By now you have no doubt heard that the supreme court ruled 5-4 in Obergefell vs. Hodges that same-sex marriage is a constitutional right and is now the law of the land. (read the full decision here)
As a Christian how are we to think about this? To be honest, this decision did not surprise me, but I was disappointed. I had held out some hope that the constitution and not the winds of public opinion would win the day. But that was not to be.
3 Quick Observations About The Same-Sex Marriage Supreme Court Decision
1) The world has not ended, but make no mistake this will have significant cultural impact. There are 2 sides of this balance beam we can’t afford to fall off of. First, we need to remember that Christianity is still true, regardless of what is going on in a particular cultural moment. Our hope is fixed in Christ, not a cultural majority. We have an opportunity to love and engage. Let’s not miss that.
The other way not to react to this news is to say it won’t effect me and my marriage and everything will continue on as it has. That is not true. And that will become more painfully evident in the days ahead–especially for children.
2) Whatever your views on same-sex marriage, the constitution lost–and that is not good news for the United States of America. While I am not a legal scholar, I have taken the time to try to digest the issues at play here. What remains clear from the 4 dissenting justices is that in the words of Chief Justice Roberts, “The majority’s decision is an act of will, not legal judgment. The right it announces has no basis in the Constitution or this Court’s precedent.” The supreme court acted as a “super-legislature” in this case imposing its will rather than finding a rational basis for it in the constitution.
This may feel good (in the moment) if you happen to find yourself in the majority of current cultural opinion, but opinions change. You may (whatever your view) find yourself in the minority opinion at odds with 5 supreme court justices as the constitution is shaped to fit current trends. The whole point of a fixed document that anchors our country is so that it is really difficult to change laws and amend the constitution. That is being bypassed by judicial activism when it suits the court. That’s not good news for the rule of law in a free society. For more analysis, read here.
3) More than ever it is important to have courage, stand for religious liberty for everyone, and promote and embody true tolerance. There is a lot here. But the bottom line is you and I as Christ-followers must affirm what Jesus affirmed about God’s created order (cf. Matt. 19 as he cited Gen. 1-2). We must also not be silent. We must stand our ground no matter what comes. We need to affirm true tolerance where people can disagree with one another about things that really matter and still love and respect one another (read more about this here). People we may disagree with are not the enemy. They are made in the image of God and worthy of dignity and respect. Here are 2 books that need to be must reading.
– Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom by Ryan Anderson
– The Silencing: How the Left is Killing Free Speech by Kirsten Powers
Here is a talk that my friend John Stonestreet gave recently at Impact 360 Institute entitled: Same-Sex Marriage What Now (Video). It is well worth a watch.
Now is not the time to lose heart. It is time to think, love, and engage.
A Quick Response to the Who Are You To Judge Objection? (read more)
If you found this post helpful, you would enjoy How to Respond to the “That’s Just Your Interpretation” Objection
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