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Conservative Christians Selectively Apply Biblical Teachings in the Same-Sex Marriage Debate
Daily Beast ^ | 02/22/2014 | Kirsten Powers

Posted on 02/23/2014 11:31:35 AM PST by SeekAndFind

Conservative Christian groups in Arizona cheered the passage Thursday of legislation that would allow individuals and businesses in the state to deny service to same-sex couples due to religious beliefs.

All eyes have shifted to Governor Jan Brewer, who must now decide whether to sign the bill. Similar legislation died in Kansas last week, but has also been introduced in Ohio, Mississippi, Idaho, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Oklahoma.

The Arizona law seems to apply to services beyond those tied to weddings, but same-sex weddings are the impetus for these bills. Specifically, they are in response to lawsuits against three different Christians who refused to photograph, bake a cake, and sell flowers for same-sex weddings. The backers of these laws claim that a Christian cannot, in good conscience, provide a good or service for a same-sex wedding because it violates the teachings of Christianity.

If these bills become law, we could see same-sex couples being denied service not just by photographers and florists, but also restaurants and hotels and pretty much anyone else who can tie their discrimination to a religious belief.

Many on the left and right can agree that nobody should be unnecessarily forced to violate their conscience. But in order to violate a Christian’s conscience, the government would have to force them to affirm something in which they don’t believe. This is why the first line of analysis here has to be whether society really believes that baking a wedding cake or arranging flowers or taking pictures (or providing any other service) is an affirmation. This case simply has not been made, nor can it be, because it defies logic. If you lined up 100 married couples and asked them if their florist “affirmed” their wedding, they would be baffled by the question.

(Excerpt) Read more at thedailybeast.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: Arizona
KEYWORDS: arizona; az; christianity; christians; culturewars; dailybeast; gaymarriage; homosexualagenda; kirstenpowers; samesexmarriage; ssm
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1 posted on 02/23/2014 11:31:36 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

As usual, the author wants to nuance the issue to death.

Her argument is that Christians seem to have little interest in this level of analysis and jump right to complaints about their legal and constitutional rights.

She argues that Christians wrestling with this issue must first resolve the primary issue of whether the Bible calls Christians to deny services to people who are engaging in behavior they believe violates the teachings of Christianity regarding marriage.

And her conclusion of course is .... IT DOES NOT.

WHY AM I NOT SURPRISED !!


2 posted on 02/23/2014 11:33:40 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

As usual, the author wants to nuance the issue to death.

Her argument is that Christians seem to have little interest in this level of analysis and jump right to complaints about their legal and constitutional rights.

She argues that Christians wrestling with this issue must first resolve the primary issue of whether the Bible calls Christians to deny services to people who are engaging in behavior they believe violates the teachings of Christianity regarding marriage.

And her conclusion of course is .... IT DOES NOT.

WHY AM I NOT SURPRISED !!


3 posted on 02/23/2014 11:33:43 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

What a bald faced lie.


4 posted on 02/23/2014 11:34:57 AM PST by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: yarddog

A liberal moron preaching about Christianity when one of the root tenets of liberalism is to ridicule Christianity and religion..Thanks but I get my daily comedy stuff from the white house.


5 posted on 02/23/2014 11:37:18 AM PST by max americana (fired liberals in our company last election, and I laughed while they cried (true story))
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To: SeekAndFind

I’m no biblical scholar and can’t quote scripture but I seem to remember that Jesus did not take kindly to some money changers and merchants who were trading in sacrificial animals.


6 posted on 02/23/2014 11:40:24 AM PST by Jim Robinson (Resistance to tyrants is obedience to God!!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Frankly, I don’t think how you can nuance “man shall not lie down with another man.”


7 posted on 02/23/2014 11:45:32 AM PST by Gaffer (Comprehensive Immigration Reform is just another name for Comprehensive Capitulation)
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To: SeekAndFind
we could see same-sex couples being denied service not just by photographers and florists, but also restaurants and hotels and pretty much anyone else who can tie their discrimination to a religious belief.

