Gay Marriage: Why use the word? A different view on the subject by a person of faith

I may not appease too many with this article, including some friends. All I ask is that no matter where you are on the political spectrum that you read with the hope of finding common ground where there are divergent cultural and religious views. Christians should be thinking people, as is our history from sciences to art. When it comes to politics we run to the right or left. I suggest we do not always have to make that choice. As the photo presents, our President made a very polarizing and political statement. I am attempting to actually have a discussion that is a bit less rhetorical and more practical and from my perspective as an evangelical Christian.

Civil rights are already given to gays who want to marry in most states. I am not sure it is fair to exclude those rights in a free society such as ours. What does anyone have to gain by that? Domestic partnership where all the legal rights of marriage exists perhaps is a worthy middle ground. Non-traditional views of family and marriage are en vogue, and yet some insist expanding the use of a word that really is reserved for faith-birthed traditional views of family. The state should preserve rights and protect all of us from intrusive or prejudicial treatment under the law. For the most part, we have accomplished this for race and gender, even though attitudes cannot be legislated. At least the law says that your race or gender or religious affiliation are invisible and protected.

As a person of faith, my belief as a Christian is that marriage is between one man and one woman. This comes from historical teaching out of the Bible that reaches further back than our great nation. The importance of rearing children and having an institution is practical and in the interest of the general welfare of all. People who are non-traditional and non-religious usually agree on this point. Time has changed the family experience in recent history. Some choose to raise children on their own. My family of origin was single parented for a period of time. Whether this style of family was by choice or not, we legally protect that family. From the message of my faith, orphans and widows are especially protected and valued. Vulnerable people need such protection.

For this reason, I believe that even though a gay couple should not marry in my religious view I am for the state and society in general protecting the children that may be part of that or any other family. Orphans should never be created. It is a worthy compromise to simply find a way to legally establish civil unions. However, why do some insist on using the traditional word “marriage” for such legal protection on the liberal left? And, why do my friends on the right insist on state-legislating the word marriage while saying their faith is the issue? Both are missing the boat in my opinion. It is easier to polarize people than synthesize solutions.

Here are some bullets-for-thought:

  • The state does not (nor should not in our nation) determine my religious belief about marriage. So, why would it matter what they say? It matters if it oppresses. It matters if it excludes. It matters if it interferes.
  • Liberals want to change what is traditional rather than define something “new” which in a pluralistic society is wrong on this issue. Come up with a new term or embrace the attempts of this with “civil unions” or “domestic partnerships”.
  • Conservatives in some circles want a theocracy legislated about marriage. As a person of faith, I do not want the state to interfere with my beliefs. Period.
  • Liberals would do well to appreciate the religious, historical, and practical existence of family. It is not just about choosing who to love, but being sure children and the vulnerable are protected under law. Selfishness is never a good selling point.
  • Conservatives would do well to accept that the very small minority of people who might ask for these rights do less harm than the divorce rate of traditional families. Hypocrisy is true of us all. So, be more humble.
  • Granting or protecting civil rights should be more important than a word. Emotions want us to define marriage a certain way. Emotions are warranted but not the whole picture for either side. It is not truly “progressive” to destroy an idea that in our society should still be allowed to thrive. It is not “conservative” to marginalize people when religious liberty is the fight.

I am wondering if anyone else out there is in the middle on this. This means you are neither for redefining the word marriage or denying rights to same sex couples.

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Rich Kirkpatrick

Rich Kirkpatrick

Writer, Speaker, and Musician. Rich Kirkpatrick was recently rated #13 of the “Top 75 Religion Bloggers” by Newsmax.com, having also received recognition by Worship Leader Magazine as “Editor’s Choice” for the “Best of the Best” of blogs in 2011, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

222 comments

  1. What ‘rights’?  We throw around this term ‘rights’ without defining what it means.  We have allowed the left to establish the discussion by claiming some unnamed set of ‘rights’ that are supposedly being ‘denied’.   Before we are asked to support ‘rights’ for anything, I think we had better be clear what we are really defining.

    1. There are actually quite a few rights involved.  For example, in many states a “domestic partner” cannot be named as a next-of-kin with regard for medical decisions and are not considered “family” in terms of people who die intestate.  In many companies, you cannot claim them as beneficiaries or dependents for medical insurance, or take time off to care for them under the FLMA.  I agree with Rich.  If we can remedy these shortcomings under the law with civil unions, etc…  then why do we need to redefine marriage? 

      1. These are not issues of ‘rights’.    As a single person I can make power-of-attorney for things like medical decisions.  Many companies do allow you to name partners for medical benefits – this is an issue of the company and its policies.  Same for the FMLA – this is another government regulation attempting to force employee friendly behavior on companies.  It has nothing to do with rights.
        The civil rights movement was about people being treated differently in our society because of the color of their skin.  The gay ‘rights’ agenda is about gays claiming legal advantages accorded to married people within our society when they wish to call themselves ‘married’ or in a ‘civil union’. They are two completely different things.

        1. The tendency on each side–right or left–is to legislate their view at the expense of the other. This is dangerous.

        2. Let’s play devil’s advocate here.  Say I was in a same sex relationship.  (with you, let’s say!)   We’ve been together for 20 years.  I have no will, no power of attorney.  (Most people don’t at my age)   
          Now say, I’m in a terrible car accident.  (Or have a heart attack, or a stroke…)  I’m unconscious and need someone to make medical decisions for me.  You’ve been my committed partner for 20 years – but in the eyes of the law, you’re a stranger.  You’re shut out.  My parents (who hate you, by the way) have you banned from my hospital room, because they are the next of kin.  (Even though I haven’t spoken to them in over a decade.)   

          I have no medical insurance, even though you have a good job.  I’m an artist and work part-time.  But you are a state employee in Nevada, and I cannot legally be your beneficiary.  

          Where are my rights?  Where are yours?  This is the disconnect.  

          You can’t call a duck a chicken and make it a chicken.  You can’t call a same-sex union a marriage and make it marriage.  But you can roast a duck just like a chicken, and you can give legal protections to people regardless of their lifestyle. 

          (That was a crazy metaphor right there.) 

    2. The right has refused discussion of any kind. Instead, there has been polarizing on both sides. Remember, it is easier to polarize people than synthesize solutions. So, lets buck that trend.

  2. What ‘rights’?  We throw around this term ‘rights’ without defining what it means.  We have allowed the left to establish the discussion by claiming some unnamed set of ‘rights’ that are supposedly being ‘denied’.   Before we are asked to support ‘rights’ for anything, I think we had better be clear what we are really defining.

    1. There are actually quite a few rights involved.  For example, in many states a “domestic partner” cannot be named as a next-of-kin with regard for medical decisions and are not considered “family” in terms of people who die intestate.  In many companies, you cannot claim them as beneficiaries or dependents for medical insurance, or take time off to care for them under the FLMA.  I agree with Rich.  If we can remedy these shortcomings under the law with civil unions, etc…  then why do we need to redefine marriage? 

      1. These are not issues of ‘rights’.    As a single person I can make power-of-attorney for things like medical decisions.  Many companies do allow you to name partners for medical benefits – this is an issue of the company and its policies.  Same for the FMLA – this is another government regulation attempting to force employee friendly behavior on companies.  It has nothing to do with rights.
        The civil rights movement was about people being treated differently in our society because of the color of their skin.  The gay ‘rights’ agenda is about gays claiming legal advantages accorded to married people within our society when they wish to call themselves ‘married’ or in a ‘civil union’. They are two completely different things.

        1. The tendency on each side–right or left–is to legislate their view at the expense of the other. This is dangerous.

        2. Let’s play devil’s advocate here.  Say I was in a same sex relationship.  (with you, let’s say!)   We’ve been together for 20 years.  I have no will, no power of attorney.  (Most people don’t at my age)   
          Now say, I’m in a terrible car accident.  (Or have a heart attack, or a stroke…)  I’m unconscious and need someone to make medical decisions for me.  You’ve been my committed partner for 20 years – but in the eyes of the law, you’re a stranger.  You’re shut out.  My parents (who hate you, by the way) have you banned from my hospital room, because they are the next of kin.  (Even though I haven’t spoken to them in over a decade.)   
          I have no medical insurance, even though you have a good job.  I’m an artist and work part-time.  But you are a state employee in Nevada, and I cannot legally be your beneficiary.  
          Where are my rights?  Where are yours?  This is the disconnect.  
          You can’t call a duck a chicken and make it a chicken.  You can’t call a same-sex union a marriage and make it marriage.  But you can roast a duck just like a chicken, and you can give legal protections to people regardless of their lifestyle. 
          (That was a crazy metaphor right there.) 

    2. The right has refused discussion of any kind. Instead, there has been polarizing on both sides. Remember, it is easier to polarize people than synthesize solutions. So, lets buck that trend.

  3. What ‘rights’?  We throw around this term ‘rights’ without defining what it means.  We have allowed the left to establish the discussion by claiming some unnamed set of ‘rights’ that are supposedly being ‘denied’.   Before we are asked to support ‘rights’ for anything, I think we had better be clear what we are really defining.

    1. There are actually quite a few rights involved.  For example, in many states a “domestic partner” cannot be named as a next-of-kin with regard for medical decisions and are not considered “family” in terms of people who die intestate.  In many companies, you cannot claim them as beneficiaries or dependents for medical insurance, or take time off to care for them under the FLMA.  I agree with Rich.  If we can remedy these shortcomings under the law with civil unions, etc…  then why do we need to redefine marriage? 

      1. These are not issues of ‘rights’.    As a single person I can make power-of-attorney for things like medical decisions.  Many companies do allow you to name partners for medical benefits – this is an issue of the company and its policies.  Same for the FMLA – this is another government regulation attempting to force employee friendly behavior on companies.  It has nothing to do with rights.
        The civil rights movement was about people being treated differently in our society because of the color of their skin.  The gay ‘rights’ agenda is about gays claiming legal advantages accorded to married people within our society when they wish to call themselves ‘married’ or in a ‘civil union’. They are two completely different things.

        1. The tendency on each side–right or left–is to legislate their view at the expense of the other. This is dangerous.

        2. Let’s play devil’s advocate here.  Say I was in a same sex relationship.  (with you, let’s say!)   We’ve been together for 20 years.  I have no will, no power of attorney.  (Most people don’t at my age)   
          Now say, I’m in a terrible car accident.  (Or have a heart attack, or a stroke…)  I’m unconscious and need someone to make medical decisions for me.  You’ve been my committed partner for 20 years – but in the eyes of the law, you’re a stranger.  You’re shut out.  My parents (who hate you, by the way) have you banned from my hospital room, because they are the next of kin.  (Even though I haven’t spoken to them in over a decade.)   

          I have no medical insurance, even though you have a good job.  I’m an artist and work part-time.  But you are a state employee in Nevada, and I cannot legally be your beneficiary.  

          Where are my rights?  Where are yours?  This is the disconnect.  

          You can’t call a duck a chicken and make it a chicken.  You can’t call a same-sex union a marriage and make it marriage.  But you can roast a duck just like a chicken, and you can give legal protections to people regardless of their lifestyle. 

          (That was a crazy metaphor right there.) 

    2. The right has refused discussion of any kind. Instead, there has been polarizing on both sides. Remember, it is easier to polarize people than synthesize solutions. So, lets buck that trend.

