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***News Release***


Family First
During National Marriage Week, American Family Association Reminds That Family is Crucial to Stability of Both Government and the Church

TUPELO, Miss.—The state of marriage in America has changed radically since the landmark Obergefell v. Hodges Supreme Court decision in 2015. Today, millennials are waiting longer to wed, and some younger Americans are choosing to skip marriage altogether.

For its 40-plus years in existence, the American Family Association (AFA, www.afa.net) has been working to keep marriages and families strong throughout the country. That is also the goal during next week’s observance of National Marriage Week, Feb. 7-14.

American Family Association spokesperson Walker Wildmon recently authored a report for AFA’s blog site “The Stand” on the topic of “The Origins of Family”—namely how marriage and family must be defended and protected.

“In order to value something, we first need to understand its origin and purpose,” Wildmon says. “We can all agree that family, government and the church are important. They complement each other. But the family plays a significant role that can’t be ignored in the stability of the government and the church.

“Modern higher education teaches that family is a social construct—a man-made phenomenon,” he adds. “What society views as family might differ substantially from what the Bible says about family. The reality is that family is an inherently divine institution, created and defined by God Himself. And two important aspects of the family are marriage and parenthood.”

Throughout an ever-changing culture, AFA has held true to the biblical tenet that marriage is the union between one man and one woman—a beautiful picture of the Church (the bride) and Jesus Christ (the groom). Mutual loyalty and respect for one another is a sure way to live a happy and healthy marriage, Wildmon shares. Likewise, parenthood is a key component to the marriage covenant. The bearing of children is what “be fruitful and multiply” means in Genesis 1. Not only is parenthood about being fruitful but it is also about discipleship.

“Of the three God-ordained institutions—family, government and the church—the family was created first,” Wildmon writes. “By family coming first in Scripture, it shows that family is crucial to the stability of the government and the church. Imagine a stable and prosperous government without families. This would be impossible. Society would be full of anarchy if not for the family structure. It naturally provides checks and balances, and some form of order.”

In the same vein, Wildmon says, imagine a church without families participating. It would be very difficult for the body of Christ to flourish without mothers and fathers discipling their children and providing a solid foundation for the church to build on.

“Again, we can all agree that family, the government and the church are important,” he continues. “They complement each other. But the family plays a significant role that can’t be ignored.”

National Marriage Week is a national observance that seeks to celebrate marriage in a non-commercial way around Valentine’s Day and serves as an ideal time to highlight the importance of marriage for individuals, families and the nation. The week was first observed in 2010 to encourage individual and group efforts to raise the issue of marriage to the national agenda and support marriages across the country.

For more information on American Family Association, visit www.afa.net or follow AFA on Facebook or on Twitter @AmericanFamAssc. Read more about AFA.