I wish this issue would just go away
But it won’t. So I will continue speaking out in love (I’m trying anyway) in support of retaining the joining of one man with one woman as the only accepted form of marriage. The following is what I had to say recently in a debate with another blogger about gay marriage.
Objections to gay marriage are primarily moral in nature, and that’s where I’m going to have to park with my argument. There are societal consequences which weigh against gay marriages, such as a further erosion in the cultural foundation of an optimum family unit of father, mother, and children, already weakened by sex without commitment and responsibility, and easy and accepted divorce. But I think they’re mostly discounted and disbelieved because they rely on expectations which are seen as only potentialities, or case studies which don’t hold much weight in an era when it’s my study against your study.
Yet they are worth pointing out before I get into the moral component. The traditional family unit is the bedrock of society. A man and a woman commit themselves to each other for life, and raise children in a secure environment, training them to be confident and considerate contributors to the welfare of their community. A strong family greatly benefits society.
Gay marriage upsets that foundation. You will say that gay couples can have strong marriages with confident and considerate children as well. It upsets it because though the children may seem confident, they have missed out on the influence of either a mother or father which is so necessary to a child’s proper development. Certainly plenty of children from single parent households seem to make it alright. But a two-parent, stable household is preferable and the standard we should be upholding, encouraging, and supporting.
That’s what pro-family organizations like the ones Chick-fil-A supports are striving to do, while at the same time coming alongside the moms and dads who find themselves raising children on their own through widowhood or divorce. But to condone and approve of family units that are intentional in their lack of either a mother or father is like purposefully removing the center I-beam of a building. The structure may not fall immediately, but over time it definitely will.
There are case studies, whether you choose to accept them or not, which demonstrate negative outcomes in the lives of children raised by homosexual parents. The most recent one can be read here. The results show the following among adult children of lesbian mothers as compared with those with married mother-father parents: four times as many receiving welfare growing up, over 3 times as many currently on public assistance, half as many currently employed full-time, 3 times as many reporting having an affair while married or cohabiting, and over twice as many who recently thought about suicide, among other negative outcomes. You can see the numbers here.
You may counter that children of divorce also exhibit negative consequences but we allow divorce for practically no reason at all. And you would be correct. There are groups and movements working to discourage divorce and help couples work through difficulties and stay true to their commitments, but the divorce rate is so high, even among Christians, that it is unlikely you would get enough support for changing the divorce laws.
These societal consequences play in heavily to whether or not gays have a “right” to marry each other. Some rights are self-evident, others are determined by a general consensus. Basic anatomy and physiology as well as thousands of years of male-female couples and any resulting children being the generally accepted family unit in every culture, speak loudly against it being self-evident. So great efforts have been launched to make it true by general consensus.
But simply asserting gay marriage as a right because the individuals are adults and love each other is not valid. As a society, at least in my state, we currently deny an adult man and woman who love each other to marry if they have the same father and mother, and even if they are first cousins. We also deny that right to individuals who are already married to someone else. And we have good reasons for it, just as we do for denying it to homosexual couples.
But the primary reason to oppose gay marriage for me, and I would have to guess for most Christians, is that God opposes it. From the destruction of Sodom in Genesis 19 to the labeling of homosexuality as an “abomination” in Leviticus 18 and 20, to Romans 1:26-27 where it is called “dishonorable” and “shameless”, 1 Corinthians 6:9 where “men who practice homosexuality” are counted among the “unrighteous” and as “contrary to sound doctrine” in 1 Timothy 1:10, and Jude 1:7 which references the “unnatural desire” which brought about the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, it is clear that God considers homosexuality a sin.
The unfortunate fact that not everyone believes in and submits to God does not render Him incidental to the discussion. He exists and has supreme authority over the entire universe and everything and everyone in it whether you believe it or not. And as one who does believe and submit, I am called to be salt and light in the world, exposing the darkness of sin and lovingly holding out the light of truth, and of God’s forgiveness and salvation.
So because God opposes homosexuality, I cannot accept, condone, or approve of efforts to promote it as good and natural. And more so, I should actively oppose such efforts because they contribute to an attitude among the general population that God IS incidental and should not even be acknowledged, much less obeyed. This attitude then pervades the media, educational institutions, and even the churches, which makes it a very personal threat as it becomes an influence against godliness in the lives of my children and others I love.
Despite my opposition to homosexuality as an accepted lifestyle, I do understand that gays feel their attraction to persons of the same sex is inborn and believe they should simply be allowed to live out who they are in the same ways that heterosexuals do. Though I disagree, I sympathize with their plight and want very much not to make life harder for them. Christians need to reach out to the gay community in love, just as we should to those who are trapped in other sins. Our churches should be welcoming and warm to everyone, without compromising the truth of God’s Word. And many are.
I sincerely wish we could all agree and live in harmony. I hate being in opposition to anyone. But my conscience won’t let me accept what God says is wrong. So I resist, and I voice my beliefs, and I pray He uses me to change at least one heart and mind.