  4. What ‘rights’?  We throw around this term ‘rights’ without defining what it means.  We have allowed the left to establish the discussion by claiming some unnamed set of ‘rights’ that are supposedly being ‘denied’.   Before we are asked to support ‘rights’ for anything, I think we had better be clear what we are really defining.

    1. There are actually quite a few rights involved.  For example, in many states a “domestic partner” cannot be named as a next-of-kin with regard for medical decisions and are not considered “family” in terms of people who die intestate.  In many companies, you cannot claim them as beneficiaries or dependents for medical insurance, or take time off to care for them under the FLMA.  I agree with Rich.  If we can remedy these shortcomings under the law with civil unions, etc…  then why do we need to redefine marriage? 

      1. These are not issues of ‘rights’.    As a single person I can make power-of-attorney for things like medical decisions.  Many companies do allow you to name partners for medical benefits – this is an issue of the company and its policies.  Same for the FMLA – this is another government regulation attempting to force employee friendly behavior on companies.  It has nothing to do with rights.
        The civil rights movement was about people being treated differently in our society because of the color of their skin.  The gay ‘rights’ agenda is about gays claiming legal advantages accorded to married people within our society when they wish to call themselves ‘married’ or in a ‘civil union’. They are two completely different things.

        1. The tendency on each side–right or left–is to legislate their view at the expense of the other. This is dangerous.

        2. Let’s play devil’s advocate here.  Say I was in a same sex relationship.  (with you, let’s say!)   We’ve been together for 20 years.  I have no will, no power of attorney.  (Most people don’t at my age)   
          Now say, I’m in a terrible car accident.  (Or have a heart attack, or a stroke…)  I’m unconscious and need someone to make medical decisions for me.  You’ve been my committed partner for 20 years – but in the eyes of the law, you’re a stranger.  You’re shut out.  My parents (who hate you, by the way) have you banned from my hospital room, because they are the next of kin.  (Even though I haven’t spoken to them in over a decade.)   

          I have no medical insurance, even though you have a good job.  I’m an artist and work part-time.  But you are a state employee in Nevada, and I cannot legally be your beneficiary.  

          Where are my rights?  Where are yours?  This is the disconnect.  

          You can’t call a duck a chicken and make it a chicken.  You can’t call a same-sex union a marriage and make it marriage.  But you can roast a duck just like a chicken, and you can give legal protections to people regardless of their lifestyle. 

          (That was a crazy metaphor right there.) 

    2. The right has refused discussion of any kind. Instead, there has been polarizing on both sides. Remember, it is easier to polarize people than synthesize solutions. So, lets buck that trend.

  5. What ‘rights’?  We throw around this term ‘rights’ without defining what it means.  We have allowed the left to establish the discussion by claiming some unnamed set of ‘rights’ that are supposedly being ‘denied’.   Before we are asked to support ‘rights’ for anything, I think we had better be clear what we are really defining.

    1. There are actually quite a few rights involved.  For example, in many states a “domestic partner” cannot be named as a next-of-kin with regard for medical decisions and are not considered “family” in terms of people who die intestate.  In many companies, you cannot claim them as beneficiaries or dependents for medical insurance, or take time off to care for them under the FLMA.  I agree with Rich.  If we can remedy these shortcomings under the law with civil unions, etc…  then why do we need to redefine marriage? 

      1. These are not issues of ‘rights’.    As a single person I can make power-of-attorney for things like medical decisions.  Many companies do allow you to name partners for medical benefits – this is an issue of the company and its policies.  Same for the FMLA – this is another government regulation attempting to force employee friendly behavior on companies.  It has nothing to do with rights.
        The civil rights movement was about people being treated differently in our society because of the color of their skin.  The gay ‘rights’ agenda is about gays claiming legal advantages accorded to married people within our society when they wish to call themselves ‘married’ or in a ‘civil union’. They are two completely different things.

        1. The tendency on each side–right or left–is to legislate their view at the expense of the other. This is dangerous.

        2. Let’s play devil’s advocate here.  Say I was in a same sex relationship.  (with you, let’s say!)   We’ve been together for 20 years.  I have no will, no power of attorney.  (Most people don’t at my age)   
          Now say, I’m in a terrible car accident.  (Or have a heart attack, or a stroke…)  I’m unconscious and need someone to make medical decisions for me.  You’ve been my committed partner for 20 years – but in the eyes of the law, you’re a stranger.  You’re shut out.  My parents (who hate you, by the way) have you banned from my hospital room, because they are the next of kin.  (Even though I haven’t spoken to them in over a decade.)   

          I have no medical insurance, even though you have a good job.  I’m an artist and work part-time.  But you are a state employee in Nevada, and I cannot legally be your beneficiary.  

          Where are my rights?  Where are yours?  This is the disconnect.  

          You can’t call a duck a chicken and make it a chicken.  You can’t call a same-sex union a marriage and make it marriage.  But you can roast a duck just like a chicken, and you can give legal protections to people regardless of their lifestyle. 

          (That was a crazy metaphor right there.) 

    2. The right has refused discussion of any kind. Instead, there has been polarizing on both sides. Remember, it is easier to polarize people than synthesize solutions. So, lets buck that trend.

  6. Good thoughts.  I agree with this.  Though, when I got to the last paragraph, I read “emotions” as “emoticons,” and got utterly confused for a second.  😛 😉  o_O

  7. Good thoughts.  I agree with this.  Though, when I got to the last paragraph, I read “emotions” as “emoticons,” and got utterly confused for a second.  😛 😉  o_O

  8. Good thoughts.  I agree with this.  Though, when I got to the last paragraph, I read “emotions” as “emoticons,” and got utterly confused for a second.  😛 😉  o_O

  9. Good thoughts.  I agree with this.  Though, when I got to the last paragraph, I read “emotions” as “emoticons,” and got utterly confused for a second.  😛 😉  o_O

  10. Good thoughts.  I agree with this.  Though, when I got to the last paragraph, I read “emotions” as “emoticons,” and got utterly confused for a second.  😛 😉  o_O

  11. Along your lines, Rich, I say that government should just get all the way out of the marriage business. My marriage, your marriage and everyone else’s should be classified as a Civil Union by the State for the sake of taxes, insurance, visitation and family, etc.  If anyone wants to be ‘married’ it is up to each to find an institution that will bless their relationship with such a title.  A solution like this would remove the need for polarization; the discussion would be all but over.  But these are the ramblings of a practical minded guy so it probably wouldn’t take hold.    

  12. Along your lines, Rich, I say that government should just get all the way out of the marriage business. My marriage, your marriage and everyone else’s should be classified as a Civil Union by the State for the sake of taxes, insurance, visitation and family, etc.  If anyone wants to be ‘married’ it is up to each to find an institution that will bless their relationship with such a title.  A solution like this would remove the need for polarization; the discussion would be all but over.  But these are the ramblings of a practical minded guy so it probably wouldn’t take hold.    

  13. Along your lines, Rich, I say that government should just get all the way out of the marriage business. My marriage, your marriage and everyone else’s should be classified as a Civil Union by the State for the sake of taxes, insurance, visitation and family, etc.  If anyone wants to be ‘married’ it is up to each to find an institution that will bless their relationship with such a title.  A solution like this would remove the need for polarization; the discussion would be all but over.  But these are the ramblings of a practical minded guy so it probably wouldn’t take hold.    

  14. Along your lines, Rich, I say that government should just get all the way out of the marriage business. My marriage, your marriage and everyone else’s should be classified as a Civil Union by the State for the sake of taxes, insurance, visitation and family, etc.  If anyone wants to be ‘married’ it is up to each to find an institution that will bless their relationship with such a title.  A solution like this would remove the need for polarization; the discussion would be all but over.  But these are the ramblings of a practical minded guy so it probably wouldn’t take hold.    

  15. Along your lines, Rich, I say that government should just get all the way out of the marriage business. My marriage, your marriage and everyone else’s should be classified as a Civil Union by the State for the sake of taxes, insurance, visitation and family, etc.  If anyone wants to be ‘married’ it is up to each to find an institution that will bless their relationship with such a title.  A solution like this would remove the need for polarization; the discussion would be all but over.  But these are the ramblings of a practical minded guy so it probably wouldn’t take hold.    

  16. Or, if the discussion didn’t end those still creating division would have their true motives revealed because an altruistic motive wouldn’t hold water.  In my opinion.

    1. The altruism of liberty holds water pretty well, and is both a value and a practical boundary. 

      1. I am referring to seemingly altruistic reasons against liberty (defense of traditional marriage, against God’s will, etc.)  Those reasons won’t hold water if its no longer a defense of traditional marriage but an opposition to civil unions for all in the scenario that we all have civil unions in the eyes of the state.

  17. Or, if the discussion didn’t end those still creating division would have their true motives revealed because an altruistic motive wouldn’t hold water.  In my opinion.

  18. Or, if the discussion didn’t end those still creating division would have their true motives revealed because an altruistic motive wouldn’t hold water.  In my opinion.

    1. The altruism of liberty holds water pretty well, and is both a value and a practical boundary. 

      1. I am referring to seemingly altruistic reasons against liberty (defense of traditional marriage, against God’s will, etc.)  Those reasons won’t hold water if its no longer a defense of traditional marriage but an opposition to civil unions for all in the scenario that we all have civil unions in the eyes of the state.

  19. Or, if the discussion didn’t end those still creating division would have their true motives revealed because an altruistic motive wouldn’t hold water.  In my opinion.

    1. The altruism of liberty holds water pretty well, and is both a value and a practical boundary. 

      1. I am referring to seemingly altruistic reasons against liberty (defense of traditional marriage, against God’s will, etc.)  Those reasons won’t hold water if its no longer a defense of traditional marriage but an opposition to civil unions for all in the scenario that we all have civil unions in the eyes of the state.

  20. Or, if the discussion didn’t end those still creating division would have their true motives revealed because an altruistic motive wouldn’t hold water.  In my opinion.

    1. The altruism of liberty holds water pretty well, and is both a value and a practical boundary. 

      1. I am referring to seemingly altruistic reasons against liberty (defense of traditional marriage, against God’s will, etc.)  Those reasons won’t hold water if its no longer a defense of traditional marriage but an opposition to civil unions for all in the scenario that we all have civil unions in the eyes of the state.

  21. One issue I’ve come across with (friends) who are homosexuals who would also classify themselves as Bible believing Christians. According to them a domestic partnership is not enough. They believe they have the right to a “Biblical” marriage. So the argument for them is not just an equality issue it is also a faith issue that gets particularly messy regarding the bible and homosexuality and marriage.

    1. One of my points: the state does not determine religious belief. They are on their own to live that out. So, the issue is not about rights for those you mention, it is about forcing a redefinition which is intrusive.

  22. One issue I’ve come across with (friends) who are homosexuals who would also classify themselves as Bible believing Christians. According to them a domestic partnership is not enough. They believe they have the right to a “Biblical” marriage. So the argument for them is not just an equality issue it is also a faith issue that gets particularly messy regarding the bible and homosexuality and marriage.

    1. One of my points: the state does not determine religious belief. They are on their own to live that out. So, the issue is not about rights for those you mention, it is about forcing a redefinition which is intrusive.

