The Christian Looks At Gay Marriage

Iowa Gay Marriage

Run to the history books and write a new entry. No matter your perspective, when the President of the United States announced his support of marriage for two people of the same sex, we crossed into uncharted waters as a nation. While Bible believers cringe and face growing fear, others of a more socially liberal persuasion celebrate victory.

On the one hand, Christians speak in apocalyptic language on the issue. Can you blame us? You don’t have to agree with us, or believe every word of the Bible as we do, but it is fully disingenuous to say that the Bible doesn’t teach that homosexuality is sin before God. What other position could one hold while claiming to believe the Bible is fully the Word of God? So you can easily imagine what our conversations sound like.

On the other hand, my wife and I have occasion to know and care about people we’ve met primarily through the SCI world who would see it far differently. The latest statistics I’ve heard have this debate at around a 50-50 divide in our nation. I have two observations I’d like to make. Both have something to do with the waning influence of Christianity today. Of course, if the influence of Christianity wanes, it falls on Christians and not on Christ.

The most-used argument for homosexual marriage is something of the live-and-let-live variety. Don’t violate someone’s right to whatever he or she wants to do. Don’t violate someone’s right to privacy. Yes, everyone has a right to do morally right things, or even to do morally neutral things. It’s no one’s business either. But this argument doesn’t hold water otherwise. Would those who use this argument use it for spousal abuse or child abuse? Of course not! Why? Because they know it’s morally wrong. Somehow even if someone subscribes to moral relativism, they would never hold it in these categories. In so doing, they blow up the argument. It is a moral question, and though we may not agree on morality, on some level we all know there is something called morality and we live by it. Christians say morals must be defined by God as given in His Word. Christians seem to argue in the arena of ideas from a far weaker position than is necessary. Somehow spouting insults, which is the antithesis of Christianity, replaced a discussion of what decides right and wrong in a world where everyone somehow knows right and wrong exist.

That leads to my other observation. It is why the world so little listens to we Christians. In too many cases, we hate homosexuals. We don’t have a scriptural leg to stand on in so doing, yet we don’t seem to care. Perhaps we don’t go as far as the wacko Westboro Baptist bunch, who spout hatred of homosexuals with salivating glee and an element of perverted fascination, but we speak of them as if they were beyond the reach of God’s grace. I am aware of Romans 1:24-32 and its unequivocal condemnation of homosexuality, but I notice several other sins mentioned there as well. Why do we pick on the one sin at the exclusion of the others? It’s my right and yours to find this sin more personally repulsive, but does it carry a right to hate those who practice it? When was the last time you felt so strongly about, for example, “backbiters”? Or the “proud”?

It’s true as Christians that we should take our stand against the rising tide of public opinion and say homosexuality is wrong, wrong for our country, wrong for individuals. But it’s also time to love as Christ loves. I don’t know about you, but I don’t believe there’s any homosexual in the world who isn’t loved by the Lord as much as me, nor one whom the grace of God can’t reach. That’s the confidence I have in the cross of Christ, and as always, Jesus is the answer.

16 thoughts on “The Christian Looks At Gay Marriage

  1. I have felt for many years a solid biblical argument about the issue has been missing; along with the destructive results of that lifestyle. I never imagined, even the current President would embrace such a position on homosexuality.

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  3. I used to agree with you on this but have changed my mind. I am a Christian. I believe a marriage is between a man and a woman only. I believe homosexuality is an abomination to God. But as you said I believe people should be able to live their life freely and the way they choose. Let me explain.

    First lets address when you said:
    ” But this argument doesn’t hold water otherwise. Would those who use this argument use it for spousal abuse or child abuse? Of course not! Why? Because they know it’s morally wrong.”

    I agree with you. Child abuse and spouse abuse should be illegal.Why? Because if you are participating in those things you are infringing on someones right to life. You are causing harm to that person. Does homo sexual marriage infringe on your right to live your life?

    Before we get to my position lets make one thing clear. It is legal for homosexual couples to go into something they call a “church” and have a ceremony and get “married”. That is legal in every state. Do you believe that should be illegal? Do you think all people involved should be fined or jailed? I dont. If people want to live in sin and do this that is up to them.

    Now that we understand that homosexuals can have something they call a “wedding” ceremony. The real question we are facing about gay marriage has to do with with government benefits for married couples etc.

    Many take one of 2 sides in this debate. One side which is the side I used to be on says that the government should define marriage between a man and a woman. The other side says that government should define marriage as between 2 people regardless of gender.

