Summary: Starting with a Biblical definition of sexuality this message argues for how Christians ought to think about homosexuality in general and the current push to legalize homosexual marriage.
STOP THE WORLD
3. Gay Marriage
There was a sexual revolution after the 1960’s and these days, we’re in the midst of another. Time Magazine has called it the “Homosexual Revolution.” They say this revolution is changing the way we see our most basic institutions: church, schools, military, marriage, even culture itself.
As a result of this revolution, everywhere one looks there are signs of gay acceptability.
In the 1970’s you had one homosexual character on TV, we now have several dozen.
Many pop stars and many athletes are coming out of the closet.
Even Disneyland - that icon of conventional Family Life - annually welcomes 20,000 gay men and women to Gay Day.
In our public policy there is increasing validation of homosexuality as a perfectly acceptable alternative model for sexuality and family life.
And of course in February 2004 the Massachusetts Supreme Court opened the way for legally marrying gays which pressed the issue onto the national scene.
When someone who follows Jesus Christ thinks about the homosexual revolution, and the ways it’s reshaping our ideas of marriage and sexuality, the first place they turn is the Bible. Why? Because the Christ Follower doesn’t come to any issue and think that their understanding, or perspective, or wisdom is all-sufficient.
They’ve learned to rely on God’s wisdom for complex moral issues. And they see God has given that wisdom in the Bible. Now, I’ll cut to the chase: the Bible is very unambiguous about this: homosexuality in general is not in keeping with God’s design for human sexuality. If you wanted to do an in-depth study of the relevant verses: we have a position paper to check out*.
Now, I’m not going to get into these verses, because they’re straight forward and they primarily make a negative case against something. I thought it would be more enlightening to approach this from the opposite standpoint of making a positive case for Christian sexuality. I figure once we understand positively what sex was made for, then it will make more sense why any deviation from that is unhealthy.
Sexuality is first addressed in Genesis 2 where we see the creation model invented by God Himself. In Matthew 19 Jesus reaffirms and validates that creation design. What is it? Same formula is stated in both places:
It is not good for man to be alone. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.
Why not good for man to be alone? Because God created people special:
“God said, let us make people in our own image, to be like ourselves. So God created people in his own image; God patterned them after himself; male and female he created them.”
So what does it mean to be made in the image of God? Well, certainly it means we can appreciate spiritual and moral reality, but it means something much more. It means that we were created to share with God this special kind of community called oneness. Pull out a coin in your wallet or purse*. What’s the Latin phrase on that?
E PLURIBUS UNUM.
Which means, “of the many, one”. Well, the Bible reveals, God is an E PLURIBUS UNUM, God. He’s not a simple unity like Islam believes, God is a complex unity. A THREE IN ONE, God is a TRI-Personal God, one Being, three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. And these three persons share in one nature, intimacy, love, unity, oneness.
So, when we were made in the image of God, guess what? We were made with this capacity for E PLURIBUS UNUM. God made a man, then, he brought woman out of man. He made humanity two, a duality. But then, God says,
this is not good that they should be separate, the woman and man must join again, as one. God says, ’You were one. She came from your body. Now you’re separate; now you’re two. But what you’re to do is: become one again.’
This mysterious, beautiful symmetry and completion in the first marriage of Adam and Eve is how Christ followers look at sexuality. It’s beautiful, and difficult, because it sees sex as spiritual, it sees men and women as equal but different, each bringing a different aspect of the image of God to their one flesh relationship.
Therefore, what sex is physically, it was also meant to be spiritually. To divorce sex from the fact that men and women were made for spiritual oneness is a violation of it’s design.
So having a male and a male is not really pluribus, therefore not eligible for Unum – spiritual oneness – even if you have them living under the same roof, having sex and raising children. Having two females likewise cannot reflect the mystical union of one flesh either – it’s like having two left feet. There is something of the divine nature that a man and woman each bring. And neither can ever bring what the other brings.