The next few months will be very important to those who have a passionate stance on marriage equality. Today the Supreme Court will hear arguments on whether “Proposition 8, a California voter initiative that defined marriage as between a man and a woman, violates the federal Constitution” and tomorrow they will hear “arguments about whether a part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act of 1996 that defines marriage to be ‘only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife’ in determining federal benefits violates the Constitution’s equal protection clause.” For more information about what all this means and what the potential outcomes may include check out the NYTimes very digestible flow chart here!
Overall, this event reflects a pinnacle moment in history where our nation’s highest courts have the potential to affect thousands of LGBT individuals and their families. They could affirm basic and fundamental human rights or they could rip away equal treatment for no other reason than religious scripture interpretation. I am 100% convicted (not just convinced) that God affirms same-sex marriage. While telling my intense and long journey involving prayer, scripture reading, and counsel regarding homosexuality would constitute a much longer blog post, I believe it is important for me as a Christ follower and LGBT ally to stand up and make this claim. And I do not boast in this belief for my own sake, but to show that Christ’s love for all of His children is unconditional and His call for monogamous marriages that reflect His sacrifice and love is not limited to heterosexual couples.
For those who still believe homosexuality is a sin and use that belief to inform the decision regarding marriage equality, I strongly encourage you to reconsider. I understand that there will never be a time when everyone in the world can 100% agree on issues – this sadly includes Christians. We are human and as such we are inherently sinful with pride, stubbornness, and the inability to concede on certain issues – myself included! So, I am not trying to appeal to Christians to ask them to believe homosexuality is not sinful right now, I am asking you to see that by using that to inform your political stance is not very valuable to God’s Kingdom.
By outlawing marriage equality, you are not going to get a cookie and a pat on the head from God for doing His work. Even if marriage equality is shot down and even if gay people cannot marry the person they love, you are doing nothing to show God’s grace and mercy and love for His LGBT children. Hebrews 11:6 says, “And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” So let’s say abolishing marriage equality prevents your conviction of sinful same-sex marriages, the lack of same-sex marriages does nothing to draw people closer to God. Running away from sin is meaningless unless you are running towards Christ. I can sit here all day and try my hardest to avoid sin but unless I believe in my heart that God raised Jesus from the dead and my desire to do what God asks is motivated by my love for Him, it is all for nothing (Romans 10:9). Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- not by works, so that no one can boast.” Please do not think that by outlawing same-sex marriage you are saving people. No, it is by accepting Jesus that you are given new life; a life still filled with mess, sin, and confusion. Jesus never once tried to outlaw sin through the Roman courts. He talked with sinners, ate with sinners, loved sinners, and taught sinners. Jesus offered His table to anyone willing to eat with Him, He never forced anyone. Christ is about changing hearts to run from sin, not changing laws to force submission.
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