    I do not take either of these positions. My position is I want government OUT of marriage all together. I personally don’t even want government in my own marriage. Do you? For tax benefits everyone should be treated equally as an individual. Married people should not get more benefits. Marriage contracts with the government should be eliminated. I don’t need the government to tell me that I am married to know I’m married. I know I’m married because I made a commitment before God and family to my wife. I don’t need a paper from the government.

    As I said our tax system should treat people all the same. Regardless if you are married or not. We should either have a flat tax or a national sales tax. Single people should not be treated unequally. Many godly people are single. People in the Bible were many times. The government should not give benefits to married people that they do not give single people. This is why government marriage contracts should be eliminated. Government should treat every person the same.

    With that in place all we have left is what is already legal. With government out of peoples marriages all that is left is a ceremony which I mentioned earlier. I believe that should be legal. I do not think a immoral marriage ceremony should be shutdown by law enforcement.

    One other question I was curious about. I noticed you said Yes, everyone has a right to do morally right things, or even to do morally neutral things. It’s no one’s business either. But this argument doesn’t hold water otherwise.”

    What exactly does this mean? To me you are saying that people should be allowed to legally do things as long as they do not go against the Word of God. Maybe I am misunderstanding. If that is the case should homosexuality be against the law? Should adultery be against the law? Hopefully your answer is no people should have the freedom to do these things even if they are sin. If the answer is yes they that sounds much like sharia Islamic law in the middle east.

    Ultimately all this comes down to this. Should people have the freedom to sin and disobey God or not? Is it the role of government to enforce the moral laws of God or not? I say it is not the role of government. God not government is the judge and jury on these things. As long as someone is not stealing or harming me and my family I say let them be. Let them live in their sin. They will answer to God not mans government. I am just as disturbed as you are at the rise in homosexuality in America and immorality in general. The thing is government laws and taking away freedom to do things that are immoral will not solve the problem. That is because of mans sinful nature. Ultimately the only answer is repentance and faith in Jesus Christ. No government laws will change the tide.

    • Thank you for taking the time to respond and share your viewpoint. It seems you and I are in agreement about what God thinks about gay marriage, we just differ in how that ought to play out in life. I may be wrong, but you seemed to share a libertarian point view at least in terms of government’s role in a moral matter.

      Throughout your arguments you keep making a distinction between sins that “hurt” someone else and sins that don’t. If I understand you correctly, you are saying the government can therefore address murder, but not things like gay marriage. Besides the point that sin always hurts people (even others besides ourselves), where could we find such a distinction in Scripture. I feel that comes more from modern political thought than the Bible.

      Remember that the Old Testament laws were, among other things, laws of Israel’s government. It was, of course, a theocracy rather than a republic with some democracy,but the Lord still made it clear what He expected the nation to do. He clearly has expectations of the nations, which we see in the judgment of the nations.

      I think the standard is much higher than just what hurts others. We should have laws based on morals that ideally comes from God’s Word. If The Lord has defined marriage then that should be the law of a nation, particularly if we profess to be a just nation.

      I think the tax issue is irrelevant to the discussion–why would you defend fair taxes for them with no concern for the issue The Lord would label so much greater? No one likes taxes, especially high taxes, but the powers that be are ordained by God. I’m glad we live in a country where we can at least speak our protest

      BTW, if the powers that be are ordained by God, then a legal marriage would be an issue God asks us to conform to. Until those laws ask us to directly violate God’s laws, we should obey them.

      I also think you misunderstood my point about morally right or morally neutral things. I in no way equate legal things with moral things. If something is illegal I shouldn’t do it unless it is a sin not to do it. It is never right to do something immoral as defined by God. His Law is highest.

      There is also a big difference in what people do and what governments sanction. If people break God’s laws they will answer to God for it, but if nations approve sinful things then the nation will answer to God. That is why so many of this see this as a huge issue, though Christians should still treat others properly.

  4. I know its been a while. I have been to busy to reply. Thank you for the discussion. I realize that I will not change your mind on this subject. Which is not my goal. I think good discussion makes us think about our views. This will be my last reply on this subject. Feel free to respond to my questions or comments as time allows you if you desire.

    You say I was making a distinction sins that “hurt” others and sins that don’t. This is not at all what I am saying. I actually never used the word “hurt” at all. I agree sins can hurt other people. Lies,adultery etc affect others and not just yourself. The distinction I am making is the difference between things that infringe on my right to live my life and my property. (In other words harming me or my family physically or stealing from me or damaging my property. etc. ) and things that have no effect on how I live my life or my property. Many things that are sin do not stop me from living my life the way I choose. Hopefully I have clarified this.

