Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Judicial Déjà Vu

Last Friday our nations Supreme Court by a razor thin margin of 5 to 4 struck down any remaining same-sex marriage bans as unconstitutional. Thus in effect it became the law of the land. I want to start out by saying that although this grieves me greatly it was not surprising and did not send me into a panic. First of all, I was 99.9% sure that the court would make this decision. This did not happen overnight. Thus I was (as much as is possible with something like this) ready for it.

Secondly, it is worth noting that we as believers should have no expectation that the world would side with us on this crucial matter. There is no way for the carnal man to completely understand the divine picture of marriage and the parameters which God has put on it. If they do not love God why would they care about the way he wants us to live?

With these things being said allow me to share with you what does concern me. It saddened me a great deal to see the number of people that I know who claim the name of Christ who voiced approval of this decision. Many people use the excuse that we are all sinners and we shouldn’t judge. I have a couple questions for you. First of all, if you’re going to use the argument that we are all sinners are you not in fact admitting that same-sex relationships are part of a sinful lifestyle? If they are, why should they be recognized by our country (or perhaps more importantly by its Christians) as a normal way of life? If they are not, the “We are all sinners” argument doesn’t fly. You can’t have it both ways.

Many people have spent a lot of time in the last few days trying to reason away the passages from both the Old and New Testament that speak of this issue. Instead of going into major detail on these, I would simply ask you to provide me with the passage that you think shows God’s approval of these actions.

Through my study of the Bible, I have found that whenever marriage is mentioned it is talked about in the context of a man and a woman. Jesus said that God made men and women and that the reason a man should leave his household was to be joined to his wife in a one flesh relationship.  “And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,  And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh?” (Matthew 19:4 –5) In this passage Jesus is quoting from Genesis and sharing God’s only intended plan for marriage.

Another argument people make is that if we actually lived by the Bible we would be polygamists and we should all own slaves. I just want to state here that just because polygamy and slavery were mentioned in the Bible that does not constitute God’s approval of either. If you read the stories of those in the Bible who practice polygamy you will often find that it carried with it its own penalties. Wives fighting amongst each other, sons of one wife killing sons of another or other undesirable results.

As far as slavery goes, much of what is written about that is dealing with how you should respond if you are a slave not necessarily how moral or holy it is to own them. It is important for us to remember that stories in the Bible do not shy away from the faults of those who stories they tell. The men and women of the Bible dealt with sin and had flaws just like the rest of us.

The Bible speaks clearly against homosexuality. “Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:  Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.  For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.  And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,” (Romans 1:24-30)

People often say that homosexuality is only one sin in many and that we who don’t practice it are just as guilty as those that do and that would be absolutely correct. When I look at the list of sins that are contained in the above passage I’m reminded just how guilty I am. I have no merit of my own to stand on and my only hope for heaven is the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross.

That being said, there is a difference between realizing that you are in a lifelong battle against sin and trusting God to make you more like Jesus each day, and simply accepting a sin as normal behavior. That is the major difference between what is going on with same-sex marriage and how we deal with other sins in our life. It’s not the sin that is worse, but rather the acceptance of that sin.

You may choose to disagree with what God says on this topic, but you can’t deny that He said it. I would encourage you to take a good long look at what the Bible truly has to say on this issue and ask God to reveal his truth to you.

Another thing that greatly distresses me is the amount of power that we as a nation have bequeathed to the Supreme Court. In 1973, they decided that a woman’s right to choose preempted the right to life. It wiped out all previous restrictions which the citizens of the United States had placed on this procedure. There was brief mention about the age of viability but since it was never established this became a blank check to obtain an abortion through all nine months of pregnancy.

As I sit here in the summer of 2015 I feel a very definite case of judicial déjà vu. Once again the Supreme Court has wiped out all previous decisions by the citizens of the United States in one single vote. They did so by once again conjuring up something in the Constitution that was not there. In the words of Chief Justice John Roberts “Celebrate the achievement of a desired goal. Celebrate the opportunity for a new expression of commitment to a partner. Celebrate the availability of new benefits,” he read from his opinion as crowds outside the court’s doors cheered the decision. “But do not celebrate the Constitution. It had nothing to do with it.”

I have a final question for those celebrating the Supreme Court decision. Is it only all right for the Supreme Court to decide things you agree with? What if they outlaw guns next or something else you hold dear? What will you do then? We as citizens are being given less and less of a voice in our government. We must be willing to stand up for what is right. This is the cornerstone of liberty.

In closing please know that I understand that our only true hope is found in Jesus Christ, but it’s worth repeating here that William Wilberforce was able to see the end of slavery in Great Britain because he was willing to serve Christ faithfully within the parliament. We must seek to serve the Lord wherever he has planted us and to remember the glorious truth “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord…” (Psalm 33:12)


Andrew Gommesen 

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