To be sure, this story about the on-going battle over so-called gay marriage is disturbing, even if it is not surprising.
The issue of “gay marriage” is an important one, and one about which Christians should be gravely concerned. I think most would agree. But what is interesting is to consider the reason why each Christian thinks they should be concerned. I have a feeling, for instance, that not all Christians have the same reasons for being concerned.
This is what I mean. If marriage for gays becomes the law of the land, what will that mean? For some Christians, it may mean something very near to it being the end of the world. It may well mean that we are losing another finger on our gripe upon the culture. It will mean our culture will become less Christian. It may even mean that the church will become increasingly marginalized in society, perhaps even to the point of receiving persecution for standing up for righteousness sake.
Certainly, these are lamentable things. And I believe Christians should do all they can in their limited power as citizens of this country to stop it. That may mean going to the voting booth, praying, and protesting peaceably. But, that said, I would suggest that should gays “get marriage,” it would not exactly be an apocalyptic crisis.
After all, its not like we haven’t seen this before. In fact, it would bring our culture more in line with the culture in which the early New Testament church lived. In fact, such a lamentable scenario may just make the New Testament all that much more real to the Christian. Try imaging an America where gay marriage is legal and the church is marginalized, and then read the Book of Revelation. Or, how about the 1 Corinthians? Could it be that living in a Christianly nation has blinded the church today to the hard realities and teachings of the New Testament? Might it be that such a situation, in God’s providence, will become the occasion for a renewal and reformation in the church? In other words, would it really be the end of the world or would it be the stage upon which the Gospel finds its greatest moment in American history?
Another way to put is in the form of this question: can you see just how optimistic amillennialism is and how pessimistic a transformational form of postmillennialism really is?
Don’t mistaken me. No Christian, irrespective of his eschatological view, should hope for the legalization of wickedness. As I said above, we should militate against it. But Jesus said his Kingdom is not of this world, and I take great optimistic hope in that fact. The Kingdom and its progress does not hinge upon the decisions of the world’s politicians. But Jesus reigns as the King of Kings no matter what the governments of the Gentiles do. And the church always seems to thrive, even if in smaller numbers, when it finds itself having to swim against the tide of the culture. Yes, it will be harder. But, then again, the New Testament church did not have it easy and the Lord never promised that being a Christians would be easy. And while we never hope for or ask to suffer, yet the testimony of the New Testament church has always been that believers have thanked God that they were counted worthy to suffer for the name of Christ.