Response to Newsweek

January 5, 2009 at 5:15 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
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Recently, Newsweek magazine published a cover article promoting and defending same-sex marriage. The article’s author, Lisa Miller, gives her view of what Scripture says about marriage. Her condescending attitude of Scripture and her lack of knowledge of what the Bible says is telling. To shore up her weak argument for same-sex marriage, she quotes people that are so-called Bible scholars. Unfortunately, these “scholars” seem to share her weak, anti-God hermeneutic. What follows is my response to her article, which basically comprises the same tired arguments that have always been given.

 

With her first sentence, the author shows her contempt for the Bible and for those who choose to take it as the authority over anything else. She says that she wants to “take the religious conservatives at their word and define marriage as the Bible does” and then, instead of giving that definition, mistakenly asks which “bible hero” we should look to for that definition. To find the definition of marriage, instead of looking at the men who did or didn’t follow that definition, we should look to the One who instituted marriage from the beginning. When God made humans, He first made man. After He made man and put him in the garden, He gave him the task of naming all of the animals. As Adam named the animals, he began to notice how different he was. God then caused Adam to sleep and removed a rib from his side. God fashioned the rib into a female helper for Adam. When Adam saw her, he called her woman. At the end of Genesis 2, the institution of marriage is started. It is between Adam and Eve. From the beginning, God could have created two men or women to use to institute marriage, but He didn’t. He made a man and a woman. Despite the fact that a man and a woman are needed to reproduce, the main reason that a marriage is defined as one man and one woman is because THAT’S THE WAY THAT GOD DEFINED IT! Over and over in today’s society, people seem to think that they can redefine things because they feel that they should be changed. They believe that they can redefine things when they have no authority to do so! God defined marriage in the beginning and never changed His definition. The next argument is that we can look at the fact that Abraham, Jacob, David, Solomon, and others had more than one wife. Miller then tries to confuse the issue by asking her readers whom we should look to for the correct Biblical definition of marriage. This seems ridiculous. It also shows Ms. Miller’s complete lack of understanding concerning Scripture. First, Hagar was not Abraham’s wife. She was the maid of Abraham’s wife. The birth of Ishmael was due to Sarah and Abraham taking the birth of a son into their own hands instead of trusting in God’s promise. Marriage was defined by God and regardless of whether David, Solomon, or the others stood by that definition or not, it didn’t change the definition of marriage.

 

Second, Miller neglects the history of man from Adam to Jacob. In the long list of ancestors in Genesis 5, we are given no indication that any of these men had more than one wife. In Genesis 6, we see Noah and his sons, all who have one wife. We also don’t see any indication that any of those listed in the genealogies in Numbers or Chronicles/Kings as having more than one wife. But, as I said above, regardless of whether or not any of these men had one wife or more than one, it still doesn’t change the definition of marriage that God made.

 

The funny thing is that Miller seems to ignore the Old Testament instances where God specifically condemns the practice of homosexuality. He calls homosexuality an abomination (Leviticus 18:22). She also seems to forget that God punished the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah because of the sin of homosexuality, which He called exceedingly grave. When Abraham is told about God’s plans to punish the cities for their sin, Abraham asks God if He will punish the righteous with the wicked. Because God defined homosexuality as an abomination and exceedingly grave sin, that’s what it is, regardless of what anyone else wants it to be. Why do Ms. Miller and those who try to use the Bible to promote gay marriage think that God will bless something that He has already defined as an exceedingly grave sin and an abomination? She also claims that all of the kings of Israel and Judah had more than one wife, even though there is no indication of this. Where it even lists their family members, there aren’t any that have more than one wife.

 

She then tries to take the argument to the New Testament by saying that the example of marriage given in the NT is no better. She goes right for the Lord and says that He was single and preached an indifference to earthly attachments including family. Unfortunately, she neglects to give any Scriptural references for this argument (or any others for that matter). This, again, shows ignorance of the Lord and the Scriptures. Jesus did say that we should love God more than we love our family. When He said that those who follow Him should hate their father and mother (Luke 14:26), He was using hyperbole to compare the love that we should have for Him to the love that we have for our parents. We are given no indication that anything other than the God-given definition of marriage was the norm during the time of the New Testament writings. To say that Jesus was single somehow implies that He advocated that being married is unholy or not right is to add something to Scripture. What bearing does Jesus’ singleness have on the definition of marriage, especially when Jesus confirmed Genesis 2 as what marriage is (Matt. 19:5/Mar. 10:7)? For some reason, Miller tries to say that because Jesus was single, heterosexual marriage isn’t the only form of marriage or the only one that God condones. That makes absolutely no sense.