Sold. Where do I sign?

(Especially hotels. Yuck.)

8 posted on 02/23/2014 11:49:33 AM PST by SamuraiScot
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To: SeekAndFind

One basic tenet of freedom is that you can’t be forced to work for someone against your will.


9 posted on 02/23/2014 11:49:38 AM PST by marron
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To: Gaffer

The author’s argument is that providing a service should be construed as participation or affirmation. Why? Because if Christians truly believe that a vendor service is an affirmation, then they need to explain why it is only gay and lesbian weddings that violate their conscience.

Her argument is that Christians are applying their beliefs INCONSISTENTLY or UNFAIRLY. She then gives examples...

For instance, Before agreeing to provide a good or service for a wedding, Christian vendors must verify that both future spouses have had genuine conversion experiences and are “equally yoked” (2 Corinthians 6:14) or they will be complicit with joining righteousness with unrighteousness. They must confirm that neither spouse has been unbiblically divorced (Matthew 19). If one has been divorced, Christian vendors should ask why.

But Christians don’t do that in the latter case, so, her question is this, why simply target refusal of service to gays and lesbians and ignore other Biblical violations?


10 posted on 02/23/2014 11:52:24 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: marron

The courts are going to knock down these laws unfortunately.


11 posted on 02/23/2014 11:53:37 AM PST by goldi
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To: marron

RE: One basic tenet of freedom is that you can’t be forced to work for someone against your will.

I guess this would include not being forced to provide a service for someone because you don’t like his race...??


12 posted on 02/23/2014 11:54:41 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind
There was one interesting point that the essayist brought up that wasn't fully explored. It is the concept that every heterosexual marriage, even those that don't follow all of scripture, are in some way acceptable to God. If this is the case, then Christian wedding vendors are within their rights to deny services to gays and not look too deeply into the specifics of heterosexuals who seek their services.

However, there are specific verses that make it quite clear that just because a couple says they are divorced, or even if the state and their "church" say the are divorced, does not necessarily mean they are divorced in the eyes of God.

Any subsequent marriage on the part of either of the parties of a false divorce would constitute bigamy. One would think that Christian wedding service vendors would at least seek not to supply services to bigamists.

We worry that polygamy will be the next wall to be breached in the culture war, but maybe that wall got breached decades ago.

If none of Elizabeth Taylor's divorces was a proper one, isn't it the case that she was a polygamist? Ditto for everyone else married several times with only bogus divorces intervening between the marriages.

Were any of Taylor's photos, cakes, reception facilities, flowers, etc. provided by Christian businesses?

13 posted on 02/23/2014 11:55:18 AM PST by who_would_fardels_bear
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To: marron
One basic tenet of freedom is that you can’t be forced to work for someone against your will.

That principle was conceded when society accepted forcing white people to do business with black people. You either have freedom of association, or you don't. Once limits are accepted, the state decides for you what is "officially" right or wrong and how you are required to deal with it.

14 posted on 02/23/2014 11:56:51 AM PST by Tax-chick (The future is not going to take us seriously.)
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To: Tax-chick; SeekAndFind
I guess this would include not being forced to provide a service for someone because you don’t like his race...??

That principle was conceded when society accepted forcing white people to do business with black people.

Good point and I thought about it as soon as I wrote it.

I remember the bad old days and the practices of those times disgusted me then and do to this day. I remember cafes who would do take-out orders for black people but they weren't allowed to come in and sit down, for example.

I obviously don't see this in the same light because I don't see homosexuality and race as in any way equivalent.

You are not allowed to refuse service to someone because of their race but you can refuse if someone is a jerk, for example.

So I don't see a legal equivalence. But good luck I suppose finding a court that will agree with me.

15 posted on 02/23/2014 12:08:03 PM PST by marron
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To: SeekAndFind

Let’s hope Jan Brewer doesn’t cave and signs the bill. I always thought she was pretty strong - this will tell.


