As the Supreme Court considers the merits of adopting or banning same-sex marriage, many politicians are voicing their support for changing the law.

But just as smart shoppers know to look beyond an advertisement to read the fine print, Americans should look beyond the surface issues to the surprising details no one is discussing.

THE ADVERTISEMENT

Here is the way same-sex marriage is “advertised” today:

1. Legalizing same-sex marriage will allow gay and lesbian couples to have the same hospital visitation rights, etc. as other married couples.

2. Legalizing same-sex marriage will put an end to discrimination by affording gay and lesbian couples the same rights as heterosexual couples.

3. Same-sex marriage won’t affect other types of marriages.

What’s the big deal, right?

THE FINE PRINT

Here is the fine print below the advertisement, just a few of the implications of legally redefining marriage.

1. When it comes to the family, there is no qualifiable difference between a mom and a dad.

Supporting same-sex marriage is saying the law of the land should reflect the fact that two dads are just as good for kids as a dad and mom. Gender plays no role in parenting. No civil institution should reinforce the idea that men and women bring different gifts and skills to parenting. No civil institution should uphold the notion that boys and girls benefit from fathers and mothers in different ways.

(Think this is a stretch? Consider the outcry towards outspoken homosexual actor, Rupert Everett, when he publicly agreed with his mother that children need a mom and dad.)

2. Marriage will be based on the intensity of a couple’s emotional bond.

Historically, marriage has been envisioned as a physical and emotional bond designed for procreation and family life. Laws have regulated marriage differently than other friendships and relationships because society has recognized and sought to preserve the notion of an institution that points beyond the partners to the responsibility of raising children.

Supporting same-sex marriage means redefining marriage as something no longer comprehensive (directed toward procreation and family life), but primarily emotional in nature. It’s about the romantic feelings of the partners, not the exclusive fidelity of a man and woman who agree to constitute and nurture a family.

The case can be made that gays and lesbians want permanence as well as emotional union, and the push for same-sex marriage shows they are willing to go to great lengths to manufacture a sort of permanence in order to sustain the emotional bond.

Still, once marriage is totally separated from reproduction, it will likely become as inconsistent as our emotional whims. If marriage is based on something other than complementarity, why should it be exclusive? Why permanent? Why should the government be involved at all?

3. Disagreeing with same-sex marriage is a sign of bigotry and should not be tolerated.

Supporting same-sex marriage is saying the law should enforce a new “norm” on how marriage is defined. The law should lead society to adopt this new norm and question anyone who opposes it.

In light of the new definition of marriage enshrined in law, those who believe marriage is for a man and woman, with an eye toward reproduction and the establishment of family, will be marginalized as intolerant and narrow-minded, subject to the same treatment we reserve for racists and bigots.

(You don’t have to be a prophet to see this on the horizon. Examples: here’s a wedding vendor who closed his business; here are the adoption agencies that have shut down rather than violate religious conscience.)

4. Same-sex marriage will be taught as normal in all public schools. What is legalized is normalized.

Shortly after same-sex marriage was legalized in Massachusetts, a second-grade teacher read students “King and King” – a story about a prince who chooses another prince for a husband. Concerned parents spoke out. The courts ruled against them. And why not? “Two husbands” is the law of the land there.

Supporting same-sex marriage means doing away with the idea of having a “norm” that leads to social stability. It is not extending marriage to some people; it is changing the definition of marriage for all people.

5. Legalizing same-sex marriage will lead to the legalization of “marriage” in other cases.

If marriage is a contract based primarily on romantic feelings, why should the state discriminate against brothers and sisters who wish to marry? If a bisexual insists on the need for both a male and a female spouse in order to be satisfied, why should the law discriminate in favor of couples instead of threesomes?

(Think this is far-fetched? Brazil already has a case on the books: a civil union for a trio. The notary cited the changing definition of marriage and family as justification. This columnist from the UK agrees. Why resist?)

Those in favor of same-sex marriage say traditional marriage laws are discriminatory. If we apply the same standard across the board, we must admit same-sex marriage is discriminatory too. Any law that regulates marriage establishes limits. Discussing marriage laws should prompt us to ask the question no one is asking: just what is marriage anyway? 

Conclusion

Considering the current flow of our society, the legalization of same-sex marriage seems inevitable.

