Summit Lecture Series: Grounded In Truth, Apply Love To People

Summit Lecture Series: Grounded In Truth, Apply Love To People September 27, 2021

What Is Marriage?

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John Stonestreet:

I am reformed enough in my theology where I think that the reason that I’m going to heaven is because of Jesus, not because I got things right. Does that make sense? It’s grace and the first action of grace comes from God, not from me. And if you’re a Calvinist or Armenian, you agree. I mean, it’s just, God does that. So, I am not ready to look at someone and say, you’re going to heaven, you’re not going to heaven. And you’re going to hell, because that’s not my job and it’s not actually what I’m supposed to do. What I’m supposed to do is encourage everyone who’s a brother and sister in Christ to follow. So if I saw you, right, in heterosexual sin, and I said nothing, that would be a problem. Right. And I think that carries over. One of the things it’s not lost on the homosexual or transgender community that the only time we’re bringing this up is when it has to do with homosexuality or transgender.

We’ve been just stunningly silent on porn addiction of pastors and porn addiction of grownups and of all kinds of different things. Right. And so I think we need to be consistent. I know this isn’t a direct answer, but I’m just not ready to say to someone you’re definitely going to hell. Yeah. I mean, I was in the park the other day and I saw a guy with a shirt that said, “Smoke meth and worship Satan.” That guy might be going to hell, you know what I’m saying? I might be willing to say that, but that’s just a really dangerous thing to do.

The scripture holds that out. And my job is to say, “Look, this is what Christ says.” What option do I have? It’s like Peter saying, “Jesus turns around when all the disciples leave him.” And he says, “Are you going to leave too?” And Peter says, “Where else am I going to go? You have the words of eternal life.” Right? So that’s the thing and that’s what I was kind of tell you. Don’t let your emotions get swayed by situations, let your emotions be grounded in truth, and then apply love to the situation and to the people. So, yeah. Really difficult thing, who you got next?

All right. So there’s been a lot of cases of same sex couples, suing different businesses and organizations and stuff like that. But do you ever think that there’s a situation where a same sex couple does have legitimate legal action to be able to take out on that kind of thing?

Yeah, no, absolutely. And this is one of the things that it’s needs to be understood in terms of these cases that have happened. Okay. In all of the situations so far where it’s happened, what we have been told, is that the same sex couples were discriminated against as people. The reality is in all of these situations, primarily the bakery in Denver, there’s a case in Washington that was a little bit different. But then that photographer in New Mexico, they had served these people products that were part of their business already. They were asked to participate in a ceremony. And that’s when they said, no. Okay, now what’s happening is, and probably the clearest example of this is what happened with the New Mexico photography case. Okay. So here you have a woman, Elaine Huguenin who had been a photographer, they emailed and said, “We’re going to have a same-sex commitment ceremony”.

She emails back very politely and says, “You know what? That’s just not something I do. Here’s someone who does it and you can contact them.” So she referred them to another photographer. They were able to get a photographer there. They were happy with the work, and it was cheaper than Elane Photography would’ve charged them, but they still sued Elane Photography. And what Elane Photography argued was, “I would have done a portrait of someone who claims to be a lesbian. That’s not an issue, but they asked me to participate in a lesbian commitment ceremony. And I’m a person of faith. And I can’t separate my faith from my job, from my work.” Does that make sense? And to participate would be having to force that. So when she was penalized, when the civil rights commission found her guilty, there was a concurring opinion written by a New Mexico judge called Richard Bosson and Bosson, what he said was so stunningly unbelievable.

What he wrote was that in America, you can have deeply held personal beliefs, but you have to curtail those beliefs when you live it out in the public square. That is a definition of religious freedom that they have in China, that they have in Cuba, that they have in North Korea. In of other words, you can believe whatever you want in your own head, but you’re not allowed to bring it into the public square. And what he went on to argue is, you have to, this is what he said, “You have to separate your belief from your behavior, because by doing so, you don’t separate their belief from their behavior.” What’s the first freedom in the constitution, the freedom of conscience, what Richard Bosson just said is the first freedom is the freedom of sexual orientation.

So she was literally told you have to separate your belief from your behavior, so that you don’t separate their belief from their behavior. And he goes on to say, and I quote, “This is the price of citizenship.” This is a brand new understanding of religious liberty. And what’s happened is, we’ve got a reversal. Now your question was, do gay and lesbian people have rights? Yes. They have human rights. They have rights. So if someone discriminated against them, right, because they were human, then yes, that’s a problem. If someone did not serve them, if a doctor did not treat them for surgery, right? But participating in a ceremony that celebrates behavior, that’s a different thing altogether. Do you see that distinction? That’s a really, really important distinction. But what we’re being told is to not participate, not celebrate someone’s behavior is to discriminate it against the person. But we’re only doing that now in the area of sexuality, not in any other area, does that help you at all? Okay, great question.

People who are related can’t have sex because the outcome of their child will be a genetic. disorder.

Not that they can’t have sex, they can have sex. What I’m saying-

… Yeah, but the outcome …

… Is that it’s illegal, that they can have … they’re discriminated against in marriage. Is that what you’re talking about?

No, what I’m talking about is the disease that follows. What I’m not understanding is in Genesis when Adam and Eve … how did that all start? Because that’s one family, that’s all the same genetics.

Right, right, right. So, yeah, no, obviously when you have this and by the way, you have to remember throughout the history of the world, marriage wasn’t about having romantic feelings with someone else. Okay. Romantic feelings, followed marriage. Marriage was used as an institution to secure alliances. Marriage in Genesis is again, the institution by which God is going to build the whole human race. So did Cain marry his sister? Yeah. There’s no other explanation. Okay. But you also have to understand too, that you don’t have this multiplication of the gene pool that’s going to be creepy, that’s going to be effective at this point. Okay. So as a result of the fall, and this is how I think we understand it, as a result of the fall, the gene pool, the fall starts impacting everything, right. And impacts every aspect of God’s creation including our genetic makeup.

And then you start having these negative consequences. And so the mosaic law, right? The law that identifies Israel is one of the first ones to say incest, eh-eh, right. Because, at this point it was no longer necessary. There is going to be these corruptions in the gene pool and that sort of stuff, that there’s not going to be with Adam and Eve’s kids. Does that make sense? Now, what I was saying earlier is not anything having to do with that. Just that now it has just been eternally long established, right? In every civilized country that incestuous relationships are discriminated against when it comes to marriage and there’s a good reason for that. And that is because of the health of the offspring. Does that help? Okay. I will be back on Thursday.

And so if you want to pick up one of the same sex marriage books, they’re in the bookstore, they’re 10 bucks. All right. It’s 160 pages. It’s very readable. Chapter 12, the very last chapter is, What do I do if? With a whole bunch of scenarios and the appendix of the book, is written by a friend of mine who is a same-sex attracted believer who has committed his life to celibacy, and also is going into the ministry. He’s brilliant. And I asked him, what do you need from the church? And that’s probably worth the price of the book alone. All right, good. Thanks guys.

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