The biblical definition of marriage and its relevance to marriage equality

Marriage Equality
Earlier this year, as the Supreme Court began the conversation around California’s contested Proposition 8, social media outlets were buzzing with opinion over marriage equality. In an attempt to show solidarity and support for our LGBT friends, many people changed their Facebook picture to a red and pink image of an equal sign. I did this as well.

I noticed that, for many of us who run in Christian circles, this change was followed by a number of our Christian friends expressing dismay at our departure from the “biblical definition of marriage”. I watched as many people began to post scripture to argue their stance, pointing to bible passages that refer to homosexuality as sinful.

What frustrates me most in this debate about marriage equality is that Christians feel so comfortable invoking the bible when we are talking about government matters. Our country was founded on religious freedoms. The right to worship (or not worship) is one that is afforded every person in this country. Most of us would agree that the separation of church and state was something our forefathers desired. And yet, so many Christians seem perfectly fine in using their own particular religious teachings while arguing about the rights of others living in this country.

Also by Kristen: The Damaging Effects of Shame-Based Sex Education: Lessons from Elizabeth Smart

Since when did the biblical definition of something become the litmus test for state freedoms?  A Hindu person does not agree with a Christian’s biblical definition of God. And yet, most of us would agree that Hindus have the right to worship, congregate, and apply to the state to  enjoy whatever rights are afforded to a religious organization.  Their right to worship in their own way does not detract from mine, nor does it threaten me in any way. It also does not diminish my own definition of God to affirm and support their rights.

This should apply to marriage equality as well. Guess what? If you affirm marriage equality, you can still think whatever you want to think about marriage, or homosexuality. You do not have to change your personal interpretation of scripture in order to affirm the rights of others.  You can read Genesis or Leviticus however you like and still agree that others have the right to behave outside of your own belief system. You can also find plenty of forums to discuss how to apply the bible to homosexuality. But the inconvenient truth is that government matters should not be that forum.

The relevance of your biblical beliefs on homosexuality in regards to marriage equality? THEY AREN’T RELEVANT.

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When I see you arguing the bible against that red equal sign, what I hear you saying is, “I would like to impose my religious beliefs on others, regardless of whether or not they share my faith.”  I’ve heard a whole lot of nonsense about “slippery slopes” on Facebook this week, but this tendency to impose our religious beliefs on others is the most dangerous one I’m witnessing.


Kristen Howerton is the mom of four children within four years via birth and adoption, and has been blogging at Rage Against the Minivan as a coping skill since 2004. Kristen is also an adjunct professor in the psychology department at Vanguard University, where she teaches on diversity, counseling skills and addictive behaviors. Kristen uses her background as a family therapist to write an advice column for the local family magazine OCFamily and is also a contributing author to The Huffington Post. She likes to waste time on Twitter at @kristenhowerton.

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About the Author

Kristen Howerton

Kristen HowertonKristen Howerton is the mom of four children within four years via birth and adoption, and has been blogging at Rage Against the Minivan as a coping skill since 2004. Kristen is also an adjunct professor in the psychology department at Vanguard University, where she teaches on diversity, counseling skills and addictive behaviors. Kristen uses her background as a family therapist to write an advice column for the local family magazine OCFamily and is also a contributing author to The Huffington Post. She likes to waste time on Twitter at @kristenhowerton.View all posts by Kristen Howerton →

  • jonathan starkey

    I don’t want to live in a Hindu Society. Do you know India was rated the #1 most racist nation. Hinduism doesn’t have a context of value.

    Neither does postmodernism. Postmodernism retro reads it’s beliefs backwards into Historical documents.

    I don’t want to live in a Society that is set to destruction, and it’s my Human Right to protect the future Human Rights of our children and family.

    The Gay Marriage issue is a Human Rights issue for children and family. Not for those who want to be personally fulfilled. Human Rights is being torn down in the name of Human Rights.

    You need to fight for it lady. I believe as a Christian you are on the wrong side of the debate. Blinded by postmodernism and emotional idolatry, and a misguided understanding of justice. Because the real injustice is to children and future generations.

    • jonathan starkey

      Biblical revelation is the radical roots of the Human Rights movement, and it is being dismantled in the name of Human Rights.

      Anti-Slavery- Yes, Womans Rights – Yes, Gay Marriage – No, Abortion – No

      Anti Slavery and Racism is not the same battle as Gay marriage, and you need to find out why it isn’t.

      Besides “Christians” aren’t picking the fight.

      • John (not McCain)

        I will protect my family and myself from anti-American filth like you by any means necessary.

        • Drew

          Get behind us, Satan.

        • Frank

          So you would resort to violence to protect your sin? Why is that not surprising at all? Slippery slope indeed.

          • John (not McCain)

            Neither I nor my family are “sin,” but do give my best to your very chaste mother.

          • Frank

            No you are victims of sin, which you have actively chosen. Which has lead to a cycle of other sins. Its quite pernicious to surrender to a sin. Thankfully forgiveness is always available.

        • TheodoreSeeber

          And thus the message we all got clearly today: SCOTUS to Christians- America no longer wants you and will kill you.

          • KellyLynne

            That’s a complete and utter lie.

          • TheodoreSeeber

            it is what will end up, this is how tyranny has started in every other formerly “democratic” nation- with the judges.

  • Nathan Duffy

    Atrocious garbage. Neither the Free Exercise or Establishment Clause of the first amendment is at all relevant regarding whether we ought to appeal to our religious traditions — especially when dialoging with other members of that tradition! — when making arguments as to what social policy and the law ought to be on some matter. In fact, the Free Exercise clause means we are absolutely free to appeal to such sources in our public and political arguments and reasoning (just as others are free to reject them), and to forbid their presence or admissibility in the public square would be a violation of that clause’s explicit protection. Hindus are absolutely free to appeal to the Hindu religious tradition and argue, on that basis, for certain policies under our Constitution. And in so doing they “force their religion” on precisely no one, and the claim that they are doing so is utterly asinine.
    If there is a section of your life where God and his word is, to quote you, “NOT RELEVANT”, then one must judge your theological political philosophy as deficient and un-Christian, as there is no realm of your life upon which Christ ought not have absolute reign and supremacy.

    • http://www.rageagainsttheminivan.com/ Kristen Howerton

      The Free Exercise clause is a bit of a straw man here. But in terms of where God’s word is relevant to my life . . . yes. God’s word is relevant to MY life. MY sexual ethic. Absolutely. But recognizing that I cannot impose that on others, by laws or any other means, does not make me un-Christian.

      • jonathan starkey

        No, it means you are a dualistic Christian.

        • jonathan starkey

          Or a humanist.

        • KellyLynne

          So you want to live in a theocracy? Better hope your religion is the dominant one.

      • Frank

        Imposing and teaching and standing true to the Word of God are two different things. If you realize you cannot impose your beliefs on others you should have simply stayed quiet on this issue right? Are you not trying to impose your belief on others in this post?

      • Drew

        There is no law against sodomy; there is no law against homosexuality. You are conflating two issues, government recognition and benefits bestowed upon married couples, and homosexuality.

      • Nathan Duffy

        The anti-SSM crowd: looking to impose their vision of marriage through the instrument of the law.
        The pro-SSM crowd: looking to impose their vision of marriage through the instrument of the law.
        Sorry, all law is imposed morality, hon. There is no ‘neutral’ ground.
        And no, Free Exercise is absolutely relevant as you invoked “separation of Church & State” and the first amendment is where that concept is defined legally. And when we look to the 1st Amendment, we find 0 support for your proposed understanding of that concept and evidence that controverts it utterly.

        • Brian Evans

          Actually there is a ‘neutral’ ground. It’s for the government to get out of the marriage business altogether.

          • pjsr

            Actually, Jewish priests and early Christians were the ones that got into the marriage business late. There was no church involvement in weddings until Rome became ‘Christian’ and bishops were appointed as government officials. We, the Church, need to get out of the marriage business altogether. There’s no provision for church involvement in marriages.

        • bluecenterlight

          Did you really call Kristen hun? That is amazingly condescending, and inappropriate. If someone talked that way to your wife I’m sure you would be pissed. Our sisters deserve respect, you can respectfully disagree. I think that deserves an appology

  • KBH

    so, based on this argument, moderate to left-leaning Christian should never invoke the words of Christ to advocate for governmental action to help the poor or other “social justice” causes, cause they that would be trying to impose your religious beliefs.

    If you can invoke Jesus to argue for more government programs to help the poor then why not to advocate for marriage according to God’s design?

    Funny how “red letter” folks like to pick and choose when to invoke Jesus and which word of christ to invoke. Often time it is when it also dove-tails with their political convictions. Which, BTW, the right does as well.

    • http://www.rageagainsttheminivan.com/ Kristen Howerton

      Jesus informs me on how I view social justice issues (and all issues) but I don’t impose that on others. There are plenty of non-believers who are for more government programs to help the poor, too, and I work alongside them without making it a religious issue, even though I’m motivated by Christ’s example.

      • jonathan starkey

        This is why the Neo-Anabaptist and Red Letters are being criticized as being too Liberal. And it’s what makes it deceptive to people who are drawn to the real radical roots of Christianity.

        • jonathan starkey

          Even Bill Maher makes fun of this type of Libertarianism.

      • Drew

        Just so you are aware of what you are actually saying, all social programs involve taxation, which imposes on an individual how much money can be taken by the government and in what way it should be spent, so you cannot draw Biblical support for any government social program.

      • KBH

        everything this website advocates is from a “biblical” platform because of its very name. So whether its articles on Gitmo or Gay Marriage the Bible is being used (on some level) to lobby for a position. The very think you decry in your article.

        You might be the exception, but how many times have we seen someone invoke Matthew 25 “to the least of these” to advocate for socially liberal causes? answer: plenty

        • Drew

          That’s the irony.

          Her article essentially “flamed” Craig Watts, a long time author on this website, who constantly uses the Bible to support government social programs.

          She is actually arguing from a secular, libertarian position, in contrast to the majority of this website.

    • Drew

      It is sad to see six hypocrites down-vote you for speaking the truth.

  • Frank

    There is nothing loving about supporting, condoning, affirming, celebrating or remaining silent over sinful behavior.

    Supporting gay marriage is an act of hate that no Christian should participate in.

    • Nathan Duffy

      Well said, Frank. The secular law (if we grant that there ought to be any secular sphere at all, which I don’t) is a moral teacher; a Christian is negligent if he happily helps that law to lull others into believing their sin is acceptable. Said Christian is complicit in shepherding others toward hell. There are some limits on this in our form of government — we can’t outlaw masturbation, or lying, for example — but marriage is not such an area. Defending the 2000 year old model of Christian marriage is incumbent on all believers, and allowing or assisting its decline is sinful.

      • Frank

        It is nothing short of an act of hatred. Yet there are some who call it love. Anyone who calls it such has no understanding of what love really is.

      • Scoobycheese

        We actually do outlaw lying, at least in certain situations.

    • KellyLynne

      So, your idea of “love” is that people should be denied visitation in hospitals, or custody of children, or the ability to make medical decisions, because you don’t approve of their relationship? That when a loved one dies, they should pay inheritance taxes that result in losing their homes? That they should be stuck in a waiting room while their beloved breathes their last?

      That is not love. It’s hate disguised as “standing up against sin.” And it’s evil.

  • hikerrev

    Maybe I want to redefine marriage according to what I see in the bible. So, I’m going to advocate for polygamy (remember Jacob?, or more obviously, Solomon?). I’m going to advocate for men being required to marry their brother’s widow. And when biblical marriages dissolve, I’m going to advocate for execution of the adulterous party by stoning. Seems biblical to me.

    The truth is that there are many different models of marriage in scripture ~ they can’t all be life-giving in today’s culture, even if they were at one time. What if, instead, we start at the heart of the Gospel … maybe with “Love one another, as I have loved you”?

    • Frank

      There is nothing loving about supporting, condoning, affirming, celebrating or remaining silent over sinful behavior.

      So yes start and end with love.

    • Nathan Duffy

      Or we could start with what Christ said about marriage and what it is, look at his appeal to its pre-fall state in genesis, and further look to Paul, find an utterly coherent, unambiguous picture that precludes same-sex marriage and vote and act accordingly? Yeah, let’s do that instead.

      • Drew

        Liberal Christianity has went off the deep end and is not coming back, Nathan. They are now speaking about the Bible on the same terms as atheists do – errant, teaches polygamy and stoning, that “love” means we can do anything that makes our genitals or minds tingle with delight.

        • http://www.rageagainsttheminivan.com/ Kristen Howerton

          Did you read the post? The point is that you can still view the bible as conservatively as you like and not impose it on the rights of others.

          • Drew

            I was clearly responding to Hiker, Kristen.

            However, to answer your question, I did read your post, and I strongly disagree. The Constitution speaks of freedom of religion, not freedom from religion. Your desire to create an atheist government is not moral.

            I think you confuse that a “right” and what a “benefit” is. Under your definition, everything is a right, including tax benefits that create incentives for marriage. I’m not opposed to rights; I am opposed to benefits and incentives for immoral behavior.

          • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

            Sadly, thats the whole point for the small conservative crew who always tries to dominate the RLC board—they not only WANT to impose their religious views on non religious people…they feel they have a RIGHT to do so.

            Its the same 5 people who havent figured out that most RLC voices are progressive than they deem ‘biblical’ …and they just won’t move.

          • Drew

            Jimmy – posting hate against all who disagree with him since 2010.

          • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

            RLC is about the Red Letters—and taking them back from the culturally rooted fundamentalism that has warped them here in the USA.

          • jonathan starkey

            Not in the name of liberalism.

          • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

            I never mentioned liberalism.

          • jonathan starkey

            You don’t have to. I wouldn’t be called deceived if you knew what you were influenced by.

          • Frank

            No the RLC is about selective RL’s and in the process demonstrating that they are really not RLC’s at all.

          • Drew

            That’s what it should be about, Jimmy.

            What it is not about is the ecumenical promotion of militant, liberal Christian theology. I mean, you have Tony saying in the history of this website that RLC promoted a high view of Scripture, then you have authors arguing for a low view of Scripture on a weekly basis.

          • Nathan Duffy

            American protestant “fundamentalism” (or evangelicalism.. or Protestantism itself, for that matter) does warp the truth of the Faith in various ways. But that doesn’t mean it gets *everything* wrong, and traditional marriage is one issue (among many) where conservative evangelicalism is in complete agreement with the Faith once delivered to the Saints. Progressive evangelicalism, on the other hand, has essentially no continuity with that Tradition at all and rejects it at virtually every point.

          • Frank

            Oh please. The liberal crew completely dominates this board. If ti were not for a few courageous commentators there would never be a complete story posted, If you want anyone to “move” posts some scriptural support for your positions.

          • 22044

            Or invite one of us to write posts above the fold.

          • jonathan starkey

            Progressive LOL

          • 22044

            I thought RLC was about RLs, not about progressives vs. conservatives.

        • Rafael

          You do know that YHWH(The Father and The Son and The Holy Spirit) created “delight” for the mind and gentials?

          1 Timothy 4, The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spiritsand things taught by demons. 2 Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. 3 They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. 4 For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, 5 because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer.

      • Rafael

        Creation Argument doesn’t work, just because Same Sex wasn’t INTENDED, doesn’t mean it’s wrong, Blindness wasn’t intended, certainly not a sin.

  • Drew

    Unless Kristen is a libertarian, this is the most hypocritical article I have seen posted on this website.

    • Frank

      Its just a continuation of the pattern that RLC has devolved into.

  • 22044

    Kristen,
    After you wrote a reasonable proposal on this site a couple of weeks ago regarding about how shame isn’t a good tool to use when teaching abstinence to children, this post falls way short.
    Maybe you’re best off directing the points in this post to the arguments you see on facebook…but there’s a strong nonreligious case as to why governments legitimately define marriage as between one man and one woman. Many Christians are aware of the sound arguments that build that case.

    • 22044

      One can google Manhattan Declaration to find some helpful information about my final point.

    • http://www.rageagainsttheminivan.com/ Kristen Howerton

      Did you care to elaborate, or did you just want to tell me vaguely that there are sound arguments?

