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What does the Bible say about same sex marriages?

Today’s Question: What does the Bible say about same sex marriages?

Bible Answer: This is a topic of great debate, especially now since President Obama clearly stated his views for same-sex marriage and the US Supreme Court struck down DOMA, forcing the Federal Government to recognize same-sex marriage in states that have legalized it. And recently the owner of Chick-fil-A was under fire for stating his religious views that same-sex marriage is unbiblical, and so the mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, has tried to use his mayoral powers to keep Chick-fil-A from opening a second restaurant in Chicago. Make no mistake about it: the gay right's activists will discriminate against anyone who will not sanction homosexuality or same-sex marriage. This issue appears to be the defining subject to determine who will stand up for the Bible or come against it. 

People will ask me, "Bishop where directly in the Bible does it speak against same sex marriage?" I’m not aware of any ancient society allowing same sex marriages, so you won’t find any direct reference to this in your Bible. The issue just did not come up. It hasn’t even come up in our country until recently. The best we can derive from the Bible about same sex marriages is by seeing how the Bible speaks about homosexuality.

Most people know about the Old Testament prohibition against homosexuality.

"Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable" (Lev 18:22).

This scripture is rather clear. No deep interpretation needed here. In fact, this statement describes homosexuality as "detestable" sometimes translated as abomination. It means "disgusting." This word is carefully used in conjunction with serious sins. Make no mistake about it: homosexuality is a serious sin under the Old Testament.

Gay people should not think God is singling out their sins, however. This sin is simply part of a list of twenty other sexual unions forbidden. Other sins include adultery, incest and bestiality. People will argue that eating shell fish according to the Old Testament is also an abomination, so they are quick to discount this prohibition by appealing to Israel's dietary laws, and saying that Christians are inconsistent in using Leviticus concerning homosexuality but not using it concerning eating shrimp. What they don't tell you is that the Lord Jesus "declared all foods clean" (Mark 7:19). Yet He never changed the Law of Marriage--it still is a lifetime commitment between one man and one woman. Also, of the list of forbidden sexual practices mentioned in Leviticus chapter 18, which one would be acceptable? Incest, adultery, bestiality? I have yet to find anyone willing to sanction any of the sexual prohibitions, except homosexuality. Why is homosexuality okay, but not the others? The truth is, all the sexual prohibitions in Leviticus are wrong and sinful.  

Concerning the New Testament, Jesus does not directly address same sex marriages; although, He does talk about marriage. He said,

"'Haven't you read,' he replied, 'that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate." (Matt 19:4-6)

Jesus taught that marriage is between "male and female". There is no point in trying to get Jesus to sanction same sex marriages. He doesn’t. According to Jesus, there is no such thing as marriage between the same-sex. It doesn't exist in God's sight. According to Genesis chapter one and three, marriage is a lifetime commitment made between one man and one woman for the purpose of "being fruitful and multiplying" (Gen 1:27). Same sex partners can never multiply together. They are by nature unable to fulfill the command given to the entire married race. 

There is a direct reference to homosexuality in the New Testament. It comes from the pen of Paul.

"Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God" (1 Cor 6:9-10).

Homosexual offenders are placed in the same category as adulterers, prostitutes and thieves. They are all wrong. I couldn’t imagine the apostle approving of homosexual marriages, can you?

Not only does the Bible, by default, forbid same sex marriages, but tradition and nature prohibits it also. The concept is against every tradition known to the human race and is obviously against nature. Allowing same sex marriages will devalue real marriages, open a Pandora box of other issues such as polygamy, incest marriages, child marriages, and even foolish marriages between men and animals. Same sex partners will demand equal rights to adopt children, so we would be forced to put children in harms way to learn this lifestyle. As Pope Francis properly said that children adopted by gay partners would amount to "discrimination against children."  

Where will the line be drawn? Let's allow reason, common sense, and our inner sense of right and wrong help us to make the right choices, not withstanding the clear biblical teaching on this subject. 

America is at a crossroad concerning same sex marriages. Runaway mayors, disguising themselves as equal rights activists, have forced this issue by illegally performing marriages for homosexuals. Although the "Defense of Marriage" act gives the states the right to reject same sex marriages performed in other states, this issue must be settled once and for all with a constitutional amendment.

In the past, slavery was a state issue, but eventually, it was clear that the Federal government had to put an end to it.  Civil war broke out because other states wanted to maintain their right to have slavery. The issue of marriage cannot be left to each state to decide. This issue is so fundamental to society that congress and three fourths of the states should settle the issue for our country.

In the end, the state has only one reason why they should be involved in marriage laws at all, and that is to seek to promote in its marriage law the best setting to nurture children. The state should recognize that the best setting is between a mother and father. Children have a better chance to turn out better if they are raised by their parents. So if a couple divorces the state tries to make sure that both parents stay involve in the children's lives through visitation rights and through child support. On the other hand, gay couples will never have biological children together. If there is biological children then the children will rightfully belong to the one biological parent, thus the state should stay out of that relationship.

If two men "feel a connection" they can do what they want with that feeling. If they want to move in and buy a house together, fine. If they want to make a commitment to each other, then they are free to do that, but they don't need the government to get involve in their relationship, because that is not in the state's interest. Love and emotional connection is outside the scope of the state's interest. The state should care about the biological children created in the union, and children can only be born with two heterosexual couples.

Finally, someone might ask, "What happens to the Church if same-sex marriage becomes legal in the US?" The answer is simple and is the same answer in states and countries that already legalized same-sex marriage: the Church must continue to stand for the truth and affirm the sanctity of marriage. The Church sees marriage as a sacrament, thus we hold that only God can actually join two people in holy matrimony. God does not, and will not, join two homosexuals together in marriage and so the Church cannot perform those marriages. The question remains whether or not the government will fine or punish churches for not agreeing to perform marriages against their religious views. (For example: Will cities tax the properity of churches for not performing same sex marriages?)

Remember also that the Church cannot always perform heterosexual marriages as well, when she knows the two could not be joined together by the Lord. There was a man in my church that divorced his wife so he could marry the woman he wanted, but I could not perform the marriage, because the marriage would be adultery in God's sight. Now, he got married by the court, but he is not married in God's sight. You see, the Church is always confronted with the tension between the laws of man and the laws of God. As the Church, we must stand lovingly, yet firmly, on the side of God's laws.

My great concern is that our society is falling downward in morality, and so it does not surprise me to see society begging the government to endorse their immorality. However, I am also concern for our free speech rights being called "hateful" or maybe even declared "illegal" in the near future. The ultimate goal of the homosexual activists is to make their immoral conduct acceptable in society, but that will never happen so long as ministers have free speech and continue to speak the truth in love. So to arrive at their ultimate goal, the homosexual activists will have to find a way to shut the mouths of ministers, and so our freedom of religion and free speech rights may very well be in jeopardy.  

On a related topic, you might check out my other question about Can Homosexuals Change? or watch the YouTube video on Same-Sex Marriage.

 

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