Adam Nelson's Reviews > Marriage Under Fire: Why We Must Win This Battle

Marriage Under Fire by James C. Dobson
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's review
Sep 06, 2011

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I gave this book 3 stars because Dobson speaks some good spiritual truth. The book is rather too short to give this subject the proper, grace-centered focus, and so it comes off, unintentionally, as a work of condemnation. Yes, the subject matter is urgent and requires urgent debate, but it can't be rapid-fire like this.

I'm not really one to try to pick fights over subjects like homosexual marriage, so this review will be rather brief. I have gay friends whom I love and bear compassion for. Yes, as do all, I have my own views on this matter. I prefer not to bring those views up because I believe God's grace can operate in spite of, independent of, and even through a person's issues, whatever they may be. What breaks my heart is that anything, whatever it may be, would get in the way of God's grace in their lives, and I'm the chiefest among folks who let obstacles separate me from God. These are stumbling blocks. I feel that if anybody is caught up in any sort of stronghold, it will be borne out in their lack of contentment. That's really all I'm going to express on any hot-button issue, homosexuality or otherwise. Enough is being said about the issue that I feel I can withdraw from the debate and prayerfully try to love people the way Jesus loves me. There's no problem with that, is there?

Many may take issue with Dobson's comparison of the homosexual agenda (a term he uses, so lay off me) with Nazi Germany, and while that relation is quite inflammatory, especially as it, like every other subtopic in this book, is given bullet-point consideration, we should all take pause and question ANY sort of agenda or movement and what its real motives are. How far should the government intervene in somebody's personal beliefs? We live in a country where the Ku Klux Klan is allowed to meet on city hall and capitol lawns but any mere and rather peaceful criticism of or opposition to the topic of gay marriage can get a person fired in certain sectors and can also be labeled as hate speech. There's something quite nefarious to that line of thought. I don't care which side of the issue you fall on--let's not go so far as to restrict free speech.

I have seen criticism that Dobson does not present statistics in this book to support his claims, but he lists copious source material that does, and the same criticism can be leveled against the other side of the debate, so let's not get too hasty to judge. Dobson knows what he's doing. He is a leading child psychologist and expert in his field (if not THE leading expert). Yes, he is an evangelical Christian, but that's not the same as "stupid," as he is also a social sciences professional. And many of his sources are secular, non-Christian publications. Don't write him off because some leftwing nut job told you to for your own good.

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