The Chick-Fil-A controversy has once again brought the issue of homosexuality into the spotlight of our culture. What makes this so disturbing to me is the way the owner of Chick-Fil-A has been villain-ized as a hater (the new label of derision in our culture). This man voiced his own faith belief which is grounded in centuries of biblical interpretation many believe is rather direct in its meaning.
Now, before I go any further I wish to state that I strongly believe the civil benefits granted to a man and woman who enter into the state mandated contract for a recognized union should also be granted to same gender couples. However, I also believe that any individual believing it is a violation of God’s word should not forced to accept homosexuality and have the same right to proclaim such publicly as those who hold a different position. I do not believe that the church or anyone who has the conviction that same gender attraction and sexual affection is against God’s will should be forced or coerced to call the state mandated contract a marriage.
At the same time, I believe God’s grace comes to all people. I also believe that Love is more than attraction and affection. True love comes only from God for God is Love. In our human-ness we can experience love and share love and grow in love, but on this side of the eternal veil we will always have to deal with our own sinfulness and finite understanding. We are not God. Yes, we do decide for ourselves what is right and wrong but when we do this apart from the God’s revelation and Spirit’s direction we can dilute or pervert what is truly right and give in to what is truly wrong. We also can justify our thinking and actions and feel compelled to push our view upon others. This is not the way of Jesus.
Case in point, the following is an except from an article recently published in a magazine related to a large faith community:
“The advocates for the acceptance of homosexuality definitely have a voice, and that voice was heard loud and clear. However the delegates have chosen for 40 years not to agree with that voice. When advocates say they haven’t been heard, what they really mean is that the church has not agreed with them. In frustration, they then trun to intimidation and coercion through protest tactics.”
No one is forcing those who advocate homosexuality to be part of this voluntary religious institution. Those who feel this position is wrong are free to follow their conscience and develop a structure they are more comfortable with. They do not have the right to force their view upon the majority who do not accept their position. The “advocates” in this case have become aggressors who will not recognize that their position is not going to supersede the view of Scripture held by the majority and thus they reason that they have not been heard so their aggressive tactics are justified. Their reason becomes: “You are wrong, we are right and we will force to accept this.”
I believe in reaching out to all people. I do not identify people by their gender preferences. I do not identify myself by my gender preference. I have friends who are in same sex gender relationships. I do not “preach” at them. It is not my job to judge them. If (and I stress the if) they bring up the issue, I tell them I am not the Holy Spirit and the Spirit is the One they must state their case. We all fall into the error of violating the will of God so I have no right to judge anyone. I do believe God loves us and defines his love for us in sacrifice and service. This is a much better way of defining love rather than using attraction and affection. The flesh fails and emotions are capricious at best. God’s Word will remain forever.