  23. One issue I’ve come across with (friends) who are homosexuals who would also classify themselves as Bible believing Christians. According to them a domestic partnership is not enough. They believe they have the right to a “Biblical” marriage. So the argument for them is not just an equality issue it is also a faith issue that gets particularly messy regarding the bible and homosexuality and marriage.

    1. One of my points: the state does not determine religious belief. They are on their own to live that out. So, the issue is not about rights for those you mention, it is about forcing a redefinition which is intrusive.

  24. One issue I’ve come across with (friends) who are homosexuals who would also classify themselves as Bible believing Christians. According to them a domestic partnership is not enough. They believe they have the right to a “Biblical” marriage. So the argument for them is not just an equality issue it is also a faith issue that gets particularly messy regarding the bible and homosexuality and marriage.

    1. One of my points: the state does not determine religious belief. They are on their own to live that out. So, the issue is not about rights for those you mention, it is about forcing a redefinition which is intrusive.

  25. One issue I’ve come across with (friends) who are homosexuals who would also classify themselves as Bible believing Christians. According to them a domestic partnership is not enough. They believe they have the right to a “Biblical” marriage. So the argument for them is not just an equality issue it is also a faith issue that gets particularly messy regarding the bible and homosexuality and marriage.

    1. One of my points: the state does not determine religious belief. They are on their own to live that out. So, the issue is not about rights for those you mention, it is about forcing a redefinition which is intrusive.

  26. The biggest hurdle is the law, both Federal and State.  There are over 1100 Federal laws that are specific to Married couples (granted many are minor but many big ones are tax-related), and obviously quite a few State ones that differ by state.  Civil Unions, as they are called in some states that have done that, are not recognized in other states.  If the Church had not allowed the Government to secularlize the term “marriage” in the first place then we would not be having this discussion. A good summary of the issues is here (may not be all 100% correct as of today as it’s almost 5 years old but a good summary nonetheless): http://www.factcheck.org/what_is_a_civil_union.html  

    1. The issue then is not to redefine what marriage is, but create something new. In California there surely are more than 1100 laws to drive a car. So, it is not simply an issue of law. It is an issue of culture, faith, and of rearing children and their welfare. This is how this is different than other civil liberties issue in our time.

      1. OK, using your car analogy someone comes up with a new type of vehicle, call it a Whatzit.  CA says “only Cars can go on the road.”  Options are:a.) classify a Whatzit as a type of Car
        b.) Change the 1100+ laws in California to say “Cars and Whatzits” instead of Cars
        c.) Create a law that says “wherever it says ‘Cars’ it means ‘Cars and Whatzits'”
        Sounds like you’re advocating for c.), that you create one law that says “any laws that grant rights to Married couples shall also grant those rights equally to ‘Civilly United Gay Couples.'”  But the problem with that is that you have those against “Gay Marriage” saying “you’re just covering it up with a euphamism, but it’s the same thing” and you have those for saying “my religion supports homosexual marriage, why can heteros use the term but not us?” (the whole “separate but equal” thing).  It accomplishes the usual compromise goal of angering both sides which is why, in this hyper-partisan era, it will get nowhere.

        1. Separate but equal need not apply here. Women and men are separate, different, yet equal under law. So, to call something “A” and allow under that for people to call it what they want seems plausible. “X” and “Y” already exist and legally equal–just make Civil Unions with full rights. And, bam. We are done.
          It will get nowhere only if we are fearful of trying to come to the table with more than leftist and right wing rhetoric. This rhetoric is designed to classify, vilify, and marginalize practical solutions that can still respect our traditions and culture while being humane and respectful of the non-traditional. Instead, we want a cultural war of winners and losers. 

  27. The biggest hurdle is the law, both Federal and State.  There are over 1100 Federal laws that are specific to Married couples (granted many are minor but many big ones are tax-related), and obviously quite a few State ones that differ by state.  Civil Unions, as they are called in some states that have done that, are not recognized in other states.  If the Church had not allowed the Government to secularlize the term “marriage” in the first place then we would not be having this discussion. A good summary of the issues is here (may not be all 100% correct as of today as it’s almost 5 years old but a good summary nonetheless): http://www.factcheck.org/what_is_a_civil_union.html  

    1. The issue then is not to redefine what marriage is, but create something new. In California there surely are more than 1100 laws to drive a car. So, it is not simply an issue of law. It is an issue of culture, faith, and of rearing children and their welfare. This is how this is different than other civil liberties issue in our time.

      1. OK, using your car analogy someone comes up with a new type of vehicle, call it a Whatzit.  CA says “only Cars can go on the road.”  Options are:a.) classify a Whatzit as a type of Car
        b.) Change the 1100+ laws in California to say “Cars and Whatzits” instead of Cars
        c.) Create a law that says “wherever it says ‘Cars’ it means ‘Cars and Whatzits'”
        Sounds like you’re advocating for c.), that you create one law that says “any laws that grant rights to Married couples shall also grant those rights equally to ‘Civilly United Gay Couples.'”  But the problem with that is that you have those against “Gay Marriage” saying “you’re just covering it up with a euphamism, but it’s the same thing” and you have those for saying “my religion supports homosexual marriage, why can heteros use the term but not us?” (the whole “separate but equal” thing).  It accomplishes the usual compromise goal of angering both sides which is why, in this hyper-partisan era, it will get nowhere.

  28. The biggest hurdle is the law, both Federal and State.  There are over 1100 Federal laws that are specific to Married couples (granted many are minor but many big ones are tax-related), and obviously quite a few State ones that differ by state.  Civil Unions, as they are called in some states that have done that, are not recognized in other states.  If the Church had not allowed the Government to secularlize the term “marriage” in the first place then we would not be having this discussion. A good summary of the issues is here (may not be all 100% correct as of today as it’s almost 5 years old but a good summary nonetheless): http://www.factcheck.org/what_is_a_civil_union.html  

    1. The issue then is not to redefine what marriage is, but create something new. In California there surely are more than 1100 laws to drive a car. So, it is not simply an issue of law. It is an issue of culture, faith, and of rearing children and their welfare. This is how this is different than other civil liberties issue in our time.

      1. OK, using your car analogy someone comes up with a new type of vehicle, call it a Whatzit.  CA says “only Cars can go on the road.”  Options are:a.) classify a Whatzit as a type of Car
        b.) Change the 1100+ laws in California to say “Cars and Whatzits” instead of Cars
        c.) Create a law that says “wherever it says ‘Cars’ it means ‘Cars and Whatzits'”
        Sounds like you’re advocating for c.), that you create one law that says “any laws that grant rights to Married couples shall also grant those rights equally to ‘Civilly United Gay Couples.'”  But the problem with that is that you have those against “Gay Marriage” saying “you’re just covering it up with a euphamism, but it’s the same thing” and you have those for saying “my religion supports homosexual marriage, why can heteros use the term but not us?” (the whole “separate but equal” thing).  It accomplishes the usual compromise goal of angering both sides which is why, in this hyper-partisan era, it will get nowhere.

        1. Separate but equal need not apply here. Women and men are separate, different, yet equal under law. So, to call something “A” and allow under that for people to call it what they want seems plausible. “X” and “Y” already exist and legally equal–just make Civil Unions with full rights. And, bam. We are done.
          It will get nowhere only if we are fearful of trying to come to the table with more than leftist and right wing rhetoric. This rhetoric is designed to classify, vilify, and marginalize practical solutions that can still respect our traditions and culture while being humane and respectful of the non-traditional. Instead, we want a cultural war of winners and losers. 

  29. The biggest hurdle is the law, both Federal and State.  There are over 1100 Federal laws that are specific to Married couples (granted many are minor but many big ones are tax-related), and obviously quite a few State ones that differ by state.  Civil Unions, as they are called in some states that have done that, are not recognized in other states.  If the Church had not allowed the Government to secularlize the term “marriage” in the first place then we would not be having this discussion. A good summary of the issues is here (may not be all 100% correct as of today as it’s almost 5 years old but a good summary nonetheless): http://www.factcheck.org/what_is_a_civil_union.html  

    1. The issue then is not to redefine what marriage is, but create something new. In California there surely are more than 1100 laws to drive a car. So, it is not simply an issue of law. It is an issue of culture, faith, and of rearing children and their welfare. This is how this is different than other civil liberties issue in our time.

      1. OK, using your car analogy someone comes up with a new type of vehicle, call it a Whatzit.  CA says “only Cars can go on the road.”  Options are:a.) classify a Whatzit as a type of Car
        b.) Change the 1100+ laws in California to say “Cars and Whatzits” instead of Cars
        c.) Create a law that says “wherever it says ‘Cars’ it means ‘Cars and Whatzits'”
        Sounds like you’re advocating for c.), that you create one law that says “any laws that grant rights to Married couples shall also grant those rights equally to ‘Civilly United Gay Couples.'”  But the problem with that is that you have those against “Gay Marriage” saying “you’re just covering it up with a euphamism, but it’s the same thing” and you have those for saying “my religion supports homosexual marriage, why can heteros use the term but not us?” (the whole “separate but equal” thing).  It accomplishes the usual compromise goal of angering both sides which is why, in this hyper-partisan era, it will get nowhere.

        1. Separate but equal need not apply here. Women and men are separate, different, yet equal under law. So, to call something “A” and allow under that for people to call it what they want seems plausible. “X” and “Y” already exist and legally equal–just make Civil Unions with full rights. And, bam. We are done.
          It will get nowhere only if we are fearful of trying to come to the table with more than leftist and right wing rhetoric. This rhetoric is designed to classify, vilify, and marginalize practical solutions that can still respect our traditions and culture while being humane and respectful of the non-traditional. Instead, we want a cultural war of winners and losers. 

  30. The biggest hurdle is the law, both Federal and State.  There are over 1100 Federal laws that are specific to Married couples (granted many are minor but many big ones are tax-related), and obviously quite a few State ones that differ by state.  Civil Unions, as they are called in some states that have done that, are not recognized in other states.  If the Church had not allowed the Government to secularlize the term “marriage” in the first place then we would not be having this discussion. A good summary of the issues is here (may not be all 100% correct as of today as it’s almost 5 years old but a good summary nonetheless): http://www.factcheck.org/what_is_a_civil_union.html  

    1. The issue then is not to redefine what marriage is, but create something new. In California there surely are more than 1100 laws to drive a car. So, it is not simply an issue of law. It is an issue of culture, faith, and of rearing children and their welfare. This is how this is different than other civil liberties issue in our time.

      1. OK, using your car analogy someone comes up with a new type of vehicle, call it a Whatzit.  CA says “only Cars can go on the road.”  Options are:a.) classify a Whatzit as a type of Car
        b.) Change the 1100+ laws in California to say “Cars and Whatzits” instead of Cars
        c.) Create a law that says “wherever it says ‘Cars’ it means ‘Cars and Whatzits'”
        Sounds like you’re advocating for c.), that you create one law that says “any laws that grant rights to Married couples shall also grant those rights equally to ‘Civilly United Gay Couples.'”  But the problem with that is that you have those against “Gay Marriage” saying “you’re just covering it up with a euphamism, but it’s the same thing” and you have those for saying “my religion supports homosexual marriage, why can heteros use the term but not us?” (the whole “separate but equal” thing).  It accomplishes the usual compromise goal of angering both sides which is why, in this hyper-partisan era, it will get nowhere.