      • 22044

        I’d recommend my google suggestion, but here are a couple of brief points to start with:
        A government has a compelling interest in ensuring that generations reproduce in order to progress as a nation, and supporting marriage as between a man and a woman helps advance that interest.
        Adding to that, assuming we have children, each child has a mother & father & has a natural right to be raised by his/her biological parents. Affirming marriage as between a man and a woman helps support that as well.
        Finally, any arguments supporting gay marriage do not present a unique framework that would reject polygamous or polyamorous “marriages”.

      • Frank

        Do a search for “Harvard What is Marriage” for a cogent and compelling secular case for heterosexual marriage only.

      • Frank

        Search for “Harvard What is Marriage” for a cogent and compelling secular case to keep marriage heterosexual.,

  • Drew

    If Kristen didn’t mention “running in Christian circles,” would you think this article was written by a Christian, an atheist, or a Democratic Party spokesman, or an atheist Democratic Party spokesman?

  • Pastora Rhonda

    Kristen, thank you for expressing your views in this article. It is often difficult to stand up in the public forum and state what we believe. Thank you for your bravery. This is an issue that will not go away and it is an issue that we (as Christians) have to learn how to deal with.

    I want to express to you how important it is to me (and I believe to God) that we have compassion. It is never compassionate to keep someone away from a loved one who is sick in the hospital. (this is not a sexuality issue but a relationship issue). I believe that that same sex partners should be treated with dignity and compassion. I believe the law should protect their rights to be in relationship with one another. I certainly would not want to government telling me with whom I could and could not associate.

    However, my spiritual concern is that as the law swings to protect these “rights of association” that my rights as a pastor may be violated. I do not believe that a marriage between two people of the same sex is ordained by God and would, therefore, refuse to officiate at this type of union. The current trend would seem to indicate that this decision would open me up for a lawsuit. I recently read of a Christian flower shop owner who refused a contract for a homosexual wedding on religious grounds and now is being sued. The rights of compassion and association that should be afforded to all citizens of the USA should not force me to compromise my spiritual beliefs as a Shepherd.

    Thank you for this forum to freely express my views.

    • Sharideth

      Thank you for being so respectful in your response. Your graciousness stands in stark contrast to most of what I’m seeing here today.

      I am not 100% settled in my thoughts on all of this yet and we need to have productive discourse instead of accusation. So, thanks again.

      • Drew

        “The relevance of your biblical beliefs on homosexuality in regards to marriage equality? THEY AREN’T RELEVANT. When I see you arguing the bible
        against that red equal sign, what I hear you saying is, “I would like to
        impose my religious beliefs on others, regardless of whether or not
        they share my faith.”

        How about asking the author to have a productive discourse?

        • Sharideth

          The line between passion and hostility can be difficult to gauge sometimes, but it definitely has been crossed in the comments section here. Your response to my appreciation of someone who disagreed with grace is evidence of that. It was completely unnecessary to engage the way you did.

          • Drew

            Except your response was not just about appreciating the cordial discourse, but also implying that the rest of the discourse was accusatory, lacked grace, and was disrespectful.

            My point to you is that most gracious articles engender gracious responses.

    • Valarie

      Thank you, Pastor Rhoda. Thank you for your compassion and empathy. God bless you and your ministry.

    • KellyLynne

      Those are thoughtful and compassionate comments.

      I don’t think you have a thing in the world to worry about as far as being legally obliged to officiate someone’s wedding that you don’t approve of. Have you heard of cases where a Catholic priest has been sued for refusing to marry a divorced couple? Or a Jewish rabbi for refusing to marry an interfaith couple? Or, for that matter, a pastor of any faith being sued successfully for refusing to marry a same-sex couple in the states where same-sex marriage has been legal since 2005?

      The flower shop is a very different example, because it’s a business and can’t discriminate against customers based on sex, race, or religion. Would you defend the right of a flower shop to refuse to sell wedding flowers to an inter-racial couple, or a couple of a different religion?

  • Barbara Mack Blackburn

    Wholeheartedly agree. Thank you for having the courage to post this.

    • Frank

      Where is the courage in supporting a position that our secular culture agrees with? The real courage is stand true to the Word of God in the face of opposition.

      This post is simply pandering. No courage displayed at all.

    • Drew

      It takes no courage to promoted the Democratic Party platform and to take Christianity out of America. It has been happening for several decades. It’s actually quite popular among atheists. Ayn Rand would staunchly agree with everything that Kristen wrote that religion has no place in government.

  • Barbara Mack Blackburn

    Wow. After reading the comments here I can see more clearly why “Christians” are distrusted by outsiders. Instead of reflecting the love of God, they mirror nothing but their own Pharasaical hard-line law. I live by faith, not by the law. Christians think they have the right to demand complete obedience to their views, as if they run the world – at least judging by so many sarcastic, nasty comments here. Since when did Jesus tell us to go out and make conservatives out of people? Since when did Jesus die to make sure nobody would be homosexual or disagree with us?

    It is quite rare these days to find a Christian who reflects grace, kindness, and the admonition to tell the truth in love. I find that very sad. God doesn’t force our obedience or love. What makes us think we have the right to force others to obey and love what they only see as angry, unloving people?

    • Frank

      What is the truth in love regarding sexuality and marriage for you?

      • Frank

        Barbara I am really interested in your answer. Will you answer my question or is your post simply a drive by?

        • 22044

          If it is a drive by, there’s nothing graceful, kind, or loving about that, is there…?

        • Sharideth

          I suppose other options could be that she is under no obligation to answer to you or maybe her time is better spent elsewhere.

          • Frank

            Fair enough but that only discredits her that she is unwilling to actually engage, Isn’t that partly what a troll is, a drive by and refusing to answer any followup?

          • 22044

            Certainly there is no obligation, but then she fails to uphold her own standard.

          • 22044

            We don’t become Christians so we can blast rhetorical bullets of judgment at each other.
            Since you weren’t too happy with Drew’s response somewhere else on this thread, I think we can also rightfully assess Barbara’s attempted smears as unserious.

      • http://www.rageagainsttheminivan.com/ Kristen Howerton

        The truth for me is in scripture. That’s the point, though. I cannot impose my beliefs
        on others or deny their rights because they don’t follow scripture as I do.

        • Frank

          Fair enough but you also should not be supporting sinful behavior. Where is the love in that?

          Not only that but you encourage other Christians to not stand up for their beliefs and whats best for our world.

          • http://www.rageagainsttheminivan.com/ Kristen Howerton

            So are you in favor of outlawing divorce? Should we deny rights to single mothers? If we have to legislate biblical marriage, where does it end?

          • Drew

            “I’ve heard a whole lot of nonsense about “slippery slopes” on Facebook this week…”

            I hope in your haste to post you realized this irony. You are now worried about slippery slopes in the other direction.

          • Frank

            Divorce is certainly a problem in Christendom but that’s a separate issue. No one is claiming that its ok for people to get divorced but you are claiming its ok for people of the same sex get married which it is not ok.

            Once again how can you be for sinful behavior in any form. Its one thing to not make an issue out of it its another entirely to encourage it and encourage others to do it. Do you not see that? Really?

          • Rachael

            When did it become our job to enforce righteous behavior? Don’t we trust God to do HIS job? I don’t think Kristin is arguing the slippery slope – but rather asking why we are so hung up on homosexuality and not other sins. If we are indeed against sinful behavior in any form, why does homosexuality get so much attention? Is is because we’re more uncomfortable with it than abuse, or divorce, or laziness, or anger?

          • Drew

            Same sex couples can live together as a couple if they want; they can have their “marriage” recognized by their faith tradition. What do no get is the designation of marriage from the government and the additional rights/benefits that go along with it.

            All laws enforce righteous behavior, by the way.

          • KellyLynne

            Why should they not?

          • Frank

            We are talking about it because its the issue of the day and some Christians fallaciously say homosexual behavior is not sinful but cannot provide any scriptural support for their flawed opinion and talk of love as they prove they don’t know what it is. So people are rightly talking about it.

          • John

            A man named Matthew Vines on YouTube in a video called “The Gay Debate: The Bible and Homosexuality”, spends over an hour looking at this question from a well-researched scriptural basis. If you just look at Wikipedia on Homosexuality in the New Testament, it has an article which provides both sides of the argument. What’s important to recognise is that both sides are interpretations. Neither one is 100% water-tight. There are really important terms whose definition we don’t know, which have been translated in different ways over the years. It’s actually pretty easy to find people using scripture to argue their position, though.

          • Frank

            I have seen the video and its not compelling. There is no scriptural support for homosexual behavior in any form. It is water tight.

          • John

            What do you make of the fact that Jesus is totally silent on the subject?

          • Frank

            He is not silent at all. One since He is God all scripture came from Him, Secondly in answering a question about divorce He affirmed Gods create order for sexuality and marriage. Third as a Jew He would have believed in Jewish beliefs about sexuality and marriage. He didn’t say much because everyone knew homosexual behavior was a sin. There were no questions about it.

          • John

            But doesn’t Jesus overturn a huge amount of Jewish custom? He speaks to a Samaritan woman on her own. He works on the Sabbath. He adds to the commandments of the Torah. His treatment of the Pharisees is a violation of Levitican law. He does not marry. If you ask a Jew, Jesus was not a very good Jew. I think the Matthew verse on divorce is an argument against divorce. To say that it is a condemnation of homosexuality seems to be adding a meaning that isn’t there.

            If I don’t reply again, it’s because I have some work for tomorrow. So please don’t take any offence. Thanks for the discussion, Frank.

          • Frank

            Well if you were asked a question about corporate bankruptcy you would have to know what a corporation was and what bankruptcy was to answer. Jesus was asked about divorce which is a dissolution of a marriage so He would know what a marriage was and reaffirmed it in case there were any doubts. Jesus could have easily cleared it all up by saying “man leaves his parents to be joined with another man” or “woman leaving her parents to be joined with another women.” Sounds like perfect opportunity to clear things up if it was ok.

          • Drew

            It’s actually amazing how clear the Bible is on this issue. The mental gymnastics required to affirm homosexual sex and marriage is unbelievable. You have to reinterpret the entirety of Scripture though a different lens, that Jesus erased the OT and that a secular, humanist definition of “love” is all that matters. It is little wonder that when people hold this view that they are wrong on dozens, hundreds, and even thousands of other interpretations of Scripture.

            I have to chuckle at John. “Dude, look up some random guy on Youtube, he has a good argument.” No wonder why the Bible tells us to learn Scripture so we’re not blown around by every argument! All it takes is one guy on Youtube that tickles our ears as to what we want to hear, and we’re sold. Or, like Dee mentioned in a previous post, we let “spirits and angels” talk to us and say that everything she is currently doing is “righteous.” All it takes is a little breeze to knock some over.

          • Val

            “All it takes is one guy on Youtube that tickles our ears as to what we want to hear, and we’re sold. ”

            How about Mary Lou Wallner then, Drew? Her daughter is dead because of people like you. How does that tickle *your* ears….Drew?

          • DFEvans

            No questions except, of course, those poor slaves who were the sexual property of their masters and then told to remain slaves by the Apostle Paul. How exactly were they to keep from sinning against their body? Did anyone really expect them to? It seems more complicated than you are willing to recognize.

          • doug_mmm

            John, silent on the subject – well he never mentions paedophelia, drug dealing, arms trading, people trafficking either – does that mean he’s okay with them?

          • lily

            Because it wasn’t an issue, Every one would have known that homosexuality was forbidden so no need to mention it.

          • JohnK

            There’s no scriptural support for flying in airplanes either.

          • lily

            Matthew Vines is a self-confessed homosexual young man who wants to justify his behaviour. He has a big axe to grind and is distorting scripture to that end. Same sex relationships are a no-no.

          • doug_mmm

            That’s disingeneous Rachel. It garners attention because it’s a prominent social issue of the day.

          • bluecenterlight

            I’ve never been to a church that preached divorce was OK, I’ve also never been to a church where divorced people weren’t loved and accepted.

          • Frank

            Great so no one should have any problem with churches who love and accept LGBT people while at the same time teaching Gods plan for sexuality and marriage as one man and one woman.

          • bluecenterlight

            I think what I was getting at is that it is not dealt with in a public manner. Divorce is a difficult and emotional issue that is dealt with on a one on one basis in a pastoral setting. No one tries to white wash the fact that Jesus calls the re married adulterers, yet no one believes that there is not redemption and everyone gets second chances. But there lies grace. I don’t think any of us are comfortable with the fact that we all fall short God’s perfect standard. That God forgives us not only what we have done, but what we will do. It can’t be that easy, so we return to what is comfortable, compliance to the law. I do understand your point Frank, I am sexually immoral and it would not be a loving thing for someone to rubber stamp my behavior as “OK”, but to be honest I would recognize that as bullshit. I have the holy spirit and know when my behavior deviates. But when you hold a broken person to a standard that they know they fall short of and tell them to fix themselves when they know they can’t, it’s like handing a toddler a bunch of power tools and telling them to build a house. Love does not stop at telling people the truth, love comes along side and helps. When I went into the ministry a wise pastor told me that light is equated with truth in scripture, “think of it like a flashlight”, he said “you can shine the light on someone’s path and lead them out of darkness, or you can shine it in their eyes and get them really pissed at you, it’s the same light, same truth it’s all how you use it”. It is why scripture says to speak the truth in love, love is investment, love costs you something. Love shouted across a chasm is cheap love. Love builds bridges. The church has built walls when it comes to homosexuals, not bridges. Jesus never said anyone’s behavior was OK, but even the worst sinner felt comfortable in his presence, we sorely lack this ability. No one should be made to feel comfortable in their sin, but if you have accepted Christ as your savoir, you are not dangling over the pit of hell by a string, and your next slip will be the thing that causes that string to snap. Grace is a dangerous thing, a tension that is difficult for us to wrap our minds around. I have compassion on homosexuals because I know their stories, I know them because I have listened to them. I can speak because I am invested. If you are not willing to walk across the battlefield. If you are not willing to listen to their stories, to come along side as a friend. Then your love is a cheap love that costs you nothing. Then you really have no interest in seeing homosexuals receive Jesus as their lord and savior, you only want to be right. As a divorced person, I have learned sometimes the worst thing in the world to be is right. Being right can cause you to do a lot of wrong. Go love them Frank, love them as the lord leads, or else each one of your posts builds a wall of hypocrisy that one day you might find too difficult to escape.

          • Frank

            Your problem is with the people who act the way you describe not me. You have no idea about the love that I show people. But all love is rooted in truth or its not love.

          • bluecenterlight

            I would love to hear about your homosexual friends. What has their experience with the church been? Are they open to spiritual conversations? If you have successes in relaying the love of Christ to homosexuals this would be the forum to talk about it. I think we could all learn how to better convey truth, we are all poor conduits. So how about sharing?

          • Frank

            Well there are limits to fully sharing on a comment board but my experiences with my gay friends and acquaintances cover a full range of experiences. They have had both good and bad experiences in church. As far as our relationships and our discussions around this issue they range from them ending our friendship because of my beliefs, to we agree to disagree around the issue, to continuing the discussion as they work out what they believe to actually deciding to trust God with their sexuality and pursue celibacy until something changes.

          • bluecenterlight

            I am glad to hear that this something you are actively engaged in. Though we may differ in certain aspects of this debate, we do agree on one thing, everyone who desires to follow Christ must lay everything at the foot of the cross, including our sexuality. Homosexuality is a difficult subject and it takes incredible courage and integrity to engage one on one instead of hiding behind banners. I pigeon holed you Frank, I have spent so much time shouting from behind my own banner that it is sometimes hard to realize when I do it to others. For that I apologize. Politics has tainted me just as much as everyone else who has engaged in it I guess. I think we could all learn from Paul’s advice to Timothy.

            2 Timothy 2:24-25

            24 And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. 25 Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth

          • Frank

            We can all learn a lot from the words of Paul. Sadly some people dismiss them. Tragic and antithetical to their faith.

            Although the issue is political its not about politics. Its about people lives, both here and now and eternally.

            I extend my apologies to you as well!

          • bluecenterlight

            ;)

          • Valarie

            Oh My God. This made me cry. Thank you, so much. I love you too.

          • bluecenterlight

            hugs

          • doug_mmm

            Well spoken Frank. Kristen is seeking popularity with this world rather than promoting biblical values.

