By Mario Liu
In Australia, same-sex marriage is a controversial subject which causes much heated and emotional debates between its supporters and the Christians who oppose it.
In the Australian society there are many demonstrations and protests by activists who support same sex marriage. They are for freedom, equality, love, anti-discrimination, and progress. On the other hand many Christians believe that the Bible says homosexual behaviour is a sin. Many Christians are worried that, one issue at a time, the moral value of the society is gradually being eroded.
Gay and Lesbian Issues not making the top-ten-list
In our Christian community, the issue of gay rights sits uncomfortably in the grey area of differing opinions from being accommodating to outright opposition. Whilst discussing this issue the other day, the Lord gave Robert Holmes the impression that Gay and Lesbian issues do not come up in the top ten of God’s list of concerns.
The Lord said: “You worry about the gay and lesbian issue, marriage, and the decay. But consider the fact that this did not make the top ten. The issue here is that Christians do not even understand the Ten Commandments. Consider the ‘covet not thy neighbor’s donkey’ – covetousness is absolutely rife in your society.
“Your moral compass is out of order and needs to be reset – put the top ten first! This is a speck and log issue.”
God is saying that we have logs in our own eyes, while we are criticizing others for the specks in their eyes.
How should Christians deal with Homosexual People?
Whilst we were discussing God’s comments about the logs and specks in people’s eyes, another prophetic friend of mine shared the following story:
Three young men came to visit the church that my friend was attending. Over a period of time they became friendly with one another, and the three young men revealed to my friend that they were gay. The young men were hiding this fact from the other people in the church, but they were willing to tell my friend the truth.
Faced with this challenge, my friend prayed and asked God how to handle this situation.
God said: “Listen to them. Accept them. Sexuality is not part of identity. There are issues of character, integrity, faith, discipline, etc, that are ahead of sexuality, and far more integral to identity.
“Give them me. Teach them to hear me. And when I bring up their sexuality with them, that is when you are allowed to talk with them about it too.
“Don’t think where you are equals truth.”
The last sentence from God is a subtle reminder that we also have logs in our own eyes.
The welcoming policies of a Christian School
My friend is working as a teacher in a Christian school. He said that there is a lesbian couple who send their children to attend his school.
The principal said this to the lesbian couple: “We have a different view of appropriate relationship under God. This will not affect our acceptance of you, our support of you, or our desire to work together with you. We are always happy to talk and discuss our view and yours.
“Please know, though, that we will be presenting our view here.”
The couples’ response was “That is OK, great.”
Should Christian politicians make laws to oppose legalizing same sex marriage, based on their biblical believes?
Some Christian politicians in Australia believe that the society is slowly deteriorating. One of these politicians declared during a debate in the parliament that his reason for opposing legalizing same sex marriage is that if this is approved, the activists would move on to attack another established social moral, such as trying to legalize paedophilia. His statement created a great uproar of protest from some of his audience.
There is some truth in the statement of that politician – that society is slowly deteriorating.
Apostle Paul agreed that the world will continue to become more lawless. He said the following in the Bible:
2Ti 3:1-6 You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times.
For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred.
They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good.
They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God.
They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!
They are the kind who work their way into people’s homes and win the confidence of vulnerable women who are burdened with the guilt of sin and controlled by various desires.
I am in my mid-sixties and I have seen a lot of changes happened in the society. In my younger days, clothing and personal attire were more modest and conservative. Sex scenes in movies were highly restrained. Nowadays sexual immorality is commonly shown even on main TV channels.
Should Christians try to use their political powers to stop, or even reverse this trend? If this is our duty, then we should oppose same sex marriage with all our strength, because this issue at the moment is the battle-line. Losing this battle will cause further moral decay.
C S Lewis has some good suggestions on this issue. During his day, the battle-line was about legalizing divorce rather than same sex marriage. Divorce was illegal in England and the activists were campaigning for divorce to be legalized.
The following is C S Lewis’ opinion on this issue as recorded in his book “Mere Christianity:”
“Before leaving the question of divorce, I should like to distinguish two things which are very often confused. The Christian conception of marriage is one: the other is the quite different question – how far Christians, if they are voters or Members of Parliament, ought to try to force their views of marriage on the rest of the community by embodying them in the divorce laws.
A great many people seem to think that if you are a Christian yourself you should try to make divorce difficult for every one. I do not think that. At least I know I should be very angry if the Mohammedans tried to prevent the rest of us from drinking wine. My own view is that the Churches should frankly recognise that the majority of the British people are not Christians and, therefore, cannot be expected to live Christian lives. There ought to be two distinct kinds of marriage: one governed by the State with rules enforced on all citizens, the other governed by the Church with rules enforced by her on her own members. The distinction ought to be quite
sharp, so that a man knows which couples are married in a Christian sense and which are not.”
The above passage by C S Lewis can be easily modified to be applied to the issue of same sex marriage. Christians are expected to follow God’s laws. But Christians should not force their views onto non-Christians, just as Mohammedans do not have a right to enforce their laws, such as no drinking of alcohol, on non-Mohammedans.
What would Jesus do?
Joh 8:1-11 Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, but early the next morning He was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and He sat down and taught them.
As He was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd.
“Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do You say?”
They were trying to trap Him into saying something they could use against Him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with His finger.
They kept demanding an answer, so He stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then He stooped down again and wrote in the dust.
When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman.
Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”
“No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”
What should we do now?
I have heard sermons saying that we are now living in the period of grace and that we need not worry about the Ten Commandments any more.
And yet God has clearly said to Robert Holmes that God is concerned about the Christians’ lack of understanding of the Ten Commandments.
God said: “The issue here is that Christians do not even understand the Ten Commandments. Consider the ‘covet not thy neighbor’s donkey’ – covetousness is absolutely rife in your society.
“Your moral compass is out of order and needs to be reset – put the top ten first!”
We need to seek God’s help to reset our moral compasses.