I am hesitant to even wade into this conversation because 1) I am not any sort of official spokesperson; 2) I have many friends on both sides of the issue; and 3) I don’t care much for the vitriolic rhetoric that is often used against those who feel the way I do.
However, I think it is important for both sides of a conversation to be shared and heard. I don’t think that many people on either side of the marriage amendment debate have taken a whole lot of time setting aside their personal feelings and preferences in order to understand the positions of others.
Before I explain why I am planning to Vote Yes to the MN Marriage Amendment this fall, let me take a moment to explain what I am not doing with my vote.
(Of course many will disagree with me on the following points, but I will have to let that be.)
- I am not voting against the worth, dignity or value of any person.
- I am not voting against the need to find a solution for people in same-sex relationships to experience some of the benefits of people in heterosexual marriages.
- I am not voting in the hopes of creating some kind of Christian theocracy.
- I am not voting to minimize, criticize or condemn the feelings people in same-sex relationships have for one another.
- I am not voting to uphold what some would claim as the ‘traditional’ view of marriage.
- I am not voting because I believe broken, abusive, destructive marriages are somehow inherently better than even the best same-sex marriage.
That being said, let me share the reasons I am voting for the amendment. Actually, there is only one reason.
I believe that the God of the Universe decided from eternity ago that marriage would be between one man and one woman.
I take the following statement from Dr. John Piper who I believe defines marriage in a Biblically accurate when he says,
Marriage is created and defined by God in the Scriptures as the sexual and covenantal union of a man and a woman in life-long allegiance to each other alone, as husband and wife, with a view to displaying Christ’s covenant relationship to his blood-bought church. (for the entire sermon click here)
I believe that defining marriage in a way that is faithful to the entire breadth of teaching in the Bible, completely removes the option of same-sex marriage just as thoroughly as it removes the option of polygamous marriage, open marriage or any other so-called marriage relationship that is not constituted by one man and one woman alone. My stance on the amendment is not one of hate, judgement or bigotry. It is simply my best faith effort to be faithful to the what the Scriptures declare as God’s intention for his created world.
I understand that those people outside of the Christian faith will not likely be swayed by my opinion. It is not my intention, nor my responsibility, to try and convert anyone to any kind of thinking.
Many opponents of the amendment who are sympathetic to Christian faith, and yet plan to Vote No, say they are doing so because God is a God of love. I don’t disagree, He most definitely is. But the fact that 'God is love' is not a blanket that can be simply dropped over any idea or action, as justification for what a broken humanity desires to do. God has certain ideals and mandates for the world he created. Marriage, between a man and woman, is one of those.
However, I do call on those people who claim to follow Christ to study the above definition closely, and to decide for themselves if this is in fact what the Bible teaches. And if it is, a very difficult personal decision will need to be made, namely,
1) to set aside personal opinions and culture influence and be faithful to Christ, or
2) to sit in the place above Scripture and determine what God’s declared will is.
Only when we first love God, demonstrated by our willing obedience and submission to His declared Word, can we then rightly love all the world he has created.