          • JT

            Hi, Kristen. Been mulling over your thoughts here and have stumbled upon a few problems. First, could you qualify the language of marriage “equality”? In other words, what is the measure by which one attributes equal or normative status to various modes of sexual unions?

          • bluecenterlight

            What does love look like to you Frank, and how are you living that love out?

        • Frank

          Btw thanks for engaging in the comment section. That is a courageous act which few posters are unwilling to step up and do.

        • Brian T. Kelley

          Thanks for the great article, Kristen. It’s certainly time to untangle the Church from government.

          1 Peter 2:11-17 encourages its audience to live in peace with the society at large. I think it’s clear how we can have peaceful resolution on this emotionally-charged, divisive and sensitive issue: Christians should relent. Imagine the day when the term “anti-homosexual” is no longer used to describe Christianity in America. What will take its place? Hopefully something Christ-like!

          I’m not sure why many of the commenters seems to be so focused on the morality of people who do not claim to be part of the Church. What’s the scriptural basis for that? There’s plenty of scriptural support for holding one another accountable, encouraging each other and living holy lives as part of the body of Christ that is the Church (e.g. Proverbs 27:17, Ephesians 4:25, Colossians 3:16, James 5:16). But I can’t find any instruction to impose laws and world views on others (see also Ephesians 4:3), especially on those who don’t even profess to follow Jesus.

          Instead of investing our time, effort and money in to politics and government we should focus on living like our earliest brothers and sisters like we see in Acts 2:42-47 and 4:32-35. The Church is God’s instrument for renewal (Matthew 6:10, John 16:13). Let us be passionate about that!

          • Drew

            Brian,

            The New Testament is written from the standpoint of Roman occupation, not from the standpoint of a Democracy (easy mistake to make).

            Peter was speaking in a time of Roman occupation where Christians had no influence on government. Peter was saying that instead of overthrowing the government, that Christians should respect this authority. Peter was not talking about having a choice to vote or influence government we should do whatever non-Christians tell us we should do.

            By the way, if you read 1 Peter 2:11-17 carefully, it actually says that the pagans will still accuse us of doing wrong even if we do good, just that they will have a “come to Jesus” moment when Jesus actually comes. So no, I do not suspect there will be a day when Christians are not called “anti-homosexual.”

          • Brian T. Kelley

            Yes, the context for 1 Peter 2 is different but the principle of living in peace (a recurring theme throughout much of the New Testament) is the same. I’m not sure what the mistake is; I didn’t claim it was addressed to us specifically.

            Does scripture instruct us to legislate morality through secular government? If so, where? On this particular issue that seems contrary to peaceful living. We (“Christians”) are telling non-Christians what to (not) do, not the other way around.

            In verse 12 the author is warning the audience its pagan neighbors will accuse it of doing wrong because of the righteous living the pagans observe that occurs within the local Body. He’s not referring to observations concerning his audience participating in society at large. Opposition to marriage equality don’t fall under “living good lives.” Good lives are oriented around the stuff Jesus cares about, such as that listed in Matthew 25:34-36.

          • Drew

            Brian,

            Let me shed some light on this issue for you.

            You proved my own point – Scripture doe snot tell us to legislate morality through secular government, nor does it tell us to avoid legislating morality through secular government. The Bible simply does not speak about functioning democracy, as I have already said.

            Under occupation, there are only two choices – disobey or obey. The decree comes down and you only have two options. Peter is saying that as Christians, we obey (unless the decree tells us to sin, in which case we disobey).

            In a democracy, there are three choices – disobey, obey, or work towards changing the decree. The idea of being able to change the decree was a foreign idea; Peter was talking to “foreigners and exiles.”

            What you are saying is trying to change the decree is an act of “violence.” I strongly disagree. Participating in a functional democracy is a peaceful resolution.

            Living good lives includes commission and omission, doing and not doing.

          • Brian T. Kelley

            Until you provide scriptural evidence in support of Christian activism in government despite negative repercussions (which I’ve asked for in the last two posts) there’s no point in having this discussion. There’s certainly good that can come out of legislation, but using it to alienate and oppress people is not good. It is legal to advocate for that but legal is not the same as right.

            Violence is not the anthesis of peace (and it’s the resistance to changing the decree, as you put it, that’s the problem). I don’t think anyone would claim “Christians” at large in this country and the LGBT community are at peace. And scripture indicates that’s a problem since “Christians” are not, at scale, making an effort to do so.

          • Drew

            Until you can provide scriptural evidence in support of gay marriage there’s no point in having this discussion. (Not finding Scriptural evidence “for” something is not the same as finding Scriptural evidence “against” something).

            My point to you, which you missed, is that the Bible is silent about Christian life in a democracy. I cannot provide Scripture saying that Christians have to vote; I cannot provide Scripture saying that Christians cannot vote.

            I think that what is clear is that however we vote, we are to respect the outcome. If gay marriage is legal in my state or country, I will disagree, but I will respect the authority.

            On another topic, peace is a goal but not the only goal. Jesus was hated and crucified. Jesus said that we should be expected to be hated as well. It is a false meme that we should relent in order to find peace when Jesus says we will be hated, period. We should seek peace but we should not necessarily expect to find peace.

          • pAAtty

            BTKelley.you are making some sense to me. I have been so sad and yes, actually mad today because of this ruling and do nlot know what to dod with my feelings..I have had discussions with my much more liberal husband and am praying how to handle my emotions. Any suggestions on what to say when others attack my conservative take on this issue”::.confused….

          • Guest

            So when I shove my Buddhist morals down your throat through legislation it will be okay? Remember that the United States is a nation made up of many people from many places with many religions. If you want to see a nation ruled by religious legislaton look to Iran.

          • Troy Johnson

            Christians have the power of their vote. But it seems to me, We value as a whole people with secular skills over Christian moral values when we actually vote. As Christians we need to find and vote for the candidate that has our Christian values rather than our secular values.

          • jamaica leesa

            Drew– I posted this above.

            What is wrong with RLC? Oh. My.
            Gosh. It’s not that Christians (Believers in Christ who follow Christ
            *and* believe Scripture) think that our religion should rule. It is that
            we will vote according to our faith. Our view of political issues will
            be shaped by our faith. Clearly your political stances are not shaped by
            your belief in Jesus Christ.

            I am more and more alarmed by RLC passing itself off as a “Christian”
            publication — and more and more shocked that Dr. Campolo thinks these
            articles from so-called “Believers” are actually helping to strengthen
            Christianity.

            Dr. Campolo, what you have done is put forward — through these
            writeres/their perspectives/their articles/their insistence that they
            are followers of Chris — you have opened up a path for the
            infiltration of Christ’s teachings and the Triune God’s Words in
            Scripture to be distorted by false prophets and teachers. This is the
            biggest threat to the church: these liberal Left non-Believers who are
            claiming to be the real Christians. You want to destroy the church from
            within using Christ’s Name to do it. Get thee behind me, Satan!

            ~Jamaica Leesa aka Michelle

          • lily

            I used to hold Tony Campolo in high regard – not any more!

        • Lorne Langfeld

          The REAL truth is what the Bible teaches. We cannot impose our beliefs on others but we also cannot deny what the Word of God teaches and pretend that it is not there in the text. Not only should we be aware of what Genesis and Leviticus states, but also the new testament teaching in Romans and elsewhere regarding immorality.

          • Rafael

            What does Leviticus and Genesis state? because I see nothing in regard to Homosexuality. Romans 1 is a difficult passage and most likely Not Paul speaking, but a hypothetical writing which Paul refutes

          • lily

            Raphael Re-read Leviticus – same sex relationships forbidden in the same way as are man and animal relationships.

        • Rafael

          It’s not imposing beliefs, we know that Jesus Christ is The Way, and The Truth and The Life, and that’s not imposing it’s just giving truth, also Scripture doesn’t condemn Homosexuality, God(YHWH: The Father and The Son and The Holy Spirit) has no problem with it.

        • Stephen Verdon

          This is so rational and simple.

        • Jimothy Timberline

          Rights are given by God not Government. Marriage is ordained and conceived by God. One man one woman. Man cannot change that.

        • Brandon Miller

          Ms. Howerton, Dr. Campolo has also said, “how can we ask non-christians to act like Christians?” And I hear you both. For didn’t Jesus tell us to, ‘not cast your pearls among swine’ because they will ‘trample on it’ (and isn’t that like asking a pig or a goat to act like a sheep)? But, I would like to point out how some of us ‘middle-of-the-road’ type Christians feel that this act of “affirming” a behavior, seems dangerously similar to “encouraging” it. This is where peoples’ consciences are aching. If LGBT’s want to get married bad enough than they will find a way to somehow do it. And just because I don’t affirm and “encourage” it, doesn’t mean that I am imposing Christian standards on unbelievers by a simple disapproval, or does it? I know that you are simply trying to love people and let them come to God on their own. Yet, I sincerely ask, ‘how do we do this without comprise?’

          Also, in my previous comments about this article (which I posted on Jan 2nd 2013, if your are interested) I shift the debate to; what did Jesus ask of all of His followers? For there does come a point where I can’t expect nonbelievers to act like Christians. So, perhaps our focus on homosexuality should be for those who are also Christians or want to serve God despite being homosexual? … ( sorry this is so lengthy) (pt 1 of 2) -

          • Brandon Miller

            (pt 2 of 2) -MY POINT WAS THIS, I just think that we all (including the people on THIS WEBSITE) need to NOT ONLY READ THE RED LETTERS ABOUT SHOWING LOVE to our enemies as well as our neighbors and brothers, and turning the other cheek, BUT ALSO take an honest LOOK at Christ’s other teachings in red; which call us to deny ourselves (Luke 9:23, Matthew 10), not to worry or obsess about food and clothing like the pagans do (Matthew 6), and where He explains that if we don’t love Him more than our family (and friend assumed) than we are quote, ‘not worthy of him’ (Luke 14, Matthew 10). I am not trying to be harsh. I just wish people on both the conservative and liberal side of things would read the whole context.

            Though you and I will agree that, ‘love is a verb’ or an action, and Paul said that, “actions speak louder than words.” God Bless -

        • doug_mmm

          Sorry Kristen, that is relativistic nonsense. So you cannot impose your beliefs on paedophiles, murderers, drug dealers, etc because they don’t follow scripture ‘as I do.’ What an insane world it would be if such laissez faire prevailed….. let alone a very unChristian world.

      • Val

        That it’s absolutely none of your freaking business how others choose to love one another. How’s that?

    • 22044

      Try again, Barbara, when you know what you’re talking about.
      Nobody’s trying to make conservatives.
      Nobody’s trying to demand or force anything on anyone.
      Nobody’s angry, sarcastic, or nasty.

      • Sharideth

        “Try again, Barbara, when you know what you’re talking about…Nobody’s angry, sarcastic, or nasty.”

        It only took you two lines completely discredit yourself.

        • 22044

          I don’t care what you think.

          • Sharideth

            Hey! Take it as a compliment. It was quite a feat! Very impressive. Most people usually need more time.

          • 22044

            Really? You’re representing Christ when trying to convince me to accept your rephrasing of your comment, or just being needlessly sarcastic?
            Thanks for playing. Bye.

          • Sharideth

            If by “rephrasing” you mean I edited it to include the “to” that was missing between “lines” and “completely”, then yes, you got me. Guilty as charged. I have no business representing Christ with bad grammar.

            As for the sarcasm, I don’t consider it needless at all.

          • 22044

            Gratefully, I am loved/affirmed by Christ, not some internet commenter.
            Are you loved by Christ too? Do you have a new soul? Is your life a testimony of that?

          • Sharideth

            And skilled at pious non sequiturs, too! Well done!

          • Drew

            … all this from the individual that claimed they wanted high discourse ….

            Hypocrisy always gets exposed.

          • 22044

            Well noted.

          • Sharideth

            You know, that’s totally fair. My snark doesn’t add anything to this conversation. But neither has numbersforname. It’s been all attack and condescend then deny doing either of those things. So I had some childish fun. I suppose the “I don’t care what you think” set me off since he/she? clearly expects everyone to care about what he/she? thinks.

            My bad. Good on you for calling me out.

          • 22044

            Regarding your comment to Drew, nobody has to care what I think. To me, that’s fair.

            Because I don’t know who you are, I decided to look at your previous Disqus posts. It looks like you’re a recovering arguer on the Internet.
            It looks like you should take your own advice and stay off commenting on blogs for a while. I’m not a bad guy although I may appear that way. I tend to be honest, I often present contrarian views, and occasionally I challenge what looks like hypocrisy. You could have let my comment stand and no harm would be done.
            So I wish you well and trust that you’ll be more careful in the future.
            All the best.

          • David Reynolds

            Respect

          • Drew

            Not that my opinion matters much, but for what it is worth, you just gained some respect from me.

          • Sharideth

            That always matters. Thanks.

          • 22044

            Then I am bummed that you see my questions as non sequiturs. A fellow sister in Christ would not see them that way.

          • 22044

            And I regret that you don’t have joy in the Lord, that you self-justify your use of needless sarcasm.
            I hope you may know Him in a real & personal way.
            Your sin isn’t so great that He couldn’t overcome it.

          • 22044

            Sorry, should be a reply to Sharideth.

          • Sharideth

            It’s cool. We all knew who you were replying to.

          • KellyLynne

            Someone disagrees with you, therefore they must not know Jesus. Nice.

    • Drew

      When liberal Christianity is met head-on with Christianity, you will always hear howls of “love means postmodernism.”

      • Draayerfamily

        Sorry – this was the comment I asked the above question for. What do You think love means?

    • rsf3612

      Old argument. The ‘liberal’ side is demanding ‘complete obedience’ to their worldview as well. Seems to me, Barbara, that anyone with a view outside of yours could not possibly reflect grace or kindness. Ridiculous.

      • Draayerfamily
      • doug_mmm

        Well spoken rsf3612. The tragedy is that in criticizing her fellow Christians she reflects the very values she despises in them. Her critique is actually incredibly bigoted in that she assumes all objectors to her ‘tolerance’ are ‘angry, unloving people’ wherease they could be principled loving people. I agree rsf3612 – ridiculous.

    • Simple Man

      We don’t have a right to demand things, but part of the great commission is the obedience of the nations to God’s law – “Teaching them to obey all things whatsoever I have commended you…. “

    • Rafael

      If you have grace and Love others as you love yourself(-Jesus Christ(YHWH), Matthew 7:12, Matthew 22:34-40) you would help them stay Away from false doctrines(such as Anti-Gay, as Homosexuality isn’t a sin)

      And stay away from other religions as They Do Harm, why would you want to harm YHWH(The Father and The Son and The Holy Spirit) by condoning their rejection?

      It’s not different than condoning Anti-Gay, as it does harm, as Homosexuality isn’t a sin.

  • Jay

    So….no one here who is against gay marriage can still give a good reason why we should not make it illegal to worship other gods. I think the worship of another god is higher on the list of ‘must not do’ than gay marriage. So why are you guys not focusing your efforts on that?

    • Frank

      SSM is about worshiping other “gods.” It certainly shows a complete lack of faith in our creator. Something we are all guilty of in some form btw.

      • Jay

        You’re making it a blanket ‘sin’. All sin is a lack of faith in our creator. Almost anything legal can be made a sin.

        If you want to be practical and compare the actual consequences of SSM and other religions, you will have to admit that allowing other religions to create temples, have a presence in the community, evangelize and convert, they have a much greater impact in leading people away from God. If both are the same, and one has much greater consequences, why spend so much time attacking the lesser?

        Also, if we as Christians spent even HALF the effort we spend on SSM and applied that to banning pornography, which has much much much greater impact on people’s morality and spiritual decay, the nation would be in a much better state.

        • Frank

          Well SSM in the issue that’s being pushed today. There are fallacious claims today that homosexual behavior isn’t sinful or isn’t always sinful. I suspect when people stop claiming its not sinful then the church will step back from the issue. Until then….

          • jay

            My friend, it is not about sinful or not. The article here is about allowing rights to exist even though they are sinful in your eyes. You allow pornography to exist, you allow Muslims to practice their beliefs, you agree that all that is sinful, yet you and many others out there do not spend even a fraction of the effort on those issues that you do with SSM. You continue to focus on the speck and not the plank. If you are not being a pharisee, I don’t know what you are.

          • Frank

            Oh please. If this were an article supporting pornography then some would comment about it. I would.

