The thought police are on the rampage. More and more often we are hearing of people who have their first amendment rights trampled by left leaning corporations, usually of the Hollywood type, or by anti-constitution judges. The most recent example would be the Benhem brothers whose real estate TV show was cancelled by HGTV. The reason? Well, none was officially given but the obvious is, well, obvious. They are Christian by faith and are opposed to abortion and choose to define marriage the same way God does, as between one man and one woman, for life. So much for tolerance.
Now we hear that a federal judge has struck down Oregon’s ban on same-sex marriage which was determined by the voters in 2004. This is the latest in a string of such decisions striking down state marriage laws put in place by the voters. We know that just because the majority votes for something that doesn’t make it right but I wonder where we are headed when we allow judges to overturn the will of the people?
But let’s think about marriage. Who came up with the idea in the first place? This is not a hard question to answer, God is the one who created man and woman. He is the One who determined that marriage would be between a man and a woman. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed” (Genesis 2:24–25, NKJV).
There is no shame when a man and a woman who are married engage in intimate relations. Any sexual activity outside that bond is sinful. The Bible is crystal clear on that subject. It condemns homosexuality right along with fornication and adultery. Such behavior is shameful (cf. Rom. 1:21-32). Here is what God says at one point, “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9–11, NKJV).
What I find interesting in the passage from Paul in First Corinthians is the phrase, “nor adulterers, nor homosexuals.” Now, if I were a big TV preacher, or had a large church and my views defining marriage God’s way somehow became known to the public at large, the homosexual crowd would likely protest me and my church, as they have already done to others. They would call me a bigot, a homophobic Neanderthal, and other names that I cannot repeat. On the other hand, if were to preach against adultery and leave the homosexuals out of it, there would be no protest.
There is a big difference between homosexuals and adulterers in relation to their response to the biblical definition of their sin. There are not groups of adulterers crying foul when we Bible believers call their actions sin. The truth is, they know they are wrong. Now, they may not come to hear preaching that condemns their sin, but they are not gathering up in groups to protest the church’s so-called “hate speech” against adulterers. They, the adulterers, know that we do not hate them. In fact, they know that we really love them and want the best for them. That’s why we tell them their actions are a sin against Holy God. I have found that through preaching and counseling many an adulterer has come to admit they were grieving the Holy Spirit of God and that repentance was the answer.
I know that there are many adulterers who justify their sin, much like homosexuals do. I get that. In fact, they might even try to say that in their particular circumstance their sin was perfectly acceptable. Society often agrees with them. But God does not. Unlike the homosexuals; however, adulterers aren’t out demanding the rights to marry or join the church.
Well, why shouldn’t adulterers be able to marry? Someone will surely point out that adulterers, by definition, are already married! While this is certainly true, apparently they are not married to the one they want to be married to. Their whole problem could be solved if we just allow them marry as many as they would like, all at once. While it is beyond probable that the first spouse is likely to object, we can enlightenedly point out that such objection constitutes “hate speech.”
Here’s the bottom line: marriage belongs to God. It is His idea, His creation, His plan, and so the rules are His to make. Governments can call apples oranges but that won’t change the facts. They can call same-sex couples (triples, quadruples, etc.) “married” if they so choose, but the fact is two or more homosexuals will never be married, at least not in the eyes of God. It is good that the state should recognize and agree with God’s definition of marriage. But if the state fails in its responsibility, that will not change God’s definition.
If you stand for God’s definition of marriage you will likely be attacked and called names. I was recently called a bigot for siding with God and His Word. But the reality is, those who believe that homosexual behavior of any kind is acceptable are the bigots. They are bigoted against God! If you agree with God then you actually love sinners (homosexuals in this case) more than those who condone their behavior. The truth is that a homosexual lives in a house that is burning down. If you love them you will warn them and tell them there is One who can bring the water of life to rescue their souls. Having shared the love of Christ and the plan of salvation with a number of homosexuals over the years I can testify to the fact that God can and will set them free from their sinful lifestyle.
Marriage belongs to God and we should leave it in His hands. It is a beautiful thing and a great picture of the relationship of the church to the Lord Jesus Christ (cf. Eph. 5). Let’s not corrupt this beautiful picture of God’s grace and glory with man’s corruption and degradation. Marriage – one man and one woman, for life.
Tom, Your blog was the first “non-teaching” writing of yours that I have read. It reads just like you speak…conversationally. I thought it clear and concise. Keep ’em coming, brother!
Way to go Tom.
Hi Chaps – like the blog
Great read. Looking forward to the next one.
What if the voters of a state in vast numbers vote to legally recognize same-sex marriage? Should their votes and voices in this debate not be heard?
Jeffrey, thanks for your comment. I think it highly unlikely that “vast numbers” would vote to legalize same-sex unions. And besides that, their voices in the debate are being heard because the media is their voice. It is the voices of those who believe in traditional marriage that are not being heard. Even if such a vote took place that would not change the fact that marriage belongs to God and it is His to control and define. The Supreme Court has ruled against God already, since the time of my original post. That doesn’t change God’s Word on it. The majority isn’t always right and in this case the majority is not in favor of changes to centuries of human history regarding marriage based on God’s law. Marriage, by definition, will always be between one man and one woman.
Tom Rush, if we relied on the Old Testament , that would negate the argument that marriage is to be defined as being between one man and one woman.
Ragnar, that is an incorrect assumption. First, we rely on the Bible not just one portion of it. Second, we rely on Jesus’ understanding of the Old Testament. Clearly He understood the concept to be one man and one woman (Matt. 19:1-10). Third, if you only used the Old Testament the only conclusion that you could come to would be that God’s intent from the beginning was one man for one woman (Gen. 1 & 2). In Deut. 17:17 kings were forbidden to “multiply wives.” The fact that men in the OT ignored God’s instruction doesn’t change the instruction. Your assumption that because some, or perhaps even many, were disobedient to God’s law somehow nullifies God’s law is not a good biblical approach. If you follow the lives of those with many wives you will discover that their actions brought them much grief. God’s standard is clear, one man for one woman.