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Affirmations and Denials for a Christian Response to Gay Marriage

The following was sent in to my local newspaper for consideration in the editorial page (it was, however, rejected by the editor):

In no way do I pretend to represent the entirety of the Christian community. Some will be happy with what I say here, others not. But I do want to put these affirmations and denials into the public square with the hopes to further the discussion with my neighbors. So, with that said, I present the following 5 affirmations and denials concerning gay marriage from a Christian perspective.

First, we affirm that marriage is designed by God to be between one man and one woman, until death do they part.

We deny the legitimacy of divorce for any other reason than desertion or adultery. Therefore, no-fault divorce has only served to cheapen the institution of marriage.

Second, we affirm that heterosexuals (Christian ones in particular!) have a shameful record of honoring the institution of marriage, and are primarily responsible for the decay of the institution today.

We deny that the homosexual agenda to advance the cause of gay “marriage” is the only, or even primary, threat to the institution. Hetereosexuals were doing a pretty good job of bringing marriage into ruins long before the rise of the modern gay agenda.

Third, we affirm the legitimacy of gay couples wanting access to basic social “rights.” To that end, we affirm visitation rights for same-sex co-habitants, equal pay for equal work, and social acceptance of the person without prejudice.

We deny that anyone has a right to treat another human being with violence or a lack of dignity.

Fourth, we affirm the right of homosexuals to live safely and peaceable in society.

We therefore deny tolerance for violence or bullying in the public schools.

Fifth, we affirm the true and historical meaning of the word “marriage.” We affirm that God is the maker of things, including the institution of marriage, and is the sovereign Lord who rules over all things, including the public square. Therefore, God is the giver of meaning to all of life. He has given in his Word, the Bible, the final revelation of the meaning of all things. And he has defined marriage as a bond between one man and one woman.

We therefore deny that anyone as the right to come along and re-define the institution according to their preferences. We deny that changing the meaning the word will improve the acceptance of gays in society. They should be afforded the basic “rights” of everyone else, including physical protection under the law, without altering the meaning of words.

So much more can be said, but that should get us started. I believe that there are other ways of gaining rights, protection, and acceptance in society than through redefining terms. Furthermore, while I am not willing to accept homosexual behavior as normative or morally acceptable, I am very concerned that homosexual persons receive the same respect and protection as everyone else. I passionately reject bullying in schools. But not just the bullying of homosexuals, but also bullying of skinny kids with glasses and pimples too! This is a human question, not a question of sexual orientation. All people are created in the image of God, and though fallen should be afforded the respect due to an image-bearer of God. But Christians cannot back away from the truth of God’s Word, even and especially in the public square, to hold up heterosexual marriage (with all its failings!) as God’s will and to call all deviations from that sin while warmly offering to all the hope of the Gospel.

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