Those of us who continue to advocate for the traditional definition of marriage are painted as mean-spirited and regressive. Still, informed citizens ought to consider the implications of overhauling one definition of marriage and replacing it with another.

~~~~~

Recommended Reading: What Is Marriage? by Sherif Girgis, Ryan T. Anderson, and Robert George

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76 thoughts on “Read the Fine Print Before Supporting “Marriage Equality””

  1. Jrg says:

    This article breaks my heart- because its so true and So many believers are falling for the lies of the “marriage” equality movement. Oh how they will be terribly disappointed when they see what they have actually bought into ….

    1. JohnM says:

      Or maybe they will have become so dull of understanding that they will not be disappointed. What then after that?

  2. Eric says:

    Why have marriage defined or legally backed by the government at all? If marriage is a religiously binding agreement between a man and a woman, aimed at only for starting a family. What about all the couples in which they can’t have children? Or how about this…marriage is a religious notion, bring forth a man and a woman together, in the eyes of god. If there is supposed to be a separation of church and state, which I believe there should. Freedom is freedom across the board, and you should be able to believe whatever you believe. That would mean that not only would the government have to keep out out of the marriage debate, but also the divorce. Would the church have to take over the reigns of all the deadbeat dads or mothers out there, because the government would no longer have the right to intervene in those cases? Would the church need to institute it’s own court system to find people guilty in such actions, and fine them, or send them to jail in religious run facilities? I find that quite dangerous in and of itself. Each church would turn into it’s own mini-government. If you don’t happen to believe the same thing as the church itself, would that give the church legal right, to charge you? Don’t define religion, or marriage for me. That is my right to decide what I believe. But, maybe you don’t agree that human choice, is what makes us who we are to begin with.

    1. Brian says:

      I completely agree. A stamp of approval by the government doesnt amount to much in my point of view. Culture will always preach a message contrary to the Gospel; I wouln’t send my 2nd grader to school to learn about gender roles and what qualifies as marriage. That’s my job (and I live in Mass).

      At the end of the day, homosexual marriage doesnt defame Biblical marriage any more than disposable Hollywood marriage does and just because society lables something a marriage doesn’t make it so. As Christians, let us demonstrate the value of Biblical marriage to our culture. Honestly, since Biblical marriage is unity between a man and woman reflecting the unity between Christ and his Church, can we really expect a culture who denies Jesus to have any understanding of how to properly define a marriage?

      1. Nancy says:

        Brian, you are so right, they know not what they do…

      2. Dave says:

        Brian, I have struggled with this issue myself and agree. Should Christian’s use man’s law to require the world to live by God’s standards?

        Certainly laws need to be made or changed when they allow people to kill/abuse those who cannot protect themselves such as unborn babies or human slavery, but this is a different case where these are adults who hurt nobody but themselves.

        Is the Gospel best served by mandating man made laws? Or rather as you said “let us demonstrate the value of Biblical marriage to our culture” by loving our wives as Christ loved His Church and wives submiting to their husbands as we all submit to Christ.

        1. Dave says:

          I agree, Dave. It is not our role as Christians to mandate or legislate our belief system upon the world. Doing so will only make us more of a target for violence than we already are. If we ever hope to sway the hearts of homosexuals (or any unsaved person for that matter) and share the love of Christ with them, we cannot thump them endlessly over the head with the Bible. We must simply live the example of Christ in our own lives. When others see the light that shines throughout all aspects of our lives, they will approach us when they are ready and ask us what it is that brings us such peace and hope. It is then, with love and humility, that we will be able to share the Word of God with them, and through the work of the Holy Spirit they will receive and accept salvation. Let us also remember that homosexuals have every right to live freely and peacefully in this great land of ours and enjoy equal protections under the law, which frankly they currently do not. As such, I choose to stand in humility and love with my gay colleagues, neighbors, and friends, supporting their efforts to achieve marriage equality. I do not see it as a threat to my community, my children, my faith, my church, or my salvation. As the Reverend Martin Luther King once said, “Without justice, there can be no peace.” In my mind, justice starts with equal treatment of all citizens under the laws of our government. We have so many more important things to be worried about in this country, such as how we are going to get this country out of debt and ensure a firm financial future for our children. Spending our collective time, money, and energy opposing gay marriage seems ridiculous to me in the face of the other problems this country is facing.

      3. Kenton says:

        I agree. Christians have always lived in tension with the world. And they never claimed that the solution was to change the world.

  3. Mark Z says:

    #5 Is a very good point and one you made very well.

  4. Phil says:

    With regard to #5, so long as changes to the law defining marriage are made through the legislative process, then there is no danger of #5 happening.

    (or, at least the changes to the law are not going to happen until a majority of the population thinks these changes are a good idea. For example, with regard to Brothers marring Sisters, that change isn’t going to happen in our lifetimes.)

    1. S D says:

      Right, I am sure you turn the clock back 10 to 20 years ago and we would have the statement that we would never see gay-marriage in our lifetimes.

      You do realize that this is the first time in all of human history that we are changing a definition of an institution. We have no clue as to how far the damage that this will cause, and to plead that we will never see brother/sister marriages is a bit naive.

      1. Phil says:

        1) Well, let’s look back 20 years. Here is the August, 1989 cover of the magazine The New Republic arguing for gay marriage:

        http://thenewrepublic.tumblr.com/post/7010080114/thepoliticalnotebook-twenty-two-years-ago

        Where are the people advocating for brother/sister marriages? Oh wait, they don’t exist. To think that we will see brother/sister marriages in our lifetimes is to go down a crazy slippery slope, divorced from reality.

        [Or we can wait and see--I promise you, if we have brother/sister marriages in my lifetime due to legislatures passing laws making them legal, I promise you I will accept that I was wrong.]

        2) The definitions of institutions have certainly changed. I have no idea what you are talking about. There was once a time when marriage could mean 1 man and more than 1 woman. But we don’t define it that way anymore.

        Finally, Denmark has had civil unions since 1989. How long do you think it will take to see all the damage that has caused in Denmark?

        1. Melody says:

          They also have the age of consent being 15. It is very “rich” in the commerce of sex trafficking.

          A place where a man that physically and sexually abuses his family of ten, including making his daughter have sex with a horse, gets an eleven year sentence.

          What kind of study would you recommend because it sounds like a real Utopia to me? Let’s use it as a model.

    2. Dave says:

      Okay, let’s have a reality check. Marriage between close family members has been a common practice throughout history AND often sanctioned by the church. The royal families of Europe regularly married cousins with cousins and uncles with nieces in an effort to keep the royal bloodlines pure and these marriages were sanctioned by the Christian church of the time. (See http://tinyurl.com/incestuousmarriages) Of course, when it comes to reproduction, the genetic results of inbreeding are catastrophic, leading to birth defects and mental retardation. These unwanted genetic outcomes are precisely the reason why modern laws prohibit marriage between family members and why legal penalties exist for sexual unions between family members (incest). Through the science of genetics we now understand what our forebearers did not, and this is the reason why marriage between brothers and sisters will not be sanctioned by the state.

      There is a lot of talk about changing the “institution of marriage.” If we look at the history of marriage throughout time, not only does the institution contain the aforementioned marriages of close family members, which we no longer recognize or sanction, but many cultures, including the Jews and the Egyptians, had marriage practices that we no longer view as moral. For instance, in the Jewish culture, when a husband died his brother would take the widow as his wife, even if he already had a wife. Indeed, it is a common practice today across the middle east for men to have more than one wife. The more affluent a man is, the more wives he has. In Egyptian culture, not only were brother-sister marriages sanctioned and common, there were even father-daughter and mother-son unions.

