Gay Marriage Stuff – Part 1

On December 20, 2013 a U.S. District Judge ordered Utah’s defense of marriage legislation unconstitutional, in effect overturning a legally approved ban on same sex marriage that was passed by Utah voters in 2004. Many states across this nation seem to be dropping like flies through both judicial and legislative processes as of late regarding the issue of same sex marriage; although Utah may seem to be just one more of those states, both sides of the debate recognize that this decision in this state has massive repercussions. Usually, I do not like to wade into politics in my writing, but since I believe that the issue of marriage and sexuality is more spiritual than political in nature, I desired to write a short piece to help our church who ministers in this state to think correctly and Biblically through these issues.

Before we look at how Christians should respond, let us be certain we understand the issues well. For one committed to the Bible as their sole authority for faith and practice, same sex marriage is an impossibility. Neither society nor governments created the institution of marriage; therefore, no society nor government has any authority to define what marriage is. Let us be clear conservative societies have no right to define marriage as being between one man and one woman and so-called progressive societies have no right to define marriage as between two men or two women. Governments, societies, cultures, communities do not define marriage. God defines marriage and he has done so in his Holy Bible. In that sense, same sex marriage is a pretend agreement that the government is expecting everyone to pretend exists. So whether by legislation or by judicial overreach, the governments given to us are asking us (or commanding us) to pretend the imaginary is real. The way in which the liberal society does this is by redefining what marriage is. God has defined marriage as a lifetime covenant made between one man and one woman whereby they leave their current familial setting and vow to forsake all others thus creating a new family unit which God may or may not bless with children and in so doing provide one another with suitable companionship until one or both individuals dies. This is God’s ideal, but the war against Biblical marriage began long before the latest rulings for same sex marriage. The attack against Biblical marriage in this particular society began when marriages stopped being about lifetime covenants made between a man and woman and validated by God as their witness and began to be about “expressions of love and affection.” When marriage ceases to be about two naturally distinct genders covenanting together to create a new family unit in cohesive, loving, and mutually beneficial companionship and becomes more about an expression of deep affection; it is not long before it begins to make sense that two members of the same sex are thought to have the right to express deep affection. By deemphasizing the covenant aspect of marriage and emphasizing the emotive affection in a marriage, many have been convinced that it is only natural if a man and woman can show their love by getting married why two men cannot or two women show their love by getting marriage. You are not opposed to love and commitment are you? It my civil right to love whoever I desire! By changing the argument from being about the covenant of marriage, to being about so called “love” and appealing to emotion, liberals have won popular opinion in the up and coming generation.

We also need to understand that the issue is not about civil rights. The lawyer for the same-sex couples who brought suit against Utah leading to the judge’s decision used this argument, she said that “gay marriage [is the] civil rights movement of this generation.” Think carefully, how is marriage, gay or straight, a civil right? How is it being denied to anyone if it is? What is being denied is government recognition for certain beneficial purposes (like tax purposes or legal purposes). But most of those benefits from being married are already legally obtainable in most if not all states. Most states allow “civil unions” for legal reasons between same-sex couples. And if that fails, same-sex couples are able to get “power of attorney” for most everything else. I am not for these things, but it shows that legal recourse for supposed “same-sex couples” has been possible before the challenges to Biblical marriage. There are some things that are different, such as tax benefits, but that is different, single people do not get tax benefits married couples do; neither widows or widowers. Is it not a civil right that single people get the same benefits as married people? The reason why any group gets tax advantage because of their relationship situation is because somewhere along the lines, our government deemed it beneficial to societal structure for certain relationships to be encouraged. The Government cannot force anyone to get married, but they can provide benefits to those who do, knowing that heterosexual marriage relationships creates cultural and moral stability for the society as a whole. The government does not have to give advantage to married couples, but they certainly are free to if it is shown that such an advantage benefits the society. My point in this, is that it should be clear that all the oppositions to bans on gay marriage is not a civil rights issue, but rather a desire to call evil good and good evil. It is as Romans 1 says, not wanting to retain God in knowledge or express gratitude to God, but to suppress God’s truth on the matter.

Finally, we need to understand that the speed and pervasiveness of the attack on Biblical value in our society is at a breakneck pace and unless God intervenes our society will continue in this trajectory. The resolve of the judicial branch in our nation to defy the will of a vast majority of people in favor of this judges personal feelings regarding what marriage is and who should be married is shocking. This is what has most people, Christian or not reeling. This ruling seems so bold. A valid legal process was enacted in 2004 where the will of the people was heard and the constitution properly amended to reflect the will of the citizens; but that civil way of conducting law was rudely attacked by one judge expressing his personal opinions. The media would have us believe that those who oppose same-sex marriage are the minority of backwards religious zealots. If that is so, how do they explain that 32 states have bans on gay marriage by either Constitutional amendment or state law; but only 18 states have legal same-sex marriage, and seven of those were only by court decision (Utah being the latest), eight by legislation and only three by popular vote. The media would have you believe that if you are opposed to same-sex marriage you are the woeful minority who needs to move into the 21st century, but the actual math does not measure up. My argument is not for a political solution, but I share these numbers to point out that the worldly agenda that is opposed to Biblical truths one of which is Biblical marriage will skew the facts, twist the numbers, use propaganda and coercion in an effort to get their desired results. This will happen so quickly in the months and years ahead, that many professing Christians may find themselves checking their Bibles at the door and embracing godless ideologies.

