‘Gay marriage’ and the Gospel
By JAMES A. SMITH SR.
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Robb and Robin Wirthlin, parents of a seven-year-old in Lexington, Mass., whose son was taught a “gay marriage” lesson in his second grade public school, came to Tallahassee to urge Floridians to pass Amendment 2. The teaching was mandated because of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court’s 4-3 decision in 2004 to legalize “gay marriage.” In a legal challenge, the Wirthlins were unable to gain even an opt-out right for their son. (For more on the news conference, see “Massachusetts parents warn about dangers of ‘gay marriage’” on page one.)
In addition to the education implications of “gay marriage,” Anita Staver, a religious liberty attorney who leads Orlando-based Liberty Counsel, said at the Tallahassee news conference a “crystal ball” wasn’t needed to know what would happen in Florida if “gay marriage” was permitted. In every place where “gay marriage” has been legalized, religious freedom is now under assault.
Staver cited real-life cases—not hypothetical concerns—where religious freedom has suffered in places where “gay marriage” has flourished:
• Catholic Charities in Boston was forced to stop providing adoption services because it refused to place children with same-sex couples.
• When the Parker family objected to having their child forced to read King and King, a cartoon book about same-sex marriage, school officials actually had the father, David Parker, arrested. The Parkers, joined by the Wirthlins, spent more than a quarter of a million dollars in legal fees and they still lost. School officials say they have to teach same-sex marriage to elementary kids because it’s the law.
• Broadcasters and others in Canada, where same-sex marriage is legal, have been charged as criminals for criticizing same-sex behavior.
• Scott Brockie, a Canadian printer was fined $5,000 for refusing to print letterhead for a homosexual advocacy group.
• Canadian pastor Stephen Boisson was charged with a “hate crime” for speaking out against the indoctrination of children in the public schools regarding homosexuality.
• Chris Kempling, a professor at British Columbia College of Teachers, was suspended from his job for writing letters to his local newspaper expressing his opinion about the promotion of homosexuality in the public schools.
• Britain’s Civil Partnership law has been used as an excuse for police investigations of individuals who dare to speak against same-sex activity.
• Swedish pastor Ake Green was arrested, convicted and sentenced to a month in jail for preaching a sermon against homosexual behavior. Although his conviction was overturned, this case had a chilling effect on other pastors. Ultimately, once a state opens the door to same-sex marriage, there is no basis on which to stop anyone from demanding the right to group marriages.
Although legalized just earlier this year, David Buegler, vice president of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod in St. Louis, Mo., told reporters at the Tallahassee new conference that LCMS pastors in California have already been pressured to perform same-sex ceremonies.
In light of these facts, there can be no debate that religious freedom is endangered where “gay marriage” is permitted.
In Ephesians 5:22-33, the Apostle Paul explicitly ties marriage to the Gospel message of God’s grace to humanity, noting the husband-wife relationship pictures the relationship between Christ and the church. Paul bases his teaching in God’s creation of Adam and Eve, quoting Gen. 2:24: “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.” This beautiful picture is obliterated by “gay marriage.”
Beyond the danger to the free exercise of our religious freedom to preach the Bible’s teaching on marriage and homosexuality, the Gospel itself is at stake in the “gay marriage” debate. Of all the reasons to vote in favor of Amendment 2, the ability to tell the Gospel story must be the top concern for Christians.
Vote “yes” on Amendment 2.
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