On many an occasion I have heard that the (primary) purpose of sex is to have children. Similarly, I have frequently heard that the (primary) purpose of marriage is to have children. Suffice it to say that I think that both of these positions are absurd.
These positions end up creating beliefs like "contraception is morally wrong because it thwarts the priamry purpose of sex" and "gay marriage is wrong because the gay couple can't produce children, thus defeating the primary purpose of marriage".
The contraception issue has been dealt with in Jeremy's post on contraception, so I won't deal with it here.
The gay marriage argument showed up in the editorial pages of last Sunday's paper. I was surprised to see it. While I'm not known for agreeing with this particular columnist, he rarely says anything quite so stupid.
He argues that of all the different kinds of families, heterosexual couples, gay couples, divored couples, and single parents, children are best off with the heterosexual couples. Therefore, gay marriage shouldn't be legal, because marriage is primarily about children and gay marriage cannot produce children, or if they adopt it is not the ideal environment for children. He nowhere mentions that divorce or single parenthood should be illegal because they are non-ideal as well. Nor does he mention that widows and widowers should be forced by law to remarry for the sake of their children. He similarly doesn't mention that infertle people should not be allowed to marry as they cannot produce children. Nope, he only mentions that gay marriage should be illegal because it is a non-ideal environment for children.
But then again, what can you expect then the entire premise is wrong? Sex is not primarily about children. And neither is marriage. To say such things is to make them merely a means to the end of children. But the biblical view of sex is that it is a physical expression of the union of marriage. And the biblical view of marriage is that is an illustration of the spiritual and mystical union of Christ and the Chruch. Neither of them has children as their focus. And any attempt to make children their focus is a subversion of their true purposes.