        1. Separate but equal need not apply here. Women and men are separate, different, yet equal under law. So, to call something “A” and allow under that for people to call it what they want seems plausible. “X” and “Y” already exist and legally equal–just make Civil Unions with full rights. And, bam. We are done.
          It will get nowhere only if we are fearful of trying to come to the table with more than leftist and right wing rhetoric. This rhetoric is designed to classify, vilify, and marginalize practical solutions that can still respect our traditions and culture while being humane and respectful of the non-traditional. Instead, we want a cultural war of winners and losers. 

  31. What I think about the matter aside for a moment; I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. 
    On the politics side I think it helps to dig a little deeper and ‘follow the money’ so to speak: 

    When we look at the history of it over the last dozen years we see that the true effect of the ‘gay marriage’ issue is to mobilize people, otherwise uninterested in recent presidential candidates, to actually show up to the polls for something they think matters (gay marriage) and while they’re there they vote for president. 

    So, in short, the issue is being promoted to get people to care about something enough to a) vote and b) watch the news.

    Republicans and democrats need gay marriage on the ballots this fall so that people will actually show up to vote because Obama and Romney are really freaking boring and probably have only this shadow issue separating them.

    Once again the American people are caught up in a non-issue while the empire is expanded.

    1. ” I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. ”
      I disagree. I can agree we you if we have it the same way. But, it is time to not be afraid to be open about what we believe and to do so with the right tone and with a bent to not make a loser out of someone else so we can win. Let’s diffuse it rather than ignore it.

      1. I’m all for understanding and stating beliefs, especially when they are of critical importance for someone to begin accepting God’s grace. I just think having a Handle on the gay issue is really low on the list considering christ never spoke of it.
        When I contrast that with the reality the when 83% of American people age 14-24 hear the word. Christian the first thought they have is ‘hate gay people’ per barna’s book unchristian. (Off the top of my head so they may be off but the scope is there). We need to walk away from this battle or lose the war.

        1. “…considering Christ never spoke of it”Gotta jump on this one, brother. Assuming an orthodox view of both the Trinity and the Biblical authorship, this would be a hazardous misstatement.

          Walking away from this battle would leave the wrong people fighting it, which is the real source of the promblem. What I think Rich is saying, and I agree with him, is that we need to be engaging, not to “win a battle” but to promote truth and hopefully preserve what I believe is great about our country.

          1. ! Cor. 2:14 is relevant here. 
            People without the spirit cannot understand the things of the spirit. If someone who is not a Christ follower wants to get gay married, do drugs, look at porn, or any number of sins…as a Christ follower I, at the root level, have no problem with that. They don’t live by the same code I live by and I don’t expect them to play by God’s rules. Instead I mourn for them and love them when given the chance.

            I don’t see the public square as a place to get people to play by the rules of a God they don’t even believe in.

            Call yourself a Christ Follower and sit at my table…then we can have a conversation about how you are representing that. 

          2. Vince,
            As far as my article is concerned it is not about getting people to play by my rules or my view of God’s rules. It is practically living out the tensions between wanting justice for a group of people that should have rights while being honest with my view of traditional marriage. And, I am trying to do so in a way that is respectful and honest. If we are silent, then we let Romney or Obama be our voice.
            The fallacy in the thinking you mention is that this is all private. Raising kids is not private. Marriage is not private in its entirety. Porn is not private. Porn influences human trafficking. We need to take a stand for justice there. Drugs harm people. We need to speak into the well-being of our society about that. The public square is where we live. And, feeding the poor and being about justice for people is part of our Christian faith. All I am doing is saying lets offer a better choice to respond to people in our society who need us to lead and be loving rather than reactionary and fearful.
            RK

        2. All the more reason to have reasoned, grace oriented conversation. The reason many feel the way they do is we are silent while Westboro Baptist speaks for us. Or, we let politicians determine the articulation of our views. Letting the world know we are not monolithic in our views and thoughtful allows us a better platform than not engaging at all. Justice is part what Jesus modeled. We should hope that where it lacks we can work together even with a view that differs.

  32. What I think about the matter aside for a moment; I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. 
    On the politics side I think it helps to dig a little deeper and ‘follow the money’ so to speak: 
    When we look at the history of it over the last dozen years we see that the true effect of the ‘gay marriage’ issue is to mobilize people, otherwise uninterested in recent presidential candidates, to actually show up to the polls for something they think matters (gay marriage) and while they’re there they vote for president. 
    So, in short, the issue is being promoted to get people to care about something enough to a) vote and b) watch the news.
    Republicans and democrats need gay marriage on the ballots this fall so that people will actually show up to vote because Obama and Romney are really freaking boring and probably have only this shadow issue separating them.
    Once again the American people are caught up in a non-issue while the empire is expanded.

    1. ” I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. ”
      I disagree. I can agree we you if we have it the same way. But, it is time to not be afraid to be open about what we believe and to do so with the right tone and with a bent to not make a loser out of someone else so we can win. Let’s diffuse it rather than ignore it.

      1. I’m all for understanding and stating beliefs, especially when they are of critical importance for someone to begin accepting God’s grace. I just think having a Handle on the gay issue is really low on the list considering christ never spoke of it.
        When I contrast that with the reality the when 83% of American people age 14-24 hear the word. Christian the first thought they have is ‘hate gay people’ per barna’s book unchristian. (Off the top of my head so they may be off but the scope is there). We need to walk away from this battle or lose the war.

        1. “…considering Christ never spoke of it”Gotta jump on this one, brother. Assuming an orthodox view of both the Trinity and the Biblical authorship, this would be a hazardous misstatement.
          Walking away from this battle would leave the wrong people fighting it, which is the real source of the promblem. What I think Rich is saying, and I agree with him, is that we need to be engaging, not to “win a battle” but to promote truth and hopefully preserve what I believe is great about our country.

          1. ! Cor. 2:14 is relevant here. 
            People without the spirit cannot understand the things of the spirit. If someone who is not a Christ follower wants to get gay married, do drugs, look at porn, or any number of sins…as a Christ follower I, at the root level, have no problem with that. They don’t live by the same code I live by and I don’t expect them to play by God’s rules. Instead I mourn for them and love them when given the chance.
            I don’t see the public square as a place to get people to play by the rules of a God they don’t even believe in.
            Call yourself a Christ Follower and sit at my table…then we can have a conversation about how you are representing that. 

          2. Vince,
            As far as my article is concerned it is not about getting people to play by my rules or my view of God’s rules. It is practically living out the tensions between wanting justice for a group of people that should have rights while being honest with my view of traditional marriage. And, I am trying to do so in a way that is respectful and honest. If we are silent, then we let Romney or Obama be our voice.
            The fallacy in the thinking you mention is that this is all private. Raising kids is not private. Marriage is not private in its entirety. Porn is not private. Porn influences human trafficking. We need to take a stand for justice there. Drugs harm people. We need to speak into the well-being of our society about that. The public square is where we live. And, feeding the poor and being about justice for people is part of our Christian faith. All I am doing is saying lets offer a better choice to respond to people in our society who need us to lead and be loving rather than reactionary and fearful.
            RK

        2. All the more reason to have reasoned, grace oriented conversation. The reason many feel the way they do is we are silent while Westboro Baptist speaks for us. Or, we let politicians determine the articulation of our views. Letting the world know we are not monolithic in our views and thoughtful allows us a better platform than not engaging at all. Justice is part what Jesus modeled. We should hope that where it lacks we can work together even with a view that differs.

  33. What I think about the matter aside for a moment; I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. 
    On the politics side I think it helps to dig a little deeper and ‘follow the money’ so to speak: 

    When we look at the history of it over the last dozen years we see that the true effect of the ‘gay marriage’ issue is to mobilize people, otherwise uninterested in recent presidential candidates, to actually show up to the polls for something they think matters (gay marriage) and while they’re there they vote for president. 

    So, in short, the issue is being promoted to get people to care about something enough to a) vote and b) watch the news.

    Republicans and democrats need gay marriage on the ballots this fall so that people will actually show up to vote because Obama and Romney are really freaking boring and probably have only this shadow issue separating them.

    Once again the American people are caught up in a non-issue while the empire is expanded.

    1. ” I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. ”
      I disagree. I can agree we you if we have it the same way. But, it is time to not be afraid to be open about what we believe and to do so with the right tone and with a bent to not make a loser out of someone else so we can win. Let’s diffuse it rather than ignore it.

      1. I’m all for understanding and stating beliefs, especially when they are of critical importance for someone to begin accepting God’s grace. I just think having a Handle on the gay issue is really low on the list considering christ never spoke of it.
        When I contrast that with the reality the when 83% of American people age 14-24 hear the word. Christian the first thought they have is ‘hate gay people’ per barna’s book unchristian. (Off the top of my head so they may be off but the scope is there). We need to walk away from this battle or lose the war.

        1. “…considering Christ never spoke of it”Gotta jump on this one, brother. Assuming an orthodox view of both the Trinity and the Biblical authorship, this would be a hazardous misstatement.

          Walking away from this battle would leave the wrong people fighting it, which is the real source of the promblem. What I think Rich is saying, and I agree with him, is that we need to be engaging, not to “win a battle” but to promote truth and hopefully preserve what I believe is great about our country.

          1. ! Cor. 2:14 is relevant here. 
            People without the spirit cannot understand the things of the spirit. If someone who is not a Christ follower wants to get gay married, do drugs, look at porn, or any number of sins…as a Christ follower I, at the root level, have no problem with that. They don’t live by the same code I live by and I don’t expect them to play by God’s rules. Instead I mourn for them and love them when given the chance.

            I don’t see the public square as a place to get people to play by the rules of a God they don’t even believe in.

            Call yourself a Christ Follower and sit at my table…then we can have a conversation about how you are representing that. 

          2. Vince,
            As far as my article is concerned it is not about getting people to play by my rules or my view of God’s rules. It is practically living out the tensions between wanting justice for a group of people that should have rights while being honest with my view of traditional marriage. And, I am trying to do so in a way that is respectful and honest. If we are silent, then we let Romney or Obama be our voice.
            The fallacy in the thinking you mention is that this is all private. Raising kids is not private. Marriage is not private in its entirety. Porn is not private. Porn influences human trafficking. We need to take a stand for justice there. Drugs harm people. We need to speak into the well-being of our society about that. The public square is where we live. And, feeding the poor and being about justice for people is part of our Christian faith. All I am doing is saying lets offer a better choice to respond to people in our society who need us to lead and be loving rather than reactionary and fearful.
            RK

        2. All the more reason to have reasoned, grace oriented conversation. The reason many feel the way they do is we are silent while Westboro Baptist speaks for us. Or, we let politicians determine the articulation of our views. Letting the world know we are not monolithic in our views and thoughtful allows us a better platform than not engaging at all. Justice is part what Jesus modeled. We should hope that where it lacks we can work together even with a view that differs.

  34. What I think about the matter aside for a moment; I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. 
    On the politics side I think it helps to dig a little deeper and ‘follow the money’ so to speak: 

    When we look at the history of it over the last dozen years we see that the true effect of the ‘gay marriage’ issue is to mobilize people, otherwise uninterested in recent presidential candidates, to actually show up to the polls for something they think matters (gay marriage) and while they’re there they vote for president. 

    So, in short, the issue is being promoted to get people to care about something enough to a) vote and b) watch the news.

