How Far Have We Gone? A Sad Day for America
On May 9, 2012, a historic cultural moment occurred at the White House when an American president expressed his support for same-sex marriage for the first time. During a “chat” with Robin Roberts of ABC News, President Obama talked candidly about the “evolutionary” process he underwent on this issue.
Only four years ago, when he was running for president, he expressed his belief in traditional marriage as a sacred commitment made before God. What caused the president of the United States to change his mind? Here’s what he said in the interview:
I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors, when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together; when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that “Don't Ask Don't Tell” is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I've just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married."— ABC News, May 9, 2012
In the interview he also said that even young Republican conservatives on college campuses, who disagree with him on every other issue, agree with him on issues of sexual orientation. He went on to state that his daughters’ friends who have same-sex parents do not want their parents to be treated differently.
So, apparently, it was family, friends, neighbors and soldiers that changed the President’s mind.
“Coincidently,” the President spoke about this controversial issue the day after a May 8th Gallup Poll came out claiming that by a margin of 50% to 48%, Americans favor the legalization of same-sex marriage. Whether you agree with these findings or not, they suggest a growing departure and disrespect for our Creator’s divine authority. And, despite the fact that President Obama concluded his reasoning with an appeal to Scripture saying, “It is also a golden rule to treat others the way you want to be treated,” it is apparent our President, along with a growing number of sympathizers, has become part of our country’s real problem: Disregard for God’s Word.
With all due respect, I believe that President Obama, like so many others today, sometimes misuses the Scriptures, conveniently quoting those that serve his purpose and leaving the rest behind. This makes a mockery of God’s Word. If you are going to refer to the Golden Rule or the Second Great Commandment on how we should treat each other, you can’t forget the First Commandment, as Jesus spoke in Matthew 22:37-38:
“Jesus said to him, ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul,
and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment.”
To love your God with all your heart, soul and mind forces you to empty yourself of your own personal agendas and to love God’s Word as the standard upon which you base your entire life.
As the psalmist wrote, “The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes,” (Psalm 19:8). We also know that God’s Word keeps us alive and safe as Proverbs 4:4 says, “He also taught me, and said to me: ‘Let your heart retain my words; keep my commands, and live.’” If we love God, we will keep His commands, despite the opinions of family, friends or neighbors. When we confuse love and respect for each other with the acceptance of sin, it will ultimately lead to the destruction of our society.
While it may not be popular (or “politically correct”) to say so, Holy Scripture condemns gay and lesbian behavior in the most severe terms. Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13 call it “an abomination.” In Romans 1, the Apostle Paul paints a vivid picture of total depravity, stating that because people were not thankful and did not glorify God that “…God also gave them up to uncleanness, in lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves,” (1:24). In verses 25-27, Paul goes on to specifically describe gay and lesbian behavior as resulting from “vile passions” that are “against nature.” In 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, homosexuality is listed with other sins whose practitioners will not inherit the Kingdom of God. The Bible, in both Old and New Testaments, clearly and consistently teaches that homosexual relationships are immoral and contrary to God’s will. Therefore, to lend support to the legalization of same-sex marriage is to endorse immorality—and to denigrate the most important institution God has given to mankind for the continuation of the human race. Legalizing same-sex marriage would also force Christians and others with traditional moral values, to accept behavior they believe is wrong, and that violates their conscience.
While President Obama’s evolution on same-sex marriage may represent election year politics at its worst, it is sad nonetheless—especially when just a few years ago he claimed to hold the opposite view. As he stated when running for president at the April 17, 2008, Saddleback Presidential Forum:
“I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian—for me—for me as a Christian, it is also a sacred union.” When asked about his change of position during the ABC interview, his words clearly indicate that his rationale was not influenced by a genuine belief in God’s Word. Franklin Graham was able to see through the President’s misguided rhetoric and issued this strong statement:
In changing his position from that of senator/candidate Obama, President Obama Has, in my view, shaken his fist at the same God who created and defined marriage. It grieves me that our president would now affirm same–sex marriage, though I believe it grieves God even more. This is sad day for America. May God help us.