            Get it together man!

          • Jay

            LOL are you telling me that you don’t think Christians are more focused on banning SSM than pornography? You guys are SOOOO focused on this stuff all other issues seem to shrink, even though those issues are bigger. Again, tell me why you allow pornography to be legal? Or rather, why Christian churches and organizations spend millions every year to fight SSM and not pornography or alcohol, both which have much greater impact?

          • Frank

            The focus is on SSM as our country’s focus is on it and because some Christians fallaciously claim its not sinful and damaging. It’s common sense why there is focus on this issue at this time and rightly so.

          • Drew

            Alcohol is not a sin; over-consumption of alcohol is.

            Pornography is a sin but there are multiple ways to fight sin. Legislation is often a last result, as is in the case of abortion, when lives are at stake.

            What we do not do with pornography is give government recognition and benefits and tax incentives to pornography companies.

            Nobody is saying same sex couples cannot live together or get married in their faith tradition and have a ceremony. What we are saying is that the government should not give them benefits and incentives that are bestowed upon marriage.

    • Nathan Duffy

      Retaining the traditional definition of marriage doesn’t “make anything illegal”, including homosexuality. If someone were advocating to make homosexuality illegal, you would have a point. As is, of course, you have none whatsoever.

      • KellyLynne

        What do you mean “make homosexuality illegal”? You make it sound as though there *aren’t* still sodomy laws on the books in the US. (Or, for that matter, as though anti-gay Christians aren’t going into countries like Uganda and pushing for anti-gay legislation with a death penalty attached.)

  • ChuckM

    While we are redefining marriage from male/female, who gets to decide what the new definition of marriage is? If male/male and female/female are ok, what about male/male/female, or male/female/female, or male/male/female/female, or even male/female/animal? I’d really like to know what will define a marriage in the future.

    • Valarie

      Since when can an animal provide informed consent and apply for and sign a marriage license?

  • Oliver Watts

    How does it effect anyone what gays do? They can do what ever thwy want in my opinion, including getting married.

    • Frank

      All sin affects our world including the Kingdom of God.

    • Drew

      Yes, they can do whatever they want.

      No, we do not have to give them tax benefits and incentives to do whatever they want.

      • Pastora Rhonda

        this is the most interesting thing you have said today! I would like to dialogue with you (and others about this)…dialogue means that I have not formed and opinion, I am working things out, thinking about things and ask you to do the same. Ok, hypothetical.

        Let’s say that you and your cousin Nancy have both lost your spouses. You are both lonely and having a very difficult time making ends meet on your own. So you decided that you will share a home. You become roommates. But because of your maturity and family relationship you find yourselves inter-connecting your lives in ways that are deeper than most roommates. You share a bank account so that either of you can pay the household bills. Because you refinanced the house together both of your names are on the note. Things like that. You and Nancy care for each other as family…as brother as sister. You are not lovers but you have significant relationship that impacts a huge variety of areas in your life.

        You live this way very happily for many years. When times become even harder you have to drop your insurance. Nancy has a great plan with her job but sadly, you don’t qualify because you are not her spouse or child. One day Nancy is in a car accident resulting in a coma. Tragically she cannot tell anyone her wishes and she has no will. You know her wishes but the hospital will not acknowledge you. In fact, because she is in ICU and you are not immediate family, you are not admitted to visit her.

        In this scenario do you not think that it would be compassionate for you to receive some of the benefits that are given to others who share a household? What about companions who share their lives together? Retired widows or missionaries or whatever.

        ALL sexual conduct aside…. If companions share lives, bank accounts, households….shouldn’t that have some rights in so much as it has to do with one another?

        • 22044

          I’m not an expert on this matter, but I believe legal documents can be drawn up to allow the kinds of privileges between two consenting people as you’ve described.
          I certainly would take no issue with that.
          Maybe Drew has some thoughts.

        • Frank

          Expanded civil unions can provide these kinds of benefits without calling something a marriage that will never be a marriage.

          • Pastora Rhonda

            Yes, I see what you mean about that. I know a few different languages so the actual “words” of things don’t concern me as much as the implications. So maybe (still thinking this thru) I don’t care so much about what “it” is called (civil union or [cringe] marriage). I think I am most concerned that we who do not believe that God has ordained this type of union will be “forced” by law to recognize it in our churches by officiating at the services, being forced to baptize or allow admittance for “official” membership…those kind of things. If the law can be made to protect and offer allowances for companions (sexual or not) by the choice of those companions, that is one issue. Forcing that “political” or “marketplace” or “secular” choice on Christian organizations like churches, adoption agencies, seminaries….well that is different and could threaten our liberty as believers in a the Bibles infallibility.

          • Frank

            You are rightly concerned about this issue. If marriage is seen as a right and if SSM marriage is classified as any other heterosexual marriage then most certainly you will be forced to officiate SSM’s or suffer the legal consequences.

          • Pastora Rhonda

            So then are we saying that Kristen’s article is short-sighted because she is trying to say that the two issues are separate? She is basically saying that we as Christian’s can support this political agenda (for lack of a better term…work with me here) and it shouldn’t impact our spiritual lives or right to worship according to what we believe? Well that’s not true then, is it?

            I think (more prayer needed) I could support a “companionship” marriage that would give legal rights (as outlined similar to my hypothetical scenario above) to couples but would NOT extend to religious organizations. Perhaps all 501(c)3’s could have an additional code given that would indicate that they are a certain type (church, seminary adoption agency etc)…or maybe they already do, and these “types” of religious organizations could be exempted from…. marriage, baptism, admittance for membership, clergy admittance etc. IF the desired this exemption.

            This could create breaks in the future for other type “companionships.” For example the mother who lives with her adult son cause she cannot take care of herself alone…or vise versa. Two widows sharing expenses. Or two retired priests…. etc. They could apply for the same “companionship” classification and receive benefits as such.

          • Frank

            There is already some mechanisms in place like Power Of Attorney. I think that anyone should be able to choose who their caregiver is or who they want to manage their affairs. And if the SSM supporters were simply concerned about rights they would accept civil unions but that’s not good enough for them as they have some other motives. They keep talking about separate but equal but they fail to realize they will always be separate and something different than opposite sex couples.

          • Pastora Rhonda

            Frank the POA and the Civil Unions are not giving people the same kind of rights or access that “marriage” does. It does not entitle them to health benefits, death benefits become very complicated, many hospitals will not recognize a POA for a SSC if the family of the hospitalized person (father, mother, sister, brother) create an issue. It seems that these options aren’t “working”

          • Frank

            Oh I know. I mentioned it because in some of the companionship models you presented there already are mechanisms. Expanded civil unions is he answer. Heath benefits, death benefits could all be resolved without making something that isn’t a marriage a marriage simply for the legal rights it bestows.

          • Pastora Rhonda

            Yes, that preserves our rights in our churches and religious organizations. I think I could get on board with that.

          • Frank

            Only those looking for some sort of validation wouldn’t accept this solution.

          • Drew

            Why should a private employer be forced to give these kind of health benefits? Many do voluntarily, and that is their right to decide.

          • Pastora Rhonda

            That is an Obama Care issue that we would have to have a different and very long conversation about… :::::sigh::::: no easy answers. But talking…having a conversation (not a fight) ..about it helps me to think and to pray. To try and understand other perspectives helps me to expand my “box.” But my short answer to you is….. Yup, I agree with you. :)

          • 22044

            Pastora Rhonda, Frank, & Drew, thanks for keeping a civil dialogue here.

          • Goynkes23

            Very interesting discussion. I think if we reserve legal rights for the non-sinners we are all in trouble. If a woman gets a divorce, should we not allow her to legally marry again since this will make her an adulteress? Should we keep Muslims and Atheists from getting married since the do not worship our God (Yes I am a Christian and married to a female for almost 20 years). Jesus said 1) Love God and 2) Love Your Neighbor. I am not sure how supporting equal rights for all humans is violates either of those laws.

          • 22044

            Good questions. Since the above suppositions all involve a man marrying a woman, my general point is that they would all be considered qualified marriages by the government.
            Supporting equal rights for all doesn’t mean that we force the government to redefine marriage, though.

          • Goynkes23

            So why shouldn’t the same right to get married be offered to 2 men or 2 women?

          • 22044

            Marriage isn’t a right; it is a privilege and it has conditions, one of those being the genders of the participants being different.
            If others want to redefine it, that’s fine as they want to see it, but trying to force a false definition of it on others is wrong.

          • Goynkes23

            What makes the definition of marriage between different genders? The Bible? The same Bible that says a man or woman in a second marriage is committing adultery? If we are defining marriage by what the Bible says, I think we missed the boat a long time ago. Many Christians like to pick and choose which verses and ideas they want to take from the Bible. I do not disagree that the Bible is very clear that marriage is 1 man and 1 woman. My question is should the government be able to deny 2 men or 2 women the ability to get married just because it is not a Biblical marriage. If so, you open up a much larger door on who would be able to get married.
            If we are defining marriage by today’s laws (the same laws that didn’t allow colored people to eat a meal with me or women to vote not so long ago), then maybe they are dated. Either way, you are treating one person differently than another just because they are sinners in the eye of the Bible. Welcome to the club. We are all sinners. Did Jesus treat everyone the same or did he think certain groups should be discriminated against?

          • 22044

            We’re not supposed to discriminate against people, but practicing nondiscrimination as a personal code of conduct and as a Christian has a different intention: the understanding that the Gospel is a free gift for all people.
            It isn’t to create special rights that have no root in natural rights (like the right to eat meals with anybody and the right to vote would be).
            Regarding the right to vote, would there not be discrimination against people under 18? If so, is it good or bad?

          • 22044

            Somewhere else on this thread, Frank and I provide referrals to other sites & studies that present the case for marriage as being between a man and a woman, without using the Bible or religious arguments.

          • 22044

            By the way, I appreciate that you ask challenging questions but do so in a spirit of fairness and civility.

          • Drew

            Your argument, while wildly emotional, actually supports any and all forms of unions. You do realize this, correct?

          • Goynkes23

            Correct. Why should I be the judge of who gets married? If I was and I denied humans that right or benefit or whatever you want to call it based on gender, am I not judging them? Love God and Love Your Neighbor. Help me understand what I am missing.

          • Drew

            So you endorse polygamy and polyandry – just so we are on the same page?

          • Drew

            There is a difference between benefits and rights.

          • Goynkes23

            How so? Not that I am disagreeing, I am just curious how you differentiate.

          • Drew

            Married couples get a tax break.

            Is a tax break a “right” or a “benefit?”

            Even if you argue all benefits should be applied equally, then why would businesses all not receive tax-exempt status, rather than just non-profits?

            Hint: It’s not a right, it’s a benefit.

          • KellyLynne

            So a private employer should also be able to decide not to give benefits to inter-racial or interfaith couples? Or couples of different religions from them?

          • KellyLynne

            Civil unions and powers of attorney are routinely ignored. They also don’t actually provide all the rights and responsibilities of marriage, only a limited set that varies from state to state and is not recognized in others.

            And the legal documents you talk about can be prohibitively expensive. Why should a gay couple have to spend thousands to secure *some* of the same protections that my husband and I can get with a $25 marriage license?

          • KellyLynne

            Please cite an example of a pastor being legally forced to officiate a marriage that went against his/her religious beliefs, or successfully sued for refusing to do so.

        • Drew

          I am in support of legal rights, sure. I can support something to be created where legal rights are conferred.

  • jonathan starkey

    Leaving Society to celebrate Christianity in Private apart from politics and the public sphere equals dualism. It’s what the rapture theology teaches. It’s no different than saying I don’t want my religious to be brought into the equation. (Right)

    Loving people with the hands of Jesus and never mentioning sin in the name of Love. Humanism. Monotheism or Christian Monism. (Left)

    It’s interesting to me how the “Pharisees” always wanted to go with the flow of Society. Don’t rock the boat. And it’s what Biblical Orthodox are being accused of, by the people who don’t want to rock societies boat.

  • rsf3612

    So then, an LDS or Muslim should be able to have multiple wives. Who is to say what is right?

  • rsf3612

    Every law is legislated morality. The question is ‘whose’ morality/worldview will we legislate. I am not for bigotry in the slightest, but am not convinced that the traditional definitions of marriage should be changed.

  • RDF

    So let me get this straight…the author ask that Christian not impose their “will” (biblical or otherwise) on individuals who do not have the same belief system. Others are denouncing this because they do want to impose their beliefs. In so doing one (the author) is secular while the other is biblical and right. This is because certain ones of us have decided that our interpretation of Scripture is surely the right one compared to others (especially this author). So did I miss something…an honest discussion turns to name-calling and labels because we may disagree. Disagreeing is fair. But it is a voice at the table of Christianity that must be heard, whether you like it or not. Read Acts 15 real quick and you may see the fairness of having all voices at the table and may come away thankful that they decided to let the immoral and unclean Gentiles into the movement. May Peace reign!

    • Frank

      This is an issue about love and what it is. One side thinks its loving to allow people to live any why they want to live. That’s secular. The other side take the definition of love from God as demonstrated through Christ. That’s biblical. And that love never allows anyone to stay where they are unchanged. that love is defined by Jesus and obedience. All voices can and should be heard but not all voices speak the truth or carry equal weight.

      • Elexa Dawson

        I’m honestly confused by your stance and have some questions. How are your views informed by the love of God through Christ in regard to Jesus’ acceptance of sinners and outcasts? Also, have you experienced any “sinners” caught and accused in the “sin” of homosexuality being changed by the preaching of an anti-lgbt person? I am asking honestly, because I can see your train of thought, but I also see it derailing on a few points.
        Regarding what love is, I let the Corinthians 13 passage inform me there… non-judgment is a big part of that passage. Do you see that differently?

        • Frank

          There are thousands of people with SSA, people who were active in homosexuality that have been transformed. That’s not o say that they still don’t have SSA but they see the truth about it.

          4 Love is patient,(I) love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.(J) 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking,(K) it is not easily angered,(L) it keeps no record of wrongs.(M) 6 Love does not delight in evil(N) but rejoices with the truth.(O) 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.(P)

          Encouraging sinful behavior is not love. Wanting to live sexually as we choose to, living against Gods created order is self-seeking, is prideful, is evil.

          So yes I ascribe to Corinthians 13 as well.

          • Frank

            Also encouraging sin dishonors others and God.

          • Elexa Dawson

            Love never gives up.
            Love cares more for others than for self.
            Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
            Love doesn’t strut,
            Doesn’t have a swelled head,
            Doesn’t force itself on others,
            Isn’t always “me first,”
            Doesn’t fly off the handle,
            Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
            Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
            Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
            Puts up with anything,
            Trusts God always,
            Always looks for the best,
            Never looks back,
            But keeps going to the end.

  • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

    There is a U.S. fundamentalist ethos that has added unbiblical concepts (rooted in fundamentalist US culture, and not the bible) to the words of Jesus and Christianity as a whole. This culture claims that it holds the sole right to read and interpret what the Bible says. Anyone not in agreement with them are badgered with words like “liberal” and “unbiblical”.

    RLC offers alternative voices for those who take the words of Jesus seriously but do not buy into the stereotypical Evangelical close mindedness— that is SO ON DISPLAY in this comment section.

    This has nothing to do with liberalism or anything else—but everything to do with good Christians like Kristen, myself and others spotlighted to share that there ARE people who take Jesus VERY seriously but come to different set of conclusions than the hateful, bigoted positions so often associated with Evangelicalism here in the USA.

    • 22044

      Come on Jimmy. You should be happy that some people offer alternative viewpoints here. You don’t want to just stay in a bubble full of the same groupthink, do you? It’s just sharing ideas and trying to persuade. I’m also wondering where you see hate & closed-mindedness. Or is that how you view all disagreements?
      Hatred & bigotry is out there – more among secular leftists/progressives. Perhaps you need to get out more.

      • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

        Im not happy that trolls persist on the RLC blog—driving away almost all civil Progressive dialogue because they just keep shouting the same things in the comment section. You should be blocked—and in fact—I know that some have been blocked but blocked users keep creating new logins and returning. You guys create a toxic atmosphere. Very sad.