 

It’s the same with Paul. Miller says that Paul, who was single, only looked at marriage as a last resort to contain animal lust. Of course, once again, Miller gives no references to this so that her readers might actually read what Paul said in context and gain a correct understanding. And, once again, Miller neglects what Paul said about homosexuality. In Romans 1, Paul calls homosexuality a “degrading passion” (v.26), an “unnatural function” (v.27), and an “indecent act” (v.27). Paul also talks about homosexuality in 1 Corinthians 6 (the chapter before the one she quoted). He says that those who practice homosexuality will not inherit the kingdom of God (v. 9). At the end of this chapter, Paul warns the Corinthians to flee immorality and glorify God with their bodies. Chapter 7 is a continuation of this idea, with Paul talking about how it is better for the gospel if people can be single and focus on doing the work of the gospel. But, Paul says that it is better that someone gets married than to burn with immoral passion and fornicate. Verse 9 of 1 Corinthians 7 is what Miller calls “the most lukewarm endorsement of a treasured institution”. Even when she does quote Scripture, she misquotes it. Paul says that if someone cannot remain unmarried:

 

But if they do not have self-control, let them marry; for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

 

What’s interesting is that Miller forgot to mention the fact that when Paul talked about marriage, he said that each husband should have his own wife and that they should fulfill their duties to each other. Miller also seems to miss what a heterosexual marriage reflects. In Ephesians 5, Paul gives commands to a husband and wife:

 

Eph 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her,

Eph 5:26  so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,

Eph 5:27  that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.

Eph 5:28  So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself;

Eph 5:29  for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church,

Eph 5:30  because we are members of His body.

Eph 5:31  FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND SHALL BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH.

Eph 5:32  This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church.

Eph 5:33  Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband.

 

The institution of marriage is a reflection of Christ and the church. The husband steps into the role of Christ and is to love her with the same self-sacrificing love that Christ has for the church. The wife is to play the role of the church and respect her husband. He then quotes Genesis 2:23-24 as the pattern for marriage. Sadly, the idea of “gay marriage” completely destroys this image.

 

She also seems to miss the apostle Peter’s instructions to those who are married (emphasis mine):

 

1Pe 3:1  In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives,

1Pe 3:2  as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior.

1Pe 3:3  Your adornment must not be merely external–braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses;

1Pe 3:4  but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.

1Pe 3:5  For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands;

1Pe 3:6  just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear.

1Pe 3:7  You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.

 

What’s ironic about all of this is that Miller calls marriage a “treasured institution” and then spends the rest of her time trying to redefine it and tear it down. Not to mention the fact that there is nothing preventing homosexuals from getting married. All they have to do is stop living a sinful lifestyle and then marry someone of the opposite sex. She tries to make her ideas appeal to her readers by implying that those who share them are “contemporary” and that those who hold to the Scriptural definition of marriage are primitive and backward. By doing this, she neglects the thousands upon thousands of heterosexual married couples who DO use the Bible as a how-to script to very satisfying and God-glorifying ends.

 

Miller also seems confused about what kind of issue this is. She claims that this is a civil issue, while the opponents of it are all religious conservatives. In truth, this issue is a moral issue whose opponents are living in rebellion against God and desire to put themselves in authority over Him. She then falls back on the same old canard of comparing the “plight” of homosexuals desiring to live an unscriptural, immoral lifestyle to the troubles that African-Americans had concerning slavery. The two issues are nothing alike. Skin color is something that the person has no choice about. Sexual orientation is a choice. There have been many homosexuals who have chosen to leave the homosexual lifestyle and live lifestyles that glorify and please God. She claims that the sides of the same-sex marriage argument are unevenly matched because all of the opponents of “gay marriage” are the ones that use Scriptures as the basis for their objections. To be honest, this may be the only point that we agree on. The sides are unevenly matched. All of those who support “gay marriage”, whether practicing homosexual or “Christian”, have decided to pick up a fight against the Lord Himself. Meanwhile, Miller paints the fact that Christians against “gay marriage” use Scripture for the basis of their objections as some sort of tragedy, like having a set of absolute moral values is something to be ashamed of.

