More thoughts on Gay Marriage

Usually when watching the Daily Show, I watch Jon Stewart’s commentary and then skip the interview. He is not my favorite interviewer by any means. Yet, I did find this one interesting. Mike Huckabee was on promoting his new book, Do the Right Thing. The conversation moved into a debate over gay marriage. Huckabee stuck to the fact that voters defined marriage as one man and one woman. Stewart refereed to Old Testament ideas of marriage as in polygamy. Nothing Biblical fell out of Huckabee’s mouth, no scriptural reference at all.

That got me looking into the Biblical accounts of a traditional marriage. Here is what I found (please add more if you know of any)
Gen. 2:18, 21-24 – God sees Adam as lonely and desires to make a companion for him, God creates Eve.
Malachi 2:14 – speaks of the marriage covenant, but is trying to get people not to marry foreigners.
1 Corinthians 7:1-2 – Paul tells us not to marry but that if we do every man should have a woman and every woman a man.
Ephesians 5:22-33 – wives submit to husbands, husbands love your wives like Christ loved the church. Talks about how a marriage should work, as far as the relationship itself
1 Peter 3:1-5, 7 – again talks about the relationship aspect of marriage
Hebrews 13:4 – states that marriage should be honored by all

Other than these there are rules about who should can marry a widow, how to set your daughters up with good husbands. There are stories of people trading their daughters for political purposes and many more, and even weirder scriptures. Besides the ones above nothing really speaks to why marriage should be between a man and a woman. Besides the Genesis passage, all the others speak to relationships and not to why marriage is a covenant between a man and a woman.

Is our stance on marriage = man & woman, based off of more tradition than scripture? Are we fighting the idea of gay marriage because of social ideals or scriptural based theology? There was a time when a black man was seen as 3/4 human and women were property. Those were social ideals that were overturned. Ten years from now will we look at this issue and think the same thing?

I have a feeling I know what some people will say. Gay marriage is cultivating unbiblical morality. If gay marriage is legal then we are promoting homosexuality. I am wrestling with that idea as well…more to come.

Jon Stewart makes some good points and I think Huckabee (as a Baptist minister) should have come out stronger on Biblical principals. Yet he is also probably still trying to run for some sort of office and may want to shun the ‘preacher’ side of things. Here is the interview.

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Gay Marriage

What is the purpose of marriage? Why do two people vow to spend their lives intertwined? We are communal people who desire to be around and with others. But is that the only reason we marry? Is it only in order to have a buddy to go through life with or only to feed our sexual desires?

These are some of the questions that I have been wrestling with recently. I have been wresting with the issue of gay marriage. Am I for it or against it? Is there really anything biblical against the idea? Why is the government involved in marriage anyway, if it is a religious structure? I still have a ton of questions.

What I do know is the purpose marriage has seen some changes over time. The goal for Abraham’s kin was to ‘be fruitful and multiply.’ Marriage was a place of procreation. When you are born to Jewish parents, you are considered a Jew. Having children, building a family, was and still is a way of building up a religious people and nation. That is not the case for Christians. Children born to Christian parents are not necessarily Christian. We promise, at infant baptism, to raise them up in a way pleasing to God, but eventually that child will have to make the decision him/herself. Being born into a Christian home doesn’t make you a Christian. Procreation within marriage is not an evangelical tool or building up a religion. What is the purpose of marriage now?
Marriage is a place where the love of Christ can be shared between two people in deeper and more intimate ways. It is a place of caring, joy, support and service to one another. It is a place where sacrificial love is practiced and perfected. Marriage is a place where when life happens there is someone there who will walk through it with you. It is having someone who will hold your hand when your parents die and also make sure to change the toilet paper when it runs out. Marriage is a place where tenderness is demonstrated with a kiss after being apart for a while and finding joy in doing nothing else but holding each other. Marriage is a place where deep conversations about what makes us, us happen with honesty and love.

Marriage is what happens in the bed room, the bath room, the living room, the kitchen and all the other places life happens. You cannot confine marriage to one room of the house. How you deal with dirty dishes day in and day out is as important as how you handle what happens in the martial bed. For marriage to succeed you look at all aspects of life and you promise to do everything you can for the other person.

If this is marriage, why does it have to be limited to only a man and a woman?

“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.” (Gen. 2:24) But David has a great post on other verses in the Bible that talk about marriage, ones we ignore constantly. How do we deal with those? How do we deal with the pieces of scripture on issues we ignore or have come to understand differently because of our post-modern thinking; like slavery, the role of woman in the church, and many others.

Peter Storey once said, “God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve, but Steve showed up. Now what are you going to do?” He also said, “Homosexuals are the only people we demand be celibate.” We give them no way to deal with their sexual desires. A strait person could get marriage and have as much sex as s/he would like. We don’t even make that big of a deal anymore if they stray within their marriage and decide that they desire someone else instead. Yet we don’t allow two homosexuals to join in a monogamous relationship where commitment is demanded and expected.

I’m still on the fence. I see my gay friends and I feel their pain. I see them look at my wife and I and I feel sorry they cannot experience our type of relationship for themselves. Yet, I cannot ignore the current Biblical thinking as well. So here I sit, pondering on the fence.

Dumbledore’s Gay and so are others…

I am not sure how to take this new insight into the Harry Potter series. I, like so many others, wonder why. I wonder what the main point of Rowling’s decision to do this, at this point. Were her sales slacking? Does it really add another dimension to the character? Does it help build tolerance for gays and lesbians around the world knowing that a fictional wizard in a children’s book is gay?

I truly think it doesn’t add anything to the stories. There is really no mention of sexual behavior between the adults in the novels. The only physical contact between characters is the occasional teenage hormonal induced snogging. Does this really add to Dumbledore’s character in such a way that makes him different, now knowing he is homosexual?

I am sure the relgious right will have another log to throw on the anti-Potter fire now. Not only will reading these books turn your children into devil worshipers but it will now turn the gay too. Or is that the same thing?

Here is a top ten list of possible other children characters that might be gay too:
10. Frank Hardy (of the Hardy Boys)
9. Margret (from Hello God It’s Me Margret, this was the first vagina monologues)
8. The Pokey Little Puppy
7. Sam I Am
6. Inspector Gadget
5. Little Jack Horner
4. Smurfette
3. Pokémon (its all in the name)
2. He-Man (really who would wear that outfit)
1. The Three Men in a Tub