I don’t usually do this in this forum, but I pastor a church of hundreds of young Christians in an urban area who are some combination of confused / scared / ambivalent about the implications of today’s SCOTUS ruling on Same-Sex Marriage. Without taking the time to thoughtfully piece this together, here are 11 random, bulleted thoughts in light of today’s ruling…
1. There’s only one true “Supreme Court” and it’s not in Washington. Tattooed on Jesus’ thigh is the title “Chief Justice of chief justices”. Christians are going to be just fine, brothers and sisters.
2. With two moral issues raging in our culture right now (sexual revolution 2.0 and racial reconciliation), Christians must apply the same directive of the Bible: “We must obey God rather than men.” In the one case, this will lead to us preserving boundaries. In the other case, it will lead to us destroying barriers. (HT: Ray Ortlund)
3. Jesus retains the nickname “Friend of Sinners“, loves the LGBTQ community, and is eager to pour out mercy on all of them who repent of their sins, which are not ANY worse than the sins straight people must turn from to follow Christ. The person in same-sex relationships isn’t worse than the straight college guy looking at porn.
4. Many younger Christians, having been discipled by modern culture, will find themselves confused and emotionally torn. They’re going to think, “I know most Christians think same-sex marriage is wrong, but I don’t understand why and I don’t know if I agree.” Wise pastors and churches will not angrily dismiss these struggles as immature, but lovingly engage their questions to help them think through a robust vision of Christian sexuality.
5. The transition Christians of my generation and up will increasingly have to make is from viewing ourselves as a “moral majority” to viewing ourselves as a “missional minority”. That’s not a bad thing.
6. During the next few years, I expect to see some churches and Christian leaders accommodate to the culture on this issue in a misguided effort to win people. First, this is just dumb; when we do this we’re converting Jesus to People as Lord, not calling people to convert to Jesus as Lord. Second, God removes himself from churches who love the world more than they love Him. Charles Spurgeon: “That very church which the world likes best is sure to be that church which God abhors.”
7. Sexuality is to our culture what wealth was to the Rich Young Ruler. Whatever we say “if following Jesus means giving up my right to this, I cannot follow Jesus” about, that thing is our functional god. (HT: JR Vassar)
9. The command to love our neighbor is just as important as the command to stand for what God has declared true. Christians must view LGBTQ people as neighbors to be loved, not just “sinners to be confronted”.
10. Rich Christian marriages will increasingly become critical evangelistic validators. How can we expect people to listen to our gospel message if our “gospel marriages” are hollow and treated by us as cheap?