      With all this in mind, I don’t see how anyone can claim that the “institution of marriage” has remained unchanged throughout time or that changing the definition of marriage is going to bankrupt society. Honestly, the definition and institution of marriage have been changed numerous times throughout history. If we are to be honest, what we are fighting to maintain is the modern Christian definition of marriage, which really hasn’t been around all that long considering the length of human history. I’m not even comfortable using the Bible to justify our modern Christian institution of marriage, for within its pages are numerous examples of marriages and sexual unions which do not fit our current “one man, one woman” interpretation. For instance, the previously mentioned example of a brother marrying his widowed sister-in-law, Noah’s family re-populating the earth (how did they do that without interbreeding?), and even Adam and Eve (with whom did Cain and Abel reproduce?). And finally, let’s also not forget that the modern committed union between homosexuals was not a social construct in the time the Bible was written, so it is no wonder that the Bible fails to mention such couples. Indeed, modern Bible scholars say the ancient languages literally have no word that means “homosexual”. The concept of same-sex intercourse is literally defined as rape in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, and the practice (or fear of it) was used by residents as a means to drive “undesirables” out of their city. Since man-on-man rape is an act of violence and an abuse of power, it is consistent that the Bible deem it an “abomination.” Since they had no word for gay sexual intercourse, the closest description their language could generate was “for a man to lie with another man as with a woman.” I’m certain that this interpretation of the Bible will not sit well with staunch defenders of the Bible, but bear in mind that this too can be a literal interpretation of the Bible if viewed honestly and with an open mind. The fact is, the Bible contains many historical holes and leaves many questions unanswered. As Christians, we cannot claim to know everything about the past, about the life of Jesus, or about God’s plan simply by reading the Bible. What we CAN know, and take comfort in, is that Christ is our Savior and our example for living, that God is love and He lives within us, and that those who love God and accept Christ as their Savior will see life everlasting. Beyond that, it is not our role as Christians to judge the world nor to legislate that the world follow our belief system. We can define and sanction Christian marriage however we see fit within the Body of Christ, and the world, as always, will follow its own coarse. May we all, Christian and non-Christian alike, come to know peace in our hearts and learn to love one another unconditionally.

      1. buddyglass says:

        To my knowledge, clearly incestuous marriages were never condoned or commonplace among European royalty. First cousins? Sure, but that’s arguably not “incestuous” from a biblical point of view. The rate of birth defects among the offspring of first cousins is not significantly higher than in the general population. The health issues seen by European royalty were due primarily to repeated inbreeding over multiple generations and not by first cousin marriages per se.

  5. Melody says:

    People, including Christian, are really clueless in how society affects them. How it effects their children and their children’s potential future spouse. So many of them have the wisdom of Lot.

    1. Kenton says:

      Except Gentile Christians living in the first century Greco-Roman world endured its many sins not by changing the culture, but by increased attention to God’s word and Christian fellowship.

      1. Melody says:

        But that is not our situation. Our situation is that we have a voice but refuse to speak. We have a voice but claim we don’t want to push our morals on anyone. Or worse we just change our theology so that there is no real sin for God to die for but we expect Him to greet us some long lost friend.

        1. Kenton says:

          They too had a voice. And they spoke. The questions are, what did they speak, and how did they use their voices? The answer is the gospel. And they did not proclaim the gospel as a “reform your behavior and your laws for the good of all”, but “repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, performing deeds in keeping with repentance.” The former preaches good works without Christ; the latter preaches salvation and righteousness through Jesus Christ.

          1. Melody says:

            Yes Keaton but a little hard to do when you have wolves telling them that God made them that way so they are not in sin. They are just in love. Even harder when you have people that say we shouldn’t be talking about it at all. You would think that 75% of the country was homosexual with the way everyone acts.

          2. Kenton says:

            It is hard, but when did the apostles ever preach the gospel without an opposing voice and an overbearing society or regime? It makes the message more profound, makes conversion more miraculous, and it makes the preacher more dependent upon God’s power, not man’s wisdom.

            So we confront society’s worldview with the biblical worldview of a God who created people in His image, perfect and pure and ordered and good; people who sinned against God and so incurred upon themselves and their progeny spiritual and physical corruption, including that of sexual desire. And the acting out of such corruption is what sin is, which God will judge, because He holds all people accountable, having intended for them to live and move “in Him”, according to His ways and cognizant of His goodness and purpose. In mercy, therefore, He sent His son Jesus, who lived and moved and spoke and acted after His image, revealing God to us again; who also died on the cross on behalf of us who sinned, providing a means for our sins to be paid. God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the corruption of death, so that we who believe in him might be freed from the corruption of body and spirit, so that in perfect holiness and righteousness we might live and move in Jesus, having the hope of eternal life and liberation from the corruption of the world.

            We must confront the worldview with the gospel.

    2. Dave says:

      Actually, Lot had quite a bit of wisdom and obeyed God’s command not to look back when the cities were destroyed. It was Lot’s wife who was without wisdom and disobeyed God, thus she was the one turned to a pillar of salt.

      1. Melody says:

        Dave that is the Sunday school version. Read the passages again.

        Abraham takes his nephew with him when God tells him to go to the promised land. Through various events they acquire a lot of wealth. To stop the fussing between the workman Abraham gives Lot the choice of the land for his flocks. Lot picks the best valley for himself.(1) Abraham continues to live in tents but Lot ends up living in the city.(2)

        The city is attacked and plundered because of the kings and Lot is carried off to another country as a slave.
        Abraham gathers his men and goes after them. He brings all the wealth back to the kings and rescues Lot.
        Where does Lot go to live? Back into the city, that he knows is a wicked place.(3)
        When the angels come to Abraham he bows to the ground, offers to wash their feet, have them rest in the shade and to give them bread. He then rushes to tell Sarah to bake bread and he chooses his best calf to serve them with milk and curds.
        Then we know that he pleaded for the city to be saved if there were ten righteous men. We know that there were not even ten righteous men but Lot liked it there. He raised his family there and it wasn’t for the purpose of being salt either.

        Lot was sitting in the city gate. He was not a nobody in the city. It would seem that he either had some influence or he had pleased the right people. He recognized the angels, bowed down and then rushed them to his house. -There is his one act of wisdom-
        He rushes them there with the intention of rushing them out in the morning. He knows how evil the place is and how they treat strangers there. But that is where he has chosen to make his home.

        Offering his daughters(4) instead of the angels, you don’t seriously think that God approved of that do you?
        He calls their behavior wicked and they act like it is the first time they have heard that from him. They are indignant that he would presume to judge them.
        The angels tell him to gather his family to leave but he can’t convince his future son-in-laws. They think it is all a joke. What does it tell you about their character or his ‘godly’ influence on their lives? And yet he has agreed to have his daughters marry them.(5)
        When the angels urge him that it is time to go he hesitates.(6) The angels have to grab them all by the hand and rush them out. When they tell him to flee to the mountains he doesn’t do it, he argues he can’t. They let him go to a small town.
        Yes Lot’s wife looks back when they are told not to but is he not the leader of his household?
        Then he takes his daughters to live in caves because he is afraid.(7) They have no future so they come up with a solution based on the culture they grew up in and get their father drunk to have children.

        Peter tells us that Lot was a righteous man. Yet at the end of his life what did he have to show for it? 1 Corinthians 3:15

        His descendants with his daughters became Ammonites and Moabites. The ones that practiced child sacrifice to Moloch.

        So no Lot was not a wise man. He was a saved man by God’s grace.
        I certainly would not allow Lot into my inner circle for advice when I am seeking wisdom though.

  6. Justyn says:

    #1 – this is a very uneducated position. Only if a child is raised in utter isolation do gender roles play such a strong role on them. The fact is that kids grow up around hundreds of other people (their environment) where they get all kinds of cues as to what is appropriate/not appropriate for their gender.

    #2 – this is a legal issue, not one of emotionalism. The U.S. gov’t extends significant rights to a select group – those who marry. Others want access to those rights and as Americans we should be giving equal access to all. The only reason to argue against gay marriage is if you believe the bible speaks against it. And that’s a religious value – one that shouldn’t be forced on others.

    #3 – Aaaaaand? People may think you’re a bigot for eating meat. If you believe something is right, you should do it regardless of what people are going to say about you.

    #4 – Social stability doesn’t come from the singular definition of one part of our society. Yes, same-sex marriage will be taught as normal in public schools, because that’s what the laws say is legal. But when were we supposed to relinquish to the public school system what our child is being taught as right and wrong?