(to be continued)

Comments

comments

10 Comments

  1. Lou said:

    [Here is an interesting article I found on the amazing net. Any reaction?]

    USA – from Puritans to Impure-itans

    Any connection between beautiful New England and predicted disasters?
    Take same-sex marriage. I would have guessed that a “sin” city (San Francisco? Las Vegas?) would have been the first to legalize it.
    Oddly it’s been America’s birthplace that’s wanted to be the first place to end America and its values! It’s been a Nor’easter of Perversion (helping to fulfill Luke 17’s “days of Lot”) that began in (you guessed it) Boston in 2004!
    New England has gone from the Mayflower Compact to the Gay Power Impact, from Providence to decadence, from Bible thumpers to God dumpers, from university to diversity to perversity, and from the land of the Great Awakening to God’s Future Shakening that’ll make the Boston bombings look like Walden Pond ripples by comparison!
    The same Nor’easter has been spreading south and as far west as Washington State where, after swelling up with pride, Mt. Rainier may wish to celebrate shame-sex marriage by having a blast that Seaddlepated folks can share in lava-land!
    The same Luke 17 prediction is tied to the Book of Revelation which speaks of the cities that God will flatten because of same-sexism – including American cities – a scenario I’ll have to accept since I can’t create my own universe and decree rules for it.
    I’ve just been analyzing the world’s terminal “religion” that has its “god,” its accessories, its “rites,” and even a flag. It’s an obsession that the infected converts are willing to live for, fight for – and even die for!
    Some claim that Jesus never mentioned homosexuality. Well, when gays have birthdays they don’t say what they don’t want but say positively what they do want.
    Likewise Jesus didn’t get negative and mention every sexual variation that He knew mankind would invent, but stated positively that marriage involves only a man and a woman!
    Want more facts? Google “God to Same-Sexers: Hurry Up,” “Government-Approved Illegals,” “FOR GAYS ONLY: Jesus predicted,” “Filthy Still Club (Rev. 22:11),” and “The Background Obama Can’t Cover Up.”

    January 6, 2014
  2. Eskil said:

    hello,

    What do you think of this Christian Pastors’ video:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kxBPgm_5-vw

    How do your church deal with such gay people? Do you invite them in, kick them outside, kill them like Westboro Baptist Church? Or are homossexuals those who God has given not to save????

    March 15, 2014
  3. pmatt said:

    Lou,
    I am sorry, but I had a hard time following anything of what you said. I think you need to work on your communication skills. I at least got the part, you are against gay marriage…I think.

    March 15, 2014
  4. pmatt said:

    Eskil,
    Thank you for your comment.
    I will have to watch that video when I get a chance.

    I can answer how the church I am a part of responds to gay people. I am in the process of writing a part 2 to this article that will give more details of what I believe the Christian response ought to be. But I will respond briefly to what you have asked in this comment.

    As far as our church is concerned, everyone who is willing to hear the Bible taught is welcome to come to our assembly and learn. Of course we invite them in. We invite all sinners in, for the only reason we as believers can even worship God in truth and holiness is because he has redeemed us from our sin and has created in us a new heart and desires to serve him. Paul the Apostle tells the Corinthians that “of such were some of you.” This statement gives us perspective. First, that no sin is beyond the grace of God, the cross of Christ covers sins of the heart such as pride, selfishness, anger, bitterness, unkindness; sins of sexuality, adultery, immorality, homosexuality, etc.; and sins of idolatry… where sin abounds grace does much more abound. Second, this statement tells us that when God does redeem and justify a sinner, whatever the sin may be, he concludes that they were in these sins. The repentant sinner is given a new hope and standing, but also a new nature. So we invite all sinners, including homosexual persons to hear the gospel, and we smile and we shake their hands and we invite them to our dinners and we ask them if they know Jesus and we plead for them to repent of their sin, and we tell them we will pray for them, and we tell them that God does not accept us as sinners the way we are, but welcomes us to come to him in faith being sinners and from there he will make us holy.

    Of course, I believe that all acts of murder committed are sinful and would never condone the killing of any type of sinner. How is it like Christ to kill a sinner, sending them to judgment. It is like Christ to call sinners to repentance. I detest the teachings and practices of Westboro, I have a hard time believing they are Christians, their bitterness is palpable and their compassion is absent. But I have never heard of them killing homosexuals.

    The last question you asked is answered in my previous statements. Yes, homosexuals are those whom God will save. This is why I believe the political and social actions legitimizing sinful behaviors is so dangerous. If an adulterer or murder or violent person is told that his lifestyle is “normal” and that he is fully accepted, then how am I loving them by winking and nodding at their sin? I would apply the same thing to those who are caught up in the lustful sin of homosexual behavior. If I love them I will tell them what God says about all sin.