        • 22044

          Please be specific and discuss the toxic atmosphere you’re proclaiming.
          Again, hate is out there. It’s not what you think.
          Civil progressive dialogue? I’d welcome it. I rarely see it.
          If you’ve already decided that you need to attack people who disagree with you, whether in the original posts or in the comments, civility is unattainable.
          I’m trying to give some feedback that might be helpful and you talk about wanting to block me.
          I do like other posts on RLC. Do you not see my comments when I do so to that effect?

          • Drew

            Unfortunately Jimmy only reads the articles about homosexuality and does so only to call everyone that does not agree with him a biggot or homophobe or fundamentalist, usually in caps, yelling at everyone.

          • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

            To be very clear drew, I actually do read most posts. Sadly, today I fell off the ‘don’t feed the trolls’ bandwagon, because I felt people were personally attacking my friend Kristen and because I do appreciate her perpective.

            Reading the posts is actually part of the work that the RLC Board of Directors asks me to do. However, I do not comment anymore because of the toxic atmosphere.

            I will go back to being silent, but will be working to clean up some of the bullying and vitriol in comment sections.

          • Frank

            Once gain I ask you what is your definition of a troll?

          • Drew

            Someone that does not agree with him and has a forceful conviction.

          • Drew

            I appreciate where you are coming from in standing up for a friend.

            At the same time, I cannot endorse your position of banning and deleting posts that you personally disagree with and trying to limit freedom of dissenting speech. To me, it’s a low character position, and is bullying in and of itself.

          • jonathan starkey

            Underdog Syndrome

          • David Reynolds

            Actually Jimmy I think you handled yourself very well. It can be hard to deal with some of the stuff that gets thrown around here. To be honest I don’t know why they don’t go to one of the many hate pages out there that would be far more suited to their branding.
            It’s kind of sad really. Lonely middle aged men looking desperately for an argument, most likely because no one will still talk to them in the real world.
            They add little to my world for the time investment required to read their vitriol, and to be honest I shy away from RLC and go other pages that the haters haven’t yet found. I fear RLC risks losing many thoughtful readers unless they choose to block the nuffers, but of course that is not my call.

          • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

            Sorry to have missed this. I appreciate your words and have begun some basic dialogue with the RLC Board on how to work on this. Hopefully we can earn some trust back. :)

          • David Reynolds

            No worries my brother. You have my love and respect.

        • Frank

          The only toxicity comes from you guys and your fallacious unscripturally supported posts. You are leading people into sin.

        • Frank

          Whats your definition of a troll?

        • Digger

          What do you mean by, “civil Progressive diologue”? Is any diologue that you don’t agree with uncivil? Is there ANY dialogue that you disagree with that IS civil? Is the idea of this website to create a bunch of “free thinkers” who all hold the same beliefs? Is it you claim, as well as RLC’s claim, that anyone with opposing views are unchristian? Is “fundamental” the new ‘F’ bomb for progressives?

        • 22044

          OK, let me try something else.
          I remember your first comment to me, it was very nice. I had the impression that “maybe Jimmy’s a good guy doing good things.”
          Now I wonder. Maybe you’re not angry but I see shouting in your posts. Are you involving in spreading the false worldviews of progressivism & postmodernism and trying to push Jesus into those empty ideas?
          Would it be better for you to contend for the historic, orthodox faith instead?
          A past error was to try to fit Jesus into modernism. Eventually modernism faded away. Postmodernism will as well. Secular progressivism has no kindness or godliness at its core; rather, it is Machiavellianism dressed up in sheep’s clothing.
          As believers, we are set apart; and citizens of a new kingdom.

        • jonathan starkey

          We come back because we are looking for Jesus in the Red letters, just like you, and we’re trolls because of conflict?

          You guys talk all about peace, and conflict resolution, but when someone disagrees they’re a troll?

          It’s not very progressive if we aren’t going to have these demanding conversations. In fact this is exceptionally Biblical between believers.

          Acts 15 was about defining what was moral and what was cultural.

    • jonathan starkey

      Underdog syndrome.

      • jonathan starkey

        An inferiority complex is a lack of self-worth, a doubt and
        uncertainty, and feeling of not measuring up to society’s standards. It
        is often subconscious, and is thought to drive afflicted individuals to
        overcompensate, resulting either in spectacular achievement or extreme
        antisocial behavior.

    • Drew

      “Anyone not in agreement with fundamentalists are badgered with words like “liberal” and “unbiblical.” – Jimmy Spencer

      “…fundamentalist ethos that has added unbiblical concepts.”

      Do you see the irony, Jimmy?

      • bluecenterlight

        Come on Drew you use the phrase militant liberal in ever other sentence, you are in place to call someone out on that.

        • Drew

          Blue, I was simply pointing out the irony of what he said, not that anything he said was wrong or offended me. I do hope, Blue, that you understand what irony is.

          • bluecenterlight

            Irony is the thing that get wrinkles out of your clothes, like “I need to irony my slacks afore I go to church” ;) I think we could all dial back the labels, none us fit into neat little packages. It is easy to write people of as one thing or another but we are called to live by one label, Christ followers. I think we are all sincerely trying to do that to the best of our ability (although that has clearly led us to different conclusions on certain matters). Labeling is the world working it’s way into the life of the church, its lazy, I have been guilty of it and am convicted to stop.

          • Drew

            You miss the irony a second time. When you are talking about banning people and limiting speech as Jimmy has, and you mention the problem of throwing labels around, then you immediately start throwing around the labels that you just decried… that is climbing Mt. Hypocrisy to the top and planting a flag.

          • bluecenterlight

            I really am going to have to look this irony thing up ;) My point was that we all need to stop pigeon holing each other, both sides. It is just getting tiresome to me, and it feels like we are just shouting past each other. I think both sides have valid points to make but as soon as labels come out people stop listening. The world is that way, we should rise above it.

          • Valarie

            A Scotsman cloning sheep is irony!

          • bluecenterlight

            lol

    • Frank

      There is no one more close minded than many of the bloggers who post article here.

    • Drew

      For someone that talks about love, you are more filled with hate than anyone I’ve see on this website, Jimmy. All you do is rant about evil fundamentalists and getting people blocked and kicked out from this website. You’re the one talking in caps, angry as possible, Jimmy (Kristin is too).

    • bluecenterlight

      I do find it interesting that I found this place as a refuge from a flag waving, violent, politicalized Christianity. The same people who caused me to walk away from the church, throw my hands up and say “God you deal with it” ( not healthy, I know) But I have re engaged largely because of this movement. It gave me hope that I wasn’t alone. Having said that, I kinda feel alone. This should be an encouraging place for those who have rejected the turn the church has taken over the last few decades. A place for re invention and clarification, refocusing on how we can be Jesus to a broken world. Instead these message boards are a magnet for the people I was trying to get away from, and it’s just constant petty bickering that sucks me in and makes me my worse self and not my better. That sucks. I would love for this to be a more positive place, I definitely feel convicted to be the change I want, but it is discouraging.

      • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

        Yes. Yes. Yes. Thank you for the encouraging words…you are not alone. I can promise you that we will be working hard to provide the kind of place you describe.

      • David Reynolds

        I’m with you my brothers. Hugs.

      • Valarie

        You are so not alone. *hugs*

  • Elexa Dawson

    I just want to say thank you for writing this. I am one of those people who has a hard time deciding how my faith should influence my politics, but remain separate from them. I appreciate your voice.

    The hard lines that the bible-worshippers have drawn around morality are vapor. Pharisees of every generation disagree with the one before it. Postmodernism is a change, but modernism was a change. If we do not think that we are framing and answering the homosexuality question vastly differently than a first or second century Christian would, we are ignorant.

    I hope that Kristen is proud to be called a post-modernist, because that’s the time and motion we find ourselves in now. This means to me that she is engaging in the present moment, and not trying to resurrect some imaginary past point in history where things were supposedly more moral or respectable than they are now.

    Is the fear that people will cease to procreate? I highly doubt it.

    Is the fear that patriarchy is dying? I think so.

    • Nathan Duffy

      LOL @ “Pharisees” of every generation disagree with the one before it. There’s actually an unbroken 2000 year tradition of moral teaching, rooted in Scripture and the apostolic Faith, on what marriage is and what homosexuality is, and how these issues are to be addressed in the public sphere and that tradition *it’s absolutely unequivocal.*

      • Elexa Dawson

        I haven’t yet read any first century commentary on same-sex relationships. Could you point me in the right direction?

        • Digger

          Have you ever bothered TRYING to find first century commentary of same-sex relationships? Do you understand why there wouldn’t be much “commentary” on “same-sex relationships” in the FIRST CENTURY? Would you change your mind about homosexuality if you were to be presented with a link to first century commentay on same-sex relationships? (Saying, “what, only one document?” is a poor cop out.)

          • Elexa Dawson

            I have looked, but not found much so I was asking Nathan who I thought might have some information.

            I understand why there wouldn’t be much commentary, since our species seems to only recently have begun going through this biological shift, and that’s also why I don’t personally equate the sins of any of the “clobber verses” with present-day same-sex relationships.

            The only church history I’ve been exposed to on the subject leads me to think that some same-sex relationships were affirmed until fairly recent history. I would certainly read whatever I found. I can’t say how it would affect my views… but I don’t believe that a mind stretched beyond it’s former boundaries can ever shrink back to it’s original state… or however that quote goes :)

            My heart is for all people, of all colors and backgrounds and orientations and identifications, and for releasing them from the false identities that have been assigned to them.

          • Frank

            The false identity of gay is one of the most damaging of all.

        • Nathan Duffy

          Who said there was anything on “same-sex relationships” and why would there need to be in order for what I said to be true? There wouldn’t need tobe, of course. So yep, what I said.. still true. What you said.. still completely wrong.

          • Elexa Dawson

            I thought that’s what we were talking about, but okay. I’m not interested in you being wrong! We are ALL ONE! Love and peace.

  • Jael James

    Good article. There’s also an ebook on Amazon called Marriage Without a License that brilliantly details the differences between the biblical definition of marriage and civil marriage. It concludes that the two types of marriage are not the same thing. After reading this it is hard to argue against same sex marriage since civil marriage in a lot of ways actually opposes the biblical definition of marriage whether it is between straight or gay people. I suggest that everyone struggling to understand the differences read this book. It is a short read for less than three bucks and can be downloaded to your computer even if you don’t have a Kindle.

    Sometimes it helps to get out of our opinions about a matter and deal strictly with facts.

  • jonathan starkey

    A man’s own follishness ruins his life, yet his heart rages against the Lord. #Prov19

  • Scoobycheese

    Quick questions:

    You say that we cannot impose our beliefs on anyone because they have rights, according to our government. Well, according to our government (and its founding documents) where do we derive these rights?
    All laws impose morality. From where do we get our morality, governmentally speaking?
    I get that you can’t use scripture (say, in court) to support or oppose the laws of our country, but you do not see any other logically driven arguments against same sex marriage?

    • http://www.rageagainsttheminivan.com/ Kristen Howerton

      Laws are affirmed within a society by mutual agreement, not by scripture.

      • Scoobycheese

        You did not really answer any of my questions. I agree with your statement (except you should have said “our society” instead of “a society”). I said in my post that we cannot support or oppose laws in our country with scripture (not from a legal standpoint, anyway).

        I did not ask how we got our laws. I asked how we got our morality on which our laws are based. And I asked where (according to our own documents) we derived our rights. Oh, and I asked if you were able to see any LOGICAL (not religious) arguments against same sex marriage.

        I am not trying to argue anything here. I am merely trying to figure out where you are coming from. Because, personally, I do not think my Christian beliefs are illogical. A lot of our laws and God’s laws mirror each other (murder, stealing, lying, etc.). That is because they make sense for society at large. We will never pass laws that make people worship Jesus, nor should we. But we pass plenty of laws that mirror His teachings because they are good and they are right and even society can see it. I am wondering why you do not think this fits into that category.

      • Rafael

        Laws are from YHWH(The Father and The Son and The Holy Spirit) actually, if Laws were based on human opinion, then if a human says that rape is right, it would be, however as Morals are Objective, and rape can never be right no matter any opinion, it has an Objective Law Giver, this cannot be humanity as humans are subjective.

        YHWH(The Father and The Son and The Holy Spirit) imposes The Law of “Treat others the way you want to be treated”(Matthew 7:12), which isn’t bad, we should want this law imposed on us, it’s wonderful.

  • glittertits

    This was the worst post on Red Letter Christians ever.

    Blessings!

    • Frank

      Its getting so hard to make that determination. I mean what stinks worse, rotten eggs or feces?At some point you have to see the whole thing as rotten. Tragic as some will come here expecting the Red Letters and all they will get is secular humanist musings.

      • Digger

        Oh, Frank, they stopped following the Red Letters long ago. Many of the red letters paint Jesus as a bigot, or too exclusive.

        • Frank

          Well I would say that they simply pick and choose while they accuse other of picking and choosing and fail to see the irony. They have become exactly what they set out to fight against.

      • Drew

        Personally, I think there are some great authors and articles here, which is why I still visit. When it does become truly rotten I will leave again.

        I wondered what happened to Jenny Rae Armstrong.

        • Frank

          Well yes some are actually inspired by the RL but its so hard to find them among the chaff.

        • 22044

          Or Kent Annan. I even replied to an older post of his to ask if he would write more posts on RLC.

    • Digger

      Maybe one of the silliest, but I wouldn’t call it the worst. Yes, using government law to justify having a stance that is contraty to the Bible is a sure sign of a false teacher, but really, I don’t think Kristin is going to sway too many people away from the true Gospel with this over-reaching article.

    • 22044

      I wonder if you’re familiar with the Simpsons. If so, you might get it if I tell you I read your post in the Comic Book Store Guy’s voice.

  • David Reynolds

    A really nicely written piece Kristen, thank you for penning it and posting it. To be honest, the element of true religious freedom is not an issue that I had given much thought to prior to this article. I had been more inclined to consider only the “What does it mean to be like Christ in this?” Aspect. Thanks for giving me something else to ponder.

    Also, fair play to you for engaging in the comments for a time. The comment section can be like a giant time toilet with no end in site. Before you know it, you’ve lost a month of your life and you’ve become a lonely bearded, overweight, middle aged man sitting in a dark room over your computer, obsessing over some complete stranger’s comments……and that’s even if you started off as a woman!
    Happened to me.

    • Drew

      It’s actually not a good piece at all. To argue that the only way to live in a society is to have an atheist government is absurd and dangerous.

      • David Reynolds

        :) Drew, I’ve missed you! The last time we spoke you told me that you were never coming back to this site again and that God had told you not to, that was four months ago.
        Did God change His mind again?
        Just the same old hateful, negative crap that you’ve always spewed…in the name of Jesus…..I suspect that’s going to get awkward one day.
        How’s the beard coming along?

        • Drew

          As I mentioned in a previous comment on this thread, which I’m sure you did not read in your haste to flame me, was the fact that I had left, came back to read some great authors, and unfortunately have found too many poor authors still being posted.

          I never said I would never come back, I never said that “God told me” not to come back; you are slandering me on command of Satan. What I did say is that I had better stuff to do then fill up on spiritual junk food.

          I’ll be happy to answer for myself when that day comes. As for yourself, at a minimum you’ll have some slanders to explain.

          • David Reynolds

            LOL :). And the beard?

          • Drew

            Sorry, but I’m not finding a lot of humor in this situation. Rome is burning, the court jester is talking about beards.

          • David Reynolds

            Some “Romes” should burn, I think yours in one of them. Have another bag of Doritos. :)

          • Drew

            “When
            I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I
            reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.” 1 Corinthians 13:11

            Time to grow up and become a real man, David.

          • David Reynolds

            Thanks Drew, compelling reply and I shall take it on board. Try and get some sunlight today.

          • bluecenterlight

            Yeah, you really stop being commanded by Satan ;) I’m pretty sure God is against that.

      • bluecenterlight

        How about a respectful government?

        • Drew

          Again, Blue, that is so vague as to mean nothing more than your personal opinion of what respect is.

          • bluecenterlight

            Christians fled to this country because of persecution, not from pagans but from other Christians in power. I think the dream our forefathers had was a place that respected all beliefs and allowed an environment that was free from having any one particular belief to be forced on another. Government protects religious freedom by staying out of the religion business. I don’t think government should be atheist, that is simply another religion, I believe it should be agnostic.

