A lover spurned
– What if we held tightly to the idea that to love one another is holy and sacred because love comes from God?
– But let one person find love, comfort or companionship in someone of the same gender and suddenly the laws of God are invoked.
– Huh, it’s almost like maybe Jesus cared more that we love each other and less about who we love.
– Nobody should ever feel so hopeless because they can’t love whoever they want to love.
– Our loving God couldn’t possibly want this for them.
We’ve got it backwards…or upside down. One is two and two is one. We’ve flipped God’s primary commands and put them in the order that we think is right.
The above comments are from a recent Facebook discussion about same-sex marriage where love was invoked by pretty much everyone as that which blesses and condones such unions. But the way I see it, there is a fatal flaw in this argument when it is used by believers in the God of the Bible. Certainly love should be our guiding principle in how we treat others, but loving our neighbor does not supersede loving our God.
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” – Matthew 22:36-40
The second is like it, but it’s still second to the first commandment to love God. So if we are disregarding what God says as we preach love for our neighbor, we are doing wrong. We are breaking the first and greatest commandment. Surely loving God means not putting our neighbor above him. And not ignoring what he has unequivocally said is abhorrent in order not to be seen as bigoted and intolerant.
You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination. – Leviticus 18:22
If you love me, you will keep my commandments. – John 14:15
Jesus said we are to love God AND love our neighbor. The two are not mutually exclusive. And since love means wanting the best for the beloved, and the very best thing for every human being is to know God and be in his will, we are not loving our gay friend when we affirm him in his sin. Nor our straight friend.
Rather, speaking the truth in love… – Ephesians 4:15
…we live out love for God and our neighbor at the same time when we say, “I love you, but what you are doing is not right.”
There are many today who deny that homosexual behavior is an abomination in the eyes of God. Here’s an excellent resource addressing and refuting this position.
Or for a brief overview of homosexuality and the Bible, check out this short video.
Funny, I don’t see anything in this scripture — A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:34-35 — that eliminates “certain” people.
Further, the bias against homosexuality is based in the Hebrew bible — and references to it in the NT are from those scriptures. Yet Jesus clearly said A NEW command I give you …
Old … new. Get the picture?
It continues to amaze me how Christians bend and twist the scriptures to fit their personal biases. How much plainer can it be put … you must love one another.
It doesn’t seem like you even read my post, Nan. I specifically said we are to love everyone. And the prohibition against homosexual behavior is in the New Testament too.
I also am amazed at “how Christians bend and twist the scriptures to fit their personal biases.” But I’m not the one doing that.
Oh I read your post. Twice. And what I see is you trying to justify the bias against same-sex relationships. Your comment — I love you, but what you are doing is not right.” sums it up perfectly.
As I previously indicated, Christians are quite “selective” in their teachings. Certain parts of the Hebrew Bible are totally discounted, ignored, and not followed because, well, “they were meant for the people of that time and and are no longer necessary.” Yet others, like the one you’re pinpointing, are (somehow) relevant for today.
Love in its purest form (via Jesus) encompasses ALL people, no matter what their color, nationality, religious (or non-religious) belief, financial status … OR their sexual preference.
So is there any behavior which we are justified in pointing out as immoral or wrong? Even to someone we love?
Christians (in this case, but in other religions as well) are the ones who are claiming something is immoral and wrong. They base their claims on a book written several thousand years ago by individuals who lived under far different circumstances.
While believers are free to live by and follow the parts of that book they feel are appropriate and justified, others, who do not place the same value or reverence on these teachings, should not be required, or devalued, for choosing to live differently.
Jesus did not condemn the (immoral) “woman at the well.” Seems there’s a lesson to be learned here.
So is that a “No”?
Short answers rarely do the trick when discussing religious topics so assume what you will.