    I have had multiple interactions with those who identify themselves as GLBT. Two things I want them to know. That God has told us in the Bible what is holy and what is sin. And that God will redeem them of their sin as he has done me if they will repent (change their mind) and believe the Gospel. But this message is what I will teach to everyone I can.

    Thanks for your interaction.

    March 15, 2014
  5. Eskil said:

    Pastor,
    I applaud your words. You have had many encounters with those who identify themselves as GLBT. Has this been within your own church? So have you yourself helped overcome or know of any specific individuals that were able to overcome this “affliction” ?
    I am leaving you a youtube video of Dr. Wesley Hill that I would like you to listen to and watch. There are plenty of church responses against those who desire to live the gay life style. There are plenty of church responses against those with who consider themselves “gay” who believe it’s Okay to be gay, have same sex relationships (Marriage) and still be considered christian. I say that there are a number of persons , with same sex attraction struggles, that are within the church or wanting to be in the church and agree with the traditional church’s view on homosexuality. They are just hidden within your ranks, afraid to speak up in fear of rejection. For all the church is against, where is the support for those of us??? For “us”, there is a need for spiritual, emotional, and physical support. Let me explain the “physical” aspect I am talking about. Those of us who choose the celibate and chaste path need other outlets for loneliness, and companionship. We need strong Christian brothers and sisters who not only help each other study ,embrace , and live the teachings of the Bible, but who also would be willing to give friendship and community and fellowship, to those of us who struggle with this. That need is not fulfilled just by meeting with other Christians one or two hours a week on Sundays. The rest of the week , or even more so the rest of life can be a struggle in loneliness, and temptation without support structures. If I came to your church and asked for such help.. would it be there, and would you help in discipleship, accountability, encouragement, counsel, and would your church also be as accepting? Like everywhere, words and action are often two mismatched actions.

    Paul states in his own words in Corinthians regarding sinners including homosexuals, ” And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” Paul believe there were those that actually were able to bear their cross, deny their sin and follow Christ complete to victory. Many so called Christians don’t believe this is possible. Do you believe this is true for homosexuals? There can actually be change? I’d like to meet some real examples.

    Waiting for the return of Christ and the redemption completed.

    Blessings,

    Eskil

    April 13, 2014
  6. Eskil said:

    Pastor,
    Sorry for repeating myself in a couple of places in my message above. Guess I should check it over before sending the “send” button, LOL. Maybe you can correct the message for me before posting. I know you have addressed some of those issues already. Sometimes though we just need it reiterated to begin to believe. Thanks.

    Christ’s love, grace, and peace.

    Eskil

    April 13, 2014
  7. Eskil said:

    Pastor,

    One more thing. In my statement above, “So have you yourself helped overcome or know of any specific individuals that were able to overcome this “affliction” ? The “So have you yourself helped over come…” was not meant to be misunderstood of me asking you if you were struggling with this issue and had overcome it. It was meant to say, ” Have you yourself had experience working with individuals who struggle with this sin to help them overcome it?” I could have worded it more clearly, sorry. Not good in my English.

    Eskil

    April 13, 2014
  8. pmatt said:

    Eskil,

    Thank you for your kind interaction. In my first response to your original comment, I said that I had multiple interactions with those who identify with LGBT. I need to clarify. I would not say that I have had many interactions; I have had some. Sadly, I can tell you that those interactions have not been with those who viewed homosexual activity sinful or if they did, they changed their minds and gave over to an unbiblical view.

    I cannot promise that a church will always respond rightly to one who is a brother who struggles with same-sex attraction, for we are all sinners. But I agree with you that those who struggle with same-sex attraction who choose to fight against the flesh’s tendency to act in lust, need the support and care and community that all of us sinners need. I also agree with your point that due to the particular nature of this struggle, the loneliness is probably more difficult. I would hope that if you were to come into our assembly that we would do everything we could to encourage you, to support you and to help keep you keep accountable to holiness. We would at least seek to do that, whether we would be successful is uncertain since we all struggle with obedience and submission to God’s commands to love one another and bear one another’s burdens at times. God has given me the job of equipping the saints to do the work of the ministry (Eph 4) and that means everyone who comes to faith in Christ regardless of what particular manifestation of the flesh they struggle with, as much as God’s grace enables, help would be there.

    A particular song we sing in our congregation says that our call is to “Love the captive soul and to rage against the captor.” That is what we try to do imperfectly.

    I am more than happy to interact in this blog, but if you would like to email me for a more personal conversation, I would love to be an encouragement to you. My email is pmatt@graceutah.com

    God bless,
    pmatt

    April 13, 2014
  9. Eskil said:

    Pastor,
    You made the suggestion to write to you via your e-mail. I have written to you twice now with no response?

    Eskil

    April 25, 2014
  10. pmatt said:

    I am sorry Eskil, my email must have filtered them out and they have not delivered to me. I tried emailing you with the address you commented with but my email wouldnt send it. Please email me again at this address pmatty79@gmail.com.

    April 25, 2014

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