    I also wanted to comment on this portion of your comment:
    “I think the standard is much higher than just what hurts others. We should have laws based on morals that ideally comes from God’s Word. If The Lord has defined marriage then that should be the law of a nation, particularly if we profess to be a just nation.”

    How do you decide which moral laws the government should enforce? Homosexuality is a sin. Should that be outlawed and people put in jail for it? Adultery is a sin. Should the government punish those that practice it? For me the answer is clearly no there should not be government laws against these things. People should have the freedom to obey or disobey Gods Word on these things. The Bible does not tell us the role of government is to punish sinners. That is the role of God. Unlike Islam which is not only a personal belief system but also a government system Christianity is a personal relationship with God. The Quran tells Muslims what religious laws government MUST put into place. Which include punishment for adultery and for being a homosexual. No more in the Bible does it tell us mans government must punish people who commit certain sins. That is up to God and his judgement for men. If we were to implement Gods law in America. We would all be in jail because we would all be guilty. So this goes back to how do you pick and choose which moral laws from the Bible to put in place?

    I totally understand what you are talking about when you say we should be a just nation. I agree. Psalm 33:12 tells us that a nation is blessed whos God is the Lord. I used to take the same stance as you do I am sure. That this verse means that the government is into institute laws based on the Bible to enforce morality. I totally understand the thinking on that. Unfortunately I don’t think its correct. What is a nation? Is a nation a government and government laws and regulations? Or is a nation the people? The people are the nation. So a nation whos people who make the God of the Bible the Lord will be blessed. Not to mention they do not need a man made government to define what marriage is or isn’t. Psalm 33:12 is not saying blessed is the government who rules by the Bible.

    Basically it is up to the people of a country to make the God of the Bible Lord of our lives. It is not up to mans government to enforce such laws. Sin is indeed to hated by us. But it is not mans job to punish others for sin (Unless it stops you from living or is stealing from you) that judgement and punishment is left to God. If a nation allows a certain sin to happen it does not mean in condones it or that the people condone it. It means that people have the freedom to commit that sin or not.

    As far as the tax issue it has alot to do with this debate. I agree whatever taxation a government puts into place we are to abide by. The Bible tells us to respect government laws. What I am saying is I do not believe the government should not treat a single person different than 2 people that are married. Everyone regardless if they are single or married should be treated the same. The whole debate over homosexual marriage has alot to do with taxes and government benefits. As I stated a “marriage” ceramony preformed preformned 2 people is totally legal. I hope you do not think people should be arrested for this. I think it is wrong but people should be free to do this. The question is can they get a piece of paper from the government recognizing that marriage? I say we elimanate marriage certificates all together. Why do we need a piece of paper from the government to know we are married? I dont need it. I know I am married because I mad commitment before God and my family to my wife. No need for government to tell me we accept this marriage. Do you know why marriage certificates were first put into place anyway? To stop interracial marriages.

    I could go on with this discussion but to sum it all up in a nutshell here is my position. Marriage as defined by God is between one man and one woman. I want the government out of marriage. I dont need a piece of paper from the government letting me know they accept my marriage. God does. Marriage should be a commitment between 2 people end of the story. If someone has a “marriage” cermony that I do not consider legit that is between them and God. They will utltimately be judged by God not mans government. The government should treat everyone the same regardless if they have a spouse or not. Should people be able to commit adultery and not go to jail? Yes. Should people be able to be involved homosexuality and not go to jail? Yes. Should people be able to have a “wedding” ceramony that is not recognized by God? Yes.

    Btw I want you to know I enjoy your site and agree with most everything you say. I actually agree with you on marriage. Its just what the governments role is in marriage that we disagree on.

    • I really appreciate you sharing your perspective on here. I too believe discussion is helpful.

      I would only point out that homosexuality and adultery were matters of the Law in OT times and that design was divinely designed. While we do not have a theocracy, these things were illegal in the earlier days of our country and the Bible was the source of that law code. I still think all turning from God’s Word on the law books invites the judgement of God and is a bad thing. We might could cite some practical issues in enforcement, but I do not believe that demands pragmatism on a Christian’s part.

  5. Also I came across this article written by a man I greatly respect. Baptist preacher Albert Mohler. He writes a lot of good articles.

    He makes alot of the simliar points you make. Especially this one:
    “While recognizing the complexity of issues related to sexual orientation, we cannot define a behavior as an intrinsic characteristic. On that basis, why not grant theft or other sinful behavior the same civil rights protection?”

    This point just doesn’t make sense to me logically as I pointed out what the difference is.

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