 

Miller says that there are two responses to the Christian view of the issue. The first, she says, is the fact that even though the Bible and Jesus say “many important things about marriage and family”, neither defines marriage as between a man and a woman. This is just a blatant ignoring of Scripture. Genesis 2:23-4 is the institution of marriage between the first man and woman. In the next chapter, when Eve finally decides to eat the fruit, the Bible says (emphasis mine):

 

Gen 3:6  When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate.

 

Later, when God punishes them for their sin, God says that the woman’s desire would be for her husband. Both Jesus and Paul look to Genesis 2:24 as the beginning of marriage and both confirm that it is between a man and a woman. So for Miller to say that the Bible, Jesus, or Paul don’t see marriage the way that Christians are defining it today is ludicrous.

 

Her second response to the Biblical Christian view of marriage is that no “sensible, modern person wants marriage – theirs or anyone else’s – to look in its particulars anything like what the Bible describes”. So what this means is that she sees those who hold the Biblical Christian view as primative and lacking sense. She also ignores a couple important and obvious facts. She claims that “modern, sensible” person wants a Biblical marriage. If this is the case, why is “gay marriage” still an issue? If the majority of people hold her view, then why did California amend their constitution to prohibit “gay marriage”? Why did Prop 8 succeed if the majority of “modern, sensible” people hold the same view she does? She then says that marriage in America is a “messy conflation(?)” of a religious institution and a civil one. What she fails to realize is that there is no way to separate the two and that the Christian foundation of marriage is most important. Without it, the institution of marriage loses its purpose and definition. She tries to say that marriage is important because it provides civil benefits to both partners (contractual rights having to do with taxes; insurance; the care and custody of children; visitation rights; and inheritance). What she fails to mention is that the majority of the listed “rights” would not apply to those involved in “gay marriage” anyway. A homosexual couple cannot have children. That means that the marital provisions for the care and custody of children, visitation rights, and inheritance would be meaningless unless one of the “partners” has children from a previous heterosexual marriage (which has a ton of implications of its own…). She then says that marriage as a religious institution is about “a commitment by both people before God to love, honor, and cherish each other – in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer – in accordance with God’s will”. Why try to invoke God’s will when it’s convenient, even though you are trying to rebel against it by trying to change His definition of what marriage is? She then, weakly, says, “the Bible is a living document, powerful for more than 2,000 years because its truths speak to us even as we change through history”. I’m wondering how Ms. Miller would define truth to fit her ideals. If the Bible is true, then homosexuality is an abomination and, therefore, homosexual marriage cannot exist because it goes against the Biblical definition. Which is it? Despite this, Miller says that there is no good Biblical reason that gays and lesbians cannot be “married” and many why they should.

 

She then returns to her first premise, that Biblical examples of traditional marriage are “scarce”. As I said above, this is just blatant ignorance of what Scripture says. She then puts forth that marriage was “critical” to “pass on tradition and history”. Does she have any proof of this or is this just what she believes marriage is for? She offers no evidence for this other than a so-called “bible scholar” who just so happens to support her view (and openly disagrees with the Bible). She also says that marriage was important to “maintain the Jew’s precious and fragile monotheism”. Precious and fragile? Seriously, Ms. Miller is supposed to be a religion editor for Newsweek. Does she know anything about Biblical Christianity or does she just take what she’s told by those who share her view on the issues? Abraham is the first person to be called a Hebrew (not long after God called him away from his family). He held so closely to the One, True God that he was willing to kill his son in obedience to Him. He passed this strong faith in God to his children as well. To see this, all you have to do is actually study the book of Genesis. Isaac, Jacob, Joseph; they all believed in just one God and all of the people around them knew it and feared them because of it. This is hardly a fragile faith. The millions of Jews in bondage in Egypt cried out to Yahweh for salvation and no one else. Even through the times when many Israelites forsook God and followed after false gods, there were many who held firm to their faith in Yahweh. I don’t see how this affects the definition of marriage though…Marriage was instituted and ordained by God, not to pass down tradition or history, not to maintain a fragile monotheism, but to be the building block for the stability of His chosen people.