The Importance of Sexuality and Marriage
As evidenced by the words of our president, I believe that much confusion surrounds the issue of homosexuality and same-sex marriage in our country. Respecting every individual is certainly part of the Golden Rule and the Second Great Commandment as stated in Matthew 22:39, “And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’” As Christians, we are to care for and respect all people because, as Genesis tells us, all are created in God’s image. And, as God’s image bearers, we have a unique place in all of creation. Speaking of man, Psalm 8:5 says, “For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor.” Mankind holds an exalted position of honor and glory in God’s creation, which requires us to love and respect each other. This, of course, includes homosexuals, with the understanding that we are to love the sinner, but not the sin. It is here where the misunderstanding resides.
From the beginning, mankind’s identity has been defined by his or her sexuality. When we go back to Genesis and reflect on the origins of man, it is evident that along with being made in the image of God, who we are is locked-up in our gender. The word “create” in Genesis 1:27 is used three times—twice to emphasize that we are God’s image bearers and once to mark the importance of our sexuality—“So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” The Lord designed male and female uniqueness for the purpose of marriage and procreation. In Matthew 19:4-6, Jesus makes this crystal clear by combining Genesis 1:27 and 2:24 in saying,
And He answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’”? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.
Our Creator established marriage as a unique bond between one male and one female. It is also the first and foundational institution established by God for mankind through which to raise healthy children. According to Scripture, the ideal family structure for man’s wellbeing is father, mother and child. To attempt to redefine these institutions is detrimental to all.
While speaking at a fundraiser hosted by singer Ricky Martin and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Leadership Council on May 14, 2012, President Obama chose to ignore the biblical model of the family. Instead, he pandered to the audience by stating that gay couples have the right to marry, and suggested that the country has never gone wrong when it "expanded rights and responsibilities to everybody." Of course, that may be true for other issues like racial equality, but to disregard the God-established and time-honored institution of one-man, one-woman
marriage is totally inappropriate and certainly not applicable, especially under our Constitution, which acknowledges that our rights come from God.
As the Declaration of Independence states: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.” To expand the definition of these rights to include same-sex marriage not only contradicts our nation’s history, but is a slap in the face to the very Creator from Whom our rights originate! Fortunately, despite the president’s misguided opinion and the recent Gallup Poll, the American people have shown much better sense on this issue. When given a choice, so far citizens in 32 states, including California, have voted to uphold traditional, one-man, one-woman marriage. Only six states have made it constitutional (Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont), as well as in the District of Columbia, but none of these was by a vote of the people.
At the same LGBT fundraiser, the President brazenly went on to claim, "That doesn't weaken families. That strengthens families," adding, "It's the right thing to do." Do same-sex relationships really strengthen the family? While studies on the development of children raised by gay and lesbian parents compared with those raised by heterosexual parents have been inconclusive in the past, largely due to limited sampling, a newly released study by Sociology Professor Mark Regnerus at the University of Texas strongly challenges the President’s assertion, as stated in this press release:
“This study, based on a rare large probability sample, reveals far greater diversity in the experience of lesbian motherhood (and to a lesser extent, gay fatherhood) than has been previously acknowledged or understood," and he further explains, "The most significant story in this study is arguably that children appear most apt to succeed well as adults when they spend their entire childhood with their married mother and father, and especially when the parents remain married to the present day." http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-06/e-sce060712.php
The most comprehensive study of its kind ever done, it included 3,000 young Americans, age 18 to 39, who were raised in eight different family structures with 40 different social, emotional and relationship outcomes. While it is almost impossible for studies with so many variables to be absolutely decisive, this was a thorough and excellent attempt. And its most important finding was that traditional families, with heterosexual parents that remain married, are “most apt to succeed” at raising healthy children.
Redemptive and Merciful
The identity of every human being on earth resides in their soul, mind, spirit—and sexuality. In attempting to understand the origins of homosexuality, one discovers that it usually results from numerous developmental factors that are ingrained both consciously and subconsciously in the individual. It is not a question of being born gay, because there is no identifiable gene in the DNA for homosexuality. After 33 years of research, the American Psychological Association has concluded that there is no simple biological pathway for homosexuality. However, while this organization affirms that there is no definitive proof for being born gay, it also refers to “a cluster of circumstances” that compel a person into the homosexual lifestyle.
