CHRISTIANS GET UPSET about the darndest things, as far as many Americans are concerned.
Like the recent Supreme Court ruling that legalizes same-sex marriage throughout the country.
Many Christians – possibly most who go to church each Sunday – say they see this as an attack on Christianity. After all, they say, Bible writers clearly – and repeatedly – warn guys not to do the dance with other guys. Ditto for gal and gal.
“It is disgusting for a man to have sex with another man.” (Leviticus 18:22)
“No one who is immoral….a pervert or behaves like a homosexual will share in God’s kingdom.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10)
Many Bible-embracing Christians say they see the Supreme Court as essentially rewriting the Bible laws.
“It is legal for a man to have sex with another man.”
“Everyone who is immoral…a pervert or behaves like a homosexual has a legal right to do that in America.”
These Christians don’t seem to want their presumably Christian nation to stamp “USDA Approved” on the rump roast of two guys doing it.
There are Christians on the flip side of this debate. They’re celebrating under rainbows, and shouting “Hallelujah” like the Baptists. But most are not Baptists. Or if they are, they wear fake beards while celebrating in public.
“It’s a legal matter, not a religious one”
Christians celebrating the ruling say they see the law as allowing gay married couples to share the same legal rights as not-gay married couples:
- visit their partner in the hospital as a family member and make end-of-life decisions when necessary
- share in the partner’s retirement benefits
- file joint tax returns
- get divorced like half the rest of us (not me; my gracious wife somehow abides me)
The law doesn’t tell Christians what to believe, how to practice their faith, and whether or not to marry gay couples in sacred spaces. The church is still free to refuse to marry anyone, Scottish redheads included.
“The Bible got it wrong”
Some Christians argue that we know more about the science and physiology of sexual behavior than the Bible-writing herders and tentmakers did 2000 years ago. And some of these Christians don’t seem convinced that the herders and tentmakers spoke for God.
They argue that we have no idea who wrote the “laws of Moses,” such as the anti-gay laws in Leviticus. Those books of law were written anonymously. It’s Jewish legend that says Moses wrote them – a legend that Jesus seemed to embrace: “I did not come to abolish the law of Moses” (Matthew 5:17).
As for Paul’s harsh statement, the Christians say Paul was merely writing a letter to a friend and he was reflecting his Jewish tradition; he wasn’t necessarily speaking for God. And some would say Paul would not have anticipated that his letter would end up in the Christian Bible.
Just because something is reported in the Bible, those Christians say, we shouldn’t presume God agrees and that it fits nicely with the teachings and the behavior of Jesus who, by the way, never talked about homosexuality.
So there we have it. Some Christians upset about the Supreme Court ruling, and others relaxed, if not elated.
Folks are constantly pressing me for my opinion about stuff like this. Here’s my opinion. Think for yourself. I’ve got more than enough to think about for me. You think for you.
I am happy, however, to tell you what I’m going to do in the wake of the court ruling.
I’m going to keep my eyes open for people within my reach who need help, and I’m going to help them. That’s what I’d want them to do for me.
I’ll let lawyers grapple with matters of law.
I’ll let ministers grapple with matters of church ministry.
As for me and my house, we’ve got family, friends, and neighbors to tend to – along with some new friends we’ll make on trips abroad: “to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8).
Wherever we go and whatever we do, we Christians take the name of Jesus with us – for better or worse, depending on what we say and do in his name.
For more on the Bible and homosexuality
- Why does the Bible say homosexuality is a sin?” 100 Tough Questions about God and the Bible, pages 120-125
- Complete Bible Handbook, pages 142-144
- Complete Guide to the Bible, Student Edition, pages 66-67
- What’s wrong with same-sex marriages?
- Homosexuality and the Bible
Steve’s quarterly newsletter
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Random book winners this week
- Darlene Johnson
- Bev McClure
I give away free books each week to randomly selected subscribers to my free blog and quarterly newsletter.
Darlene and Bev are random this week.
Bible Gateway Blogger
I knew you would comment on this issue eventually. I want to thank you for your encouragement and your books which have helped many — including the people in our Community Book/Bible Study. Here is a comment I made to our group after the Supreme Court Decision was made:
A Word From Wayne….
We have seen some great events happening this week and thank God for it! However a greater battle has arisen and I want to take a moment to address it. I have been listening to Cspan and have looked on some various Christian religious sites (not fundamentalist sites, but respected ministries and some local Pastors that I know) — and the response on the Supreme Court Decision is being interpreted as the “downfall of American Culture.” Of course we hear this all the time!
Here is my concern — don’t let anyone stop you from studying the Scriptures or following Christ! The attacks will be coming from both our Christian brothers and Sisters (those who have another interpretation of LGBT) and our secular Gay activists who hate anything that smells Christian and uses a Bible! We have a greater responsibility to the World because we have been liberated on two fronts – equal under the law and liberated for life by our Savior, Jesus Christ. May we never forget that! And if we be called deceived by the religious right, all I can say is Blessed deception that brings such a changed life!
Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people…
24 To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy —25 to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen. (Jude 3, 24-25)
Here is a link to Matthew Vines explanation of the 6 “Clobber” passages that are always used — I think your readers might enjoy this!
Stephen M. Miller
In your writing you sound a bit like a gay Paul. I hope you’re okay with that. Not sure Paul would be.
Your link takes me to a page full of videos instead of one particular video. You might want to try that again.
Thanks again, Wayne. Peace to you.
The link works fine on my end….It is called “Gay and the Bible” by Matthew Vines — it is a 4 minute quick presentation of the famous 6 “Clobber” passages in the Bible. You may find it on YouTube.com.
Thank you for the compliment — I love the Apostle Paul! He is probably the most maligned individual by the Gay Community and Post-Modern circles — he is actually the most “affirming” writer — for his time — in all of Scripture!
I think if Paul was writing to the Churches today he would address many of these issues — he would probably have more to say about parents throwing out their gay children, ministers who are greedy for money, failure of church leaders in their marriages, Christians gun crazy for rights etc.
God Bless Steve!