 

One of Ms. Miller’s “Biblical scholars” (Alan Segal) says that marriage was “between a man and as many women as he could pay for”. Unfortunately for the “Biblical scholar”, there is no scriptural support for this as the norm (as already shown above). Miller says that “social” conservatives (I thought that we were religious conservatives?) would point to Genesis 2:24 (which I’ve already done). Her “Biblical scholar” says that “if you believe that the Bible was written by men and not handed down in its leather bindings by God, then that verse was written by people for whom polygamy was the way of the world”. Does the “Biblical scholar” realize that Biblical Christians believe that men wrote the Bible too? The difference is that we believe that they were inspired by God to write what He desired them to. Not only that, but if you don’t believe that God inspired the Bible, then how can you be a Biblical Christian? Or, why would you offer it in defense of your point of view? I wonder if he also realizes that Genesis 2:24 took place while Adam and Eve were still in the garden? This would mean that polygamy couldn’t be a way of life because Adam and Eve were the only two people in existence! If he cannot even comprehend simple things that most elementary Sunday school classes know, why should I trust him on more difficult issues?

 

Miller brings up the idea of a homosexual couple’s inability to procreate as a biblical objection, and it is. But it’s not the point. Regardless of whether or not they can procreate, or whether the Bible authors could have imagined international adoption and new technology, it doesn’t change God’s definition of marriage. She also tries to defend her position by saying that infertile heterosexual couples cannot procreate, but they can get married. What she fails to see is that they are still heterosexual couples. They still abide by the definition of marriage set forth by God in Scripture. The fact that they, or those beyond the age of reproducing, cannot have children has no bearing on whether or not they abide by how God defined marriage.

 

Miller then questions the Lord and His view of both family and marriage. Again she tries to somehow imply that because Jesus was unmarried it shows His support for homosexuality and “gay marriage”. She then talks about the “community of believers” and defines them as a radical kind of family whose bond in God superceds all blood ties. What I don’t understand is how she gets confused about what a believer is. A believer, according to the Bible, is someone who not only believes that God exists but that repents of their sins and puts their trust in Jesus Christ. I agree that the “community of believers” is a radical family, but it does NOT include everyone who says they are a Christian. She says that this community shares a bond in God. God sees homosexuality as an exceedingly grave sin. How can homosexuals see themselves as part of this community, claiming that they share a bond in God, when they live in open rebellion to Him and His Word. What does the fact that there is no marriage have to do with whether God is ok with “gay marriage”? How is the fact that Jesus doesn’t mention homosexuality an argument from silence for something that God explicity is against? What about where Jesus confirms the definition of marriage by quoting Genesis 2:24? Ms. Miller’s hermeneutic is horrible and hardly sound.

 

In her next paragraph, Miller shows a severe lack of understanding of any part of the Bible. She claims that neither Jesus nor Paul had any interest in matters of the flesh. There isn’t a part of the New Testament that doesn’t deal in some way with the matters of the flesh. What about sin? Sin is the ultimate matter of the flesh! It is the reason that Jesus came to earth in the first place! To say that Jesus didn’t care about matters of the flesh is to dilute the Scriptures down to the point of being unrecognizable to anyone. Jesus told a number of people to “go and sin no more”. Paul also talks extensively about sin (especially in Romans) and immorality. He never once condones homosexuality (in fact, he condemns it: see Romans 1:26-32 and 1 Corinthians 6:9). When he does talk about marriage, it is always a husband and wife. Paul does say that it was his desire that Christians be celibate if possible, because it allowed them to focus on the things of God. Miller says that Paul considered family stability is the best alternative. If this is true, then why would he support something that God didn’t ordain for the family? Also, what does the fact that he told those who get married to not get divorced have to do with “gay marriage”? Nothing. It seems that Ms. Miller is trying to say that the Bible says that divorce is wrong but people still do it, so that means that even though the Bible says that homosexuality and “gay marriage” is wrong, it can still be done. This is just sad. The fact that people get divorced doesn’t change the authority of God or the definition of marriage. It just means that there are people that disobey God.

 

Laughably, her next argument for “gay marriage” is that the phrase itself is not in there at all. The phrases “email”, “computer”, “dinosaur”, and “supersonic jet” aren’t in the Bible either. What does this have to do with whether or not the Bible condones “gay marriage”? She fails to understand that when the Bible explicitly defines what marriage is it does speak about “gay marriage”. Because the Bible says that marriage is between a man and a woman, it means that any other “marriage”(whether it is “gay marriage” or polygamy or anything else) is unbiblical and not something that God desires.