16 posted on 02/23/2014 12:08:35 PM PST by JudyinCanada
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To: max americana
A liberal moron preaching about Christianity when one of the root tenets of liberalism is to ridicule Christianity and religion

Genius in its simplicity. Turn the liberal's on tactics back on them. They are liberal, do not believe in the bible, there fore they are incapable of having ANY discussion on Christianity because they are UNQUALIFIED.

I know a couple of people I have engaged in the past that I will use this tactic on :-)

17 posted on 02/23/2014 12:08:44 PM PST by Turbo Pig (...to close with and destroy the enemy...)
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To: who_would_fardels_bear

RE: There was one interesting point that the essayist brought up that wasn’t fully explored. It is the concept that every heterosexual marriage, even those that don’t follow all of scripture, are in some way acceptable to God. If this is the case, then Christian wedding vendors are within their rights to deny services to gays and not look too deeply into the specifics of heterosexuals who seek their services.

__________________________________

The problem I see with the author’s argument is she IGNORES the Biblical definition of MARRIAGE itself.

Granted that there are marriages frowned upon by scripture, however such marriages are RECOGNIZED as marriages... just nor ideal ones. For instance, the Apostle Paul does not tell the Christian woman married to an unbelieving man to divorce him simply because of his unbelief. He asks her to STAY with him and pray for him and through her character, influence him to believe. THUS, such marriage is still considered a MARRIAGE. Not ideal, but a marriage nonetheless.

However, Jesus, when he talked about marriage, never considers same-sex relationships to be marriage.

In response to a question about divorce, this is what Jesus said...

“Haven’t you read,” He replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” ( Matthew 19:4-6)

With this, Jesus recognized marriage as TAUGHT by the Torah, to be between a man and a woman, not between people of two similar sexes.

So, a Christian refusing to service a “marriage” that by his belief in scripture is not considered one, is not being inconsistent with servicing a non-ideal matrimony between a believer and unbeliever. Why? Because the latter is recognized and allowed for by scripture ( albeit, not ideal ).


18 posted on 02/23/2014 12:09:54 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

“This is why the first line of analysis here has to be whether society really believes that baking a wedding cake or arranging flowers or taking pictures (or providing any other service) is an affirmation. This case simply has not been made, nor can it be, because it defies logic. If you lined up 100 married couples and asked them if their florist “affirmed” their wedding, they would be baffled by the question.”

There is a qualitative difference, and it resides NOT in any general difference between “one couple” and “another couple”, GENERALLY - the typical case between various “married couples” - but it the foundational meaning of “marriage”. With heterosexual couples for whom their is neither a historical, foundational or moral question about “marriage”, a baker’s, or photographer’s actions neither affirm, or do not affirm their marriage, but the baker’s or photographer’s actions DO affirm acceptance of the definition of marriage as represented by the couple. That is not the case, for many religious people, when it comes to a “same-sex” marriage. They do not, in their beliefs, affirm the very foundational redefinition of marriage presented by a “same-sex marriage”, nor should they have to take actions that pretend that they do.


19 posted on 02/23/2014 12:10:42 PM PST by Wuli
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To: marron; SeekAndFind

I agree with you that racial discrimination was wrong, marron. However, once the principle was established, of compelling private citizens to serve others because not doing so was wrong, you get what we have now. Legislatures and courts are ruling that “gay” is an identity category, like race or physical handicap, and not a behavior category, like being drunk-and-disorderly.

From the standpoint of Christian morality, the situation is not at all black and white. Yes, it’s clear that homosexual behavior is wrong. However, as someone pointed out above, a lot of things are wrong. Suppose an unmarried couple wanted to order a cake or rent a facility to hold a baby shower. Is a Christian business person morally required to deny them because they are in an immoral relationship?

I think it should be individual choice on the part of business owners.


