Jesus and Gay Marriage
2012-05-11
This past week, President Barack Obama revealed in an interview that he personally believes that the U.S Government should allow gay marriage.  He confessed that this was a personal journey and that it had taken time for him to arrive at his conclusion.  Personally, I am not shocked by President Obama's revelation.  I am also not shocked that gay marriage is such a hot topic in our country and around the world.  However, what disturbed me most about our President's interview was how he invoked the name of Jesus in order to seemingly back up his claim. 

The problem with Obama's statement doesn't have so much to do with his declaration in support of gay marriage (who didn't know that was coming?) as it does with his theological statements. Let me make this clear - Jesus and our President are not in agreement on gay marriage.  Jesus' view on marriage is stated clearly in the Scriptures - it is between a man and woman. Many would argue that all Jesus cares about is love.  It is true that Jesus desires we would love one another but he makes sure to define that love because he knows how desperate and evil our hearts can become. Jesus defines what he means by loving one another by first starting with the Greatest Commandment - Love God. The love we are to have for our neighbor is defined by the first command. That is why after giving us the first and greatest commandment to love God he says, "and the second is like it - love your neighbor as yourself." True love begins with "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, strength." Our love for God and His commands defines our love for one another. God defines Himself, not us.

So if we are to love God we should look at what He says about cultural issues. God has made it clear in His Word that homosexuality is wrong - regardless of our feelings on the matter, how we think we are born, or what our natural proclivities are. God also tells us not to trust our feelings on the matter and to forget following our heart. Our hearts are deceitful above all things. If our President and others are going to quote "the Golden Rule" then they must allow Jesus his presupposition that our love for God defines our love for one another. In other words if you don't love God as God defines himself then your love for others is distorted - which is why so many can justify their sin under the guise that Obama uses (The Golden Rule).  

Jesus, on his numerous teachings about marriage defines it as between a man and a woman. I say all that to say that if we are going to bring Jesus into the argument, then Obama and any professing Christian has no moral ground to stand on to justify gay marriage. Plain and simple - take it or leave it. If we want to invoke the Scriptures as President Obama has done then we must deal with the Scriptures alone on the issue. Obama is trying to have it both ways. And that is my main problem with his statement. He is trying to justify his decision by using Scripture. It just can't be done. 

If you are a follower of Jesus than you cannot agree with the decision Obama has made. I have gay friends who understand this very clearly and it is a big struggle for them. They know what the Bible says about their choices. One of my friends who is a practicing homosexual recently wrote to me, "I would agree that you can't defend gay marriage with Scripture. ..So, yeah, if Obama is using Jesus to defend his views, then I can see why churches would get upset."  My friend does not try to cover up their choices with justifications and platitudes about what they want Jesus to say. They know what Jesus says, they know what the Law and Prophets say and they choose to live in rebellion against God. I have more respect for those who know that their behavior is in opposition to the Christian faith and admit it and are still able to be my friend and care for me just as I do for them. We don't live in this pretend relationship that all is good. We have opposing viewpoints but still love one another.

Obama has tried to associate Jesus' teaching with his own decisions concerning gay marriage.  My main problem with his statement is that he tries to justify his personal and political beliefs with Scripture. In this case, it just can't be done. I would rather him say, "I know that the Bible teaches that homosexuality is a sin. I know that the Bible teaches that marriage is between a man and a woman. I just don't agree with the Bible on this issue so I am going with what I believe, not with what God says is truth." I think it would take more intestinal fortitude for him to say that he is in disagreement with the Bible rather than try and straddle both lines. His personal beliefs don't line up with Scripture regardless of whether or not they line up with the Constitution. I don't think that he is to force Christian values on the U.S. but he also cannot call non-Christian values, "Christian". That is my problem with his speech. What he has said, and the decision he has made is in no-way Christian or in line with the Scriptures. President Obama, like so many of us, is trying to make something fit into an unscriptural view of God and call it Christian. His decision is thoroughly in rebellion with what God has declared in the Bible - President or not.

(Portions of this post have been adapted from a Facebook conversation I had with many others concerning President Barack Obama's decision to announce he is pro-gay marriage.)
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