 

She then tries to divert attention from the true crux of the issue by saying that the main reason most Christians are against this is because of the idea of sex between men. The main reason that any true Christian is against “gay marriage” is because the Bible forbids it, regardless of whether or not Ms. Miller actually agrees with it or not. She says that sex between women has never been a big deal, even in Biblical times, but she gives no indication of this from Scripture. She also neglects that Paul says that those who turn their backs on God and “exchange the truth for a lie” include women who exchange the “natural function of women for that which is unnatural” (Romans 1:26). She may try to deny that this denotes sex between women, but the very next verse talks about sex between men as the same type of act. Regardless of what a Bible dictionary or “Biblical scholar” says, the Bible itself clearly condemns homosexuality as a sin and rebellion against God. She says that Leviticus is “throwaway” but ignores the New Testament. Because she cannot make the New Testament say what she wants it to, she turns to a “scholar” who supports her position (meaning they had to twist and contort scripture) hoping that she can argue from “authority”. The unfortunate thing for Ms. Miller is that no matter how high her authority might seem to be in her own eyes or the eyes of those blinded by the world, it’s never going to be higher than God. God makes it clear that homosexuality is a sin and abomination. That is something that God will never bless in any form. She says that most of us no longer heed Leviticus, and I agree but I would go further. This entire issue stems from the fact that we don’t heed any of Scripture because we think we can do what is right in our own eyes! Our “modern” world has only surpassed the prescriptions of the scriptural strawmen that Miller and “gay marriage” supporters set up in hopes that a majority will buy into their sorry misrepresentation of the God of the Bible. Obviously, it didn’t work…Miller would also have us ignore homosexuality and focus on how much to pay for a slave because she claims that the Bible gives more focus to that. I would be interested in seeing what scriptures she’s using to glean her copious “advice”. In the 98 verses that I looked at concerning slaves, none of them talked about the “best price to pay for a slave”. Regardless of whether or not the Bible talks about the “best price” for a slave doesn’t change the fact that God sees homosexuality as a sin and abomination…

 

In her next paragraph, Miller starts out with “Paul was tough on homosexuality” even though she said above that Paul showed a complete lack of interest in matters of the flesh. So, which is it? Either he was tough on homosexuality or he didn’t care but it can’t be both! The truth is, Paul saw homosexuality the same way God sees it. Because she knows this, Miller again looks to a compromising “scholar” to strengthen her view, trusting that those reading the article won’t actually check for themselves. Her “scholars” are labeled “progressive”. Are they truly trustworthy? Just judging by the short number of quotes Miller uses, I would say that they definitely are not. Her “scholars” say that what Biblical Christians see as Paul being tough on homosexuality is actually Paul “critiquing the worst kind of wickedness: self-delusion, violence, promiscuity and debauchery”. While I disagree with this on many levels (most of all is that it turns a blind eye to what the scriptures actually say), I can’t help but laugh at the fact that this seems to perfectly describe many of the people that Miller is trying to support. She then tries to use her scholars to explain away the condemnation of homosexuality by saying that Paul was actually talking about the habits of the Roman emperors and not about “what we call homosexuality”. Are her scholars trying to change the definition of homosexuality now so that they can claim that the Bible doesn’t condemn it? Read what Paul writes in Romans 1:26-27 (emphasis mine):

 

Rom 1:26  For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural,

Rom 1:27  and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.

 

Honestly, unless you are actively trying to deny what the scriptures say so that you can live the lifestyle that you want to live, how much clearer could Paul make it? Again, it’s not about what the “scholars” say, it’s about what God has already said. He has said that homosexuality is a sin. Period. What amazes me is that the “scholar” that she quotes claims that the men that Paul is talking about meet their end and are judged by God. The horrible tragedy is that this is equally true for those who compromise the His Word in order to make it say what they want. Miller then tries to throw up the divorce distraction again. It’s not about divorce. We know that God hates divorce (Malachi 3) and that many Christians get divorced. That doesn’t change the fact that God sees homosexuality as a sin though. Miller again tries to say that “because some Christians disregard the teaching on divorce, it’s ok to disregard the one on homosexuality too”. This completely misses the point. The people divorcing (or not divorcing) don’t make something true. It is true whether or not people are divorcing!

