Why Do Christians Oppose Gay Marriage?

In many U.S. states, gay marriage is now legal. The general perception is that people who support the legalization of gay marriage are caring and accepting and those who oppose it are unloving and prejudiced. Many people think that Christians are unloving and prejudiced because they belong to the latter group.

Christians themselves are responsible for this negative view of Christians. Many times throughout history, contrary to Jesus’ teaching, they didn’t fight for the oppressed but sided with the oppressors. Many Christians used the Bible to defend slavery. Many opposed womens’ rights arguing that it’s against Scripture. Because of this, many people brush off evangelical Christians’ arguments against gay marriage as another attempt to oppress people and deny them their rights. Many Christians in mainline denominations have similar views and have sided against evangelicals.

In the past, when some Christians supported slavery or opposed the women’s rights movement, they did so because their exegesis on Biblical passages concerning these issues were faulty. But today, it’s the Christians who support gay marriage who are using wrong exegetic principles.

Both the Old and New Testament clearly state that homosexuality is a sin (Lev. 18:22, Rom. 1:26-27). Gay activists say that only forced homosexual acts are wrong (Gen. 19:4-5) and that homosexual relationships between consenting adults are not sinful. They argue that homosexual people should be stoned if we take Old Testament commands seriously, but so should disobedient sons, to whom the Old Testament prescribes the same punishment (Deut. 21:18-21). So they argue that Biblical commandments cannot be taken literally and must be reinterpreted according to the times and situations.

It is true that all Biblical passages cannot be taken literally and that their applications should consider the circumstances and situations of the time. But any interpretation must not take it away from a passage’s basic meaning.

Gay marriage cannot be accepted not simply because it’s specifically mentioned in a few Biblical passages but because it stands against God’s design for creation, especially for human beings. God created human beings as male and female (Gen. 1:27). He willed that man and woman be united as one flesh (Gen. 2:24), and we call this union of man and woman marriage. A man, a woman, and their children form a base unit for human society. When we go against God’s creative design, and call a union between the same sex marriage, the basic unit of human society will be destroyed, and it might even bring the destruction of civilization as we know it.

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