    #5 – Again, this is built on the false assumption that emotionalism is driving the debate and rights advances. Even so, there are lots of health and ethical reasons to limit marriage between siblings that have led our society to limit marriage in those cases. But remember, siblings have many of the legal rights that a spouse would have anyway – hospital visitation, property inheritance, and right to claim as a dependent on taxes to name a few.

    I think Christians as a whole need to accept the fact that many of us are basing their definition of marriage on religious grounds. That’s okay for them personally, but don’t expect a pluralist system to embrace our religious views.

    These “implications” are going to convince an educated, non-Christian. They just serve to stir up the dust amongst Christians.

    1. Melody says:

      Who needs family at all. We can just watch it on television, right?

    2. Ric says:

      #1.I believe yours is the uneducated position. There are numerous (read: “a truckload of”) studies and statistics that show that children do better when raised by a mother and a father and that each bring something different to the table. It is a biological fact that we are different and we have had different roles in the family since the dawn of time (no matter when you believe that was).
      #2. The government does not give “rights” to married couples. Even in our own founding documents it is acknowledged that “rights” are endowed by our Creator. The government grants privileges to them. Marriage by definition is discriminatory. So are driver’s licenses, adoption agencies, practicing medicine, etc. All of these institutions discriminate by separating everyone who can do something from those who should. None of these are determined by a person’s feelings. The point is that marriage soon will be.
      #3. We are talking about mainline, government and institutionally sanctioned bigotry here – not just a few people who happen to disagree with you. It’s being told by your government (based upon freedom) that you are wrong for believing a certain way. It’s kind of a big deal.
      #4. So goes the family, so goes society. It’s been that way, well, forever. So, you would have no problem with a public school teaching that polygamy or pedophilia are okay? I don’t hand over the responsibility of teaching morality to a school, but I’m not a big fan of it trying to actually undo what I have taught my own children. And it will not be taught as a belief or opinion, but as fact.
      #5. You said “Even so, there are lots of health and ethical reasons to limit marriage between siblings that have led our society to limit marriage in those cases.” It’s funny that you see those reasons to limit siblings, but ignore those reasons for homosexual marriage (of which, there are plenty). And it IS a decision based upon emotion (“I can’t help who I love”). The claim is that we are discriminating against a group of people who are defined by their preference (which, of course, is subject to change).

      It is not just a religious position. The same arguments that are being used for homosexual marriage can be used for polygamy or pedophilia (see “NAMBLA”). If the same argument can be used, the same practical, non-religious objections can also apply.

    3. Dave says:

      Very well said, Justyn.

    4. buddyglass says:

      +1

  7. Cindy says:

    I am re-posting a previous comment I made in response to another article regarding defending our view of biblical marriage to a secular world and its importance as a social institution and hence, to the government:
    We will never “win” the debate to the unbelieving world about biblical definition of marriage between one man and one woman until we also promote and strengthen the biblical, heterosexual marriage ideal, its primary purposes and ultimate benefits. Marriage is the seedbed and framework for the purpose of ensuring strong and stable future societies by legitimizing and promoting the procreative and nurturing process of both husband/wife;mother/father. Even if a couple is unable or unwilling to have children, all marriages should reinforce, promote and perpetuate that model for ensuring the strong marital bond between husband and wife for the sake of society’s children. The concept of marriage has already been weakened and diluted by so many divorces, and couples so afraid or don’t feel the need or even desire to commit, or often that marriage is “just a piece of paper” that they end up living together without or before marrying (which also, btw, as studies have shown, markedly increases the chances of divorce should they ever marry). With so many children being born to unwed mothers, or are being cared for by divorced or single parents, even as they struggle daily to provide and care for them in very wonderful ways, “drive-by” parenting by the non-custodial parent does not provide the best nurturing that a child can receive. Gay marriage further weakens and dilutes the importance of the husband/wife relationship and removing its primary procreative purpose by inserting itself in the mix. Hence, the term, “adulterate”. Several studies have concluded not only that children benefit most from the daily nurturing of their married mothers and fathers, but I also would argue that they benefit best by being cared for daily from the different qualities of both mother and father just by virtue of their personalities and qualities inherent in their own gender. The one man, one woman marriage model provides the strongest bond between mothers and fathers, husband and wives, also provides the best bond and caring for the children of that union through their generation and beyond. What is best for children is best for society by ensuring a strong and stable one for the next generation. That ideal is what should be in the state’s interest. Anything less carries the weight of social price and consequences which we all end up paying one way or another.

    1. Don says:

      So based on your comments then it would suggest that you’re saying that single parenting is also not good for a child. I’m not sure I see the strong objection to that by Christians. Of course, a single parent leaving their child with some stranger most of the day is much better than having that child raised by two loving same sex parents. We all know that will just warp the poor child’s sense of worth. Also, what about divorced parents, moving those poor kids all over the place, back and forth from home to home, that must be tough, oh wait, where’s the Christian church on that?

      And explain to me how a couple that can not have children “reinforce, promote and perpetuate that model for ensuring the strong marital bond between husband and wife for the sake of society’s children”. Have you seen the divorce rate? Let me remind you, even with those loving perfect Christian husband and wives, it’s OVER 50%. Oh yeah, those marriage are really reinforcing, promoting and perpetuating a very strong message to our children.

      I’m sorry but you’re so far off base and ignorant of what’s really going on in society that it makes me ill. As a Christian you should try and better educate yourself on the facts. Gay marriage is a loving union between two loving people. There are plenty of hostile heterosexual marriage that don’t include those ending in divorce for you to preach about.

      Please do some serious research instead of just spending your 2 hours Sunday morning listening to the guy in the pulpit. God gave you talents to do your own study, use them.

      1. Cindy says:

        I’m sorry that you totally misread or misinterpreted my comment which resulted in you becoming ill. I never stated that single parenting was not good for the child. If you read correctly, I stated that a child raised by a single parent does not get the best nurturing as if raised by both his mother and father. Single parents do exceptional jobs of raising their children because it is much more difficult and the child loses out on the daily contact with the non custodial parent. The mother can not be the dad and vice versa. Reliable study after study confirms this. Of course there are exceptions, but the general conclusion by these studies indicate that children nurtured daily by their moms and dads benefit better in many important and significant areas.

        Secondly, one of the main points of my argument was that Christian community must address the weakened concept of marriage indicated by rising divorce rate and lower or delayed marriage rate. True, the divorce rate is high with couples who consider themselves Christians, but actually, another study shows that Christian couples who actually attend church together weekly or on a regular basis, pray regularly together daily, are serious students of the Bible, socialize with other supportive Christians have a much, much lower rate of divorce. My point about a heterosexual childless couple was that although they do not marry to have children, they set an example of fidelity and commitment between a husband and wife, thereby encouraging the same for others who potentially may create a family by becoming mothers and fathers.

        1. Dave says:

          Cindy, so how do you account for the statistic that in states where same-sex marriage has been legalized there has actually been a DECREASE in the divorce rate? Perhaps the example set by loving and committed same-sex couples fighting for the right to marry has actually called attention to the importance of marriage in reinforcing family values and made more heterosexual couples rethink/reevaluate their marriage vows/commitment and choose to stay married. In which case, legalizing same-sex marriage isn’t such a bad idea for society to embrace and indeed may actually help accomplish the very thing you say you wish to see, namely the strengthening of the family unit and the institution of marriage. I’m sorry, but it seems that many Christians aren’t interested so much in strengthening the institution of marriage but rather in simply defining it in such a way as to limit who may participate in its social, legal, and financial benefits. According to my understanding of Biblical principles, that is mean-spirited and wrong, especially since the legal and financial benefits of marriage are established through enactment of laws by government, the primary role of which is to insure that all its citizens are treated equally.

          1. Cindy says:

