Marriage equality. I’ll admit, as a Christian I’ve struggled some with this concept. I was taught, and raised, and reaffirmed that a marriage is between a man and a woman. Adam and Eve were man and woman. In Leviticus 18:22, Moses writes a very succinct statement about having sexual relations with someone of the same sex. The rest of this chapter still applies today as well (concerning not having sex with your mother, aunt or other relatives or with animals) so why do we want to take this one section out? Why do we constantly argue about this one line?
This week I came across two articles with a list of 40 questions. This one by a pastor and this one by a political science professor. I encourage you to read both and do your own research and soul searching. I did. I think both had some valid points. As a Christian who does not believe in gay marriage I was more partial to the first one mentioned here.
In the first article, I like question #2. What Bible verses led you to change your mind? He is referring back to his first question asking if the reader believes gay marriage is something to be celebrated. I answered “no” to question 1 because I could not point to answers for question 2.
In the second article, question #2 is Do you accept that sexual orientation is highly resistant to attempts to change it? My answer: sure. So are my attempts at not eating chocolate. A sex offenders urges are highly resistant to change as well – up to 34% repeat their offenses even after being incarcerated. But being “resistant to change” doesn’t mean you just have to keep doing it. Drug addicts are highly resistant to change too, but some overcome it. As a Christian (note that if you are NOT a Christian, I am not excluding you per se, but the part of Leviticus I am discussing here was written for other Christians) we are called daily to reject the sins we have ingrained in our souls and to follow Christ instead. It’s a daily struggle for every single person. We are all sinners – sinning in our own unique ways.
The second article asks many questions about how many gay or same-sex couples the reader knows. I’ll admit – not many. But I have known gay people and have found them to be exactly like everyone else I’ve met: just a person. The article also asks how many LGBT I have spoken to about their sexuality… none. I barely talk to my husband about it. Why should I discuss something so private with people I barely know? It seems insane to me. Their sexual orientation and relationships are none of my business. And mine is none of theirs.
Question 19 asks Did you know that, for most of church history, Christians believed that the Bible taught the earth stood still at the center of the universe? Huh? I had to do some research on this one. There is no biblical basis for this question and I don’t see how it relates to the LBGT issue at all. I believe it’s just the author trying to discredit Christians by making a vague statement. Joshua 10:13 discusses how Joshua prayed for the earth to stand still and God complied for ONE DAY (I admit, without seeing this occur, I do not know how it happened…it’ll be something I ask when I get to heaven). There is no mention about the earth being the center of the universe, although, at the time, and up until some scientist (Galileo I think) proved it wasn’t, people thought the earth was the center of the universe. The Bible does not state that. Roman Catholics have taught a similar concept to this, but again, it is not biblical. And, in this context, not relevant.
#24 Do you believe that the Bible explicitly teaches that all gay Christians must be single and celibate for life? Nope. I believe the Bible says not to be gay.
There are several questions from 25 – 39 that I don’t understand and will need further research of my own. I cannot give feedback for the Paul question about men’s long hair. Although I do not think he was speaking of a cultural norm, I’m not sure what his point truly was. Most, if not all, of the depictions of men during that time period had longer hair than most do today. Again, I feel, it’s the author’s (of the article) way of trying to discredit the Bible. I will point out that Paul does say at the end, But if anyone wants to argue about this, I simply say that we have no other custom than this, and neither do God’s other churches. (I Cor. 11:16). So… even Paul didn’t think it was really a big deal. So, again, why are we talking about it in this context?
But the very last question in the second article I truly love, Are you willing to be in fellowship with Christians who disagree with you on this topic?
A resounding YES. Because that is what God calls for us to do – fellowship and love one another. We are all sinners. Every. Last. Person. If I cannot extend grace and fellowship to my fellow sinners, than I am not Christian. If I cannot be willing to break bread with all people, then I cannot be called a child of God.
As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend. Proverbs 27:17 NIV
I appreciate both these articles (even though I agree more with one) because it is causing me to sharpen my faith, to hone my skills and to ask questions of my beliefs. Nothing has changed for me, except that my faith is now stronger and I know more about the Word. I thank both authors for that. And I hope this post will cause you to do your own research and find your own facts too.