          • Drew

            Blue,

            Every piece of legislation or taxation is a belief. Now a portion of my taxes will go towards promoting, celebrating, encouraging, endorsing, and giving incentives towards same sex marriage.

            I would guess you support the right of the government to trample the rights of those that believe in the faith healing of children. That is government taking away religious freedom by getting into the religion business. I think that is appropriate as well.

          • bluecenterlight

            I suppose when Jesus said to pay your taxes He knew that the same tax money would help facilitate His crucifixion. My tax money pays for wars I don’t agree with, drone strikes that make me cringe, and that stupid stop sign down the street. I think the reason Jesus avoided petty political squabbles was not because they weren’t important, to the Jews paying taxes to their oppressors it was an incredibly important issue. But Jesus knew that 2000 years later no one would remember the politics of the Roman empire, the only reason we do is because of Him. 2000 years from now no one will remember the politics of the United States of America, it will be a footnote in history that only eggheads in universities will study if the world lasts that long. What will matter is what did I do for the kingdom. If my political beliefs become a hindrance to others coming to a saving knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ then I must shed them. I don’t think that Jesus would have us apolitical, I just think that He would have us keep our political view in context of the larger picture. Which I think makes them go from earth shattering to kinda silly, kinda like Roman taxation is to us.

          • Drew

            Unlike Roman taxation, though, we can vote.

          • bluecenterlight

            I suppose if the Jews could vote Jesus would have been all about politics? Put on a lapel pin and run for senate and put aside the whole Crucifixion thing? The first century Christians had no say politically, and yet they shook the world. They didn’t ask for permission, or acceptance, they just loved the world one life at a time, one person at a time until they became an unstoppable force that could not be ignored. In fact it was political acceptance that ran the church off of the rails. It was their immersion in politics that caused them to slay those who would not convert, sell indulgences, etc. It is not only important, it is essential to never allow corrupt politicians to use the name of Jesus as a stepping stone to power.

          • bluecenterlight

            As for the faith healing of children I think that comes down to do I believe it’s OK for parents to kill their children. There is example after example of children dying when simple medical intervention would have healed them. I believe God heals, I also believe that it doesn’t negate your faith to go to the doctor. I believe God can transport me from one place to another miraculously, I don’t think it negates my faith to hop in the car. I think parents who don’t take their kids to the doctor have a simplistic twisted faith. Having said that we are allowed to have simplistic and twisted faith and it makes me incredibly uncomfortable for the government to speak to matters of faith, again I do not think it is their job. But is it the governments duty to intervene when a parent is abusive…yes I think so. Should parents get a pass if their abuse is faith based? That is an uncomfortable, difficult topic that I don’t have a clear stance on, it makes my libertarian side twitch in a short circuited sort of manner, but thanks for bringing it up.

    • bluecenterlight

      lol

    • Valarie

      Girl, you crazy. (JUST KIDDING)

      Seriously, that was hilarious.

      <3

  • closedhands

    I’ll come out and say that I think that sexual behavior outside of the marriage between a husband and wife is sinful. I recognize that many who read (and write) for this website will not agree, and I’m not even here to debate that issue. However, I completely agree with what is stated here. It’s important to differentiate between supporting gay marriage and supporting an environment where people have freedoms to do what they want to do. Blocking two men or two women from marrying does not prevent them from sinning, will not lead to them obtaining salvific knowledge of Christ’s work on the Cross, and honestly bears no fruit of the spirit for them to see. Respect the people, don’t hide that you think it is a sin, share the gospel, let them make their own decisions. Forcing people to obey a specific moral code has saved a grand total of ZERO people.

    • Drew

      If you and Kristen are libertarians, then I see your point of view. If not, you are both hypocrites. After all, most social programs endorsed by the government also fit into the criteria you have described.

    • Rafael

      Premarital sex is never condemned in The Bible

      • WFU86

        Check out Hebrews 13:4

  • ey

    Thank you Kristen for this article and thank you for standing up for justice and equality. It is very unfortunate that RLC is taken over by conservatives like Frank and Jonathan. They ‘scream’ the loudest each time there is an article supporting gay marriage and gay relationship.

    I don’t know what they think they can accomplish other than showing the world why people are against christianity. I doubt they really take Jesus words of feeding the poor and helping the oppressed very seriously, because if they do they wouldn’t have all these time sitting in front of a screen dehumanizing people who are gay.

    I suggest other readers do not try to engage them, you’d rather spend your time doing what Jesus does like taking care of the sick and poor in your community.

  • Aaron

    Judging by the comments from the trolls on this website, they aren’t even bothering to read the articles before rushing to the comment section. Those calling this postmodern may not actually know what PoMo is (instead defining it as whatever they disagree with). smh

    • Drew

      In your haste to comment about the comments, you forgot to define postmodernism and forgot to mention a single example of where someone saying “postmodernism” used it incorrectly. In other words, I’d suggest stop trolling the trollers.

      • David Reynolds

        Nice that you admit that you guys are “trollers”. Admission is the first step to healing, well done. :)

  • BlackBirdie

    “I’ve heard a whole lot of nonsense about “slippery slopes” on Facebook this week, but this tendency to impose our religious beliefs on others is the most dangerous one I’m witnessing.” yes! there’s more than 1 way the “slippery slope” can go! thanks.

  • Alexis Burdick

    Kristen, I agree with what you are saying here, but I also can see why – more conservative – Christians see the issue of marriage equality. You don’t feel it your job to impose your beliefs on others. I’m sure you would agree that God is the judge, not you. I think where many of us Christians have become scary to unbelievers or different believers is that we take “being saved” to be our God calling. We push people and scare them into our way of thinking rather than loving them unconditionally. Some read Matthew 25 as proof that Jesus believed in a Heaven and a Hell, but that misses the point. Jesus was telling is that the “righteous” see Jesus in everyone and treat everyone with that same love. No laws, no old rules. New rules here. Feed the hungry as is the hungry were Jesus. Clothe the poor as if the poor were Jesus. Love your neighbor – whom ever they are – as if they were Jesus.

    Closing thought: Can you imagine the growth of the church if we loved as much as we discriminate? What would our crime ridden inner cities look like if we took care of everyone as if they were God among us? Can you imagine a world where we, Christians, actually spent our weeks loving and caring for others in the way Christ taught us?

  • bluecenterlight

    C.S. Lewis in “Mere Christianity” made the point (about divorce) that we as Christians hold ourselves to a standard that we do not live up to. It is a high standard. It is also voluntary. For us to force others to live according to our standard, a standard that we frequently fall short of, is wrong. He argued that there should be two marriages, a state and a church sanctioned marriage. What the church should do about homosexual marriage is a debate we need to have. But for those living in a free country, who do not claim faith in Christ, to be held to a standard in which they do not believe I think is wrong. I don’t think it is anti Christian to respect the beliefs of others, I think it is the essence of Christianity. Let us debate whether or not homosexuals should get married, but let us debate it with them, and lets do it over coffee as friends, and not the ballet box.

  • Neil

    Biblical churches have never married everyone since some don’t meet the Biblical or the church’s requirements for marriage, for instance where a believer wants to marry an unbeliever, the couple doesn’t attend pre-marital counseling, one or both are divorced (where the divorce isn’t caused by adultery, etc.).I don’t hear much of an objection to civil unions which essentially is the same thing as marriage under the Law. They can be conducted by the Government or a liberal religious organization. Why force a church to act against their teachings? There are lawsuits pending against churches in states where gay marriage is legal because a pastor wouldn’t marry a gay couple.

  • Tom P

    I haven’t had the chance to read through all 250 posts in reply to this so my points may already have been raised but I have some serious questions.

    Firstly, as I have mentioned on other threads, I have friends and family members involved in poly relationships. As a Christain i believe in monogamy. I presume though from this article that the author would say that my views of marriage should not be imposed on society and that people in poly relationships should be able to get married to more than one person at a time? Also members of faiths that allow polygamous marriage ought to be able to do so because their freedom of religions ought to be respected. Am I understanding you correctly?

    Secondly, from my understanding of the Bible I believe that workers ought to be treated well and be paid a decent wage. I am prepared to support legislation and campaign for this, e.g a decent wage for migrant workers, a raise in the minimum wage, work place rights and so on. However, if I understand your line of reasoning correctly, this is wrong of me. My Christian beleifs on the way to treat workers should not be imposed on any body else through legislation. Is that correct? I should treat the people I employ well but should not pass judgement on non-Christian employers who choose to treat their employees poorly. I should not call for legislation to change the situation because they have the right to follow their beliefs about employees just as I have my right to follow mine.

    • Drew

      In Kristen’s haste to set up a criteria that would allow gay marriage, she neglected to realize that if the criteria was applied to other instances that it would be disastrous, as you point out and as myself and others have pointed out in the comment thread. Excellent comment.

  • TheodoreSeeber

    SCOTUS to Christianity- you are not welcome in the United States at all.

    • Frank

      Gods truth will win out in the end.

      • TheodoreSeeber

        Not until Mexico has a civil war and then invades. They’re the only hope now.

  • JS Boegl

    Couldn’t disagree with your premise more Kristen. Jesus perpetually met people where they were precisely because He Himself was the great confrontation! He elucidated the misbeliefs in His culture in nearly every chapter in the gospels. if He had waited for people to ascent to His sense of authority He’d of stayed in a carpenter’s shop in Nazareth. No less for us on a day like today when our president and SCOTUS are applauding a radical redefinition of God’s concept: Marriage. Jesus’ Kingdom in our godless culture requires all the more that we become much much more obviously blatant in our confrontation with that which destroys man and community. One needn’t be unloving in order to be that.

  • Tony Robertson

    Well, I think the sign is quite silly. But when posting the symbol you are not just saying equal rights but that you agree with homosexual marriage. I believe atheist have a right to believe what they want but I do not post any of their symbols, I believe Jehovah witnesses as well have the right but I do not post their symbols or satanist either but I believe they ought to have equal rights. I think there are better ways to support equal rights without supporting the act itself. Just my humble opinion .

  • Paul Hansen

    I don’t need (or want) to invoke scripture to call attention to a tacit absurdity in how the LGBT rhetoric began (cleverly) to frame the issue by calling it “marriage equality.” After all, who can dare question or spurn the American fundamental principle of “equality”? But the fallacy in that rhetoric is that it tacitly presupposes that ‘all marital unions are equal’ (in relevant respects)—i.e., that we are comparing apples with apples. The phrase “marriage equality” bypasses the prior question about gender-pair differences, “ARE they in fact equal?” Answers to such questions are not decided on the basis of a commentator’s anger or grace, but on the pros and cons of such unions.

  • Kassie Hill

    You believe that Christians are trying to ‘force’ their beliefs upon others, but at the same time, they are not allowed to have those beliefs without being ridiculed. So, both parties are in defense mode, leaving no room for communication, understanding, and most important, love. Both sides are fighting for their beliefs, therefore ‘forcing’ them upon each other. It’s not just Christians.

  • Andy

    Christians should never evangelize. We dont ever want to share our faith with people ever. Lets keep Jesus to ourselves.

  • tim

    So Kristen, how are you going to feel whe fellow believers lose their jobs, or get put in prison becasuse they do not sign a statement saying they suppport/celebrate homosexual marriage. It blows my mind to see so many people on this blog that do not have the discernment to understand the difference between showing the love of Christ and taking a stand for marriage as God created it. They act like it’s an either/or.

    • DrewTwoFish

      What?! Yes, SO many Christians in the US have lost their jobs and been jailed for their beliefs. Now the gays that you have marginalized and persecuted for decades are pushing back and you’re playing the victim? Hilarious.

      I imagine that your version of “showing the love of Christ” is adhering to biblical truths as you perceive them. Forget empathy, compassion, kindness, patience.

  • Katurah Day

    Oh boy. She basically just said people arguing against gay marriage because of religion, no matter what religion, are incorrect because we can’t force someone to believe what we believe. That has nothing to do with the way this country needs to be run!! God put us here to walk in his footsteps and when you legalize gay marriage, that’s endangering the world I, unfortunately, have to live in! Living how we are supposed to, without homosexuality, and matters of politics are two different things so, I agree with her statement to leave religion out of politics. However, this means run politics as they should be run, on a basis of how we should live and how we were programmed (obviously not to have sex with the same gender), so to speak. Besides, the government doesn’t care for the people of this nation, why should these pagan homosexuals get any special attention?!?!?!?

    • Valarie

      I am a born again, blood bought Christian. You calling me a pagan is more offensive than I can possibly put into words.

  • Katurah Day

    Plus how can they force me to accept gay marriage?!?! Isn’t that the same as them trying to claim I’m forcing others to believe my religion? Well, they’re trying to force me to believe, and live in a world full of, their lack of religion and moral standards.

  • Katurah Day

    She’s a psychology professor… No wonder she’s a nut case!

  • jamaica leesa

    What is wrong with RLC? Oh. My. Gosh. It’s not that Christians (Believers in Christ who follow Christ *and* believe Scripture) think that our religion should rule. It is that we will vote according to our faith. Our view of political issues will be shaped by our faith. Clearly your political stances are not shaped by your belief in Jesus Christ.

    I am more and more alarmed by RLC passing itself off as a “Christian” publication — and more and more shocked that Dr. Campolo thinks these articles from so-called “Believers” is actually helpingto strengthen Christianity.

    Dr. Campolo, what you have done is put forward — through these writeres/their perspectives/their articles/their insistence that they are followers of Chris — you have opened up a path for the infiltration of Christ’s teachings and the Triune God’s Words in Scripture to be distorted by false prophets and teachers. This is the biggest threat to the church. These liberal Left non-Believers who are claiming to be the real Christians. You want to destroy the church from within using Christ’s Name to do it. Get thee behind me, Satan!

  • Zach R

    Things I definitely DO want to do: “impose my religious beliefs on others, whether or not they share my faith.” When Jesus claims that he is the way, the truth and the life and that no one will come to the Father except through him (John 14:6), what is he saying other than that He is the only solution. The only solution to our brokenness, our sin, our struggles, our failings is to rely in faith on Christ who was made sin so that we might be righteous for God (2 Cor. 5:21). Apart from Christ, we stand condemned before God, but in Him, we stand before the Father as his sons and daughters.

    Christianity is by its very nature inclusive in the sense that the Gospel is offered to all people, regardless of the nature of their particular sinful behavior. Part of the Christian life, though, after we accept the Gospel, is that we then strive to live a holy and blameless life, not because we have to to earn God’s favor, but because we want to due to the incredible mercy shown to us. It is clear that homosexuality is not God’s will for human sexual relationships, just as it is equally not God’s will that deceit or selfishness be a part of human relationships. As Christians, we believe that these things hurt our relationships and will not give us fulfillment or satisfaction. We believe that these things are destructive for ALL people, regardless of what they themselves think or believe.

    So, for that reason, the biblical view of marriage is actually VERY relevant in determining how think about homosexuality as a cultural/legal right. Once homosexuality is enshrined in the laws and norms of our society, it becomes that much easier and requires that much less thought or reflection for people to engage in a lifestyle that is not pleasing to God and that is destructive of the sexuality that God gave to us for a specific purpose within a specific context. If this is what we want as Christians for our society and our nation, that’s fine. But we must not kid ourselves and confuse tolerance with the love for our neighbors that Jesus calls us to.

    • Valarie

      “Things I definitely DO want to do: “impose my religious beliefs on others, whether or not they share my faith”

      Ok. The Bible, in it’s most literal sense, calls for the death of people who are homosexual.

      I’m ready.

      Are you?

      Or do you lack the courage of your convictions?

      • Zach R

        The Bible, in its most literal sense, absolutely does not call for the death of people who are homosexual. The Old Testament levitical laws call for the death of those who engage in homosexual activity, just as it calls for the death of all sorts of people who commit certain sins.

        Those laws existed solely for the people of Israel as they lived in relationship with God as His people. They no longer hold sway on our lives because of the sacrifice of Christ on the cross, which grants us direct access to the Father through the Son as mediator.

        The New Testament witness, however, remains quite clear that homosexual activity is outside the purview of God’s design for human sexual interaction. This does not mean that homosexuals ought to be stoned, it simply means that we as Christians know that active homosexuals are living in open rebellion against God, just as are ALL people who have not believed the gospel and called on Christ in faith as their savior.

