Jonathan Dudley has written a provocative piece on how people use the Bible to condemn homosexual marriage and yet turn a blind-eye to other wrongs due to self-interest. The author points out that modern evangelicals reveal their personal bias when they oppose same-sex marriage since they do not endorse other standards in the Bible with the same zeal. In short, there are issues such as hair length, celibacy, when life begins, divorce, etc. that have changed over time. Therefore, since we no longer view these items as sacrosanct in the church due to the accepted evolution of religion within culture, we should not oppose same-sex marriage since it is simply the latest expression of the religion/culture adaptation.
In advocating the merits of his position, the author offers the following examples.
If nature tells us it is wrong to participate in homosexual activity due to the fact that it is “unnatural” (Romans 1) then why do Christians not adhere to Paul’s teaching in I Corinthians 11:14-15 where he says, “Does not nature itself teach you that if a man wears long hair, it is degrading to him, but if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? (1 Corinthians 11:14-15)?
… the community opposed to gay marriage has itself revised the Christian tradition in a host of ways. For the first 1500 years of Christianity, for example, marriage was deemed morally inferior to celibacy. When a theologian named Jovinian challenged that hierarchy in 390 A.D. — merely by suggesting that marriage and celibacy might be equally worthwhile endeavors — he was deemed a heretic and excommunicated from the church.
Another example of personal bias vs. Biblical obedience would be the incredible inconsistency of the church when it comes to divorce.
Although there is only one uncontested reference to same-sex relations in the New Testament, divorce is condemned throughout, both by Jesus and Paul. To quote Jesus from the Gospel of Mark: “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery.”A possible exception is made only for unfaithfulness. The community most opposed to gay marriage usually reads these condemnations very leniently. A 2007 issue of Christianity Today, for example, featured a story on its cover about divorce that concluded that Christians should permit divorce for “adultery,” “emotional and physical neglect” and “abandonment and abuse.
Jonathan reveals the motivation for the glaring inconsistencies by opponents of gay marriage when he says,
… it’s not at all difficult for a community of Christian leaders, who are almost exclusively white, heterosexual men, to advocate interpretations that can be very impractical for a historically oppressed minority to which they do not belong – homosexuals.
What do you think? Read the entire article and let’s consider the conclusion of the author based on the merits of his rationale.