“Gay Marriage” ruling thoughts

This is a simple exercise for me to think about what the questions are and think through the issues.  I did this mainly for me but figured others may benefit from the process.  If you want to submit comments please feel free to do so at balderman@rgv.rr.com.

  1. Am I surprised by the Supreme Court ruling?
    1. No
    2. The Court has shown a bend towards the will of the loud minority in the past and with an ideologically split court I am not surprised
    3. Basically 1 or 2 judges are making country changing decisions
  2. Did the Court do their job?
    1. No
    2. The court is charged with interpreting and applying the Constitution
      1. Not making law for states
    3. The 10th Amendment is very clear that marriage, healthcare, etc should be State issues, not federal.
    4. They have twisted the Constitution to meet their agenda instead of changing their agenda to match the constitution.
  3. Should the court bow to religion?
    1. No
    2. The Court is to interpret and apply the Constitution
      1. Not the Bible
    3. The Court is not a theological institution
  4. Should a “religious objector” to “Gay Marriage” be forced to perform a “Gay Wedding? (or provide a wedding service such as pictures, cakes, etc…)
    1. No
    2. The State should not force any person to violate their beliefs
    3. The 1st Amendment gives us freedom of speech and freedom of religion?
  5. Should the Tax Exempt status of churches be revoked?
    1. No…well not generally
    2. 1st Amendment
    3. Religious groups (and other501c3 groups) that act with hate in violation of other persons should be in jeopardy. (Westborough, radical Islam, etc)
  6. Can we have an America where no one can never be offended by something?
    1. No
    2. There is no Constitutional right against being offended
    3. In reality, several of the written Constitutional freedoms we are guaranteed also guarantee that we will be offended.
    4. If America is going to be a “melting pot” then there must be some heat from somewhere.
    5. We are a country of wildly varied people. We have different cultures, backgrounds, beliefs, priorities, upbringings and priorities.
    6. The Constitution is there to UNITE us, not DIVIDE us.
      1. The Supreme Court has failed in this reality.
    7. Did the court get this right?
      1. No
      2. The 10th Amendment was ignored in order to meet their agenda.
    8. Is Gay Marriage a threat to marriage?
      1. No
      2. The LGBTQ community is a very small percentage of America.
        1. Most numbers I can find say they are less than 2%
      3. Even if gay marriage was strictly forbidden and illegal in all 50 states it would have little to no effect on people being gay and building relationships and lives together.
        1. This has been happening for thousands of years.
      4. What are bigger threats to Marriage?
        1. Adultery
        2. Addiction
        3. Pornogrophy
        4. Idolatry
        5. Money
        6. Divorce
          1. Especially the “no fault” divorce
          2. Divorce is to easy
        7. Pride
        8. Arrogance
        9. Hate
        10. Youth/Unprepared for marriage
        11. Facebook (Social Media)
          1. These are all bigger threats to Marriage
        12. These are issues that will plague the gay community now that they are eligible for marriage.
          1. May be a case of the grass is not always greener on the other side
        13. Marriage can be tough.
      5. Is homosexuality a sin?
        1. Yes
        2. Old Testament and New Testament
      6. Is “Gay Marriage” a sin?
        1. Old Testament and New Testament
      7. Is “gay marriage’ or homosexuality a “specialty sin?”
        1. No
        2. They are sinners in the need of grace just like the rest of us
        3. Yes, heterosexual marriages are between two sinners as well.
      8. Is “Gay Marriage” The worst sin?
        1. Sin is Sin
        2. The only mortal sin is the sin of denying God and unbelief
        3. I find it interesting that homosexuality, which is identified as sin throughout the Word, did not make God’s “top 10” list
          1. The 10 Commandments do not contain this “Thou Shalt not…”
        4. Is homosexuality a new sin?
          1. No
          2. Been around forever
          3. When God said marriage was between a man and a woman, there were homosexuals in existence.
          4. When Jesus turned water into wine at a wedding there were already homosexuals in existence.
        5. Is “Gay Marriage” New?
          1. Yes…pretty much
          2. Since Biblical times marriage has been recognized as the union of one man and one woman.
          3. The push for “Gay Marriage” is many years old
          4. Several states have approved “Gay Marriage” over the past few years
          5. Now the Supreme Court has rules that marriage is genderless.
        6. Are Homosexuals “Bad People?”
          1. Not
          2. Well no more than we may see in any people group anyway
          3. They are people and like people they are far from perfect and all of us have sinned, fallen short, made mistakes, blown it, etc.