    Republicans and democrats need gay marriage on the ballots this fall so that people will actually show up to vote because Obama and Romney are really freaking boring and probably have only this shadow issue separating them.

    Once again the American people are caught up in a non-issue while the empire is expanded.

    1. ” I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. ”
      I disagree. I can agree we you if we have it the same way. But, it is time to not be afraid to be open about what we believe and to do so with the right tone and with a bent to not make a loser out of someone else so we can win. Let’s diffuse it rather than ignore it.

      1. I’m all for understanding and stating beliefs, especially when they are of critical importance for someone to begin accepting God’s grace. I just think having a Handle on the gay issue is really low on the list considering christ never spoke of it.
        When I contrast that with the reality the when 83% of American people age 14-24 hear the word. Christian the first thought they have is ‘hate gay people’ per barna’s book unchristian. (Off the top of my head so they may be off but the scope is there). We need to walk away from this battle or lose the war.

        1. “…considering Christ never spoke of it”Gotta jump on this one, brother. Assuming an orthodox view of both the Trinity and the Biblical authorship, this would be a hazardous misstatement.

          Walking away from this battle would leave the wrong people fighting it, which is the real source of the promblem. What I think Rich is saying, and I agree with him, is that we need to be engaging, not to “win a battle” but to promote truth and hopefully preserve what I believe is great about our country.

          1. ! Cor. 2:14 is relevant here. 
            People without the spirit cannot understand the things of the spirit. If someone who is not a Christ follower wants to get gay married, do drugs, look at porn, or any number of sins…as a Christ follower I, at the root level, have no problem with that. They don’t live by the same code I live by and I don’t expect them to play by God’s rules. Instead I mourn for them and love them when given the chance.

            I don’t see the public square as a place to get people to play by the rules of a God they don’t even believe in.

            Call yourself a Christ Follower and sit at my table…then we can have a conversation about how you are representing that. 

          2. Vince,
            As far as my article is concerned it is not about getting people to play by my rules or my view of God’s rules. It is practically living out the tensions between wanting justice for a group of people that should have rights while being honest with my view of traditional marriage. And, I am trying to do so in a way that is respectful and honest. If we are silent, then we let Romney or Obama be our voice.
            The fallacy in the thinking you mention is that this is all private. Raising kids is not private. Marriage is not private in its entirety. Porn is not private. Porn influences human trafficking. We need to take a stand for justice there. Drugs harm people. We need to speak into the well-being of our society about that. The public square is where we live. And, feeding the poor and being about justice for people is part of our Christian faith. All I am doing is saying lets offer a better choice to respond to people in our society who need us to lead and be loving rather than reactionary and fearful.
            RK

        2. All the more reason to have reasoned, grace oriented conversation. The reason many feel the way they do is we are silent while Westboro Baptist speaks for us. Or, we let politicians determine the articulation of our views. Letting the world know we are not monolithic in our views and thoughtful allows us a better platform than not engaging at all. Justice is part what Jesus modeled. We should hope that where it lacks we can work together even with a view that differs.

  35. What I think about the matter aside for a moment; I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. 
    On the politics side I think it helps to dig a little deeper and ‘follow the money’ so to speak: 

    When we look at the history of it over the last dozen years we see that the true effect of the ‘gay marriage’ issue is to mobilize people, otherwise uninterested in recent presidential candidates, to actually show up to the polls for something they think matters (gay marriage) and while they’re there they vote for president. 

    So, in short, the issue is being promoted to get people to care about something enough to a) vote and b) watch the news.

    Republicans and democrats need gay marriage on the ballots this fall so that people will actually show up to vote because Obama and Romney are really freaking boring and probably have only this shadow issue separating them.

    Once again the American people are caught up in a non-issue while the empire is expanded.

    1. ” I think the whole conversation is a huge distraction and the Church can only lose by engaging it. ”
      I disagree. I can agree we you if we have it the same way. But, it is time to not be afraid to be open about what we believe and to do so with the right tone and with a bent to not make a loser out of someone else so we can win. Let’s diffuse it rather than ignore it.

      1. I’m all for understanding and stating beliefs, especially when they are of critical importance for someone to begin accepting God’s grace. I just think having a Handle on the gay issue is really low on the list considering christ never spoke of it.
        When I contrast that with the reality the when 83% of American people age 14-24 hear the word. Christian the first thought they have is ‘hate gay people’ per barna’s book unchristian. (Off the top of my head so they may be off but the scope is there). We need to walk away from this battle or lose the war.

        1. “…considering Christ never spoke of it”Gotta jump on this one, brother. Assuming an orthodox view of both the Trinity and the Biblical authorship, this would be a hazardous misstatement.

          Walking away from this battle would leave the wrong people fighting it, which is the real source of the promblem. What I think Rich is saying, and I agree with him, is that we need to be engaging, not to “win a battle” but to promote truth and hopefully preserve what I believe is great about our country.

          1. ! Cor. 2:14 is relevant here. 
            People without the spirit cannot understand the things of the spirit. If someone who is not a Christ follower wants to get gay married, do drugs, look at porn, or any number of sins…as a Christ follower I, at the root level, have no problem with that. They don’t live by the same code I live by and I don’t expect them to play by God’s rules. Instead I mourn for them and love them when given the chance.

            I don’t see the public square as a place to get people to play by the rules of a God they don’t even believe in.

            Call yourself a Christ Follower and sit at my table…then we can have a conversation about how you are representing that. 

          2. Vince,
            As far as my article is concerned it is not about getting people to play by my rules or my view of God’s rules. It is practically living out the tensions between wanting justice for a group of people that should have rights while being honest with my view of traditional marriage. And, I am trying to do so in a way that is respectful and honest. If we are silent, then we let Romney or Obama be our voice.
            The fallacy in the thinking you mention is that this is all private. Raising kids is not private. Marriage is not private in its entirety. Porn is not private. Porn influences human trafficking. We need to take a stand for justice there. Drugs harm people. We need to speak into the well-being of our society about that. The public square is where we live. And, feeding the poor and being about justice for people is part of our Christian faith. All I am doing is saying lets offer a better choice to respond to people in our society who need us to lead and be loving rather than reactionary and fearful.
            RK

        2. All the more reason to have reasoned, grace oriented conversation. The reason many feel the way they do is we are silent while Westboro Baptist speaks for us. Or, we let politicians determine the articulation of our views. Letting the world know we are not monolithic in our views and thoughtful allows us a better platform than not engaging at all. Justice is part what Jesus modeled. We should hope that where it lacks we can work together even with a view that differs.

  36. Yeah for middle ground! 🙂 
    I’ve been looking for an article like THIS as well! This is the discussion I’ve been trying to have. It seems that people on both sides aren’t talking about the true issue at hand. To ME the answer is already at hand and the issue of Same Sex Marriage is merely a political ploy to swing votes. Most of the defense FOR Same Sex Marriage is by those who want the same benefits or rights of those married couples- which they receive within the statues outlined in Civil Unions. Most of the defense AGAINST Same Sex Marriage becomes one of personally attacking the motives, priorities of those seeking and becomes an emotionally charged debate that is unsolvable. 
    I don’t see the need to redefine ‘marriage’ and I also don’t see the point in denying rights to same sex couples. I’m also confused on why this is such a hot topic except for perhaps the lack of discussion regarding the options of Civil Unions or Domestic Partnerships.

    1. Yes, Vince and you and I agree with about the political polarizing of this issue. It serves both candidates well to wedge us.

  37. Yeah for middle ground! 🙂 
    I’ve been looking for an article like THIS as well! This is the discussion I’ve been trying to have. It seems that people on both sides aren’t talking about the true issue at hand. To ME the answer is already at hand and the issue of Same Sex Marriage is merely a political ploy to swing votes. Most of the defense FOR Same Sex Marriage is by those who want the same benefits or rights of those married couples- which they receive within the statues outlined in Civil Unions. Most of the defense AGAINST Same Sex Marriage becomes one of personally attacking the motives, priorities of those seeking and becomes an emotionally charged debate that is unsolvable. 
    I don’t see the need to redefine ‘marriage’ and I also don’t see the point in denying rights to same sex couples. I’m also confused on why this is such a hot topic except for perhaps the lack of discussion regarding the options of Civil Unions or Domestic Partnerships.

    1. Yes, Vince and you and I agree with about the political polarizing of this issue. It serves both candidates well to wedge us.

  38. Yeah for middle ground! 🙂 
    I’ve been looking for an article like THIS as well! This is the discussion I’ve been trying to have. It seems that people on both sides aren’t talking about the true issue at hand. To ME the answer is already at hand and the issue of Same Sex Marriage is merely a political ploy to swing votes. Most of the defense FOR Same Sex Marriage is by those who want the same benefits or rights of those married couples- which they receive within the statues outlined in Civil Unions. Most of the defense AGAINST Same Sex Marriage becomes one of personally attacking the motives, priorities of those seeking and becomes an emotionally charged debate that is unsolvable. 
    I don’t see the need to redefine ‘marriage’ and I also don’t see the point in denying rights to same sex couples. I’m also confused on why this is such a hot topic except for perhaps the lack of discussion regarding the options of Civil Unions or Domestic Partnerships.

    1. Yes, Vince and you and I agree with about the political polarizing of this issue. It serves both candidates well to wedge us.

  39. Yeah for middle ground! 🙂 
    I’ve been looking for an article like THIS as well! This is the discussion I’ve been trying to have. It seems that people on both sides aren’t talking about the true issue at hand. To ME the answer is already at hand and the issue of Same Sex Marriage is merely a political ploy to swing votes. Most of the defense FOR Same Sex Marriage is by those who want the same benefits or rights of those married couples- which they receive within the statues outlined in Civil Unions. Most of the defense AGAINST Same Sex Marriage becomes one of personally attacking the motives, priorities of those seeking and becomes an emotionally charged debate that is unsolvable. 
    I don’t see the need to redefine ‘marriage’ and I also don’t see the point in denying rights to same sex couples. I’m also confused on why this is such a hot topic except for perhaps the lack of discussion regarding the options of Civil Unions or Domestic Partnerships.

    1. Yes, Vince and you and I agree with about the political polarizing of this issue. It serves both candidates well to wedge us.

  40. Yeah for middle ground! 🙂 
    I’ve been looking for an article like THIS as well! This is the discussion I’ve been trying to have. It seems that people on both sides aren’t talking about the true issue at hand. To ME the answer is already at hand and the issue of Same Sex Marriage is merely a political ploy to swing votes. Most of the defense FOR Same Sex Marriage is by those who want the same benefits or rights of those married couples- which they receive within the statues outlined in Civil Unions. Most of the defense AGAINST Same Sex Marriage becomes one of personally attacking the motives, priorities of those seeking and becomes an emotionally charged debate that is unsolvable. 
    I don’t see the need to redefine ‘marriage’ and I also don’t see the point in denying rights to same sex couples. I’m also confused on why this is such a hot topic except for perhaps the lack of discussion regarding the options of Civil Unions or Domestic Partnerships.

    1. Yes, Vince and you and I agree with about the political polarizing of this issue. It serves both candidates well to wedge us.

