SO WHAT IF TWO GUYS want to get hitched? Or two gals?
What’s wrong with them getting married and not having sex anymore, like the rest of us? (I kid married people, with love.)
That’s pretty much the Bible Question of the Week.
It comes from Igal German, who gets a free, signed copy of one of my books for taking the time to ask the question.
Here’s the way he put it:
Why does the Bible condemn same-gender marriages?
Because the writers were goat herders and an unmarried tentmaker – not biologists, social psychologists, or shrinks.
That’s pretty much the answer some Christians would give if they said it the way they thought it. Generally, however, their internal filter helps them phrase it more politely: “The writers were inspired by God, but shaped by their times.”
Christians who favor same-sex marriage argue that:
- We don’t advocate slavery, though Paul told slaves to obey their masters.
- We don’t tell women to shut the heck up in church – well, most of us don’t – but that’s exactly what Paul told them to do.
- We don’t tell women they have to cover their head in church, but Paul did.
So if we make those exceptions, why don’t we make an exception for people who love one another and want to live the rest of their lives together not having sex like the rest of us?
That’s the argument many Christians make as they defend their support of gay marriage.
I think the vast majority of Christians would have a hard time letting go of the incredibly clear Bible passages condemning homosexuality.
Like the passage written to a church in Rome by the very unmarried Paul who travelled with a young man. Paul went so far as to call gay people perverts: “They dishonor their bodies by sexual perversion with each other” (Romans 1:24).
“The Bible says it. I believe it. That settles it for me.”
Most of us who have been Christians all of our life have heard the Bible preached that way.
But other Christians are saying we need to cut the Bible writers some slack and recognize that on some matters we know more than they knew.
- We’re better educated.
- We know the Bible better.
- And danged if we’re not 2,000 years smarter, and probably better looking. Certainly more fragrant.
The Bible writers carried fire with a stick. We flick a Bic.
To answer Igal’s “why” question, I have to say God doesn’t do “why.”
He does what he does and he says what he says, but he almost never gets to the why.
Go ahead, try to find one in the Bible. There are some, but very few.
This is not one of the few.
If you’d like to read the arguments that Christians make for and against accepting gays into the community of faith, read “My sister came out as gay.”
It’s the best thing I’ve written on this topic, and it’s from 100 Tough Questions About God and the Bible.
Meanwhile, if a pastor in my denomination married a gay couple, he would get his fanny handed to him on an offering plate and whipped out the back door like a Frisbee for the dog.
Christians disagree over whether or not to give the gay lifestyle and gay marriage their full blessing. That’s why churches have split…and why more will soon do the same. It doesn’t take a prophet to predict that.