 

She then says that the objections to “gay marriage” are not rooted in the Bible but in “tradition and custom”. She says this mainly because she has to ignore the clear teaching of scripture and all of those who proclaim it in order to have any sort of argument at all. She then runs back to the canard of “homosexuality is just like slavery/skin color”. She even quotes Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. when he said, “The arc of history is long, but it bends toward justice.” While that’s true, I don’t think that Ms. Miller and those who camp on her side of the issue see far enough or just how the arc bends. The Bible says that it is appointed unto man once to die and then the judgment (Hebrews 9:27). At this time, each of us will give an account of our lives before God. If we die in our sins (including homosexuality), then we will be given the justice of a holy and righteous God and be sent to hell for eternity. Sadly, instead of helping to warn those in sin, Ms. Miller has tried to make the trip to hell more comfortable for them…She then talks about how the Bible endorses slavery, but doesn’t seem to notice that it’s not the same type of slavery practiced here in America. And it still doesn’t change how God sees homosexuality. She says that it is impossible for the rules of the Bible to apply to our world at face value. That’s funny, isn’t our justice system based on the “rules” of the Bible, including many Old Testament ones? Why do we not see Miller crying out against a number of other issues that we seem to apply the Bible to at face value on a daily basis (or are those upcoming Newsweek articles)? Not to mention the fact that every issue that America faces has a corresponding answer to be found in the Bible. She claims that the “mature” view of scriptural authority is to move beyond literalism, like we have in the past. I wonder if Miller would say this if a literl view of scripture supported her side of the issue…This may be one of the most aggravating parts of the entire argument for me. Miller and others like her seem to think that their view of scripture is more “mature” and “modern”, when in reality it’s just convenience. Instead, I would argue that the mature view of scripture is to understand that God knew what He was talking about (He is the Creator of the Universe and is omniscient) and that, because I have a finite, sin-affected mind, I should give God “the honor of being more learned than myself”.

 

She says that marriage has evolved so that it would be unrecognizable to Abraham or Jacob. Is she sure about that? How can she know for sure? Does she have any scriptural evidence for this? Again, tries to argue from ignorance and claims the minority of examples to be the general rule. This is hardly the case. She then claims that a Newsweek poll says that 55% of those polled say that they are more objectionable to an adulterous heterosexual marriage than a “committed gay marriage”. I feel like a broken record as I type this, but that doesn’t change how God sees homosexuality. The Newsweek poll doesn’t define marriage. Christians don’t define marriage. God has already defined marriage between a man and a woman. She throws in a few other stats to try and strengthen her weak argument and then cites “modern” changes in wedding ceremonies as if that somehow gives the entire issue credibility (it doesn’t).

She says that we “cannot look to the Bible as a marriage manual” but that we can read it for “universal truths” as we “struggle toward a more just future”. I just have a few questions for Ms. Miller. Who decides which “universal truths” are actually true? If she does, then that means that many of the things that scripture says (including the ones against homosexuality) are wrong. If I do, then what if she disagrees with me? How could they be universal truths then? If we can’t look to the Bible as a marriage manual, then how can we trust any of the other truths in it? She doesn’t seem to get that the Bible is either all true or it’s not. The Bible claims to be, and is, the inspired Word of the God of the universe. What authority does Miller have (other than what she’s already given herself) to determine which verses we can pick and choose (which Christians are often accused of doing due to ignorance of both Christian beliefs and scriptural context)? And, who exactly is “struggling” with toward a more just future? I could just as easily (if not more so) say that it is Christians who are having their liberties taken away at every turn because they hate the message of the gospel. She then says that the Bible offers inspiration and warning on many things, and it does, but we cannot read into the scriptures what we wish to see there. She points out that it “speaks eloquently” about the role of families, but seeks to change how it defines those families because it doesn’t suit her. The Bible never once talks about the type of family that those pushing “gay marriage” are striving to make possible. It is not about “binding ourselves in loving pairs” but about humbly obeying the Word of God and living out our lives the way that He’s told us to live them.

As if all of her blasphemy and poor hermeneutics wasn’t enough, she then throws out the idea (it’s not new) that Jonathan and David were lovers. She says that this (false) story is a favorite among gay men. She correctly says that conservatives see this as a platonic friendship. But, then she tries to say that it was actually more than that because the two men “stood up for each other in turbulent times, through violent war and the disapproval of a powerful parent”. How does this prove that they were homosexual? It doesn’t. What it shows is Miller’s willingness to read into scripture (eisigesis) whatever she needs to to make it support her position. Unfortunately, Miller, like many in the world today seem to take every instance of love (whether in the Bible or not) and automatically assume it to be an erotic or physical love. This is ridiculous and tragic. There is no indication in scripture that the relationship between David and Jonathan and that is where the issue stops. It is both disrespectful and poor for to imply anything else or leave anything to “history and our own imaginations”.