  41. Yeah, Dan has it right.   The reason for allowing gays and lesbians to “marry” has little to do with the religious definition but a great deal to do with rights and privileges.   The differences in the latter are major, and they are inhumane.   (One example: in California, the procedure for a lesbian couple to share legal custody of a child who was born to one of the women is roughly: (a) Apply for adoption, including an invasive analysis of your “fitness to be parents.”  (b) Be refused anyway, because you are not a heterosexual couple.  (c) Hire a lawyer, amass witnesses and evidence, and go before a judge to argue that you are worthy of an exception.   Sometimes you succeed.)
    Churches should be allowed to define parameters of marriages, with minimal state interference.  (“Minimal and not “no” because I think it’s OK for the state to say that you can’t marry someone who is unable to consent.)    And no clergy should be forced to perform a marriage against his or her conscience.  

    On the other hand, secular institutions (e.g. tax code, family law, medical next-of-kin rules) should be affording fair and equal treatment to people in committed partnerships, without regard to whether those partnerships are religiously sanctioned.

    1. My argument is to simply create a new term, and lend the rights to that new term. We should respect culture and faith and it is inhumane to legislate that on one hand. This way, a truly secular definition that refers to legal rights is in play that can also respect the historical, and cultural freedoms as well. It seems that semantics matter in law, and in faith and a new word could be a solution. Legally changing a religious/cultural word does more than our government should in my opinion.

  42. Yeah, Dan has it right.   The reason for allowing gays and lesbians to “marry” has little to do with the religious definition but a great deal to do with rights and privileges.   The differences in the latter are major, and they are inhumane.   (One example: in California, the procedure for a lesbian couple to share legal custody of a child who was born to one of the women is roughly: (a) Apply for adoption, including an invasive analysis of your “fitness to be parents.”  (b) Be refused anyway, because you are not a heterosexual couple.  (c) Hire a lawyer, amass witnesses and evidence, and go before a judge to argue that you are worthy of an exception.   Sometimes you succeed.)
    Churches should be allowed to define parameters of marriages, with minimal state interference.  (“Minimal and not “no” because I think it’s OK for the state to say that you can’t marry someone who is unable to consent.)    And no clergy should be forced to perform a marriage against his or her conscience.  
    On the other hand, secular institutions (e.g. tax code, family law, medical next-of-kin rules) should be affording fair and equal treatment to people in committed partnerships, without regard to whether those partnerships are religiously sanctioned.

    1. My argument is to simply create a new term, and lend the rights to that new term. We should respect culture and faith and it is inhumane to legislate that on one hand. This way, a truly secular definition that refers to legal rights is in play that can also respect the historical, and cultural freedoms as well. It seems that semantics matter in law, and in faith and a new word could be a solution. Legally changing a religious/cultural word does more than our government should in my opinion.

  43. Yeah, Dan has it right.   The reason for allowing gays and lesbians to “marry” has little to do with the religious definition but a great deal to do with rights and privileges.   The differences in the latter are major, and they are inhumane.   (One example: in California, the procedure for a lesbian couple to share legal custody of a child who was born to one of the women is roughly: (a) Apply for adoption, including an invasive analysis of your “fitness to be parents.”  (b) Be refused anyway, because you are not a heterosexual couple.  (c) Hire a lawyer, amass witnesses and evidence, and go before a judge to argue that you are worthy of an exception.   Sometimes you succeed.)
    Churches should be allowed to define parameters of marriages, with minimal state interference.  (“Minimal and not “no” because I think it’s OK for the state to say that you can’t marry someone who is unable to consent.)    And no clergy should be forced to perform a marriage against his or her conscience.  

    On the other hand, secular institutions (e.g. tax code, family law, medical next-of-kin rules) should be affording fair and equal treatment to people in committed partnerships, without regard to whether those partnerships are religiously sanctioned.

    1. My argument is to simply create a new term, and lend the rights to that new term. We should respect culture and faith and it is inhumane to legislate that on one hand. This way, a truly secular definition that refers to legal rights is in play that can also respect the historical, and cultural freedoms as well. It seems that semantics matter in law, and in faith and a new word could be a solution. Legally changing a religious/cultural word does more than our government should in my opinion.

  44. Yeah, Dan has it right.   The reason for allowing gays and lesbians to “marry” has little to do with the religious definition but a great deal to do with rights and privileges.   The differences in the latter are major, and they are inhumane.   (One example: in California, the procedure for a lesbian couple to share legal custody of a child who was born to one of the women is roughly: (a) Apply for adoption, including an invasive analysis of your “fitness to be parents.”  (b) Be refused anyway, because you are not a heterosexual couple.  (c) Hire a lawyer, amass witnesses and evidence, and go before a judge to argue that you are worthy of an exception.   Sometimes you succeed.)
    Churches should be allowed to define parameters of marriages, with minimal state interference.  (“Minimal and not “no” because I think it’s OK for the state to say that you can’t marry someone who is unable to consent.)    And no clergy should be forced to perform a marriage against his or her conscience.  

    On the other hand, secular institutions (e.g. tax code, family law, medical next-of-kin rules) should be affording fair and equal treatment to people in committed partnerships, without regard to whether those partnerships are religiously sanctioned.

    1. My argument is to simply create a new term, and lend the rights to that new term. We should respect culture and faith and it is inhumane to legislate that on one hand. This way, a truly secular definition that refers to legal rights is in play that can also respect the historical, and cultural freedoms as well. It seems that semantics matter in law, and in faith and a new word could be a solution. Legally changing a religious/cultural word does more than our government should in my opinion.

  45. Yeah, Dan has it right.   The reason for allowing gays and lesbians to “marry” has little to do with the religious definition but a great deal to do with rights and privileges.   The differences in the latter are major, and they are inhumane.   (One example: in California, the procedure for a lesbian couple to share legal custody of a child who was born to one of the women is roughly: (a) Apply for adoption, including an invasive analysis of your “fitness to be parents.”  (b) Be refused anyway, because you are not a heterosexual couple.  (c) Hire a lawyer, amass witnesses and evidence, and go before a judge to argue that you are worthy of an exception.   Sometimes you succeed.)
    Churches should be allowed to define parameters of marriages, with minimal state interference.  (“Minimal and not “no” because I think it’s OK for the state to say that you can’t marry someone who is unable to consent.)    And no clergy should be forced to perform a marriage against his or her conscience.  

    On the other hand, secular institutions (e.g. tax code, family law, medical next-of-kin rules) should be affording fair and equal treatment to people in committed partnerships, without regard to whether those partnerships are religiously sanctioned.

    1. My argument is to simply create a new term, and lend the rights to that new term. We should respect culture and faith and it is inhumane to legislate that on one hand. This way, a truly secular definition that refers to legal rights is in play that can also respect the historical, and cultural freedoms as well. It seems that semantics matter in law, and in faith and a new word could be a solution. Legally changing a religious/cultural word does more than our government should in my opinion.

  46. Hey Rich…I wrote a letter to the SF Chronicle back when CA was considering Prop 8…I too recommended just coming up with a new word.  For thousands of years marriage had been defined as between a man and a woman.
    Now as a Presidential Candidate, I think Mitt Romney should have beat Obama to the punch and taken this thing out of play.  My personal religious beliefs are just that.  If I were running for President, I must represent all of the people, not just the Christians.  About half the population believes it should be legal for gays to marry.  The legal term should then be changed as you have suggested to allow that.  Those unions sanctified by the Church could still be called Marriages.  The president  has been set in that many marriages are strictly a legal matter and done with a Justice of the Peace or a Judge.  We should have defined those as Civil Unions a long time ago and taken the Religious term “Marriage”off of them.  

    As a side not, we as Christians have not been doing a very good job of adhering to the sacred oath associated with Marriage.  The divorce rate is the same for Christians and non Christians now.  That term should have special significance and should be recognized only for those who enter into it as described and defined by the Bible.

    1. You make a point I sadly stated as well. We Christians should live better what we believe and speak more humbly in all of this.

  47. Hey Rich…I wrote a letter to the SF Chronicle back when CA was considering Prop 8…I too recommended just coming up with a new word.  For thousands of years marriage had been defined as between a man and a woman.
    Now as a Presidential Candidate, I think Mitt Romney should have beat Obama to the punch and taken this thing out of play.  My personal religious beliefs are just that.  If I were running for President, I must represent all of the people, not just the Christians.  About half the population believes it should be legal for gays to marry.  The legal term should then be changed as you have suggested to allow that.  Those unions sanctified by the Church could still be called Marriages.  The president  has been set in that many marriages are strictly a legal matter and done with a Justice of the Peace or a Judge.  We should have defined those as Civil Unions a long time ago and taken the Religious term “Marriage”off of them.  
    As a side not, we as Christians have not been doing a very good job of adhering to the sacred oath associated with Marriage.  The divorce rate is the same for Christians and non Christians now.  That term should have special significance and should be recognized only for those who enter into it as described and defined by the Bible.

    1. You make a point I sadly stated as well. We Christians should live better what we believe and speak more humbly in all of this.

  48. Hey Rich…I wrote a letter to the SF Chronicle back when CA was considering Prop 8…I too recommended just coming up with a new word.  For thousands of years marriage had been defined as between a man and a woman.
    Now as a Presidential Candidate, I think Mitt Romney should have beat Obama to the punch and taken this thing out of play.  My personal religious beliefs are just that.  If I were running for President, I must represent all of the people, not just the Christians.  About half the population believes it should be legal for gays to marry.  The legal term should then be changed as you have suggested to allow that.  Those unions sanctified by the Church could still be called Marriages.  The president  has been set in that many marriages are strictly a legal matter and done with a Justice of the Peace or a Judge.  We should have defined those as Civil Unions a long time ago and taken the Religious term “Marriage”off of them.  

    As a side not, we as Christians have not been doing a very good job of adhering to the sacred oath associated with Marriage.  The divorce rate is the same for Christians and non Christians now.  That term should have special significance and should be recognized only for those who enter into it as described and defined by the Bible.

    1. You make a point I sadly stated as well. We Christians should live better what we believe and speak more humbly in all of this.

  49. Hey Rich…I wrote a letter to the SF Chronicle back when CA was considering Prop 8…I too recommended just coming up with a new word.  For thousands of years marriage had been defined as between a man and a woman.
    Now as a Presidential Candidate, I think Mitt Romney should have beat Obama to the punch and taken this thing out of play.  My personal religious beliefs are just that.  If I were running for President, I must represent all of the people, not just the Christians.  About half the population believes it should be legal for gays to marry.  The legal term should then be changed as you have suggested to allow that.  Those unions sanctified by the Church could still be called Marriages.  The president  has been set in that many marriages are strictly a legal matter and done with a Justice of the Peace or a Judge.  We should have defined those as Civil Unions a long time ago and taken the Religious term “Marriage”off of them.  

    As a side not, we as Christians have not been doing a very good job of adhering to the sacred oath associated with Marriage.  The divorce rate is the same for Christians and non Christians now.  That term should have special significance and should be recognized only for those who enter into it as described and defined by the Bible.

    1. You make a point I sadly stated as well. We Christians should live better what we believe and speak more humbly in all of this.

