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Missing the Point...

The Supreme Court is currently ruling on whether it is right to allow same-sex relationships the right to apply for marriage licenses that are recognized by the State. There is much hoopla surrounding this event but I am more and more and more convinced that we are missing the point.

As a Christian, I have no alternative interpretation of the Bible to land on than to acknowledge that homosexuality is wrong. This is made pretty clear in both the Old and New Testaments.

As a Christian, I also believe that every human was designed to have equal rights (recognizing that sometimes rights are stripped away based on poor behavior--i.e. prison) and that no human should be treated unequally from another.

As an American, I believe that gay rights should totally be a thing; that health care and hospital rights and birth certificates and bank accounts can all be shared with anyone you choose to claim as your beloved--particularly if that beloved is a fully capable adult whose feelings are mutual to your own.

But as a Christian American, I can't help but look at my own wedding/marriage and wonder what is wrong with our country's view of marriage?

You see, there are three ways in which I believe that my marriage became legitimized on August 8th, 2009.

1) We signed a legal document in the presence of multiple witnesses that was notarized by a wedding officiant licensed to marry in the state of Ohio. We turned that in at the courthouse in downtown Cincinnati and the state and government recognized our union.

2) We made vows before friends and family and welcomed their help along our way as we decided to join ourselves in marriage for the rest of our lives. We made promises that we intend to keep and our friends and family affirmed those statements and said that they would help us uphold them.

3) We consummated our love and affection for one another in the eyes of God in a hotel room later that night. The first time we had gone through the act of "two becoming one," and I believe that that was the moment in which God recognized that we had officially laid claim of one another.

So of the three declarations of marriage, which one actually means that we are married?
Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

The answer: yes!

The state has a vested interest in legitimizing unions because it contributes to a more stable economy, it provides good home life for children to grow up in, and because most people want to be married. Therefore, the government makes certain tax breaks and financial benefits for married couples, in order to promote monogamy. While this has a questionable rate of success (50% divorce rate), the state continues to promote marriages as a recognizable way to live together.

The church has a vested interest in legitimizing unions because it is God's created order. He made things of opposites to attract one another and build harmony: the sky and earth, water and land, night and day, God and human, male and female, etc, etc. Marriage is God's design for furthering the human race. Monogamy is God's design for companionship through life. And the church is God's helper for aiding couples in achieving lasting success.

Also, sexual contact is God's way of affirming a couple's union with one another. I believe that God looks at sexual intercourse as being one of the key factors in determining a couple's commitment to one another. Among the Big Ten God commands us to avoid adultery, i.e. having sex with someone who is otherwise committed to someone. There are numerous sex stories littering the pages of the Old and New Testaments and in every case, you see God condoning sexual activity between one man and one woman, and abhorring other types of sexual contact.

So what is the point we are missing in all of this??

The point is that the State shouldn't have a say in what the church chooses to recognize as a marriage and vice-versa. The government should legalize unions between same-sex couples just in the same way that they recognize unions between opposite-sex couples. That should be a matter of equal rights.

Some people want to elope and just be married according to the State, and that's great. Some people want to get married in a Waffle House, or a Walmart, or just about anywhere else on God's green earth. They don't care about the church and they don't give a lick who signs the marriage certificate--they just want to be married. So the church shouldn't have to have anything to do with that. The church can recognize its own marriages just like it recognizes its own baptisms (see the denominational arguments about paedobaptism and what counts as a true life dedication).

Christians should stop arguing that marriage should be limited on the State level to be exclusively between a man and wife and we should start arguing about what truly counts as a marriage according to God's standards. Let people be unionized and given the same rights to one another in the intent that they already love each other with.

"Greater love has no one than this: to lay down on'es life for one's friends." John 15:9-17
If I can spend time spreading a message, I would rather have it be the message of True Love--God's love for us--and I will spend my energy demonstrating that same True Love to those around me.

#TrueLoveCantWait

Comments

  1. Thanks for writing this. It very succinctly puts out many of my thoughts on the issue in a way I haven't had the time to put to electronic ink yet. So, I guess I'm thanking you for agreeing with my world view? :P

    ReplyDelete

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