Miller then bounces back (she might have a touch of ADHD) to the Biblical marriages that didn’t fit the definition, probably thinking that we had forgotten that she already mentioned all of this. She tries to paint the marriages, which were once used to try and prove that the Biblical definition as wrong, as beneficial to the “greater community”. She still doesn’t seem to understand that the fact that the examples given happened in no way changes the definition God made. Not to mention the fact that there was actually more than one tribe (twelve to be exact). Again, Miller resorts to quotes from “scholars” who support her position. This time, it’s a Rabbi who says that Judaism “thrives through diversity and inclusion”. He says that he believes that Judaism doesn’t want to leave anyone “outside of the religious process”. But, if we’re going by the Jewish religious process, that would mean that all of those Old Testament laws would apply. That would mean that homosexuals could be stoned for their lifestyle, wouldn’t it? Sadly, I don’t think that the Rabbi understands his own religion…If, instead, we’re talking about the Christian religious process, then why would she quote a Rabbi?

I wish that Ms. Miller would actually show some evidence for her statements regarding the Bible instead of just spouting things that she thinks will fly under the radar. She fails to show how Mary and Joseph’s marriage was unorthodox. Yes, Mary was pregnant and it wasn’t by Joseph. God took care of that when He came to Joseph in a dream. Joseph took Mary as his wife and their marriage went along as planned. But again, Miller points to a specific and in this case very unique situation and tries to paint all marriages like this. Then, in a bout of unadulterated blasphemy she spews: “The boy needed two human parents, after all”. The boy? The boy? That boy, madam, is the Savior of the world. He is the only way to heaven and unless you repent of your sins you will not go. Your contentious view of Jesus comes from the fact that you hate the message the He preaches (if you’ve ever actually heard the true gospel). If you’re trying to endear yourself to Biblical Christians, it’s not working. If you’re trying to poke us in the eye, then understand that it’s not us you mock, but the just Judge of the universe. That’s not a place that I would put myself if I were you…

The rest of the article is the main point for Miller, et. Al. She claims that the message of Christianity is acceptance for all and that Christianity is all about inclusivity. She talks about how Jesus reached out to everyone and brought the “whole Christian community” into His embrace. Unfortunately for Miller, she doesn’t know what she’s talking about. The Jesus she talks about is not the One to be found in scripture. The Jesus of scripture is NOT all inclusive. He is the One who said: “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but by me” (John 14:6). That’s hardly inclusive. In this one statement, Jesus said that all other religious belief systems are wrong. Not only that, He is the same Jesus who said that “unless you repent, you will perish” (Luke 13:3). She then cites a Jesuit priest who says that the story of the woman at the well (John 4) is evidence of Christ’s “all-encompassing love”. Does either the priest or Miller realize all that happened that day at the well? Does the story show the love of Jesus? Of course. Does it show that He condoned her lifestyle? Nope. Does it show that He supported homosexuality? Nope. Miller seems to pick and choose her stories while she neglects the number of others that can’t be twisted to support her side. She then quotes a “scholar” from Columbia who looks to Paul for support of “gay marriage”. The “scholar” quotes Galatians 3:28 and says that the argument for “gay marriage” isn’t made from specific texts but with the “general conviction that the Bible is bent toward inclusiveness”. I think that I am going to write Columbia and ask them to make me an emeritus professor there. I can spew any number of verses out of context to support any issue at any time. This is sad to be honest. Galatians 3:28 says:

Gal 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

The key words in this scripture are in Christ Jesus. You cannot be in Jesus if you are in sin. It doesn’t matter what a “scholar” thinks. That’s the truth. If you do not repent of your sins and continue in a lifestyle that God abhors, it doesn’t matter what you call yourself or how many “scholars” you can get to back you up. You are not a Christian. Therefore, you are not in Christ Jesus. The Bible is not inclusive. To say that it is is to ignore both the Old and New Testaments. In the Old Testament, God’s chosen people was Israel. There was never a time when that changed. They are still God’s chosen people. In the New Testament when the Christian church was born, it was (and still is) made up of those who repented of their sins and put their trust in Jesus Christ. This was evidenced by the fact that they were obedient to the scriptures. Those who are not born again will not inherit the kingdom of God (John 3). Those who are not saved are sons of disobedience and the wrath of God abides on them. That is not inclusive at all.  Nothing found in the Bible argues for “gay marriage”. Those who wish to make the Bible say something it doesn’t can do so, but that doesn’t change the truth. Getting “pastors”, “preachers”, and “scholars” to argue your point of view doesn’t change the fact that God has defined marriage as a covenant between a man and a woman. If there is a “pastor” or “preacher” who is “blessing” any of the “holy unions”, then they are in direct opposition to the will and Word of God and are not Christians. They are calling evil good and good evil and have set themselves against God.

