In “The Angels take Manhattan” the adventures of Amy and Rory have finally come to an end. And in spectacular fashion! The morphing of the Weeping Angels into both cherub forms and that of a giant Statue of Liberty (who could zap you back into the past) was a most brilliant way to dispatch Doctor 11’s first two companions. But for me there is just one unexpected and outstanding feature of the plot line I must discuss here: Amy chooses to jump . . . twice . . . into the arms of her husband!
Rather than continuing to travel with the Doctor “Mrs Pond” chooses to “die” with Rory, leaping from the top of a sky scraper, in order to create the paradox that would defeat the Weeping Angels. More than that, once things are put to “right” and the Angel zaps Rory back into the past, Amy again chooses Rory over her most adventurous Raggedy Doctor. Though we have sometimes doubted Amy’s commitment to her spouse (often due to the fact that Rory was so often dead, or forgotten, or turned into a plastic Roman soldier) she finally chose to honour her marriage over her friendship with the Doctor. She voluntarily stands in the way of the Angel, knowing that one touch will send her back into the past to be with Rory. He had waited for so long to know the extent of her devotion. Finally Rory would know . . . and enjoy it for next 50 or 60 years.
Now I don’t necessarily think the writers of this episode intended to send home a message about the importance of commitment in marriage. But guess what? That God-honouring message has gone out loud and clear to a generation quite confused about what marriage is, and isn’t, and whether there is any point in honouring such an “antiquated” social institution. Despite this widespread “belief” that marriage is all but gone, so many people still choose to marry. The Australian Bureau of Statistics tells us that “the 121,176 marriages registered in 2010 represented an increase of 1,058 (0.9%) from the 120,118 marriages registered in Australia in 2009. This is the highest number of marriages registered in a single year and continues the relatively steady increase in the number of marriages since 2001.”
Imagine the personal and social benefits which would result if all these married couples could find the enthusiasm and strength to honour their vows for life – to prefer their spouse over all others, and enjoy the long term benefits of God’s plan for such radical social commitment.
One woman, one man. This is the way God has planned, and it is His best plan, a mystery which ultimately points us to Christ. All our marriages, which God alone has ordained – whether they be they good, bad or great – they all proclaim, in some way, God’s ultimate plan for humanity. Consider Ephesians 5:28-33 – “In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”
God’s intention is that we all might be united with Christ, included in His Body, His Bride, the Church. Now this may be getting rather deep for Doctor Who. But even when giant Weeping Angels are involved in a fictional adventure story, everything does point to Christ!
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Nb. I would recommend John Piper’s “This Momentary Marriage” or Timothy Keller’s “The Meaning of Marriage” if you want to know more about God’s purpose for human marriage.