On Friday of last week the SCOTUS (Supreme Court of the United States) ruled 5-4 that same-sex marriage is a new civil right for the entire country. It was a huge victory for the LGBT community who for 46 years have been pursuing equality in marriage. For many who hold tight to traditional marriage values it was a seismic blow. How should a Christian respond?
Do you care about the ruling the SCOTUS has brought down? How has it made you feel? If one takes a peak at Facebook you would no doubt get differing opinions from everyone. Perhaps you have ran across an old high school friend who you thought had a different view from the one they had when they were in high school and now their profile picture is covered by a rainbow. Maybe you are just seething by the ruling and thinking about moving to another country, or maybe go underground and live out your days in isolation protecting your family from the big bad evil progressive culture, or simply go mainstream with a “if you can’t beat ’em join ’em attitude”. Maybe you are elated about the ruling and finally feel the country is headed in the right direction, finally a #lovewins time. Or maybe you just don’t care at all. What should a Christian’s response be to the SCOTUS ruling on same sex marriage?
I was talking to my son and said, “The SCOTUS 5-4 ruling will surely make being Christian uncool which is not necessarily a negative thing at all.” I asked him if he agreed with the ruling? He said, “Honestly Dad I don’t care about the ruling either way. I don’t agree with it but I really don’t care.” He said, “Segregation used to be the law but it didn’t make it right.”
Here are some of my thoughts on the matter. I am of the opinion that there is a lot of good that can come of this. I look forward to having great conversations with people. I think this has caused a door to open for honest and profound spiritual discussions. We are living in electric times. God is not sitting in a rocking chair biting his finger nails, wringing His hands and worried over what is happening in the US. God is still in control and has a story to share. He wants Christians to share that story of a Creator’s love and live it out daily. I also believe that Jesus’ example of sacrificial love is a good example to follow. He would never bash an LGBT person because of their beliefs and desires. He would want to be around them. He would love to dialogue with them. Here is God’s story of how a loving Creator has made a way for all people to have a relationship with Him:
- God is a loving creator who at the pinnacle of His creation, created man in His image and for a personal relationship based on free will.
- All people have sinned and have fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 2:10-20; 3:23). Instead of choosing to have a relationship with God, we scorned his pursuit.
- Separation from God is the consequence of sin, the Bible calls death separation (Isaiah 59:2, Romans 6:23).
- Even though His love was scorned by people, at the point of scorn and when we were turning our backs on Him, he was making the choice of becoming sin for us by sacrificing Himself on the cross (Romans 5:8).
- His perfect life and sacrificial death is the solution for our sin problem. Sin is anything we think, say, or do that doesn’t honor or please God.
- We can know God if we, by faith, choose to accept the gift of God which is his gift of eternal life and knowing God personally (Romans 10:9-10). Faith is a choice anyone can make. It is not the amount of faith a person has that is important but the object of that faith.
The reason there is so much passion behind this particular ruling is due to what many see as a clear standard for marriage coming from Jesus himself. It matters greatly what Jesus thinks about marriage. He thinks that the design of marriage is as old as creation itself in Mark 10:6-9:
6 But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ 7 ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, 8 and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. 9 What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”
A man and a woman coming together in marital emotional, relational, physical, and spiritual union is the design of God. This was His plan; not same-sex connections. Piper wrote, “For those who have forsaken God’s path of sexual fulfillment, and walked into homosexual intercourse or heterosexual extramarital fornication or adultery, Jesus offers astonishing mercy in 1 Corinthians 6:11:
Such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
I’m not making this stuff up. God’s design has become outdated to our current culture’s sexual ethic. In fact, if one believes the Bible, they will be labeled a bigot and a social pariah. So what is a Christian to do? My prediction is that being a Christian will begin to be a little tougher. I think the Church in America will begin to get purified and claiming allegiance to Christ will have a cost related to it. In Texas, where I live, Christianity can sometimes be a fashion statement. I don’t think that bedazzled crosses on hats and shirts will stop selling but as the culture continues to move away from biblical standards Christians will be forced to make a stance and that stance might cost them relationships, business ties, and possible litigation. I have thought for about 4 years now that those who oppose Church and conservative values have been trying to take away the 501(c)(3) status. That may happen and if it does one will have to figure out why they are giving to a Church or faith based ministry in the first place. There will be a cost to following Christ. I think that is a good thing.
One last thing about parenting and family. If your family holds to a biblical sexual ethic then it is important to communicate to your kids what the Bible says and why your family believes it. Ultimately, each child will have to make up their own minds. A liberal, progressive, sexual ethic is going to be around for a long time. But there has never been a time in any culture where it has been easy to stand for Christ now is not the time to stick your head in the sand. It is the time to enter into dialogue with all kinds of people, share your story and God’s story and educate your kids to why you believe what you believe.