20 posted on 02/23/2014 12:15:58 PM PST by Tax-chick (The future is not going to take us seriously.)
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To: SeekAndFind
Because it one case you don't know.

In the second it is quite in your face.

I am not quite sure why this seems to be so difficult.

It is like if I sold a dog to a couple not knowing that they were going to make the dog a blood sacrifice and in another case sold a dog to someone who TOLD me he was going to sacrifice the dog to satan before burning down his neighbors house.

21 posted on 02/23/2014 12:21:40 PM PST by Harmless Teddy Bear (Proud Infidel, Gun Nut, Religious Fanatic and Freedom Fiend)
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To: Tax-chick; SeekAndFind

I suppose an important distinction is that serving a restaurant meal to someone I don’t like, I’m not morally complicit in whatever it is I don’t like about them.

But baking a wedding cake for what I consider morally repugnant makes me complicit and forces me to join in something I consider immoral.

I could bake cakes for homosexuals all day long, and let them add the trim to turn it into a wedding cake. I don’t have to know. But don’t ask me to bake it explicitly as a wedding cake because now you’re making me a party to it. I could take picture of a gathering that includes homosexuals and as long as everyone behaves I’m not party to whatever they do behind closed doors. But don’t ask me to photograph something I consider morally repugnant which makes me party to it.

Someone else might feel differently and if they do, feel free to hire them. They could even advertise for that business and put me at a competitive disadvantage and thats their right.

I think thats how I draw the distinction.


22 posted on 02/23/2014 12:24:00 PM PST by marron
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To: SeekAndFind

Freedom of Association implies the freedom not to associate, we don’t even need to bring religion into it


23 posted on 02/23/2014 12:24:50 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: SeekAndFind

I frankly feel a business owner should be able to deny service to anyone for any reason they choose.

But that’s just me.


24 posted on 02/23/2014 12:24:59 PM PST by TexasFreeper2009 (Obama lied .. the economy died.)
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To: SeekAndFind

If the baker doesn’t have the right to refuse, does he have the right to do a shoddy job? Would the court find the baker guilty above the price paid for the cake if the quality doesn’t meet the patrons standards. Or do we all lose our businesses because the activists insist on patronizing us to their expectations?


25 posted on 02/23/2014 12:26:11 PM PST by greatvikingone
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To: Tax-chick
Legislatures and courts are ruling that “gay” is an identity category, like race or physical handicap, and not a behavior category, like being drunk-and-disorderly.

You've just put your finger on the distinction and the problem. Once people lose their moral compass, the law loses all rationality.

26 posted on 02/23/2014 12:27:27 PM PST by marron
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To: SeekAndFind

I don’t remember and Divorce Pride movements and people throwing Divorce into your face, demanding you affirm it.

These gays can buy cakes all day long without telling anyone they are homosexuals.


27 posted on 02/23/2014 12:27:55 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Should a black-owned bakery be forced to bake a cake for a KKK meeting?


28 posted on 02/23/2014 12:28:36 PM PST by Phillyred
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To: goldi

If a gay bakery denied a cake for a Christian function, would that be okay with these same liberals?

Of course it would.


29 posted on 02/23/2014 12:28:49 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: SeekAndFind

—However, Jesus, when he talked about marriage, never considers same-sex relationships to be marriage.

When we taught marriage preparation a priest once told us Jesus could have come in any time and in any social construct. He chose to come to mankind in the shelter of the Holy Family - a man and a woman. This choice affirms the definition.

Consider also that a Marriage was the first of Jesus’ miracles.

God is very interested and present in marriage and the creation of new life and want us to affirm it.


30 posted on 02/23/2014 12:29:34 PM PST by sgtyork (Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy)
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To: Tax-chick

“No Soup for You!”


31 posted on 02/23/2014 12:30:20 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: Tax-chick; marron

RE: Legislatures and courts are ruling that “gay” is an identity category, like race or physical handicap, and not a behavior category, like being drunk-and-disorderly.