        My only point is that because we know that homosexuality constitutes rebellion against God, and because we (probably) don’t want to live in the midst of a culture that revels and glories in actions that are displeasing to God, then we as a community of believers should do what we can to speak against such tendencies.

        I don’t want to kill anyone, nor does a firm biblical defense of what marriage and sexuality are require anyone to desire people to be killed.

  • wjgreen314

    John Adams, founder and 2nd President of the United States of America, spoke on behalf of our founders when he admonished U.S.:

    “We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge or gallantry would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other.” — John Adams

    • http://www.jimmyspencerjr.com/ Jimmy Spencer Jr

      Said the President of a slave owning nation. (To Adams credit, he was the ONLY man of the first 5 Presidents who did not own slaves) There are many ‘moral’ issues that we sweep under the rug. We tend to ignore those from whom we benefit from (like slavery, rampant divorce among ‘religious people’ civil rights, marriage equality, and religious & racial privilege to name a few)

  • Dave

    I get the whole separation of church and state.. Yadda …yadda. but once these things become laws it squeezes the rights of Christians., Here are 2 examples to ponder.

    1. Catholic organization Knights Of Columbus, was sued and lost $60,000 for refusing to rent their hall to lesbian couple to perform a marriage.

    2. Catholic school teacher who signed work contract stating she would follow the christian teachings of the church later comes out sharing she is openly gay and she has artificial insemination which is a violation of her contract and she was fired, later she sues and is awarded $125,000.

    There are many more examples of the no tolerance for christian values.

    How long will it be before your Pastor or reverend is sued or jailed for refusing to officiate a gay marriage?

    When Christian don’t give in to the liberal agenda we are called ” Bigots, Intolerant”
    yet when we preach our position of morals we are told not to force our morals.

  • Dave

    Problem is it doesn’t stop here. Here in Pennsylvania our schools are now adopting the view, that if an individual believes he is the opposite sex one day then that is fine and that individual can now use which ever restroom they desire. Our culture is adopting homosexuality as such a norm as well as any other forms of sex outside of marriage between a man and a women that it is perverting all forms of life. How as Christians do we not say something without coming across as non tolerant? We can’t. If you preach what is right then the world will hate you and I am fine with that.

  • rb

    This is a well written non-sensible article. However, I believe it was written in love, so props for that. Her logic is severely flawed.

  • Ingrid

    We aren’t talking about just government, anymore. Christians get bashed for their PERSONAL beliefs on gay marriage now. But as far as the government issue goes, if a citizen feels their government’s laws are morally corrupt, they will not be support of them. Christianity teaches that there is only one morally correct definition of marriage, and that marriage is a special relationship ordained by God. It is only natural that we would not be in agreement with the government passing the marriage equality bill because we feel it is immoral. That being said, many Christians aren’t as invested in the issue on the political level. The true problem is that the church is now divided on the issue. And the division isn’t due to revelation, but to social-acceptance issues.

    I am Christian. Do not believe in gay-marriage, wouldn’t go to a church that did, but agree w/ the LIbertarian view on marriage. It’s not my business who you marry, and it shouldn’t be the government’s either.

  • Stan

    The reason many Christians oppose the legal recognition of Gay Marriage is not because we want to force our religious beliefs on others. It is because having homosexual unions on morally equal ground as marriage is damaging to society. The future generation will grow up in a society that tells them that homosexual unions are ok, and they will be tempted to go astray from the Lord even further.

    Also, the recognition of Gay Marriage is not fair to the child who grows up in a family without a mother or without a father. Fathers are not optional in a family, and neither are mothers. To recognize homosexual unions as marriages would give gay couples the same priority in adoption lines. That means more fatherless or motherless homes, and more disadvantaged children. Studies show that children growing up without a mother or a father figure on average end up less educated, less wealthy, and more prone to divorce. The disintegration of marriage, via divorce and gay marriage laws, thus reduce social mobility and inflict unfair trauma to the future generation and society at large.

    Finally, it is not fair to society that tax breaks that were originally meant to help widows are given to same sex couples who do not need it.

    • Abide

      I agree with you about children. I have no interest in condemning gay people or standing in the way of their efforts to make the most of their lives – but anatomy makes it clear that the design is for all of us to have a mother and a father. The Bible makes it clear that a mother and father who remain married are the building block for society. We don’t have to hold that belief in a way that is over and against a group of people who are outside of those dynamics, but I agree with you that children is where a line has to be drawn.

      It is normal and human for people of either orientation to want kids, but it is selfishness I hear when a gay person expresses the desire to be partnered and raise kids. It’s better than foster care or an orphanage (if there even are any these days), but the compromise will leave us worse off when society adjusts and moves on. It’s also just as selfish for a straight woman who wants a child, but hasn’t found a husband, to go ahead with artificial insemination. We don’t need to single out gay people.

  • Kevin Swenson

    I believe many people miss a obvious problem with “marriage equally” and it’s- that marriage is not a right. Please show me in the Bill of Rights where marriage is. No (decent) person is saying that you simply can’t be with someone , only that the Government shouldn’t tell the Church what they should accept and what ceremonies they preform. I believe that the Government should stay out of marriage altogether and in civil unions, but not in forcing people to go against their believes, and that counts for corporations as well. Also the idea that we should take the lessons that Bible teaches us and not use them in governing is a major mistake, the US was founded on Judeo-Christian principles.

  • wjgreen314

    So, where is THAT Biblical definition of marriage? Why did you omit it? Jesus believe it, obeyed it and taught it to His contemporaries and us. Please, let me include it again here for y’all:

    “That is why a MAN (“Ish”) leaves his father and mother and is united to his WIFE (a WOMAN: “Ishah)), and they become one flesh.” Gen 2:24 NIV. As theology and biology prove two men or two women can NOT become “one flesh.”

    How good and continued from the Old Covenant into the New Covenant by Jesus was this definition?
    Matthew 19:5
    Mark 10:7
    Ephesians 5:31

    See also 1 Corinthians 7:1-7

  • TY BLOOM

    I can see where you are coming from. I understand the whole imposing our values on others thing. I guess I can share the reason that I might speak up about the issue. When I received Christ, my life changed. Amazing things happened in my life. I don’t deserve this thing called salvation. No one does. I am just as sinful as the next guy is not worse. It is sin that separates us from God. Isaiah 59:2 says, “But your iniquities have separated you from God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.” So that stinks. Then we learn in 1 Timothy 2:5 that there is only one God and one mediator who can reconcile God and humanity – the man Jesus Christ. So how awesome is that? It is so awesome that I want everyone that I know to experience it! God’s grace is so amazing it is difficult to even comprehend. (see Romans 5:8) How can anyone possibly withhold that information from someone they care about? The way we go about sharing this information is extremely important. It is sad to see people “impose their beliefs” in negative way, rooted in hate. I think THAT is the real issue here. Jude 1:23 says, “Save others by snatching them out of the fire; to other show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by flesh.” We are not to hate the sinner, just the sin. The act of Jesus dying on the cross was rooted in love and we too should speak out against sin in love for the people around us.

  • Jimothy Timberline

    Rights are given by God not Government. Marriage is ordained and conceived by God. One man one woman. Man cannot change that.

    Are you playing God by redefining his institution?

    Not one society in the history of the world, not one great moral thinker in the history of the world has proposed redefining the very definition of marriage. It is and always will be one man one woman.

    By proposing the idea of redefining marriage people are stating they are the moral equivalent to God and morally superior to almost every human who has ever lived including Jesus.

    • DrewTwoFish

      Really? I’m gay. I’m lonely…lonely in a way that you can’t understand. What have you got for me, Christian? Your profile pic suggests that you are young…and happily married. How nice for you that the world you live in works for you and that you have it all figured out. Neat and tidy.

      • Brandon Miller

        I don’t know about him, but maybe I can help. Even after becoming a Christian at a young age, I still rely on God’s strength to overcome O.C.D., depression, and suicidal thoughts on a daily basis. I also dropped out of college and had some intense marital problems when I first got hitched. So, as a Christian, I don’t have “this life all figured out.” However, when God’s presence strengthens me in my spirit… it is beyond any earthy joy…. rather, it is a glimpse of Heaven. I don’t know why I must battle these other things which are like a “thorn in the flesh” (2 Cor 12:7), but I can honestly say at the end of the day in the midst of trials, “the Lord is good and His loves endures forever! (Psalms 100, 136, 118) and “taste and see that the Lord is good.” (Psalm 34).

        I don’t know how rough your life feels… but Jesus was lonely, Jesus was despised, Jesus was betrayed, Jesus was even crucified…. and the cross was a beautiful bloody mess… His life was not suburbia neat and tidy. So, I would encourage you to lean on Our Great High Priest who was tempted in ever way (Hebrew 4:15) and is intimately acquainted with suffering and our pain (Isaiah 53). He loves you. I pray this helps. God Bless -

        • DrewTwoFish

          Hi Brandon,

          Thanks for your message.

          I’m no longer a Christian so I’m looking for purpose and connection elsewhere these days. Really, my response was a reaction to glib “truisms” so often trotted out by those who don’t understand life on the fringes or in the grey areas. It’s easy to toss out black and white pronouncements about how things are or should be. It’s another thing to live that out when reality smacks one in the face. Obviously, you have some understanding of that. We’re coming at life very differently but I do appreciate your kindness and wish you the very best in your journey.

  • TheaterG33k

    The message here seems to be that if your politics conflict with the Bible you a) ignore the parts of the Bible you don’t like b) change the meaning of the Bible to fit your politics. The faith in your politics has replaced the faith in your God.

  • Liberal Christians are a myth

    II Timothy 4:2-5 2 Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. 3 For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. 5 But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.

    This site is just Liberal fake So-called Christians twisting the Bible to justify their sin. There is no REAL CHRISTIAN teaching here.

  • Stan

    Why Does God Allow Natural Disasters; Earthquakes, Hurricanes, And Tsunamis?
    Answer: Why does God allow earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunamis, typhoons, cyclones, mudslides, wildfires, and other natural disasters? Tragedies cause many people to question God’s goodness. It is distressing that natural disasters are often termed “acts of God” while no “credit” is given to God for years, decades, or even centuries of peaceful weather. God created the whole universe and the laws of nature (Genesis 1:1). Most natural disasters are a result of these laws at work. Hurricanes, typhoons, and tornadoes are the results of divergent weather patterns colliding. Earthquakes are the result of the earth’s plate structure shifting. A tsunami is caused by an underwater earthquake.

    The Bible proclaims that Jesus Christ holds all of nature together (Colossians 1:16-17). Could God prevent natural disasters? Absolutely! Does God sometimes influence the weather? Yes, as we see in Deuteronomy 11:17 and James 5:17. Numbers 16:30-34 shows us that God sometimes causes natural disasters as a judgment against sin. The book of Revelation describes many events which could definitely be described as natural disasters (Revelation chapters 6, 8, and 16). Is every natural disaster a punishment from God? Absolutely not.

    In much the same way that God allows evil people to commit evil acts, God allows the earth to reflect the consequences sin has had on creation. Romans 8:19-21 tells us, “The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.” The fall of humanity into sin had effects on everything, including the world we inhabit. Everything in creation is subject to “frustration” and “decay.” Sin is the ultimate cause of natural disasters just as it is the cause of death, disease, and suffering.

  • Michael E McDougall

    The Bible is very clear on homosexuality and marriage, whether we choose to agree with it or not. People are free to live any way they like, but sin is sin and God does not stutter when he defines it in his word! Homosexuality is in the list; not any better or worse than any other sin, but it’s there. No “sin” is going to send anyone to Hell; we are all Hell-bound because we are sinners. Grace is the only thing that saves us.period. God’s word calls us to live according the the spirit, not the flesh. The Spirit does not conflict with God’s word so it seems confusing that someone is convinced that God approves of their sinful sexual behavior because they “feel” led by the Spirit, even though the Bible has already spoken clearly on the issue. I don’t have to wonder what God would think of me cheating on my wife; scripture makes it clear and Jesus “fine tuned” the parameters in the sermon on the Mount. Gay Marriage doesn’t have to be the hill that Christians die on, but how many Biblical truths are we going to compromise on before we abandon the Word altogether? In case you don’t know your history, this country was founded on Judeo-Christian principles. Even our most secular founders held to this belief system. The context of Jefferson’s “Great Wall of Separation” letter to the Danbury Baptists was not freedom FROM religion, but freedom OF religion. Since we live in a Free Republic it is not only our right, but our duty as believers to support legislation in line with our Christian principles. Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, etc. are welcome to do the same thing, but in the end it is We The People ET all are supposed to decide what the law shall be. Prop 8 was passed by the will of the people on a legal issue. If folks don’t agree, there is a legal way to deal with it, but calling people “haters” and such for standing up for their beliefs is not the way of grace. You people scream bloody murder when sinner’s rights are infringed on, as well we should, but you do not show the same grace towards those who decent from “your” interpretation of God’s word. Since I got saved, God gifted me with an extraordinary understanding of scripture, of Grace, which I never had as a non believer. I was saved at the age of 33 so I know a thing or two about sin! Understanding scripture is not earth shattering by any means; you simply read what is says in context and take God at His word! If you understand the Word and don’t try to sway it to fit your preconceptions there is no room for interpretation, only application. I am sick of the Right, Left and all points between; truth is either absolute or it isn’t truth at all and we must base our laws on truth and justice. Personally, I think the government should be out of the marriage business all together, gay, straight or otherwise! Biblical marriage is ordained in God’s law, not mans. If people want to do their own thing, they have that right, but don’t try to hijack Biblical Christianity and subvert the will of the people to justify yourself. Your behavior is nobody’s business except for you and whatever god you server so don’t drag the rest of us into it!!!

    • Abide

      “The Bible is very clear on homosexuality and marriage…” Where did any of the Bible’s authors address homosexuality in the context of a committed monogamous relationship?

      They didn’t.

      Clear? No, my friend. The Bible isn’t clear.

      • WFU86

        I’m not so sure it isn’t clear. When marriage is first taught in Genesis, a man leaves his father and mother for a (wife) woman. Jesus repeats this when he talks about marriage and divorce. I can’t think of anywhere in the Bible where marriage is mentioned without gender specific language. I’m open to discussion, so if you can think of an occasion where a gay union might be referenced or implied, feel free it cite it.

        • Abide

          The Bible is clear about marriage – not homosexuality. Two gay people living as husband and wife is not a marriage in God’s eyes, according to the Biblical revelation, but my point remains that scripture does not speak to monogamous same-sex relations – positively or negatively. It does not address the possible genetic and biological reasons for homosexuality or the continued affects of the fall 2,000 years after the New Testament was written.

          • WFU86

            There’s no easy answer, but for me any sexual activity outside the confines of Biblical marriage is what the Bible is talking about when it refers to “sexual immorality.” This is where I think many Christians are hypocritical, turning a blind eye to premarital sex, but railing against gay relationships. If two teens hook up, it’s a sin no matter what their sex, but most parents expect and accept it (as long as it’s boy-girl). I have four kids of my own and I think parents are often too afraid to take a stand. Too afraid to train up our children, as Scripture calls it.

            The more I pray about this issue the more I’m convicted that we all have plenty of unrepentant sin in our lives (and if someone thinks they don’t, I’d suggest pride as their sin).

  • LILI

    I FIND IT VERY ANTI CHRISTIAN TO SAY WE ARE TO TOLERATE HOMOSEXUALITY IN OUR COUNTRY, CITIES, AND IN OUR TVS. DID JESUS NOT TELL THE ADULTRESS WHO WAS TO BE STONED TO GO AND SIN NO MORE….WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO US AS CHRISTIANS.? TO LOOK THE OTHER WAY? TO LET OUR CHILDREN BELIEVE THAT IT IS JUST OK, NO BIGGY, EVEN IF GOD MADE DOGS TO BREED MALE AND FEMALE, WE AS HUMANS, WHO ARE TO BE THE CARETAKERS OF ALL THE EARTH, ARE ALLOWING MEN WITH MEN AND WOMEN WITH WOMEN. NOT THAT I WOULD HAVE THE RIGHT TO BREAK DOWN THEIR DOORS TO STOP THE ACT, NO GOD SEES IT, HE IS THIER JUDGE, NOT ME. BUT I DONT HAVE TO SEE IT, AGREE WITH IT, MARRY THEM OR EVEN ACKNOWLEGE THEM AS A COUPLE. I DO HAVE TO TELL THEM THEY ARE SINNERS AS WE ALL ARE, AND JESUS CHRIST IS THE ONLY WAY TO FORGIVENESS, CLEANSING OF THE SOUL, REBIRTH OF THE SPIRIT, USING THE GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT FOR THE GLORY OF GOD, TILL THE END.
    THERE IS A HELL AND SINNERS WHO ARE NOT WASHED IN THE HOLY BLOOD OF THE LAMB OF GOD, WILL BE JUDGED BY GOD. THERE IS NO OTHER TRUTH. SATAN IS THE LIAR WHO WANTS THE CHURCH WHO IS BUILT BY JESUS ON A ROCK TO BE SOFT ON SIN. BUT SORRY THERE IS STILL THOSE CHRISTIANS WHO ARE READY TO FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT.