Miller points out that very few Jewish or Christian denominations officially endorse “gay marriage” while some will bless “unions” and others openly support “gay marriage”. She says that she believes that homosexual couples should be allowed to marry in the same sense that heterosexual couples can. The truth is that they can. All they have to do is stop living a lifestyle of sin, repent, find someone of the opposite sex that they can love and then get married. Miller argues that “if we are all God’s children, made in his likeness and image” then “denying access to any sacrament based on sexuality is the same as denying it based on skin color”. Miller can argue that til she’s blue in the face but that doesn’t make it a valid argument or a good one. The truth is that we are not all God’s children. Ephesians says that the wrath of God is on the sons of disobedience. Jesus said that His sheep hear His voice. They are the ones that obey what He says. He also gave many parables of two different types of people, those that obey and those that don’t. This was illustrated by wheat and tares and good fish and bad fish. In 1 John, the apostle John says that there are two types of children, the children of God and the children of the devil and that they are obvious. The children of the devil do not practice righteousness. Homosexuality is a sin in God’s eyes and therefore cannot be righteous. Those who practice homosexuality, therefore, cannot be practicing righteousness and cannot be children of God. Miller mistakenly thinks that the level of seriousness you have about your argument is directly related to the truth of your argument. This is not true either. There have been many, many people who have been extremely serious about the beliefs that they hold (Paul is a good example) and have ben seriously wrong about those beliefs. It’s not about whether or not you are serious but whether what you are saying is true. She quotes a “reverend” who said, “Being with one another in community is how you love God”. That’s not what the Bible says. The Bible quotes Jesus as saying that if we truly love Him then we will keep His commandments (John 14:15, 21, 23-24). Marriage is about love, I don’t deny that. But it is only a marriage when it follows the definition of marriage given by God in the Bible. It is not a marriage any other way, no matter who tries to redefine it.  Human need also doesn’t redefine what a marriage is. There are many things that humans feel they need that are called sin in the Bible. It is not about what humans need. It’s not about the things that we want. It’s about what is true. There is nothing preventing homosexuals from getting married or growing old surrounded by friends, if they’re willing to do it all God’s way. If not, then they won’t have those things, but that’s not God’s fault, it’s not Christianity’s fault, and it’s not a reason to try and define marriage. Jesus didn’t teach us to love one another for our own good (can Miller provide any Bible verses at all?). He taught us to love God first with all our mind, heart, soul, and strength. Then, we are to love our neighbor as ourselves. It has nothing to do with us. She says that she wants children to grow up in stable homes. If this is truly the case, then she will support traditional marriage and Biblical Christian values. She ends her article with another quote from James Martin who says that he believes Psalm 139:14 supports homosexuality:

Psa 139:14  I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well.

 

I can’t help but wonder if Mr. Martin takes any other parts of the Psalm out of context in regards to homosexuality, like this part:

 

Psa 139:19  O that You would slay the wicked, O God; Depart from me, therefore, men of bloodshed.

Psa 139:20  For they speak against You wickedly, And Your enemies take Your name in vain.

Psa 139:21  Do I not hate those who hate You, O LORD? And do I not loathe those who rise up against You?

Psa 139:22  I hate them with the utmost hatred; They have become my enemies.

 

 

Martin then says that in his heart (which, according to Jeremiah 17:9, is deceitful above all things and desparately wicked), he believes that Jesus would reach out to the homosexuals among us if He were hear today because “Jesus doesn’t want people to be lonely or sad”.  I think that Jesus would reach out to the homosexuals today too, and would tell them the same thing that He preached to everyone else while He was here on earth:

(Mat 3:2)  Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

 

(Mat 4:17)  From that time Jesus began to preach and say, Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

 

(Mar 1:15)  and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”

 

(Mar 6:12)  They went out and preached that men should repent.

 

(Luk 13:3)  “I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.

 

(Luk 13:5)  “I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

 

Instead of worrying about the priest’s prayer, I think that we need to worry about God’s wrath… 

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