Even if it were an identity category, do we force someone to service it simply because it is an identity?

Let’s take an example — is Pedophilia a behavior or an identity? If a Muslim man someday wants you to service his wedding to a girl twelve years old ( I take that back, he does not have to be Muslim, all he has to do is insist that he was ‘born that way’ ), should you be forced to do it?


32 posted on 02/23/2014 12:30:52 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: Phillyred

BUMP


33 posted on 02/23/2014 12:32:17 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Also, a man and a woman in an unsanctified marriage could still both theoretically repent and remain in the marriage. The two members of a sodomite “marriage” could never do that.


34 posted on 02/23/2014 12:33:49 PM PST by mrsmel (One Who Can See)
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To: Phillyred

That’s the question I have asked. How consistent do people want to be, if consistency is everything? It was said that a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, and this scenario with sodomite “marriage” proves the truth of that statement.


35 posted on 02/23/2014 12:35:59 PM PST by mrsmel (One Who Can See)
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To: SeekAndFind
But Christians don’t do that in the latter case, so, her question is this, why simply target refusal of service to gays and lesbians and ignore other Biblical violations?

I would guess that in order to do this, a business must delve more deeply into a couple's personal issues than most people feel comfortable with. Generally, when processing an order for cake or flowers there is nothing particularly obvious about a couple who are violating God's law when they are a male/female couple. A male/male couple is obvious right off the bat.

Sure, we can probably assume the couple is engaged in fornication- they could have children accompanying them, which would make it obvious, but in that case most of us would be glad to see them "making it legal".

Aside from the divorce issue, a male/female couple have the capability to build a Godly union over time, if the union does not begin in that manner. And even in the case of divorce, would God demand that a person who divorced and re-married and then became a Christian un-do the second union and dissolve a family created? My guess is no, this is where grace comes in- where before you did not understand, acknowledge that you violated God's law, ask forgiveness and move on.

A same sex union has none of these possibilities.

36 posted on 02/23/2014 12:37:31 PM PST by Dianna
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To: GeronL

Well, fine. I’d rather have chicken anyway!


37 posted on 02/23/2014 12:39:55 PM PST by Tax-chick (The future is not going to take us seriously.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Funny, posting the Ten Commandments on a wall constitutes an Endorsement even if it was put there 50 years ago... Yet they seem to want a different standard here.


38 posted on 02/23/2014 12:41:31 PM PST by csivils
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To: SeekAndFind
The author’s argument is that providing a service should be construed as participation or affirmation. Why? Because if Christians truly believe that a vendor service is an affirmation, then they need to explain why it is only gay and lesbian weddings that violate their conscience.

By the way, it was years and years ago that I refused to attend the wedding of my husband's scummy boss who had an affair and then left his family to marry the other woman.

For years I have been quietly resistant to treating my brother's live-in girlfriend as my sister-in-law. The end result is that I don't have any special relationship to my other brother's wife because I don't wish to highlight any difference in treatment between the two.

Fortunately for me, they all live very far away and the issue is largely moot. But I mightily resent being put in a position where I am expected to treat their relationship with far more respect/credibility than either of them do. If my brother does not want to make her a part of the family-or if she is choosing to not become my family, how am I the bad-guy by treating her like just another girlfriend?

39 posted on 02/23/2014 12:54:15 PM PST by Dianna
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To: marron; SeekAndFind

I think you’re making a defensible distinction between providing service to a person and participating in an event.


40 posted on 02/23/2014 12:54:33 PM PST by Tax-chick (The future is not going to take us seriously.)
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To: SeekAndFind

“also been introduced in Ohio, Mississippi, Idaho, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Oklahoma.”

Where’s Utah and Alabama? Let’s get these on the books in every red state.


41 posted on 02/23/2014 1:02:30 PM PST by Viennacon
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To: SeekAndFind

Sorry, Kirsten, but if I run a photography business, there’s no way on God’s green earth that I am going to be a hypocrite and snap pictures of two men or two women as if it’s acceptable.