    • Abide

      People who feel a need to scream to be heard, must be people who feel powerless and are trying to feel empowered through means that will not deliver. You can calm down, my friend. The sky is not going to fall.

  • Brandon Miller

    Personally, I find myself in middle. I will not comprise the
    Old or New Testament on this matter, but I do realize that we live in a nation
    that started off as a democratic republic. Thus, if enough people vote for gay
    marriage than I guess that I will just deal with it and continue to preach the
    gospel by living out a humble life of faith, prayer, and worship, as I
    currently do now.

    What the writer fails
    to see is twofold:

    First, many
    homosexuals and activists (though certainly not all of them) hold up ‘coming
    out’ or ‘being gay’ as a form of accomplishment deserving universal acceptance.
    Thus, some people make it an even bigger and more defining issue than many of
    their conservative opponents. I will gladly go to church or a Bible study with
    homosexuals IF they are EARNESTLY SEEKING GOD; searching for God’s presence and
    open to hearing from Him no matter the cost. You see, when people label
    homosexuality as a ‘set in stone’ issue or an unchanging part of their
    personality without being open to what God may have for them through the regeneration
    of the Holy Spirit instead, THEY become the one’s drawing a line in the sand, as
    if to say that God must conform to them. I have no doubt in my mind that a homosexual
    can be saved, but I truly believe that if Jesus is LORD of your life, than you
    will take up you cross daily (as Jesus calls ALL Christians to do in Luke 9)
    regardless of your sexual orientation or the cost. We all must give up things for God. Why
    should homosexual believers be any different? Being able to practice homosexuality while following God is a double standard favoring their lifestyle and minimizes Jesus’ request for total surrender. I know it’s hard and even unique to be attracted to the same sex, but Christ wants our whole lives. Consider this verse below:

    Luke 9:23 And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes
    to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow
    Me. 24 For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his
    life for My sake, he is the one who will save it. 25 For what is a man profited
    if he gains the whole world, and loses or forfeits himself?

    Secondly, the writer assumes that quote, “affirming”
    something is not the same as agreeing with it. I don’t understand how she can
    honestly use that phrase without compromise. I don’t have to vote in favor of
    gay marriage to be a compassionate individual who cares for the LBGT community.
    I also don’t have to vote at all if I so chose (though I do). However, she may
    agree with me that regardless of the rule of law in a nation, Christians must
    simply follow God without comprise as best they know how, not allowing a
    nation’s hot-button issues to drive a wedge in the foundation of their faith or
    relationship with God.

  • Brandon Miller

    ***ATTENTION LGBT CHRISTIANS & NONBELIEVERS: I DO NOT INTEND TO DIMINISH YOU OR JUDGE YOU. BUT MAY I CHALLENGE YOU, AS A CHRISTIAN, TO PLEASE CONSIDER THE WHOLE GOSPEL WHICH MANY ARE UNAWARE OF? … that We are each called by God to be supernaturally “TRANSFORMED” (Rom 12) into a “NEW CREATION” (2 Cor 5:17) who is “NEITHER MALE NOR FEMALE” (IN CHRIST) (Gal 3:28) and experience a NEW and MORE FULFILLING inner life!… (EVEN IF our fleshly desires have yet to change). When someone is TRULY “BORN AGAIN OR BORN OF THE SPIRIT” (as in John chapter 3) they receive not only a “NEW spirit, as well as a “NEW heart” (Ezekiel 36:26), and “THE MIND OF CHRIST” (1 Cor 2:16), but the promise of a NEW and glorified BODY when CHRIST returns (Rom 8:23) is available too! So, one’s sexual orientation SHOULD NOT DETER ANYONE from receiving Christ and “ALL HIS BENEFITS” (Psalms 103:2). Did Jesus only call heterosexuals (?) to lay down their lives FOR HIM (Matt 10 &16, “HE WHO LOSES HIS LIFE FOR MY SAKE WITH GAIN IT”)? NO. FOR JESUS TOUGHT THAT ANYONE WHO FOLLOWS HIM MUST QUOTE,”DENY THEMSELVES” by taking up a cross on a daily basis (Luke 9:23). HE SURLY DOES NOT LIMIT HIS TEACHING (or His call to grace-empowered-holiness) to heterosexuals. Therefore, unashamedly PRACTICING ANY SINFUL THING while serving Christ (even if it’s something which has always been there), is certainly a DOUBLE STANDARD, simply because one is taking more liberties than Scripture permits. “FOR THE FLESH SETS ITS DESIRE AGINST THE SPIRIT (OF GOD), AND THE SPIRIT AGAINST THE FLESH; FOR THESE ARE IN OPPOSITION TO ONE ANOTHER, SO THAT YOU MAY NOT DO THE THINGS THAT YOU PLEASE” (Gal 5:17) (such as pleasing Christ), yet… “WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE (Matt 19:26).” I am not necessarily suggesting ‘reparative therapy’ (though we all could use at least some type of therapy now and again) BUT RATHER, THE BIBLE TEACHES THAT WE ALL (ME INCLUDED) SHOULD SEEK GOD FOR HIS WILL IN OUR LIVES, not our own. For Christ said, “FATHER, NOT MY WILL BUT YOURS BE DONE”(Luke 22:42). Are you up for it? Do you think that He is big enough to lead us towards something greater than living for ourselves? I hope so. God Bless-

    *** Also, here is an honest and straight forward NEW TESTAMENT passage…

    Romans 1:24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator,who is blessed forever! Amen.

    26 For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.

    28 And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. 29 They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.” -

    • Abide

      Shouting and going into a rant may vent your anger, for a moment, but not win you many friends or build bridges.

      • http://u-church.blogspot.com/ David Shepherd

        Think of Christ overturning the moneychangers’ tables where they extorted an unfair tax on foreign worshippers. He wasn’t winning friends or building bridges with the high priests either.

        He ranted on about the desecration of God’s temple too. The Pharisees thought He was a paranoid half-heathen.

        There’s a time for outrage.

        • Abide

          Those were exceptions; I’m talking about a rule.

        • Brandon Miller

          If only I was as bold as Our Lord Jesus. I am just trying to get the Gospel out there and get people to see that one can truly care about homosexuals or anyone for that matter, without compromise.

      • Brandon Miller

        CAPS is not shouting. Just being bold and passionate.

  • Kimo

    Actually, the writer has the situation exactly backwards. The concept of marriage is not Christians getting involved in “government matters.” The government redefining marriage is the government getting into religious matters. Marriage was instituted by God, not the government. If this were simply a matter of the government creating a legal relationship equivalent to marriage, that would be one thing, and I would have no objection. And in most states, that was tried but rejected by homosexuals. The purpose of creating same-sex “marriage” is not to make homosexual unions equal, but to force everyone else to acknowledge it as marriage, when it is not.

    Right now, Christians are losing their businesses and livelihoods because they will not participate in homosexual “marriages” which go against God’s word. In my own state, we were initially told that churches had to perform them, if they did not limit marriages in their church to those only between members of their own church. Fortunately, civil rights experts convinced the legislature to broaden the religious freedom exemptions, but that is where this is headed.

  • V1_0

    The problem with this “theology” is that it seeks to be pleasing to mankind in the short term and neglects the fact that as Christians we understand that there are behaviors that have long term – eternal – effects. How can we be loving and support, or even encourage, a behavior that we have been told is a sin and will need to be answered for? This is like a parent that allows a child to eat unhealthy – but desirable – foods before dinner as a habit. The short term benefit of the child being happy with the parent comes at the cost of the long term effects of unhealthy eating. The “theology” in the article also focuses on individual “rights” but neglects to consider that we live within a community, and that there is a reason that communities/society places a high value on marriage – children. Those marriage benefits that are coveted by same-sex partners have been established for the purpose of encouraging children. This is a social contract that a same-sex marriage knowingly cannot keep – so “theft” is a the word that comes to mind. Worse still, these benefits come from tax money – therefore forcing anyone holding to Judeo-Christian (and Islamic) morality to support behaviors against that morality. (And in the US violating an actual constitutional right).

  • Anonymous

    “‘When I see you arguing the bible against that red equal sign, what I hear you saying is, “I would like to impose my religious beliefs on others, regardless of whether or not they share my faith.'” Here’s the problem. When you make the red equal sign your profile picture on Facebook, or go into the streets and advocate for marriage equality, you are imposing your beliefs on others, regardless of whether or not they share your faith. We can’t avoid making exclusive truth claims and having an opinion doesn’t make us close-minded. What makes us close-minded is how we treat people who don’t agree with us. Yes, the bible says that homosexuality is a sin. But the bible also says “love your neighbor as yourself”. The bible says that no man can be greater than another because “all have sinned and fallen short of God.” Christians are called to love all others, regardless of who they are or what they’ve done, and to encourage and preach a meaningful relationship with Jesus Christ. Because the way to relinquish sin is to find Christ.

  • shanholtzjoshua

    Is Obama Still Eating dead kids @ Bohemian Grove? Or just the high priest? When will illuminati build the third temple? Welcome To The End Of Days.. I need $ = Im dead inside and Moloch is my daddy ….

  • Abide

    As a Christian, it is my duty to God to affirm the inherent worth and dignity of every human being. Anatomy makes it obvious that homosexuality is not God’s intent when the reproductive process was created, but it has gone awry. Nothing that sets us apart, no abnormality, racial issue, religious issue, cultural issue or anything else outweighs our inherent worth and dignity.

    If Christians would bear that in mind, this issue would be easier to navigate.

  • Barbie Odom

    I don’t think the
    reaction had anything to do with government or states rights but rather with
    the idea that some very small special interest group can wield the power to
    attempt to change the definition of marriage which God Himself defined.
    Call it civil union, give them partner rights and all that – just don’t
    pee down my neck and call it rain.

  • Widge Widge

    A small group of people formed the civil rights movement which the church was against so that arguement is poor.
    If homosexuality is a sin then so is divorce for ANYTHING other than unfaithfulness. That means all women must cover their heads in church, wear no jewellery and cannot speak in church and not teach men.
    There are many many more things I can add which we as Christians should not be doing according to the conservative literal view of the Bible

  • Michael Doherty

    The simplest solution is casually the best, Their should be a clear separation between state and religion, as with birth certificates, driving licenses, etc are giving by state, all marriage certificates should not be allowed to be giving by the religious community or a notary, and they should be called civil union contracts and only given by the state, this contract is not restrictive, race, or gender and stop wasting time fighting with a political system, have everyone’s church marry people in a second ceremony under each individual belief system. Which for some of us to be married under God is most important, even if the piece of paper the government does not say “Marriage”.

  • http://u-church.blogspot.com/ David Shepherd

    While the author may have a point about the separation of Church and State, her tirade against some Christians who resort to scriptural pronouncements in respect of same-sex marriage is unjustified.

    Separation of Church and State does not mean those religious beliefs should park the principles of their faith whenever a matter of public policy is being considered. This is especially true when even the framework of civil marriage, in terms of life-long monogamy, is derived from Christian tradition.

    The irony here is that those in the Church who support same-sex marriage will still have no qualms (when it suits their cause) in trotting out the relationship between David and Johnathan as evidence of homosexual approval by God, or misapplying the celibate ‘eunuchs from birth’ reference in Christ’s teaching on marriage to encompass LGBT sexual orientation. There’s no censure from secularist same-sex marriage supporters demanding that those Christians keep these ideas out of conversations about public policy.

    It’s only when it contradicts their views that they indulgently demand the separation of Church and State means that the traditional religious position should hold no sway.

    In spite of this, there are arguments against same-sex marriage that may be inferred form scripture, but are based on the legal history of marriage.

    If marriage is just about mutual care-giving, why is it presumed to be sexual? Why, for instance, can’t a couple of lovely elderly sisters make the same life-long vow of mutual care-taking and contribution to community and be recognized by the State as married with all that accrues to that estate? Think of how mutual adult sibling marriage benefits would reduce the burdens of the elderly on the State.

    The truth is that such a relationship would undermine the primacy of responsible natural kinship. That’s also why even though the husband is presumed to be the father of his wife’s children, that presumption is rebuttable by clear and convincing evidence. In those cases in which natural paternity is proven, evidence is admissible that can override the husband’s presumed parenthood.

    In contrast, legally presuming, in all instances, that a lesbian partner is the co-mother of her marriage partner’s children is an outright impossibility: a legal fiction that must undermine natural paternity every time. It places the onus on the natural father to *prove* that his parenthood should be prioritised above the rank impossibility of primary lesbian parenthood through marriage. It asserts parenthood by marital intention above the parental responsibility implied by unrenounced participation in the sex act itself.

    The State has three choices:

    1. Pass a law to end the marital presumption of parenthood for all marriage. This option would mean that same-sex marriage does affect my straight marriage rights.
    2. Pass a law (as they did in California and British Columbia) to recognise that a child can have three-parents. If straight marriages were exempted from this, it would be discrimination. Again, this can affect straight marriages.

    3. Enact same-sex marriage laws to prevent any presumption of parenthood being applied through marriage to the birth mother’s lesbian partner (as they did in the UK). This option will eventually be tested in court and probably construed as discrimination against same-sex couples.

    Alternatively, since the fabric of marriage would always confer an unfair prioritisation of same-sex partners as legal co-parents, it proves that SSM is not a just entitlement for LGBT couples.

    • Widge Widge

      What about people who re-marry? Sure that is the same argeument for hetrosexual couples who remarry and the Father has to prove he is the father?

      • http://u-church.blogspot.com/ David Shepherd

        Perhaps you could clarify the relevance of re-marriage. When a woman re-marries, her ex-husband doesn’t have to prove he’s the father of her children during the marriage. The marital presumption of his paternity persist after her re-marriage.

        Nevertheless, let’s say that someone presents clear and convincing evidence in court proving that he (the ex-husband) isn’t the natural father. For the presumption to be rebuttable, a court will entertain proof that another person is the natural parent. If accepted, the proof will mean that the ex-husband is no longer a presumed parent. It happens, but it only affects a minority of heterosexual couples. It doesn’t affect the vast majority of straight couples who continue to form autonomous family units.

        In contrast, what would happen if, in exactly the same way, the legal priority of natural parenthood could overturn the parenthood (presumed through marriage) of the birth mother’s same-sex spouse? Outside of IVF, eVery attempt of same-sex couples to form an autonomous family would be vulnerable to the natural father of the birth mother’s child.

        So, in order to make same-sex parenthood invulnerable to the cancellation of informal arrangements with natural fathers, the legislators dream up a new regime:
        1. A conclusive presumption of parenthood that can never be challenged by the natural father.
        2. Three-parent families.

        So, in order to further the interests of same-sex couples, either the natural father must be routinely relegated to become a legal stranger to his own child. Or, should the three-way split of parental rights fall apart, the child’s custody is splintered between three legally permitted claims of parenthood. That’s hardly putting the ‘best interests of the child’ first.

        There’s the difference, for heterosexual couples, natural parenthood can trump the presumption of paternity

  • Draayerfamily

    Thank you for your well-thought-out, well-written article.

  • Ian_SAfc

    “You can read Genesis or Leviticus however you like and still agree that others have the right to behave outside of your own belief system.” – A Christian could never agree that others have a “RIGHT” to sin and behave contrary to God’s Word. A Christian should be bold and speak up for truth and have the courage to peacefully promote what is right in God’s eyes so we could live in a society that obeys God and is therefore able to fully inherit his blessings. I would “accept” that some people will behave contrary to God’s Word but that does not mean I believe its their “right”.

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