The tide is settling from the Supreme Court decision. My Facebook has less rainbows, and Facebook debates have transitioned to new topics. However, there are still some lingering discussions floating around, and one term has been used a lot: “traditional marriage.” I don’t like the concept.
I learned from math class that getting the right answer is most important, but professors also care about how we find the right answers. ‘Blind squirrels find acorns’ is basically the thought. And on these kinds of issues, why we believe what we proclaim is just as important as what we proclaim.
There is a temptation to argue against gay-marriage without appealing to the authority of the God who instituted marriage. Thus, there are two ways to arrive at the position on marriage that I have arrived at.
1. The Political Way
The political way is to try to provide evidence from history which demonstrates the way societies and their governments have always viewed the marital institution, and then try to prophesy about all the potential (and likely negative) effects this decision will have on our society. Or, one must provide surveys and statistics which show empirically that homosexual lifestyles are damaging in major ways. In other words, one must prove that homosexuality and same-sex marital unions will hurt people; and therefore, for the sake of the political structure and integrity of the economy, marriage must look like one man and one woman.
Don’t get me wrong. I do believe that these things are true and can be shown. For example, I think the “slippery slope” argument, that homosexuality being legalized will inevitably lead to further redefinitions, is a good one. The SCOTUS has the right to redefine marriage, and that opens the door to defining it anyway at all, thus dissolving the institution. We will see some strange and legal marital unions in the future. I think that’s true. I do believe gay marriage will be bad for society (pragmatically, physically and spiritually speaking.)
I also think that truth leaves breadcrumbs and fingerprints. God is orderly and logical, and His creation reflects that. There is always evidence for the truth, even if highly paid and brilliant lawyers can convince people not to see it or to reinterpret it. It is impossible not to have supporting evidence for the truth. However, why hike to the beach when you can fly there for free?
2.The Biblical Way
There are many people “on my side” of the marriage issue. However, some of them arrived at our shared destination differently. They army crawled, hiked a mountain, ran through sand, slept in the rain, avoided dangerous wildlife, crossed borders, and then finally made it to our wonderful beach get-away locale while tattered, dirty, bruised, and panting. I simply flew here for free and arrived with a big hat, white legs, sunscreen on my nose, and a pina colada in my hand. I got to this beautiful place because I listened to God. Others got here by arguing politically.
Politicians can confess Christianity, but to be nominated for high-ranking offices and positions of great public scrutiny, they must offend the least amount of their voters as possible. Thus, Christianity cannot be the exclusive, cross-on-your-back, repentance-preaching religion that the Scriptures demand it to be. It must be watered down and inclusive to win votes. Remember, Jesus made Himself King by virtue of being God, fulfilling the Father’s will, being perfect, and conquering sin and death. The popular vote put Him on the cross, not the throne. Why then remove the Lordship of Christ from the conversation when arguing for a biblical definition of marriage?
I support marriage as being the union of one man and one woman…because God said so. It really is that simple. When questioned about marriage I simply open to Matthew 19, read Jesus’ definition of marriage and respond with, “Ya, what He said.”
I simply read what Jesus quoted from Genesis when God describes His purposeful, creative order and institution of the marital institution and say, “Ya, what He said.”
I simply read what the inspired apostle wrote in Romans 1 and 1st Corinthians 6 and respond with, “Ya, what he said.”
I do believe keeping marriage unaltered is better for people and for the country, but that’s not why I hold to it so passionately. I hold to it so passionately because the One who created and established both the institution and the people who partake in the institution has spoken.
That’s the fundamental question to this entire marriage debate: has God spoken?
The “Traditional values” argument in my mind is up against a wall, given that ungodly, sinful people have been on earth nearly as long as the faithful. Thus, there are plenty of historical instances of people, governments, and societies breaking God’s law. Sin is nearly as traditional as righteousness. That is why tradition and pragmatics are not my authority on marriage or government. God is my authority on marriage and government.
Why this position is important is because it moves the conversation to the heart of all sin issues. Homosexuality, marriage, murder, laughter, feeding the hungry, and all other human behavior, in order to be deemed “right” or “wrong,” need a standard of comparison. That is the discussion that needs to be had. That is why when I talk about abortion, homosexuality, rape, or anything else, I am not merely talking about those things. I am talking Gospel. That is the real conversation.
Is homosexuality wrong? Is gay “marriage” sinful and a contradiction of terms? Yes and yes. How do I know this? Because God has spoken.
You don’t believe God has spoken? Well then let’s talk about God. See how we are now discussing what matters most?
Conversations about sin are helpful because Christians have an answer to sin. Thus, all sin conversations can easily be made Jesus conversations.
“I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”
Ya, what He said.