            I have not seen nor heard of any evidence so far for concluding that the cause and effect for decrease in divorce is as a direct positive result of legalized same sex marriage in those states. More than likely, it is still irrelevant to my argument. Even the, is the divorce rate calculated as per capita or numbers only? Is it a significant number? Regardless, perhaps a lot less couples are marrying in those states or a sudden increase in same sex marriages after legalization further tips the scale to lessen the perceived rate of divorces. I would be interested in seeing how exactly how the data was arrived at; that is, we would need to see all the data; date range, in those date ranges number of same sex marriages and if those same sex married couples were and continue to be permanent residents of that state or were couples visiting the states just to get married, thereby being counted in and skewing the overall marriage data, number of all marriages performed, number of divorces, length of marriage prior to divorce, etc., especially during the years prior and after the legalization of same sex marriages. In about 10-20 years it will be interesting to see the number of divorces per capita of those states and divorce rate of all same sex marriages. Regardless of the outcome, however, it does nothing to change my argument or position that the primary purpose for the state’s interest in marriage; that is, binding and strengthening the bond between the mother and father and their potential child(ren) who benefit more fully by not only both their committed daily presence in nurturing but also even more fully by the character, quality and skill sets of the parent’s unique gender strengths and differences, thereby strengthening the social fabric of society for future generations.

      2. Tommy says:

        Don, you completely missed the point, and even justified her points, by wanting to tear apart a comment not aligning with you rather then actually, say, read it?

        You pointed out that a single parent is not the best model for raising a child, if it can be helped. Well done! She agrees. You pointed out the hypocrisy of Christian divorce. Well done! She agrees.

        Her point is that we must model truly God-glorifying marriage. That means that the dude that gets his girlfriend pregnant doesn’t roll out but stay there and help raise their child. That’s me and my wife, and we’re now expecting our fourth kid. We asked for God to clean up the mess we have made, and turn our lives fully to Him, and He has been so good to us to grant that. And Christians should truly seek what the Bible says concerning the validity and conditions of divorce, instead of looking for an easy way out.

        Now, read through her post again, and actually see what she’s saying. She’s telling us that Christians will have the best impact by modeling a beautiful marriage as created by God.

        So sweep up your bile, and try to have actual conversations here. If you don’t agree, that’s fine, but you have to at least try to challenge the actual post.

      3. Melody says:

        So what you are saying is that because people fail there is no point to having God’s standards but we should just lower the bar and then everyone will get a pass. The world will be a better place for it.

  8. bill krill says:

    There is no argument at all that a Christian has a right to view marriage as they choose. The issue is that marriage is primarily a social construct, not a spiritual one. Even in the Bible, marriage has not always been ‘one man, one woman’…sometimes it’s one man, several wives, and several concubines. There is credible evidence that conservative reading of the homosexuality verses are not telling the whole story; exegetical approaches have other valid interpretations. Also of note is that there is some good evidence of homosexual relationships in the Bible of some high profile folks. Repeatedly using Leviticus as a platform holds little credibility while good Christians continue to get tattoos, shave their faces, and eat lobster. Now, I know there are arguments otherwise, but to suggest that I’m stupid and being deceived is insulting; just as insulting as if I were to tell you that you should agree with gay marriage because everyone is doing it. This is a CIVIL issue, not a a religious one. Straight Christian people who fornicate,cheat, and divorce for reasons other than the woman cheating (even, dare I say, PASTORS that divorce…read Timothy)have little ‘moral ground’ to stand on the gay marriage issue. These Christian, heterosexual ‘marriages’ threaten MY Christian, heterosexual marriage FAR MORE than a committed gay couple together for twenty years and raising good, healthy, well balanced kids. Until the Church gets the hypocritical plank out of its own eye on issues of heterosexual marriage they have little credibility speaking about gay marriage.

    1. Kenton says:

      I don’t think anyone is arguing that marriage isn’t a social issue. In fact, many evangelicals are making the argument that marriage is a social construct (divinely instituted but still a social construct), one that has been protected by pretty much all governments. Yes, not all marriage has historically been monogamous. But, all marriage has historically been heterosexual. That’s the point that evangelicals make. And certainly hypocrisy weakens any moral stance, but it doesn’t necessarily undermine the argument made (unless there is inconsistency with regard to the argument’s views on divorce and adultery, etc.); it only undermines the one making the argument.

      1. bill krill says:

        I suggest this read to suggest that there ARE other possibilities and perspectives. Granted, the author was gay, but also highly educated. If we believe that the Gospel has more to reveal to use because were are just stupid men who cannot ‘know all’, then we need to humble ourselves to be open. Under a half dozen verses in the Bible about homosexuality, and how many about heterosexual sin? Which do you think God thinks is more important? It’s about LOVE, not sexual plumbing.
        http://www.gaychristian101.com/Gay-Marriage.html

        1. Kenton says:

          Except those verses that are about homosexuality are quite clear. If you look at everything that God states is an abomination in the Old Testament, including homosexual relationships, every one of them has to do with two things: 1) acceptable worship or sexual practice, and 2) what is ritually clean and unclean. The fact that sexual purity is something so strongly emphasized indicates that human sexuality is very important to God. Rather than being something He doesn’t care about, it is something He cares very much about. After all, He is the one who created male and female AS male and female, and He created them for each other. And according to the Bible, God created male and female specifically and uniquely for each other for a specific purpose. So homosexual relationships not only go against God’s natural order, but also go against His purposes for humanity and human interaction and activity. That this is the case is quite self-evident and knowable simply based on anatomy and biology (the case of individuals with an extra X or Y chromosome being a lamentable result of the physical corruption of human biology due to the Fall).

          If you simply do a word search for “abomination”, the two most common applications are practices associated with idolatry and practices associated with sexuality. And there is one reference to certain foods being abominations (usually the types that eat feces or other non-savory things), and a few references to things such as deceit and malice, etc. (but those seem to equate “ordinary sins” with the more heinous idolatry and sexual immorality). Why would God be so concerned about this in the Old Testament, and then the apostles reiterate such concerns in the New Testament, if they were not important to God? The fact that sex and religion are at the heart of virtually every human society is an indication their centrality in human existence. And coincidentally, love is concerned with both. So yes, God is about love, but it’s love according to His terms, not ours.

  9. Kenton says:

    This is a very helpful article in terms of what the costs will be. And it certainly gives a great case for why we should not support the legalization of same-sex marriage. At the same time, it certainly seems inevitable that such is the course for our society. Support for same-sex marriage is at an all-time high, and the fact is that our arguments, no matter how creative, fail to resonate with a society that operates from an entirely different worldview. This is lamentable. But it also provides the means for our future engagement with society. Rather than assuming that contemporary society still holds the same worldviews on government and society that existed a hundred years ago, we have to recognize that such views have changed, and we need to begin to confront the entire worldview that forms the basis of the push for same-sex marriage legalization, rather than simply addressing marriage itself in terms and from worldviews that are out of synch with the present society.

    1. Melody says:

      Do you ever wonder if it is really that high or is it a media construct?
      How did we go from states, very liberal states, voting against it to it being so accepted in just a couple of years?

      Or has God hardened some hearts and blinded some that were already headed that direction? How or why did things change so quickly?

  10. Eric M says:

    You are defending an ideal of marriage that has never existed.

  11. Don says:

    You can argue all you want that marriage is a ‘sacramental’ event and perhaps it did start with the wedding at Canaan but when the government started requiring licenses and delegated the authority for that to the preachers, it became a civil ‘state’ sponsored event. Most gays don’t want anything to do with the Church because the Church has continually wronged them. The Church can have their sacramental marriage or call it whatever they want and it can be between a man and a woman, no one is saying they should not. Marriage is a legal issue that has to do with much more than the church and if the church wants to stay out of government (and therefore remain tax exempt) then they should stop their insistence that only their views are correct. They don’t object to divorce despite the scripture, or any other of the many ‘do and don’ts’ in scripture. It sickens me as a Christian to hear my brothers and sisters comment with ignorance on how a loving caring gay couple is ruining the sanctity of marriage and then sit on their idle devil hands when it comes to divorce. All of them sit in the pews every Sunday morning as sinners themselves, divorce, gossip, lies, and throw stones from their glass house at the gay community. Seriously, it absolutely makes me ill.

