At the moment when the United States Supreme Court handed down its decision on same-sex marriage, I was in a Vacation Bible School closing program, delighting with hundreds of others at the happy faces and voices of the children as they sang and spoke of the God they’d learned about each day. They’d learned all week of Jesus, who gives greater treasure and greater love than all the false treasure and false love they’d be tempted to settle for in this world. I realized later, as I heard of the Court’s decision, that those very children will face a more confusing American landscape than we’d have envisioned even a few years ago. They’ll grow up in a society desperately needing to hear the same message they heard this past week.
Where to hear sorted-through truth about the decision?
If you’re like me, though — wanting to understand the implications of the Supreme Court’s decision for yourself, and also so that you can help your children and others understand the future implications for their Christian faith — the proliferation of different articles about the justice’s decision seems a bit overwhelming. (I read and bookmarked ten or so in the first few hours following the decision.) And even if you live in a part of the world far from the U.S., if you follow Jesus, you’ll want to think through how Christ calls us all to respond.
Two of the articles I read stood out as ones I’d like to pass on. The first is from Russell Moore of the Southern Baptist Convention, published in Friday’s Washington Post. Moore begins with:
As I write this, the Supreme Court has handed down what will be the “Roe v. Wade” of marriage, redefining marriage in all 50 states. This is a sober moment, and I am a conscientious dissenter from this ruling. The Court now has disregarded thousands of years of definition of the most foundational unit of society, and the cultural changes here will be broad and deep. So how should the church respond?
First of all, the church should not panic. The Supreme Court can do many things, but the Supreme Court cannot get Jesus back in the tomb. Jesus of Nazareth is still alive. He is still calling the universe toward his kingdom…
Moore’s piece is thoughtful and strengthening, encouraging and convicting. You really should take the few minutes to read the whole article. Find it here: Why the church should neither cave nor panic about the decision on gay marriage – The Washington Post
And then, Jonathan Parnell at Desiring God wrote a clarifying, helpful post. He concludes his piece with:
… But true followers of Christ will walk neither path. We have something to say that no one else is saying, or can say.
Distancing ourselves from both the left and the right, we don’t celebrate homosexual practice, we acknowledge God’s clear revealed word that it is sin; and we don’t hate those who embrace homosexuality, we love them enough to not just collapse under the societal pressure. We speak the truth in love into this confusion, saying, simultaneously, “That’s wrong” and “I love you.” We’re not the left; we say, this is wrong. And we’re not the right; we say, you’re loved. We speak good news, with those sweetest, deepest, most glorious words of the cross — the same words that God spoke to us — “You’re wrong, and you’re loved.”
… You’re wrong and you’re loved — that’s the unique voice of the Christian. That’s what we say, speaking from our own experience, as Tim Keller so well puts it, “we’re far worse than we ever imagined, and far more loved than we could ever dream.”
That’s our message in this debate, when society’s elites despise us, when pop songs vilify us, when no one else has the resources to say anything outside of two extremes, we have this incomparable opportunity to let the gospel shine, to reach out in grace: you’re wrong and you’re loved...
Read Parnell’s whole piece here: Why Homosexuality Is Not Like Other Sins | Desiring God
So, don’t panic, and don’t cave. Instead, remember the pivotal message each Christian is given the honor of speaking into this confusion: that we’re each far worse than we ever imagined, and yet far more loved than we could ever dream.
This is the shining message of hope we give to each person. And no matter the breadth or depth of the coming cultural changes, Jesus is still calling the universe toward His kingdom.
He is God forever and ever. And He will guide us to the end. (Psalm 48:14)