  50. Hey Rich…I wrote a letter to the SF Chronicle back when CA was considering Prop 8…I too recommended just coming up with a new word.  For thousands of years marriage had been defined as between a man and a woman.
    Now as a Presidential Candidate, I think Mitt Romney should have beat Obama to the punch and taken this thing out of play.  My personal religious beliefs are just that.  If I were running for President, I must represent all of the people, not just the Christians.  About half the population believes it should be legal for gays to marry.  The legal term should then be changed as you have suggested to allow that.  Those unions sanctified by the Church could still be called Marriages.  The president  has been set in that many marriages are strictly a legal matter and done with a Justice of the Peace or a Judge.  We should have defined those as Civil Unions a long time ago and taken the Religious term “Marriage”off of them.  

    As a side not, we as Christians have not been doing a very good job of adhering to the sacred oath associated with Marriage.  The divorce rate is the same for Christians and non Christians now.  That term should have special significance and should be recognized only for those who enter into it as described and defined by the Bible.

    1. You make a point I sadly stated as well. We Christians should live better what we believe and speak more humbly in all of this.

  51. Personally, I don’t think we need a new term or name.  I think we should take advantage of the perpetual cry for the government to stop mixing politics and religion and encourage the Government to STOP using the term “marriage” at all.  Since the word “marriage” has religious connotations for pretty much EVERYONE, the Government should avoid using religious language and ALL unions should be legally termed “Civil Unions.”  Doing this makes ALL [legally joined] couples equal in the eyes of the LAW.  It also reserves the use of the word “marriage” to citizens who may, or may not, choose to call their union a marriage while allowing others [outside the union] to use whatever tern they are most comfortable with,  as well.  Thus a joined gay couple of faith may refer to themselves as “married” while someone of a more fundamentalist religious view can call it a civil union, legal partnership, abomination, travesty of justice, or whatever they please, without affecting the rights of the joined couple in the least.   Hopefully, CHRISTIANS will choose to be loving and respectful of the rights of others regardless of their moral viewpoint on same-sex relationships.   As for myself, I don’t think Almighty God needs my help in determining which unions are holy and which are not….

    1. Indeed you have made the same point. Civil Unions surely can be a new legal term expanded beyond current meaning. Thanks for being part of this conversation.

  52. Personally, I don’t think we need a new term or name.  I think we should take advantage of the perpetual cry for the government to stop mixing politics and religion and encourage the Government to STOP using the term “marriage” at all.  Since the word “marriage” has religious connotations for pretty much EVERYONE, the Government should avoid using religious language and ALL unions should be legally termed “Civil Unions.”  Doing this makes ALL [legally joined] couples equal in the eyes of the LAW.  It also reserves the use of the word “marriage” to citizens who may, or may not, choose to call their union a marriage while allowing others [outside the union] to use whatever tern they are most comfortable with,  as well.  Thus a joined gay couple of faith may refer to themselves as “married” while someone of a more fundamentalist religious view can call it a civil union, legal partnership, abomination, travesty of justice, or whatever they please, without affecting the rights of the joined couple in the least.   Hopefully, CHRISTIANS will choose to be loving and respectful of the rights of others regardless of their moral viewpoint on same-sex relationships.   As for myself, I don’t think Almighty God needs my help in determining which unions are holy and which are not….

    1. Indeed you have made the same point. Civil Unions surely can be a new legal term expanded beyond current meaning. Thanks for being part of this conversation.

  53. Personally, I don’t think we need a new term or name.  I think we should take advantage of the perpetual cry for the government to stop mixing politics and religion and encourage the Government to STOP using the term “marriage” at all.  Since the word “marriage” has religious connotations for pretty much EVERYONE, the Government should avoid using religious language and ALL unions should be legally termed “Civil Unions.”  Doing this makes ALL [legally joined] couples equal in the eyes of the LAW.  It also reserves the use of the word “marriage” to citizens who may, or may not, choose to call their union a marriage while allowing others [outside the union] to use whatever tern they are most comfortable with,  as well.  Thus a joined gay couple of faith may refer to themselves as “married” while someone of a more fundamentalist religious view can call it a civil union, legal partnership, abomination, travesty of justice, or whatever they please, without affecting the rights of the joined couple in the least.   Hopefully, CHRISTIANS will choose to be loving and respectful of the rights of others regardless of their moral viewpoint on same-sex relationships.   As for myself, I don’t think Almighty God needs my help in determining which unions are holy and which are not….

    1. Indeed you have made the same point. Civil Unions surely can be a new legal term expanded beyond current meaning. Thanks for being part of this conversation.

  54. Personally, I don’t think we need a new term or name.  I think we should take advantage of the perpetual cry for the government to stop mixing politics and religion and encourage the Government to STOP using the term “marriage” at all.  Since the word “marriage” has religious connotations for pretty much EVERYONE, the Government should avoid using religious language and ALL unions should be legally termed “Civil Unions.”  Doing this makes ALL [legally joined] couples equal in the eyes of the LAW.  It also reserves the use of the word “marriage” to citizens who may, or may not, choose to call their union a marriage while allowing others [outside the union] to use whatever tern they are most comfortable with,  as well.  Thus a joined gay couple of faith may refer to themselves as “married” while someone of a more fundamentalist religious view can call it a civil union, legal partnership, abomination, travesty of justice, or whatever they please, without affecting the rights of the joined couple in the least.   Hopefully, CHRISTIANS will choose to be loving and respectful of the rights of others regardless of their moral viewpoint on same-sex relationships.   As for myself, I don’t think Almighty God needs my help in determining which unions are holy and which are not….

    1. Indeed you have made the same point. Civil Unions surely can be a new legal term expanded beyond current meaning. Thanks for being part of this conversation.

  55. Personally, I don’t think we need a new term or name.  I think we should take advantage of the perpetual cry for the government to stop mixing politics and religion and encourage the Government to STOP using the term “marriage” at all.  Since the word “marriage” has religious connotations for pretty much EVERYONE, the Government should avoid using religious language and ALL unions should be legally termed “Civil Unions.”  Doing this makes ALL [legally joined] couples equal in the eyes of the LAW.  It also reserves the use of the word “marriage” to citizens who may, or may not, choose to call their union a marriage while allowing others [outside the union] to use whatever tern they are most comfortable with,  as well.  Thus a joined gay couple of faith may refer to themselves as “married” while someone of a more fundamentalist religious view can call it a civil union, legal partnership, abomination, travesty of justice, or whatever they please, without affecting the rights of the joined couple in the least.   Hopefully, CHRISTIANS will choose to be loving and respectful of the rights of others regardless of their moral viewpoint on same-sex relationships.   As for myself, I don’t think Almighty God needs my help in determining which unions are holy and which are not….

    1. Indeed you have made the same point. Civil Unions surely can be a new legal term expanded beyond current meaning. Thanks for being part of this conversation.

  56. I realized, a little late, that my comments were redundant but maybe the question should be “How do we get the Right and the Left to stop polarizing us and make it happen?

    1. We do that by not allowing them to be the only ones at the table. 

  57. I realized, a little late, that my comments were redundant but maybe the question should be “How do we get the Right and the Left to stop polarizing us and make it happen?

    1. We do that by not allowing them to be the only ones at the table. 

  58. I realized, a little late, that my comments were redundant but maybe the question should be “How do we get the Right and the Left to stop polarizing us and make it happen?

    1. We do that by not allowing them to be the only ones at the table. 

  59. I realized, a little late, that my comments were redundant but maybe the question should be “How do we get the Right and the Left to stop polarizing us and make it happen?

    1. We do that by not allowing them to be the only ones at the table. 

  60. I realized, a little late, that my comments were redundant but maybe the question should be “How do we get the Right and the Left to stop polarizing us and make it happen?

    1. We do that by not allowing them to be the only ones at the table. 

  61. Very well worded my friend, and I totally agree with you. Your bullet points, especially the ones for both sides of the political spectrum,  are precisely  what we need to do. Again, I appreciate your outside perspective and attitude, God has given you a gift and I am glad to see God use this through you!

  62. Very well worded my friend, and I totally agree with you. Your bullet points, especially the ones for both sides of the political spectrum,  are precisely  what we need to do. Again, I appreciate your outside perspective and attitude, God has given you a gift and I am glad to see God use this through you!

  63. Very well worded my friend, and I totally agree with you. Your bullet points, especially the ones for both sides of the political spectrum,  are precisely  what we need to do. Again, I appreciate your outside perspective and attitude, God has given you a gift and I am glad to see God use this through you!

  64. Very well worded my friend, and I totally agree with you. Your bullet points, especially the ones for both sides of the political spectrum,  are precisely  what we need to do. Again, I appreciate your outside perspective and attitude, God has given you a gift and I am glad to see God use this through you!

  65. Very well worded my friend, and I totally agree with you. Your bullet points, especially the ones for both sides of the political spectrum,  are precisely  what we need to do. Again, I appreciate your outside perspective and attitude, God has given you a gift and I am glad to see God use this through you!

  66. When I find the woman I want to spend the rest of my life with, I want to be able to ask her to marry me, not “civil union” me.
    By asking gay couples to call it something different, you’re only segregating them further and letting them know they don’t deserve the title that straight people are conveniently allowed to have. No, I don’t think a compromise is acceptable.

    1. Also. If you’re against “redefining” the meaning of the word marriage, then why are you not also campaigning against interracial marriage, since that too redefined people’s previous notion of marriage?

    2. Personally, I want you to have all the rights, especially since children could be involved. The state should begin to recognize the nontraditional family so single parents and gay parents are not marginalized legally in any way. Children need that stability and the state while not redefining or defining marriage is needed to recognize not only the rights but public obligation of marriage and unions.
      However, the state should not redefine OR define marriage. (Sorry to my friends on the left and right). The institution of marriage is something the state did not create–it was here before the state. The state should not make theological and religious mandates about it–in either direction. So, the solution is to get the state out of marriage, perhaps entirely. It would harm our society greatly to allow the state the power to interfere at the most private levels of life and determine religious belief and practice. Ironically, the left machine is as blind as some on the right and thinks the state is the answer. Government power needs to limit itself here. 

  67. When I find the woman I want to spend the rest of my life with, I want to be able to ask her to marry me, not “civil union” me.
    By asking gay couples to call it something different, you’re only segregating them further and letting them know they don’t deserve the title that straight people are conveniently allowed to have. No, I don’t think a compromise is acceptable.

    1. Also. If you’re against “redefining” the meaning of the word marriage, then why are you not also campaigning against interracial marriage, since that too redefined people’s previous notion of marriage?

    2. Personally, I want you to have all the rights, especially since children could be involved. The state should begin to recognize the nontraditional family so single parents and gay parents are not marginalized legally in any way. Children need that stability and the state while not redefining or defining marriage is needed to recognize not only the rights but public obligation of marriage and unions.
      However, the state should not redefine OR define marriage. (Sorry to my friends on the left and right). The institution of marriage is something the state did not create–it was here before the state. The state should not make theological and religious mandates about it–in either direction. So, the solution is to get the state out of marriage, perhaps entirely. It would harm our society greatly to allow the state the power to interfere at the most private levels of life and determine religious belief and practice. Ironically, the left machine is as blind as some on the right and thinks the state is the answer. Government power needs to limit itself here. 

  68. When I find the woman I want to spend the rest of my life with, I want to be able to ask her to marry me, not “civil union” me.
    By asking gay couples to call it something different, you’re only segregating them further and letting them know they don’t deserve the title that straight people are conveniently allowed to have. No, I don’t think a compromise is acceptable.

    1. Also. If you’re against “redefining” the meaning of the word marriage, then why are you not also campaigning against interracial marriage, since that too redefined people’s previous notion of marriage?