    If you want to be Christ like, then study the Bible, it’s context, it’s geography and the culture and understand what those scriptures taken out of context MIGHT have meant. Read the new testament again, understand about worshiping idols. I pray for so many of you that are just so uninformed. Go out and meet some gay couples and get to know them and then tell me that they’ll be bad parents to a child they adopt and love and provide for. Seriously?

    1. Dave says:

      Well said, Don.

  12. If you oppose gay marriage you’re told that you have irrational phobias; you’re a hate-monger, a bigot, and guilty of discrimination. Why do people allow this kind of school yard bullying to push them into acquiescing to a militant agenda forcing a private sexual lifestyle on others?

    We must see through the vicious rhetoric and have the courage to hold to our convictions about marriage as a sacred union between a man and a woman. This isn’t about the rights of consenting adults to do what they wish sexually. They have those rights. This is about an insistence that the entire nation change its definition of the institution of marriage to conform to the sexual choices of 2 percent of the people. If marriage can mean anything, it ultimately means nothing.

    It’s a false comparison to make the sexual choices of those who want gay marriage a civil-rights issue comparable to race and gender. Choosing to be gay is not based on an unalterable condition of birth. There is simply no conclusive evidence that supports this comparison.

    If we legalize gay marriage as a civil right, it will open a social and legal Pandora’s box. Citizens will not be permitted to morally oppose homosexual behavior without risking accusations of discrimination and racism.

    Teaching people to treat each other with respect is a much better alternative to forced affirmation. Tolerance is about treating others with respect when you disagree with them. Telling people they’re not permitted to disagree is coercion, not tolerance. It threatens liberty.

    It’s ironic how the intolerance and bigotry that was once wrongly shown toward people who chose a gay lifestyle is now aimed at anyone who dares to oppose homosexual behavior.

    1. Dave says:

      Steve, you have totally ignored (or missed) the point that modern marriage is no longer just a sacrament of the church, but that it is now also “defined” as a social institution enshrined in law, which grants certain legal and financial rights and responsibilities to those who register their union with the state (which they must in order for it to be legal). As such, the institution of marriage was taken over (and yes redefined) by the state long ago. The fact is, homosexuals want their relationships recognized by the state so that they can enjoy the same legal and financial protections that the heterosexual community is entitled to under the law. As mentioned in a previous post, gays have no interest in the sacrament of marriage as defined by the Christian church. They simply want equal treatment under the law, which as citizens of this country (and other democracies), they are entitled to. We look like idiots when we rattle our Bibles and insist that our fellow citizens are not entitled to equality. Constitutionally they are entitled to equality, constitutionally we Christians have no right to impose our belief system upon them, and constitutionally the government cannot recognize our religious beliefs above any other. I’d say its a foregone conclusion that homosexuals have made their case and that it holds water. Throughout history they have been treated poorly, even beaten and killed, just for being who they are. Until rather recently in this country, the law has looked the other way when homosexuals suffered mistreatment and discrimination. It wasn’t that long ago that homosexuals were jailed by our own government just for admitting that they were gay. As Christians, where is our compassion and our empathy for the downtrodden and the maltreated? How would Jesus treat the homosexual members of our communities? Would Jesus bully, beat, and kill them? Would Jesus scheme with politicians to deny them basic legal protections that would bring financial stability, safety and security to their families and loved ones? As a Christian, I cannot condone any form of violence against homosexuals, nor can I, in good conscience, further condone unequal treatment of gay citizens under the law.

    2. Don says:

      Dave put it nicely but I’ll add this. First of all it’s marriage, not gay marriage. Equality is the issue here Steve. I have no issue with your opposition, as long as you iterate your reasons so as to justify the reasons to form a discriminatory policy. Your religious freedoms are granted under the same constitution that protects the legal unions of all people. You want to capitalize on the word marriage for your sacrament but it’s too late for that. Marriage is on every ‘state’ document where the union of two people occur, therefore it does not belong to the church.

      As for your reference to 2%, you really need to check your references on that. Also, marriage between same sex partners has a lot of meaning and is not redefined as anything less than the love between any two individuals.

      As for your comment: “Choosing to be gay is not based on an unalterable condition of birth. There is simply no conclusive evidence that supports this comparison” I’d appreciate your references on this. Plenty of reputable sources have concluded that being gay is NOT a choice.

      What threatens liberty is denying a legal agreement by the state to a select group of persons. Would you be OK it the state said that Christians can no longer be legally married or can no longer vote?

      I’m sorry but I don’t buy your reasoning at all. I appreciate your adherence to your belief but when that belief directly affects the very liberties, that you enjoy with your faith, of another group of people, then I would ask that you look at the equality factor of both groups of people.

  13. Tim Filston says:

    “Equality” rhetoric is a ruse. Their bigger agenda is freedom defined by the individual. Institutions are expendable in this view—even marriage. NEVERTHELESS, the challenge is grace AND truth. American Christians have been too reactionary and therefore fail to shape the categories of debate. We need to show how we are FOR people struggling (or not) with same sex attraction. We need to tell how we love differently from the “validate me” culture. We need to demonstrate how Biblical truth is itself a grace. The charge that we are foisting a religious agenda should tell us our message is not getting through. There’s nothing amiss with the Message. It needs new wine skins for an age which seldom hears it apart from our panic.

  14. Chas Jay says:

    In my lifetime I have seen every organization and institution that was all-male, from fraternal orders, to colleges and universities to the military, openly attacked and forced to admit women. It has been “all important” to many to achieve 50% female representation in all things to achieve “equality.” How is it that we are now taking the first institution, marriage, and calling for male-male and female-female ones to be recognized and calling it “marriage equality” when all other aspects of society we have strived to make equal amounts male-female?

  15. buddyglass says:

    Allow me to push back against some of the points on your list:

    1. When it comes to the family, there is no qualifiable difference between a mom and a dad.

    This is not implied by support for same-sex marriage. Certainly many of its supporters believe this, but it is not a logical implication of the decision to grant legal marriage rights to same-sex couples.

    For instance, if there were broad agreement that it was severely harmful for a child to be raised by anything other than a heterosexual couple we might still allow same-sex marriage but disallow same-sex couples from adopting.

    Note also that the law of the land allows for two drug-abusing, alcoholic convicted child molesters to marry and have their own children. That support for “traditional marriage” allows these two individuals to marry and procreate does not imply that they are likely to be just as good a set of parents as anyone else.

    2. Marriage will be based on the intensity of a couple’s emotional bond.

    This is already the case. Traditional marriage accommodates marriage of the old and/or infertile, as well as couples who marry never intending to have children, i.e. simply because they share a strong emotional bond and want the legal rights and obligations marriage offers. Certainly the divorce rate suggests our current societal understanding of marriage is already based largely on emotional whim. To the extent that’s already the case, it damages the claim that legal recognition for same-sex marriage will result in a sea change in this direction.

    One might also argue that same-sex marriage doesn’t divorce marriage from the act of raising children since marriage rights related to children are likely to be one of the main reasons many same-sex couples decide to get married.

    3. Disagreeing with same-sex marriage is a sign of bigotry and should not be tolerated.

    Again, this is something many same-sex marriage supporters believe, but it is not necessarily an implication of that support. For instance, I disagree with same-sex marriage in the sense that I believe same-sex relationships are sinful and same-sex marriages aren’t legitimate unions in God’s eyes. However, I can’t muster a rationale for denying legal recognition to same-sex couples. “It’s wrong,” isn’t a good rationale, given other sinful activities are not only legal but constitutionally protected (e.g. blasphemous speech).

    Also, the marginalization of those who believe the only legitimate marriage is one between a man and a woman is free to take place regardless of whether same-sex marriages gain legal recognition. It is not a consequence of that legal recognition.

    4. Same-sex marriage will be taught as normal in all public schools. What is legalized is normalized.