As former homosexual and popular Christian speaker, Sy Rogers (now married), who became straight over 30 years ago, says about his early same-sex attraction, “It is not a matter of choice—I did not choose my feelings. They developed beyond my choice and understanding.” In Sy’s DVD, One of the Boys, he offers a powerful testimony to God’s power to change and give new life. Referring to C.S. Lewis’ statement that even Mother Nature is naturally depraved and cursed by the sin of man, he goes on to say “When I had the ability to understanding how feelings control and define us, I came to the conclusion that I needed a Savior that could affect my sexuality.”
After accepting Christ, he realized that since his body was now Jesus’ dwelling place, as it says in 1 Corinthians 5, he had to forfeit his gay life style. In a statement that mirrors Romans 1, Sy states, “You need to master your own sexuality and control it,” and that without controlling the “unclean lusts” that defile and “dishonor the body,” we “exchange the truth for a lie.”
Sadly, this is exactly what is happening in our society today. When the knowledge of our Creator-God is suppressed, as it increasingly is in our culture, individuals—especially our youth—are left to their own passions that almost inevitably lead to sexual immorality. This is true for both homosexuals and heterosexuals.
The deceived world we live in is awash in sexual images and messages, which invade our lives almost everywhere: TV, movies, radio, books, newspapers, magazines, fashions, public schools and libraries—even on billboards along our roadways. In such a climate of unbridled sexual lust, where promiscuity, pornography and many other sexual addictions flourish, how can the acceptance of homosexuality be far behind, as indicated by the highest executive in the United Sates? Yet, God’s Word stands and reminds us that His desire is to forgive our transgressions and to free us from bondage to any sin. Just as in John 8:12, where Jesus forgave the adulteress who was going to be stoned, saying, “Neither do I condemn you: go and sin no more,” in His mercy, God will forgive all manner of sexual sins, including those committed by homosexuals.
If you would like to learn more about this controversial issue, click here and read a position paper written by CSI's Chief Technical Advisor, Steve Rowitt, Th.M., Ph.D.
Because it is foundational to a Christian worldview and to understanding all of life, our ministry feels strongly about the importance of Genesis. Controversial issues like homosexuality and same-sex marriage can tempt us to ignore the true meaning and power God’s Word. However, because we at CSI desire to faithfully spread the truth of creation and the gospel of Jesus Christ, we cannot side-step difficult issues or deny what the Bible has to say about them. In this letter I used some of the Scripture verses from Sy Rogers’ testimony and strongly recommend his One of the Boys DVD to you as an excellent resource. Sy’s compelling account will open your eyes to the internal spiritual dynamics involved in reaching homosexuals for Christ. With a pastor’s gracious heart, he offers insights into what we in the church need to understand about the ever-growing issue of homosexuality that I guarantee will give you a new perspective.
To make the package complete, we would like to offer another DVD entitled, Shaky Town. It was produced by the Gunn Brothers, who also made Indoctrination, one our ministry’s most popular DVDs. Shaky Town traces the history of the beginnings of the gay movement in San Francisco. Its title alludes to the fact that this infamous city, which is known for being openly accepting of homosexuality, lies directly over an earthquake fault. It shows how the gay movement can be violent, and you will see footage of a mob besieging a Christian church, as well as witness the introduction of same-sex marriage to America. As I previewed this film, it literally made me cry out, “How far have we gone?” which accounts for the title of this letter. If you care about religious liberty and the right for Christians to continue spreading the Gospel freely and without constraints, you need to see this film.
Will you partner with CSI through your prayers and financial support to keep our ministry serving the Lord and getting the creation message out to churches and the public arena? Like most other nonprofit organizations, in these challenging economic times we are experiencing a dramatic drop in donations and dearly need your help. You can help us by ordering these two powerful DVDs: Sy Rogers’ internal spiritual journey, One of the Boys, and the external historical DVD, Shaky Town. At a time when our young people are being blinded as to who they are and to Whom they belong, we at CSI will not be silent. But we can’t continue to speak out on issues like this without your generous support. Please also keep us in your prayers and check our website regularly for updates on how Christ is working through this ministry. Thanks so much, and may you and your loved ones experience our Creator’s loving grace in wondrous ways!
In His service,
Executive Director & Founder of CSI