    2. Personally, I want you to have all the rights, especially since children could be involved. The state should begin to recognize the nontraditional family so single parents and gay parents are not marginalized legally in any way. Children need that stability and the state while not redefining or defining marriage is needed to recognize not only the rights but public obligation of marriage and unions.
      However, the state should not redefine OR define marriage. (Sorry to my friends on the left and right). The institution of marriage is something the state did not create–it was here before the state. The state should not make theological and religious mandates about it–in either direction. So, the solution is to get the state out of marriage, perhaps entirely. It would harm our society greatly to allow the state the power to interfere at the most private levels of life and determine religious belief and practice. Ironically, the left machine is as blind as some on the right and thinks the state is the answer. Government power needs to limit itself here. 

  69. When I find the woman I want to spend the rest of my life with, I want to be able to ask her to marry me, not “civil union” me.
    By asking gay couples to call it something different, you’re only segregating them further and letting them know they don’t deserve the title that straight people are conveniently allowed to have. No, I don’t think a compromise is acceptable.

    1. Also. If you’re against “redefining” the meaning of the word marriage, then why are you not also campaigning against interracial marriage, since that too redefined people’s previous notion of marriage?

    2. Personally, I want you to have all the rights, especially since children could be involved. The state should begin to recognize the nontraditional family so single parents and gay parents are not marginalized legally in any way. Children need that stability and the state while not redefining or defining marriage is needed to recognize not only the rights but public obligation of marriage and unions.
      However, the state should not redefine OR define marriage. (Sorry to my friends on the left and right). The institution of marriage is something the state did not create–it was here before the state. The state should not make theological and religious mandates about it–in either direction. So, the solution is to get the state out of marriage, perhaps entirely. It would harm our society greatly to allow the state the power to interfere at the most private levels of life and determine religious belief and practice. Ironically, the left machine is as blind as some on the right and thinks the state is the answer. Government power needs to limit itself here. 

  70. When I find the woman I want to spend the rest of my life with, I want to be able to ask her to marry me, not “civil union” me.
    By asking gay couples to call it something different, you’re only segregating them further and letting them know they don’t deserve the title that straight people are conveniently allowed to have. No, I don’t think a compromise is acceptable.

    1. Also. If you’re against “redefining” the meaning of the word marriage, then why are you not also campaigning against interracial marriage, since that too redefined people’s previous notion of marriage?

    2. Personally, I want you to have all the rights, especially since children could be involved. The state should begin to recognize the nontraditional family so single parents and gay parents are not marginalized legally in any way. Children need that stability and the state while not redefining or defining marriage is needed to recognize not only the rights but public obligation of marriage and unions.
      However, the state should not redefine OR define marriage. (Sorry to my friends on the left and right). The institution of marriage is something the state did not create–it was here before the state. The state should not make theological and religious mandates about it–in either direction. So, the solution is to get the state out of marriage, perhaps entirely. It would harm our society greatly to allow the state the power to interfere at the most private levels of life and determine religious belief and practice. Ironically, the left machine is as blind as some on the right and thinks the state is the answer. Government power needs to limit itself here. 

  71. One of the most civil and intelligent discussions I have seen or heard on this subject. Thanks for the “risk”. 

    1. Thanks! This observation means a lot to me as that was my intent with the post.

  72. One of the most civil and intelligent discussions I have seen or heard on this subject. Thanks for the “risk”. 

    1. Thanks! This observation means a lot to me as that was my intent with the post.

  73. One of the most civil and intelligent discussions I have seen or heard on this subject. Thanks for the “risk”. 

    1. Thanks! This observation means a lot to me as that was my intent with the post.

  74. One of the most civil and intelligent discussions I have seen or heard on this subject. Thanks for the “risk”. 

    1. Thanks! This observation means a lot to me as that was my intent with the post.

  75. One of the most civil and intelligent discussions I have seen or heard on this subject. Thanks for the “risk”. 

    1. Thanks! This observation means a lot to me as that was my intent with the post.

  76. Quite a discussion here, Rich, and something I’d like to weigh in on. 
    As Christians, we’re called first and foremost to practice love and compassion. One thing that we simply can’t deny any more is that gay and lesbian families are doing an outstanding job of raising kids. Statistics are showing that, by and large, incidents of child abuse and neglect are almost nonexistent, and kids are thriving socially and academically in these environments. And yes, I think we can add “spiritually” to that list as well. One of the purposes of a family is to provide a nurturing, safe environment for children. If we deny the same marriage rights to these people, as defined by government, then we’re denying some basic human rights. As Christians, we can ill afford to say who can’t and can’t marry. 

    Just my 2/5 of a nickel. 

    1. Rick, I’m not for denying rights–most are not. Marriage is more than an entitlement and is not a governmental institution on the other hand. So, I say let’s allow those that desire to fulfill obligations of parenting in particular have rights that protect the raising of kids. But, let’s not let the government redefine marriage and turn it into their making. This is dangerous no matter what your view is. It is like the state defining doctrine.

  77. Quite a discussion here, Rich, and something I’d like to weigh in on. 
    As Christians, we’re called first and foremost to practice love and compassion. One thing that we simply can’t deny any more is that gay and lesbian families are doing an outstanding job of raising kids. Statistics are showing that, by and large, incidents of child abuse and neglect are almost nonexistent, and kids are thriving socially and academically in these environments. And yes, I think we can add “spiritually” to that list as well. One of the purposes of a family is to provide a nurturing, safe environment for children. If we deny the same marriage rights to these people, as defined by government, then we’re denying some basic human rights. As Christians, we can ill afford to say who can’t and can’t marry. 
    Just my 2/5 of a nickel. 

    1. Rick, I’m not for denying rights–most are not. Marriage is more than an entitlement and is not a governmental institution on the other hand. So, I say let’s allow those that desire to fulfill obligations of parenting in particular have rights that protect the raising of kids. But, let’s not let the government redefine marriage and turn it into their making. This is dangerous no matter what your view is. It is like the state defining doctrine.

  78. Quite a discussion here, Rich, and something I’d like to weigh in on. 
    As Christians, we’re called first and foremost to practice love and compassion. One thing that we simply can’t deny any more is that gay and lesbian families are doing an outstanding job of raising kids. Statistics are showing that, by and large, incidents of child abuse and neglect are almost nonexistent, and kids are thriving socially and academically in these environments. And yes, I think we can add “spiritually” to that list as well. One of the purposes of a family is to provide a nurturing, safe environment for children. If we deny the same marriage rights to these people, as defined by government, then we’re denying some basic human rights. As Christians, we can ill afford to say who can’t and can’t marry. 

    Just my 2/5 of a nickel. 

    1. Rick, I’m not for denying rights–most are not. Marriage is more than an entitlement and is not a governmental institution on the other hand. So, I say let’s allow those that desire to fulfill obligations of parenting in particular have rights that protect the raising of kids. But, let’s not let the government redefine marriage and turn it into their making. This is dangerous no matter what your view is. It is like the state defining doctrine.

  79. Quite a discussion here, Rich, and something I’d like to weigh in on. 
    As Christians, we’re called first and foremost to practice love and compassion. One thing that we simply can’t deny any more is that gay and lesbian families are doing an outstanding job of raising kids. Statistics are showing that, by and large, incidents of child abuse and neglect are almost nonexistent, and kids are thriving socially and academically in these environments. And yes, I think we can add “spiritually” to that list as well. One of the purposes of a family is to provide a nurturing, safe environment for children. If we deny the same marriage rights to these people, as defined by government, then we’re denying some basic human rights. As Christians, we can ill afford to say who can’t and can’t marry. 

    Just my 2/5 of a nickel. 

    1. Rick, I’m not for denying rights–most are not. Marriage is more than an entitlement and is not a governmental institution on the other hand. So, I say let’s allow those that desire to fulfill obligations of parenting in particular have rights that protect the raising of kids. But, let’s not let the government redefine marriage and turn it into their making. This is dangerous no matter what your view is. It is like the state defining doctrine.

  80. Quite a discussion here, Rich, and something I’d like to weigh in on. 
    As Christians, we’re called first and foremost to practice love and compassion. One thing that we simply can’t deny any more is that gay and lesbian families are doing an outstanding job of raising kids. Statistics are showing that, by and large, incidents of child abuse and neglect are almost nonexistent, and kids are thriving socially and academically in these environments. And yes, I think we can add “spiritually” to that list as well. One of the purposes of a family is to provide a nurturing, safe environment for children. If we deny the same marriage rights to these people, as defined by government, then we’re denying some basic human rights. As Christians, we can ill afford to say who can’t and can’t marry. 

    Just my 2/5 of a nickel. 

    1. Rick, I’m not for denying rights–most are not. Marriage is more than an entitlement and is not a governmental institution on the other hand. So, I say let’s allow those that desire to fulfill obligations of parenting in particular have rights that protect the raising of kids. But, let’s not let the government redefine marriage and turn it into their making. This is dangerous no matter what your view is. It is like the state defining doctrine.

  81. […] One core identity of being Evangelical is to support a secular state that does not infringe on faith. It is detestable to think of people being forced by law or sword to follow Jesus. And the distance in the mid-20th century away from the sectarian Fundamentalists partly was due to instead of fighting culture to become more devoted while building bridges. The broad tent that is Evangelical includes people who may allow for gay marriage, while not agreeing with sanctioning it as a practice. Others are against the legality of it and at different degrees such as the post I wrote a few weeks ago. […]

  82. […] One core identity of being Evangelical is to support a secular state that does not infringe on faith. It is detestable to think of people being forced by law or sword to follow Jesus. And the distance in the mid-20th century away from the sectarian Fundamentalists partly was due to instead of fighting culture to become more devoted while building bridges. The broad tent that is Evangelical includes people who may allow for gay marriage, while not agreeing with sanctioning it as a practice. Others are against the legality of it and at different degrees such as the post I wrote a few weeks ago. […]

  83. […] One core identity of being Evangelical is to support a secular state that does not infringe on faith. It is detestable to think of people being forced by law or sword to follow Jesus. And the distance in the mid-20th century away from the sectarian Fundamentalists partly was due to instead of fighting culture to become more devoted while building bridges. The broad tent that is Evangelical includes people who may allow for gay marriage, while not agreeing with sanctioning it as a practice. Others are against the legality of it and at different degrees such as the post I wrote a few weeks ago. […]

  84. […] One core identity of being Evangelical is to support a secular state that does not infringe on faith. It is detestable to think of people being forced by law or sword to follow Jesus. And the distance in the mid-20th century away from the sectarian Fundamentalists partly was due to instead of fighting culture to become more devoted while building bridges. The broad tent that is Evangelical includes people who may allow for gay marriage, while not agreeing with sanctioning it as a practice. Others are against the legality of it and at different degrees such as the post I wrote a few weeks ago. […]

  85. […] One core identity of being Evangelical is to support a secular state that does not infringe on faith. It is detestable to think of people being forced by law or sword to follow Jesus. And the distance in the mid-20th century away from the sectarian Fundamentalists partly was due to instead of fighting culture to become more devoted while building bridges. The broad tent that is Evangelical includes people who may allow for gay marriage, while not agreeing with sanctioning it as a practice. Others are against the legality of it and at different degrees such as the post I wrote a few weeks ago. […]

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