Several people have asked versions of the question: “How do we respond to people (especially those who aren’t followers of Jesus) about SCOTUS redefining marriage?”
This is a timely concern and deserves an answer (or at least an attempt).
Arching over any response should be a prayerful awareness that our words, tone of voice, and body language represent Christ, so let’s be careful to communicate grace and unconditional love. Let’s avoid arguments and debates – even heated conversations; just walk away. Here are a few bullet points to think about and possibly use in response.
- Jesus loves homosexuals. Because Jesus is our model and we seek to follow him, we too, love people who find themselves in the reality of same-sex attraction.
- We are disappointed that individual sexual autonomy has driven SCOTUS to re-define marriage – a concept that is not only Biblical but which has been the universal moral standard for the social and cultural construct of the family since the first time history was recorded.
- We are concerned because the Court failed to outline if and how to protect the rights of people and institutions who, for religious reasons, will steadfastly retain the definition of marriage as a union between one man and one woman.
- We are alarmed because the exalted right of individual sexual autonomy seems to lead to a “slippery slope” where bigamy, polygamy, pedophilia, and bestiality might also become legally protected.
We will distance ourselves from both the left and the right. We won’t succumb to societies’ pressure to celebrate homosexual practice but we don’t hate those who embrace homosexuality. We acknowledge the clarity of God’s Word which teaches us to say, “That’s wrong” and “I love you.”
Tim Keller, the articulate pastor from New York, puts it this way, “We’re far worse than we ever imagined and far more loved than we could ever dream.”
I believe this is the time for the church, the wholly devoted, committed followers of Jesus, to reach out in grace and love and say, “You’re wrong and you’re loved.” Jonathan Parnell says, “We have this incomparable opportunity to let the Gospel shine.”