    It may well become common place that things believers view as “sinful”, being common and “normal”, will be presented as such (“normal”) in the schools. Same-sex marriage certainly isn’t a prerequisite to that. The larger question might be, “To what lengths should believers be willing to go to ensure that public schools, designed to serve everyone and not just believers, continue to conform (at least in passing) to Christian mores in lieu of the prevailing societal mores when the two conflict.”

    I’d add that there are things many people view as “moral” that are also “legal” but that are not advocated in the schools because they’re viewed as “destructive” or because the belief that they’re “moral” isn’t sufficiently widespread. For instance, extreme drunkenness and sado-masochistic porn. Both legal, both thought to be morally neutral by some folks. Neither taught in the schools.

    5. Legalizing same-sex marriage will lead to the legalization of “marriage” in other cases.

    For one, the law is currently structured to accommodate couples. It needs virtually no changing in order to handle same-sex binary couples. Supporting polygamous couples would require an entire re-working of the law. That’s one reason I don’t see it as likely.

    If it does happen, though, I’m not necessarily opposed, for the same reason I’m not opposed to legal recognition for same-sex marriages.

    Why should my conception of marriage which is expressly informed by my Christian belief be enshrined as the law of the land to the detriment of those whose understanding of marriage differs from mine?

    1. Dave says:

      Well stated, Buddyglass. I concur.

    2. S. says:

      “Why should my conception of marriage which is expressly informed by my Christian belief be enshrined as the law of the land to the detriment of those whose understanding of marriage differs from mine?”

      Well that is awfully post-modern and relativistic, neither of which are compatible with Christianity.

      1. Dave says:

        Well, S, it is compatible with the constitution. The First Amendment guarantees that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” While this gives us the freedom to practice our Christian beliefs without interference, it also guarantees that our Christian beliefs shall not be enshrined in law, for doing so would infringe upon the rights of other citizens to exercise their religious or non-religious beliefs. There is nothing “post-modern or relativistic” about this concept. It is the law of the land and one of the founding principles of our great country. As soon as we start legislating our Christian beliefs onto other Americans, we open the door for others to strip away our right to practice our religious beliefs. Beware supporting legalized discrimination for it may come back to bite us in the collective behinds.

  16. Melody says:

    Buddy when have we ever done things so that they would be in the best interests of the child. Children have always been property and in a lesser value than pets. Our country came up with animal protection laws before it protected the children. Even now Judges are ordering multiple names be added to the birth certificate to reflect the reality of the parents’ choices and not who the child came from. Apparently children of gays are so happy with their lives they never search out their biological.

  17. Cindy says:

    An additional thought: I believe that the consummation of marriage completes marriage in the eyes of both the church and government. The inability or refusal of one or both parties in a marriage to engage in procreative sexual intercourse can be grounds for annulment by both the church and judicial act:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consummation
    Consummation or consummation of a marriage, in many traditions and statutes of civil or religious law, is the first (or first officially credited) act of sexual intercourse between two people, either following their marriage to each other or after a prolonged sexual attraction. Its legal significance arises from theories of marriage as having the purpose of producing legally recognized descendants of the partners, or of providing sanction to their sexual acts together, or both, and amounts to treating a marriage ceremony as falling short of completing the creation of the state of being married. Thus in some Western traditions, a marriage is not considered a binding contract until and unless it has been consummated.

    These formal and literal usages support the informal and less precise usage of the word “consummation” to refer to a sexual landmark in relationships of varying intensity and duration.

    Within the Roman Catholic Church, a marriage that has not yet been consummated, regardless of the reason for non-consummation, can be dissolved by the Pope.[1] Additionally, an inability or an intentional refusal to consummate the marriage is probable grounds for an annulment. Catholic canon law defines a marriage as consummated when the “spouses have performed between themselves in a human fashion a conjugal act which is suitable in itself for the procreation of offspring, to which marriage is ordered by its nature and by which the spouses become one flesh.”[2] Thus some theologians, such as Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J., state that intercourse with contraception does not consummate a marriage.[3]

    Under section 12 of the English Matrimonial Causes Act 1973, a refusal or inability to consummate a marriage can be grounds for the marriage to be voided.[4]

  18. Cindy says:

    Are there any states that allow civil unions or domestic partner laws which provide the same legal and financial equality for same sex partners? I thought the whole idea of civil unions and domestic partnerships were to provide the same legal rights as married heterosexual couples but also avoids the use of the term “marriage”; a compromise, so to speak.

    1. Melody says:

      It’s not enough. They want the religious ceremony too.

    2. Dave says:

      According to Wikipedia, “New Jersey grants civil unions that provide “all of the same benefits, protections and responsibilities under the law, whether they derive from statute, administrative or court rule, public policy, common law or any other source of civil law, as are granted to spouses in a marriage.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Same-sex_marriage_in_the_United_States) I know for a fact that my state, Oregon, also grants gay couples domestic partnerships that afford all the same rights and responsibilities as marriage. I suspect that there are other states with similar provisions in law. While the civil union “compromise” seems prudent and reserves the word “marriage” for heterosexual unions, it presents several legal problems, only a few of which I will mention here. First, such domestic partnerships or civil unions are discriminatory at face value under the constitution because they create a status of “separate but equal” for gay citizens. Think of it this way, in the 60’s, African Americans were allowed to ride buses (in the back), eat in restaurants (in the black section), and drink from drinking fountains (but only those specifically designated for them to use). They were “separate but equal” in that they had access to the same services that whites did, as long as those services were provided separately from the services provided to whites. By creating a marriage substitute under law, the government is in effect saying gay people can have the same rights, but only if those rights are separate from what heterosexuals enjoy.

      The next issue has a far more serious impact on gay couples and families. Because domestic partnerships and civil unions do not grant the same rights and protections from state to state, they are not recognized uniformly from state to state. This means that as soon as a gay family drives across the state line, their rights change dramatically. Consider the example of a gay family from Oregon, Tom and John, who are visiting Tom’s family in Kansas. The couple is involved in a severe car accident in Kansas that leaves Tom in a coma with irreversible brain damage. If the accident had happened in Oregon, John would have full legal right as Tom’s partner to make medical decisions on behalf of Tom. However, in Kansas, Tom and John’s domestic partnership isn’t recognized, so John has no legal standing. Instead, Tom’s parents have legal standing, and they can decide to go against the couple’s stated wishes regarding medical care. Worse yet, John has no right to take possession of Tom’s body should Tom die. That right lies with the parents, and they can legally bury the body in the family plot in Kansas despite the fact that Tom and John have already purchased adjoining plots and planned to be buried together in Oregon. This is just one of the nightmare scenarios that gay couples face every day. I’ve witnessed it first-hand. Bear in mind that, under current law, even if a gay couple is legally married in their home state, such as Massachusetts, where gay marriage is legal, if they travel to Kansas their union is no longer recognized or valid and they could be subject to the same scenario described above. It is these types of legal issues and inequities that make marriage equality so important for gay couples. The inequities under the current law make it impossible for them to provide the same safety, security, and financial stability for their families that married heterosexuals enjoy. The issue of equal treatment under the law is the reason marriage equality trumps religious and faith concerns, and it is the reason that I, as a conscientious and faithful follower of Christ, support marriage equality.

      Finally, let me say that I have not always held the belief that homosexuals should have their relationships recognized by the state. In fact, I was adamantly opposed to the concept until rather recently. I knew no one who was gay and I had no concept of the challenges that gay couples and families face. But God brought some amazing homosexual men and women into my life. I witnessed firsthand the violence, discrimination, and hatred directed at these kind and gentle people for no reason other than that they love differently than I do. God has softened my heart, opened my eyes, and He has moved me to put my Christian love into action such that I now support changes in the law that will insure gay families are treated equally. So many Christians I know have isolated themselves from the world, going from work, to home to church, and never really reaching out to anyone who isn’t a fellow believer. I urge you to step out of your comfort zone to meet and genuinely get to know someone in your neighborhood or workplace who is gay. Ask them about their life and how discrimination has affected them. You will be surprised by what you hear and learn. Then put your Christian compassion and values to work and help create a more peaceful and just world for everyone, straight and gay.

