Can you imagine what our forefathers would think if they were allowed to know that we are in the process of changing the definition of marriage in America? We seem to live in a day when any absurd idea one could think of is promoted and politically applauded. One of the leading advocates for changing this definition stated flatly that it was his intent to destroy marriage more than to simply change the definition. Sadly people who easily walk away from their wedding vows or produce children without marriage commitments have already started the destruction. There is the real possibility that if the proponents of same sex marriage get their way that multiple partnerships will follow in which several persons can demand to be married in various polygamous relationships. Before anyone cries foul, let me say that advocates of such things are already lining up to have their day in court. Once marriage is changed from a several thousand year old definition which even precedes the coming of Christ, anything is possible. Which leads me to make a declaration.
If Texas is forced to follow other states down this slippery slope, I will no longer sign government issued marriage licenses for anyone. Several Texas pastors have been working with attorneys and have found that the church can produce its own certificate of marriage. I already have several copies of such a document in my possession. This document has Scripture on it, has a place for the groom to sign and the bride to sign, and has a place for my signature. The document itself will cost nothing to the couple. The government issued document is more than seventy dollars. The couple can then take the document with them to the courthouse and present it and ask for a document which registers their marriage (This is not a marriage license.). They are then legally married with all of the protections needed. I will no longer be a functionary of the state certifying government documents. Thousands of Texas pastors will do the same. If the government cannot define marriage then it falls on the church to define it for them. Any document produced by an entity that does not know how to define marriage is not a document that I can sign. I have already informed our county clerk who is a member of our congregation of this possibility. She has verified the existence of a form for registering marriages. In the past this form was used to give legal standing to common law marriages, but I predict it will increasingly be used by those who choose Christian marriage. The state will lose a good deal of money on marriage licenses that Christian couples no longer want or need. There was a gathering of pastors and other leaders in Waco this past fall in which most of them stand ready to begin this process at such a time as marriage is officially redefined by the government.
On a final note, it always bothered me that I signed and participated with the government in documenting marriages anyway. I never in all my ministry stated what I have heard some pastors state at the end of the wedding “Now by the authority invested in me by the State of Texas . . .” I always said, “Now by the authority given me of our Lord, Jesus Christ.” I answer to a higher authority for my work.

Dan Wooldridge


  1. Pastor Dan – I want to thank God first of all for making you the pastor that He needs you to be and secondly, to thank you for standing up for biblical marriage. My prayers are with all of God’s children because the enemy attacks are non-stop. Praise God that we know the outcome & we know who will prevail at the end. God Bless you.

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