I had some response to the blog on homosexuality, so listen up. Notice that I was not favoring homosexual marriage. I hold to the traditional Christian view of marriage is one man and one wife. I believe a church or fellowship can define marriage to fit its own particular needs and the church I am part of is doing that.
I was saying that we need to use witness and persuasion rather than legislation. We will never change the world through enacting legislation that embodies Christian values and expect nonbelievers to conform. Are we pushing the political envelope because our outreach methods no longer work? We need to change our preaching and witness to change hearts, minds, and social conditions.
I have a gay friend right now. At one time, years ago, I had a gay roommate in college [we didn’t use the word “gay” back then!] I also was the fourth pianist in a piano quartet and the other three men were gay. I do not understand the gay sexual orientation, though I acknowledge it. The way they express themselves sexually is not at all the way I want to express my self. However, I think I understand a little about what my friends went through for they did not dare reveal their sexual identity in those days.
One quartet member finished graduate school and became an outstanding high school teacher, but he could not reveal his sexual orientation and retain his position. He was never a practicing homosexual, but the fear of having his orientation discovered and the loss of job finally led to suicide. Such a human waste.
I don’t like the word “gay” but will use it here for clarity. These people are human beings with all of the aspirations, feelings, and experiences of straight people. Love and marriage is one of those aspirations. While I do not think marriage is appropriate I do believe some kind of civil union could be appropriate.
You see, a gay person can love another gay person. They can buy property together, care for one another, and have a lifelong union. Without some kind of civil union, or marriage, as some states have termed it, one partner cannot make health decisions for the other partner or any of the many other joint decisions that heterosexuals make daily. If homosexuality is going to be legal, then legal protection should be afforded to those who create a bond appropriate for the state.
My former roommate is up in years and has been living with a partner for many years who is younger than he. My friend is not in good health and the younger partner is tending to his needs. They live in a western state that affords them the same legal protections and rights that a married couple has. While I have never approved of my friend’s lifestyle, I love him and am grateful that he has someone to care for him in his own home at this time in life. For me to have any other attitude would deny who I want to be in Christ.
Baptists have always promoted soul freedom, the freedom of each individual to make choices before God without human interference. That includes the freedom of choosing sin and rejecting God. That includes the freedom to live a life style that is contrary to the majority population. Soul freedom goes both ways. To destroy that freedom for one with whom I disagree would ultimately destroy that freedom for me.