  19. David says:

    In regards to #4: We all know the world is round. If a government declares and makes it a law that the world is flat, is the world still round?
    Just because same sex marriage is legal in some states, it doesn’t make it right.

    1. Dave says:

      And just because the Bible says same-sex marriage is wrong (which it doesn’t by the way, it simply talks about men laying with men, because they had no concept of the modern notion of a committed gay relationship during Biblical times) doesn’t make it illegal. In fact, what the Bible says should have no bearing on what is right/wrong, legal/illegal in this country, for this is not a Christian nation. The US is a nation that was founded on the principle that every religion be equally respected by government and that every individual have the right to practice the religion of their choice without government interference. There are many non-Christians who don’t believe in the Bible, don’t follow its precepts, and who should not be bound to its guidelines for living by enshrining Christian values into law through legislation. There are many religions that have no opinion on homosexuality or same-sex marriage and could care less whether gays marry. If we respect the principle of freedom of religion, then we must also respect the principle that government cannot and should not legislate the beliefs of one religion onto its citizenry. Rather, the government should enact laws that ensure all citizens have equal access to benefits and services, and equal recognition and protection under the law. If we define it any other way, we cease to be the land of the free and the home of the brave because we cease to be founded on “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Gay couples should be free under the law to pursue and practice their version of happiness that defines their lives. That is the true meaning of liberty. If you don’t like this concept or agree with it, there are many other countries in the world where you could live that aren’t founded on the concept of individual freedom. Feel free to move to one of them.

  20. Melody says:

    Dave

    If the majority in this non-Christian nation decided that euthanizing the elderly was the most cost efficient way to go forward because they are a drain on society – would it be wrong?

    If the majority of this non-Christian nation decided that gay marriage was just gross and made them puke would it be wrong?

    What is the basis of right and wrong? Who gets to decide?

    As for the bible, yes it does say that it is wrong. No it doesn’t matter how many things you are committed to or worship, God has given the criteria for a marriage relationship. Science confirms this. So choose your argument.
    Is it going to be that the bible doesn’t say?
    Or is it that this country isn’t based on the belief of our Creator?

    1. Dave says:

      Melody,

      While the world’s great religions can’t all agree on the same concept or nature of God, they all seem to share the same basic precepts of what is right and wrong, such as murder is wrong, coveting is wrong, etc. However, there is certainly no cross-religious agreement on homosexuality. Some belief systems say it’s wrong, while others support it’s right to exist, while others have no opinion. As far as legality is concerned, “the United States relies on representative democracy [which would mean that generally the people get to decide what's legal], but [its] system of government is much more complex than that. [It is] not a simple representative democracy, but a constitutional republic in which majority rule is tempered by minority rights protected by law.” (from Wikipedia). So, even if the majority did find that marriage equality is “wrong”, the constitution dictates that gays and lesbians be granted equal rights and protections under the law. Thankfully, if you check the polls, the majority of Americans have now come to understand this basic precept of our society and are now in favor of marriage equality.

      In some earlier argument in this thread, someone made the assertion that our form of government, including our constitution and modern day laws, were derived from the Bible and Biblical law. If that is the case, then the constitutional right of gays and lesbians to be treated equally under the law, including recognition of their relationships for the purpose of rights and responsibilities, must also derive from the Bible.

      I still hold that the Bible doesn’t say one word about gay marriage, it only speaks to male on male sex, and that predominantly in the context of gang rape. (I will remind you that modern Bible scholars don’t all agree that “homosexual” has been properly translated in previous editions of the Bible.) The lack of commentary on gay marriage cannot be taken as proof that it is wrong. The Bible doesn’t say anything about electricity, nuclear power, automobiles, skyscrapers, in vitro fertilization, or other modern concepts and we don’t consider them wrong. On the other hand, the Bible does specify that cutting your hair, eating shellfish, having sex with a woman who is menstruating, etc. are wrong (and indeed punishable by death in some cases), yet we view these concepts as perfectly normal and acceptable in modern society. I don’t know any modern Christians who uniformly uphold the Old Testament laws and their punishments, so why do you get to have it both ways but the gays and lesbians do not?

      As for science confirming that “God has given the criteria for a marriage relationship”, science has yet to prove the existence of God let alone declare the Biblical model of marriage the only acceptable form of coupling. Science has given us many opportunities for procreation outside the one male-one female model. For instance, science has developed a method for fertilizing an egg using only female DNA without the involvement of any male DNA whatsoever. Science has also brought us cloning as yet another means of reproduction. Scientific studies have proclaimed over and over again that same-sex couples are perfectly viable as parents and that children raised by such couples are equal in every way to their peers raised in heterosexual homes.

      Finally, our country is based on the basis of a belief in a creator. However, the founding fathers, recognizing that the settlers of our nation fled religious persecution in the Old World, made allowances to insure that all forms of religious belief (including non-belief) would be tolerated and treated equally under the law. So get off your high-horse and stop insisting that I, and every other citizen of this country, bow to your God and your belief system only. Others have the right to believe as they wish, and the right to live free from your religious oppression.

  21. Melody says:

    Dave put all the gay men on one continent and they will die off.
    Put all the lesbian women on another and they too will die off.
    That is science.

    A perfect example that speaks to the horror of this romanticized version of sin is David Tutera and his “spouse” with their nasty divorce with allegations of addictions to drugs and sex mixed with the fight for the unborn twins due in July. Clearly neither of them are the mother. Find equality and justice for those children in that mess.

    1. Dave says:

      Actually there are means by which science could perpetuate the populations. I mentioned them earlier. David Tutera is but one example of a gay family gone wrong. Many gay couples live normal and happy lives raising perfectly healthy families and they likely would take great offense at having their existences compared to that of Mr. Tutera and his husband. Let’s not forget that more than 50% of all hetero marriages end in divorce and the horror that this travesty wreaks on the children. Family challenges are inherent in any relationship, not just those of gay couples. As such, divorce and child custody issues are not a valid reason to deny gay couples the right to marry or raise families. So again, get off your-high horse.

  22. Melody says:

    What are you Dave? How do you define yourself?

  23. Dave says:

    I’m a freedom-loving, progressive American Christian and US Army veteran who nearly died in service of this country defending the rights and freedoms of everyone, Christian and “other”, to pursue life, liberty and their version of happiness. I will defend that right until the day I die, even for those who don’t happen to believe the same religious ideology that I do. I find it extremely ironic that I must defend the Constitution against my fellow Christians more today than ever before.

  24. Melody says:

    Well that is nice that you served. I raise you a father and a son that served in war more than once.
    I could add more but I won’t because I don’t see how that is relevant.

    What I wanted to know was where you stand on God. From what I can tell country and the pursuit of relativism comes before Him.

    I find it ironic that when people are pushing for everyone finding their “happiness” they ignore that we are not promised that in scripture. They ignore that very often one person’s happiness is hugely detrimental to another’s.

    The biggest one of all is that none of the people that are pushing it on us care one iota what their pursuit of happiness does to the children.

    What David Tutera, Rosie O’Donnell, Melissa Etheridge, do with their “marriages” is very relevant. The woman trying to pretend to be a man while having a baby is relevant. They are all leaving broken homes in their wake. Yes hetros get divorced. Supposed Christians get divorced.
    In the realm of believers that is brokenness and sin. Something that has to be repented of and something that only God can heal. But in your world there is no healing from anything because you don’t even acknowledge the brokenness. And big deal if you are willing to die defending their right to do whatever they want to do – when you let them go to hell not knowing the truth – them and their children.

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Trevin Wax


​Trevin Wax is managing editor of The Gospel Project at LifeWay Christian Resources, husband to Corina, father to Timothy, Julia, and David. You can follow him on Twitter. Click here for Trevin’s full bio.

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