Saturday, December 06, 2008

Lisa Miller of Newsweek on Gay Marriage

Lisa Miller writes on gay marriage in Newsweek:

First, while the Bible and Jesus say many important things about love and family, neither explicitly defines marriage as between one man and one woman. And second, as the examples above illustrate, no sensible modern person wants marriage—theirs or anyone else's —to look in its particulars anything like what the Bible describes. "Marriage" in America refers to two separate things, a religious institution and a civil one, though it is most often enacted as a messy conflation of the two. As a civil institution, marriage offers practical benefits to both partners: contractual rights having to do with taxes; insurance; the care and custody of children; visitation rights; and inheritance. As a religious institution, marriage offers something else: a commitment of both partners before God to love, honor and cherish each other—in sickness and in health, for richer and poorer—in accordance with God's will. In a religious marriage, two people promise to take care of each other, profoundly, the way they believe God cares for them. Biblical literalists will disagree, but the Bible is a living document, powerful for more than 2,000 years because its truths speak to us even as we change through history. In that light, Scripture gives us no good reason why gays and lesbians should not be (civilly and religiously) married—and a number of excellent reasons why they should.

This is a very useful statement that will reach a wider public.

Update: I have posted a longer response to Lisa Miller's article on the Episcopal Cafe website making the case that much more than "mutual joy" is conferred in the sacramental benefits of marriage.

3 comments:

Janet said...

Ah, you mean religion could be about love?! How welcome.

I also find justifying discrimination based on whether people can have children together or not --an excuse named for barring same-sex marriages-- truly immoral in present times. When the Bible spoke about,"Be fruitful and multiple," the Earth was not bursting with human beings who by their sheer numbers are changing the world's climate, irradicating other species, and using-up limited resources.

The Bible also tells us we have "dominion," or stewardship, over the Earth and other species. Might THIS and love be more positive focuses for religious people?!

Janet Rayor
Seattle, WA

Truthspeaker said...

We are faced with the reality that those who oppose Propsition 8, have full knowledge of its flaws. So, they try to use a religious argument, knowing that any Christian can see right through the bull. Why do they do this? To confuse those who do not beleive or are not willing to take the time to study the scriptures.

Feable attacks on God's Word about homosexuality are usually focused in Leviticus or that this was an Old Testmament teaching. Although, they are anti-semetic with this argument because they attack the WHOLE JEWSIH FAITH.

Forget the above however, what does the New Testament say, which is led by a loving Jesus Christ, who came to save all. It says in Romans Rom 1:24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:

Rom 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

Rom 1:26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

Rom 1:27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet.

Rom 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

Rom 1:29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

Rom 1:30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,

Rom 1:31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:

Rom 1:32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

Truthspeaker said...

I also often hear the uninformed and hateful rantings of those inspired to hate Christianity, make false claims of the KKK and Hitler being Christians.

Truly, when they say this they identify the KKK, Hitler, and themselves as fools. The KKK and Hitler hated Jews and killed Jews, so how could they be Christian (followers of Christ), when Christ was a Jew and his apostles who spread his gospel were Jews. These are the people with the like-mind of those who sought to kill Christ and marched him up on the hill to lay on the Cross.