Frankly, when I see two people of the same sex acting like they’re a couple, it makes me a little sick to my stomach. I should not be forced to partake.


42 posted on 02/23/2014 1:08:02 PM PST by JudyinCanada
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To: SeekAndFind

The Christians who have been threatened, sued, prosecuted, had business licenses suspended and other harassments HAVE SAID they would be willing to perform the service for an individual but not for homosexual marriage or for sleeping together.

The innkeeper in Hawaii would not rent a room to homosexuals because it violated their faith. I agree, faith in God would not allow in good conscience to rent a bed to a couple that is same-sex nor would it allow to rent a bed to a couple that are unmarried.

Homosexuals can steer clear of Christian businesses or Jewish businesses. They have plenty of secular businesses to contract with. They are only interested in equating themselves with the Black civil rights movement.

Businesses need only post a Christian or Jewish symbol to let homosexuals know not to ask for services that promote homosexuality or to let heterosexual unmarried couples know not to ask for services that promote fornication.

Whether one thinks this is backwards or discriminatory is not the issue, it is a line drawn in the sand that certain behaviors are not tolerated on the premises by reason of religious belief.

Homosexuals and prostitutes can find secular businesses to carry on their activities. There is no need to allow them to infringe on the rights of the faithful.


43 posted on 02/23/2014 1:09:00 PM PST by Hostage (ARTICLE V)
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To: SeekAndFind
Seems to me that the argument could be made along the lines of Paul's instructions about eating meat sacrificed to idols. Specifically, if the Christian doesn't know, then their conscience isn't violated.

I suppose that homosexuals could just request a cake that says "Congratulations Bob and John" and theoretically, that wouldn't be a violation of conscience, but in the details of these lawsuits, it seems that the "engaged" parties announce it directly.

44 posted on 02/23/2014 1:19:26 PM PST by The Grammarian
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To: SeekAndFind

(This is why the first line of analysis here has to be whether society really believes that baking a wedding cake or arranging flowers or taking pictures (or providing any other service) is an affirmation. er)

What else is it? The person (baker photog etc.) would not be there of their own accord. They would only be there because they are forced by the Government.


45 posted on 02/23/2014 1:27:46 PM PST by SECURE AMERICA (Where can I go to sign up for the American Revolution 2014 and the Crusades 2014?)
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To: JudyinCanada
it makes me a little sick to my stomach. I should not be forced to partake.

That's your/our ticket not to take part of it.

Bob and Bill, I can bake but seeing you two makes me sick to my stomach. So you will have no guarantee, I won't throw up a bit in the cake mixture. So go somewhere else where what they see doesn't have an effect on them.

46 posted on 02/23/2014 1:37:57 PM PST by presently no screen name
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To: SeekAndFind

Jesus never helped a sinner sin and neither should Christians.


47 posted on 02/23/2014 1:40:23 PM PST by RginTN
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To: SeekAndFind

This is either the home the brave and the land of the free, or it is not. If I have a business and do not wish to serve someone for whatever reason, that, in my opinion, ends the matter, period.


48 posted on 02/23/2014 1:41:23 PM PST by mulligan (I)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear

That’s exactly what I was thinking!


49 posted on 02/23/2014 1:54:51 PM PST by Former Fetus (Saved by grace through faith)
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To: SeekAndFind
So if christians are inconsistent, her argument is that they should let everything slide including gay marriage. Gay marriage is complete rebellion against what God has ordained. It is a case of shaking your fist at God, and saying "see and and what are you going to do about it". Knowingly providing services for such an occasion, could be felt by many christians as sanctioning that occasion.

If a bunch of people created a golden calf and worshiped it, and asked a christian caterer to provide and staff the event, there will be many christians who would balk at that.

50 posted on 02/23/2014 2:22:18 PM PST by Moorings
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