A while ago, I received an email from a friend and also a comment on the blog from someone who was opposed to the marriage amendment - saying Christ taught us to "Love One Another" and "Do Unto Others..." therefore this amendment to define what marriage is - is NOT loving all, like Christ taught us. - "It's hateful! and why are churches taking this stance?"
Let see what Christ taught us: This is from St. John Chapter 8:
"1 Jesus went unto the mount of Olives.
2 And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them.
3 And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,
4 They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.
5 Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
6 This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.
7 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
8 And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.
9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more."
Christ did not change the law for her, but he treated her with respect. He didn't condemn her, but he didn't embrace her sin and ask the elders of the church to embrace and accept her adultery and teach their children that adultery was OK and acceptable. He told her to go and sin no more.
"Jesus taught that we love and care for one another without condoning transgression. But today’s politically palatable definition insists that unless one accepts the sin he does not tolerate the sinner. Tolerance obviously requires a non-contentious manner of relating toward one another's differences. But tolerance does not require abandoning one’s standards or one’s opinions on political or public policy choices. Tolerance is a way of reacting to diversity, not a command to insulate it from examination. The Church does not condone abusive treatment of others and encourages its members to treat all people with respect."
"Disagreement with homosexual advocates' social and legal agendas has no correlation with one's capacity to love or have compassion for others. Nor is such dissent necessarily related to judgment, which is God's alone. Rather, it is about discerning between right and wrong and obedience to objective truth, rather than conforming to a code of subjective relativism popularly justified under the contemporary aegis of "tolerance, diversity and inclusion."
"Tolerance as a gospel principle means love and forgiveness of one another, not “tolerating” transgression. In today’s secular world, the idea of tolerance has come to mean something entirely different. Instead of love, it has come to mean condone – acceptance of wrongful behavior as the price of friendship."
"The Church does not condone abusive treatment of others and encourages its members to treat all people with respect. However, speaking out against practices with which the Church disagrees on moral grounds – including same-sex marriage – does not constitute abuse or the frequently misused term “hate speech.” We can express genuine love and friendship for the homosexual family member or friend without accepting the practice of homosexuality or any re-definition of marriage."
"Marriage is sacred, ordained of God from before the foundation of the world. Marriage is not primarily a contract between a man and a woman to ratify their affections and provide for mutual obligations. Rather, marriage and family are vital instruments for rearing children and teaching them to become responsible adults. While governments did not invent marriage, throughout the ages governments of all types have recognized and affirmed marriage as an essential institution in preserving social stability and perpetuating life itself.” This has been the definition of marriage since the beginning of time.
"Simply put, homosexuality threatens the Churches and our culture because it threatens the natural order of the family. Though less than three percent of the population self-identify as homosexual ("gay" or "lesbian" in common parlance), the pernicious advancement of homosexuality is very well funded, coordinated and executed."
"The primary cultural agenda of the nation's largest homosexual advocacy groups is to promote it as being on par with heterosexuality. They advance this agenda through legal challenges, and two primary methods of childhood indoctrination -- education and entertainment. This aggressive confrontation with the timeless Judeo-Christian foundation for the family and society is both well-funded and well-organized."
In 2004, the Massachusetts legislature became the first state governing body to institute legal status for same-sex marriage and bar "discrimination" on the basis of sexual orientation.
"As much as one may wish to live and let live," Harvard Law professor Mary Ann Glendon wrote during Massachusetts' same-sex marriage debate, "the experience in other countries reveals that once these arrangements become law, there will be no live-and-let-live policy for those who differ. Proponents use the language of openness, tolerance, and diversity, yet one foreseeable effect of their success will be to usher in an era of intolerance and discrimination. Every person and every religion that disagrees will be labeled as bigoted and openly discriminated against. The ax will fall most heavily on religious persons and groups that don't go along. Religious institutions will be hit with lawsuits if they refuse to compromise their principles."
To that end, in 2006, Catholic Charities of Boston closed its adoption services rather than be forced to place children with homosexuals, which the Catholic Church considers "gravely immoral." That prompted one advocacy group, the so-called "Human Rights Campaign" to proclaim "Boston Catholic Charities puts ugly political agenda before child welfare," which, of course, is a projection of the HRC's mission. Consistent with Professor Glendon's warning, the Catholic Charities case is the tip of the iceberg.