        7. Are the majority of Americans in favor of Gay Marriage
          1. Debatable
          2. When brought to a vote “Gay Marriage” has been defeated – even in liberal strongholds like California…twice.
          3. The courts have reversed the will of the people.
            1. NOTE: The Court ruling really only applies to the States involved.  I think there were 4 or 5.  The rest could reject/ignore the ruling and no applicable to their state until litigated.  Most will not – but some may.
            2. NOTE: Also, the Supreme Court built in a 3-4 week waiting period for appeal or request to reconsider.  I would bet there will be many challenges.
          4. Voting measures the ideals of those voting,, not the entire population
            1. There are polls that show yes and that show no…by wildly varying margins.
              1. Polls are not really reliable because there are too many variables.
              2. Elections are the best info we have and they show the majority are not in favor of “Gay Marriage.”
            2. Is this the biggest issue Christians are facing today?
              1. No
              2. Church Health
              3. Sin in the Church
              4. Christian prosecution
              5. Biblical obedience
                1. These and more are bigger issues
              6. Why do religious folk seem to attack the LGBTQ community with such zeal?
                1. I don’t know but can make some “educated guesses”
                  1. There are no KNOWN LGBTQ in their religious communities
                    1. It is easy to attack who you do not see.
                  2. If they attacked gossips, drunks and adulterers with the same zeal their churches would be empty.
  • There is an old preacher story told of a new preacher who was called to Kentucky to serve as Pastor. The first Sunday he preached against alcohol.  The second Sunday he preached against tobacco.  The third Sunday he preached against gambling.  The fourth Sunday he was a visitor at another church.
  1. We too often are very vocal against whatever doesn’t apply to us or those around us.
  1. How should the Christian Community face the LGBTQ community
    1. With love
    2. With tolerance but not acceptance
    3. The Biblical truth should be brought with the Love of God
    4. I am reminded of John 8:1 – 11 where a woman was caught in the very act of a sexual sin and dragged naked before Jesus for judgement. Jesus told them that the one among them who was without sin should cast the first stone.  None were sinless and they all walked away.  Jesus told the woman to go and sin no more.
    5. We should be a conduit to redemption for all; not a check valve for exclusion.
    6. Our compassion and ministry should be no different for the LGBTQ than for any other sinner.
    7. God said to love people
      1. He gave NO EXCEPTIONS
    8. One thing we MUST do is preach the entire counsel of God’s Word.
      1. We cannot back away in fear
      2. We cannot use Gods Word as a tool to tear down
  • We must speak the truth in Love and be prepared to defend our faith
  1. We must refrain from using God’s Word as a tool to beat people down.
    1. The term “bully pulpit” does not apply to churches!
      1. Pastors are not politicians or bullies using our position to bend others to our point of view.
      2. We are God’s Preachers bringing His Word to bear on the hearts and issues of our community and beyond. We bring God’s Will, not ours.
      3. God’s Word is sufficient.
      4. God’s Word has the Power and Authority, not the preachers.
    2. One thing we MUST be prepared to do is to listen, encourage and guide those who seek our ministry as they deal with these issues in their own life.
  2. One thing we MUST do is promote and model TRADITIONAL MARRIAGE
    1. Teach Biblical Marriage
    2. Bring God’s Word to bear on traditional marriage
  • Seek to strengthen and promote Biblical marriage
  1. Help and minister to those struggling with marriage.
  2. Seek to encourage and build Covenant Marriages
  1. Our ministry should be seasoned with salt not Jalapeno peppers
    1. We should be seeking to minister and care for sinners
    2. We should not be about the business of burning them
    3. Expose them to truth
      1. Just as we all need exposed to the truth
    4. Love God and Love our neighbors
    5. Deal with our OWN MESS before we point at the mess of others
    6. Remember that we are all sinners
    7. Christians are called to be SALT and LIGHT
      1. Not religious bullies like the Sadducees and Pharisees
        1. The Temple Elite/legalistic Religious zealots
        2. The ones Jesus called a “Brood of Vipers”
      2. Salt that preserves the Biblical Truths while creating a thirst for the Gospel
  • Light that draws people out of darkness
  1. Will the Government seek to close churches and silence Christians
    1. Maybe
    2. Christians need to be prepared to stand tall as Paul did and shout that “WE ARE NOT ASHAMED of the GOSPEL of JESUS CHRIST”
  2. Can a Christian be gay?
    1. Yes
    2. The same way a Christian can lie, cheat, gossip, backbite, be an addict, worship false gods, be greedy, be lazy, be arrogant, prideful and cold.
