To anyone who has spent any amount of time in church it is apparent that the family is a key part of God’s plan for peoples lives. The family was the first institution set up by God. In fact, it goes all the way back to the beginning, to the Garden of Eden. In Genesis chapter 2, God created Eve from Adam and there He created the institution of marriage, and then the family. The importance of the family unit is found in virtually every book of the Bible, and we see the blessings that follow the families who follow God’s pattern. In todays society it has become abnormal to see whole family units. Single mothers and fathers, along with blended families, have become the mainstream family units in the United States. The 2020 census gave us further insight into just how much the US family dynamic has changed.
“Therefore shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”Genesis 2:24 KJV
According to the Census Bureau, just 17.8% of US families feature married parents with children. Getting married and raising a family was once a common goal for young people. In the 1950s the average age of women who married was 20.4 years old. In 2020 the average age was 28.6 years old for women and for men the average age was 30.4 years old. Along with delaying marriage, couples in the US are having fewer, if not any children at all. In the second quarter of 2021 the American fertility rate dropped to 55.4 births per 1000, down from 58.9 in the same period in 2019. There is a variety of speculation when it comes to the cause of the decline in the birthrate, as well as the family unit, not just in the United States, but globally. Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk referred to these trends and said that society would “crumble” if people do not start having more children. Some say that climate change awareness has lead to the decline, while others state it is the increase of the LGBTQ agenda. While all of these may be contributors, the root cause can be found in the sin nature of people, and their rebellious desire to shake off all things deemed religious and/or traditional.
“I think one of the biggest risks to civilization is the low birthrate and the rapidly declining birthrate. And yet, so many people, including smart people, think that there are too many people in the world and think that the population is growing out of control. it’s completely opposite. Please look at the numbers – if people don’t have more children, civilization is going to crumble, mark my words.”Elon Musk
In todays culture promiscuity is not only wide spread but is largely accepted more now then ever before. Gone are the days where couple were ashamed of fornication, so much the more when living together outside of wedlock. Now it is considered abnormal to remain pure, getting married young is taboo. This has exponentially has lead to the decrease of the family unit. Why would couples get married, and commit to one person when they can receive the same “benefits” without the commitment. Furthermore the very meaning of marriage has changed. Not so long ago wedding vows were considered sacred. When couple swore “till death do us part” that is what they meant. Marriage was a live long commitment, and it was shameful when couple were divorced. Fast forward to today, marriage is now as flippant as a pair of socks. If one day you decide you’re not happy anymore you can get rid of your current spouse, without cause, and be accepted for it. Scripture not only teaches on the family but it also foretells of the decline of the family unit. In 2 Timothy chapter 3 Paul states that in the last days men shall be “lovers of their own selves” and that they shall be “without natural affection”. While “lovers of their own selves” is very straightforward there are different interpretations of “natural affection”. The desire to get married is natural, it is how God created us. The desire for children, is natural, its how we were designed. Abortion, wanting to kill your child in the womb, is unnatural. Wanting to go from partner to partner without any real relationship is unnatural, it is rebellion to the pattern God set out for the family. All of these issues and more has lead to the decline in families that we see reflected by census data.
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. for men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blashpemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despires of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures mmore than lovers of god; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.”2 Timothy 3:1-5 KV