to his wife. And they two shall be in one flesh. Therefore now they are not two, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
Here, in Mark 10:6-9, Jesus not only clearly establishes Marriage as a Sacrament, but also forbids divorce. Divorce… what a fun idea, one to tackle in a future post…
Interesting description of the evolution of marriage, especially the factors that contributed to the increase and decline. A study on divorce would be a logical follow-up. Go for it!