    3. Sin is sin and we are all dealing with sin.
    4. A Christian in any sin will be guided by the Holy Spirit back onto God’s path.
      1. “This is the way, walk in it”
    5. Are there LGBTQ people in Bible Believing churches today?
      1. Yes
      2. They may not be open about their sexuality, but you can bet they are there
      3. You may not know they are there but they are there
      4. They hear our words and see our prejudice/hate/hypocrisy
      5. They understand God’s Word
      6. They are seeking Grace and Mercy, just as you are. Will they find it?
    6. Is this a new issue?
      1. Thousands of years old
      2. It will probably continue to be an issue for thousands more
    7. Understand we have no stone to throw but a command to “Go and share” and to love.
    8. Will I perform a LGBTQ wedding
      1. No
      2. I must do my best to be Biblically correct
      3. Acts 5:27-32 “And the high priest questioned them, saying, “We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men.  The God of our fathers raised Jesus, whom you killed by hanging him on a tree. God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. And we are witnesses to these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him.”  ESV
    9. My decision has nothing to do with hate or prejudice
    10. I will not condemn a same sex couple
      1. Even if I do not agree with their lifestyle
    11. There are many, many lifestyles I do not agree with and/or approve of in this world
      1. I do not have to participate
    12. The reality is that even in the heterosexual and Christian communities I turn down more weddings than I perform for a variety of reasons.
      1. Most people getting married have no clue what marriage is or what God expects from married couples
    13. I will gladly minster, listen to, help, guide and care for anyone who seeks my assistance regardless of their lifestyle or personal issues.
  3. I will seek to be a redemptive conduit of Jesus Christ.
    1. John 3:16-17 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”    ESV
  4. Is God going to rain down hellfire and brimstone in Judgment of America?
    1. See #29
    2. I think that if that was God’s plan He would have already done this for all the other sins and failures of and in our country
      1. We have come a long way into darkness since our founders
      2. But, the reality is that our founders had sin in their lives as well
    3. I believe that God is giving us time to find salvation and turn towards Him
    4. We do not know how much time we have to accept Him and His love.
    5. One day we will come to a day of accountability, a day of Judgement
      1. One by one
      2. Or in a great group
  • However God decides to call us to Him, we are called and encouraged to be ready.
    1. Do not get aught waiting for the right time or until you clean yourself up. NOW
    2. How do we get ready?
      1. See #29
      2. By GRACE alone through FAITH alone in CHRIST alone.
      3. Realize your need for Jesus
    3. Are there options available for marriage?
      1. Right now a LGBTQ couple could be wed by a civil authority or a liberal clergy.
        1. In States that might approve.
      2. The contractual/legal marriage could be performed by the State.
        1. Some states are considering getting out of the wedding process completely.
      3. A ceremony in religious tradition could be performed by Clergy/churches without reporting/filing with state
        1. Pastor/Clergy are NOT agents of the State/government anyway
      4. Churches could stop doing any type of marriage/wedding ceremony.
    4. Is “Gay Marriage” the slippery slope into immorality?
      1. Maybe
      2. Already groups that advocate marriage to children, animals, siblings, etc, are saying they should have equal access.
      3. We will see
    5. Is this the end of the world and we should all panic and flee into the mountains and live in Christian Communes completely cut off from the rest of the world and wait for the rapture?
      1. No
      2. God is still God
      3. God is still Sovereign God
      4. God is in control
      5. He still loves us
        1. Yes, even those who are not like us
      6. His Son still paid the price for the sins of everyone who would believe
      7. God is still very much at work through all of this
      8. We are to continue to be His children
        1. Walking the right walk
        2. Talking the good talk
  • Getting better at being a Christian
  1. Sharing His love
  1. We DO NOT allow this distraction take our eyes of the Cross hairs of Mt. Calvary!
  2. We DO NOT allow this decision to CAUSE US TO SIN and fail our savior!
  3. We are not personally responsible for this decision (unless you are one of the Justices) BUT we are responsible for US!
    1. You are one of the King’s kids!
      1. Act like it always!
    2. We do not keep doing what we have been doing
      1. There is way more God has expected us to do
      2. Now is not the time for fear, but for faith
  • Now is not the time for apathy, but assembly
  1. Now is not the time for anything except going forward in faith
  2. GO!
  1. Why did you write “Gay Marriage” in quotation marks
    1. The court has ruled marriage is genderless
    2. The legal system and the state will need to begin using the term marriage equally
    3. The churches will have to decide how they will handle this as a church and a denomination.
    4. Maybe we can now put the label away and stop making a huge deal out of these relationships
      1. We don’t have “Straight Marriage” parades
      2. The reality is that we don’t need to know your personal life in this much detail
  • You be you