"Legalizing same-sex marriage will affect a wide spectrum of government activities and policies. Once a state government declares that same-sex unions are a civil right, those governments almost certainly will enforce a wide variety of other policies intended to ensure that there is no discrimination against same-sex couples. This may well place “church and state on a collision course.”
“Other advocates of same-sex marriage are suggesting that tax exemptions and benefits be withdrawn from any religious organization that does not embrace same-sex unions."
"Thus, if same-sex marriage becomes a recognized civil right, there will be substantial conflicts with religious freedom. And in some important areas, religious freedom may be diminished."
"The issue within the Christian Church is not one of Church unity, traditions or politics. Homosexual advocacy in the Church has become a primary catalyst for challenging Scriptural authority -- the relevance of God's word as received through Holy Scripture, the historic foundation of the Christian Church and Western society."
"To discern right from wrong, Christians turn to Scripture as the first resource of our faith, and the foundation on which the tenets of reason and tradition reside. Though the legal status of "homosexual behavior" and "same-sex marriage" is being debated within the context of government legislatures and courts, the objective truth concerning such behavior was established by Scripture many centuries ago. Therefore, no institutional body of Christians should seek to normalize homosexuality or any other sexual aberration. Doing so projects the message that such aberrations are acceptable in God's eyes and consistent with His creation. This projection is not only iconoclastic but deceitful in that it suggests overt sinful behavior is to be upheld and honored."
"Homosexuality is unanimously condemned by the foundational teachings of all world religions, and those teachings are the basis for societal norms worldwide." We are taught having homosexual tendencies is not a sin, the acting out on those tendencies and choosing that lifestyle is the sin The Bible clearly says that the homosexual lifestyle is a sin (Gen. 19: 5 , Lev. 20: 13, Lev. 18: 22, Deut. 23: 17, Isa. 3: 9, 1 Cor. 6: 9, 1 Tim. 1: 10,etc.). Thus, breaking through religious barriers is high on the homosexual normalization agenda.
"It is sometimes difficult to stand in defense of God's Word and plan for His people. Christians, however, must remain defiant in the face of errant teaching, and we must know that we have been called to do so in His name. 'Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers'." (Psalm 1:1)
The law provides for marriage-related benefits to be given to civil unions and domestic partnerships. The Marriage Propositions do not diminish these benefits. This is not about gay rights or benefits, as they have these. These marriage propositions do not prevent gays from doing anything, or it does not "impose" our beliefs or our “right choices” on them. We are not forcing anyone to "not live together", or to do the “right” thing. Individuals and Society have tolerated and accepting private, consensual sexual behavior between adults. Civil unions and domestic partnerships in these states have all of the same rights and benefits of those that are married.
Advocates of same-sex marriage seek to change the definition of marriage, they are trying to force us or “impose on us” to accept their beliefs, their choice, or their “way of life” and their redefinition of marriage to what they want it to be. If these propositions do not pass – the gays and lesbians and same-sex marriage advocates will be "imposing" on us to change our churches, to change what is being taught in our schools to our children, and to change our way life… to conform to the lifestyle they have ‘chosen’ to live.
In supporting the marriage amendment, the churches are not taking God away from any loved one. God is there for everyone and no one can remove God from one's life except himself. Advocates for same-sex marriage wish to breaking through religious barriers and promote this lifestyle.
In supporting this amendment I also am not advocating hate for those who choose to stay in and live this lifestyle – I recognize that it is a natural tendency. I don’t understand the struggles they go through. I’m not judging them or discriminate against them, or telling them they have to do what I think is right. I believe we can show respect and love to them and uphold the values of traditional marriage. God tells us to love all but to stand for the truth and be strong in the faith even if it isn't the popular thing to do.
"Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong. Let all your things be done with charity." 1 Corinthinians 16: 13-14
My sources in responding to this comment are:
(http://www.newsroom.lds.org/ldsnewsroom/eng/commentary/the-divine-institution-of-marriage and http://patriotpost.us/papers/03-32.asp) Please read these articles for more information on why churches everywhere are supporting these marriage propositions.
A Letter to the Editor
3 years ago