In 2007, I wrote the following blog about gay marriage. The recent efforts in North Carolina to ban gay marriage in that state has prompted me to re-publish it along with the original comments. If you have time, please read and join the discussion.
… This weekend my wife and I had a talk with our oldest son. Two people in our family are gay. I’ll keep the conversation to myself, but it was at that time I had finally reconciled the “homosexual dilemma” within Christianity. I realized that there isn’t one.
Should a gay man or woman be allowed to get married? I don’t see any reason why not. A very strong argument is the debate over whether banning gay marriage is constitutional or not, but there is always an even stronger presence that over weighs the argument. The “Christian Right.” You hear things like, “defending family values,” “protecting the sanctity of marriage,” and that “God detests homosexuality.” I’ve never really agreed with those statements and I wrestle with the last.
Can’t gay parents instill strong family values and morals into their children? Am I really supposed to protect the sanctity of marriage? Are straight couples sanctifying the marriage bed with an average 50% divorce rate? You know, it’s true that in the Old Testament(Leviticus 18), the act of two men sleeping together is called detestable, but there are so many other commands listed that make little sense in this day and age that it becomes clear that context is important when studying that scripture. It isn’t meant to be taken purely word for word. What’s funny though, is that the New Testament mentions that God hates divorce. Not divorced people, or gay marriages; divorce. What is James Dobson doing about that?
The truth is that I am not called as a Christian ( and neither are you if you are one) to protect the sanctity of marriage against homosexuals. I can’t find anything in the bible that alludes to such a command. In fact, I’m not called or required to defend or protect gays, marriage, straights, Christian parenting, or God. Instead, I believe that everyone was created to have a deep relationship with God, to follow Jesus’ every step and learn to live a life like his, to have real meaningful relationships with others, to serve and love others and put them before themselves, and to share the desire God has to reconcile with his children with others. Most importantly, I’m commanded to do all these things in love.
Can a gay person actually become Christian while still being gay? The Apostle Paul wrote that through Jesus Christ, everyone was made equal. Take a look at that word - everyone. Notice there aren’t any exceptions at the end? It doesn’t matter what sin you are wrestling with in your life. Jesus followers are seen as holy and perfect in God’s eyes. Every one of them. In Christian theology, the Old Testament times were a time when men and women were constantly setting themselves apart from God and His presence by their actions (sin). They had to get right with God through a series of rituals and life disciplines that lasted for thousands of years. By coming to us as Jesus, living a perfect (sinless) life, dying on the cross, and raising from the dead, God was able to offer Himself up as a final sacrifice to end that ritualistic way of life. Finally, an end was put to the animal sacrifices, the food rituals, the extremely strict guidelines that helped to preserve His chosen people. Real freedom and real equality for everyone.
Jesus never spoke about ending slavery or giving women equal rights as men. The reason, was because He knew that when people listened and lived the way He and the Father taught us to live both in words and in actions, we would understand that owning people as slaves is wrong, treating women as less then men is wrong, decimating Native Americans for land is wrong, and not allowing homosexuals the same basic human rights that we were created for - getting married, adopting children, being Christians, or priests, or whatever - is wrong. You want to know what I think God is thinking?
“Why is it taking you people so long?”