Skip to comments.(V) Be A Test Case For Your Church
Posted on 06/29/2015 8:24:16 AM PDT by OrangeHoof
If you are a member of a Bible-believing church that considers homosexuality to be sin, last week's SCOTUS decision making gay marriage a federal right has to be disturbing.
Soon, as they have with wedding bakers, florists and photographers, gays are likely to show up to be test cases asking to get married in your church.
If you are a church elder, what is your response going to be when it is your church they want to marry in?
There's a good chance your answer is going to be like this: "The Bible declares in Deuteronomy and Romans and elsewhere that homosexuality is abhorrent and sinful in the eyes of God and we refuse to allow such a wedding to take place on our grounds."
When you do, be prepared to be trashed on social media and have a complaint filed against you to the local civil rights commission and possibly sued for discrimination. Is this what you want?
Jesus told His early disciples to "be wise as serpents and innocent as doves". (Matt 10:16)
The way to counter a discrimination charge is two-fold.
1) Insist that every wedding that takes place at your church must first be screened by the elder board or a marriage consultant who is affiliated with the church. Many hetero couples are not ready for marriage and this screening body is already in use at many churches for the means of advising couples if they are not suitable yet to become spouses.
2) Document hetero cases where this consulting board has turned down weddings based on the church's belief that the couple are not ready.
Thus when the gay test case comes to your church, your answer can be: "Our church screens all prospective marriage couples for their suitability and compatibility in marriage and we decline to marry those we believe do not meet our requirements. We have already turned away hetero couples we felt were not a good prospect for marriage."
"We invite this couple to go through our Bible study and take our counseling classes like any other prospective couple and we will evaluate them for compatibility with the tenets of our church."
Oh, but what if you have no documented hetero couples that your church has turned down? You may be dragged into court and be forced to produce evidence where you've rejected a hetero couple that wanted to marry.
That's where your Singles Ministry can help out. Find some guys and girls willing to go through the counseling and screening while acting out like what they DON'T want in a marriage partner for the sole purpose of being rejected so the church can document that rejection and be able to state with a straight face that they are not rejecting a gay couple solely for being gay.
Lawyers would have to find a different angle other than simple discrimination as a reason to prove the church is discriminatory.
Wise as serpents.
Oh, and in no way should you tell the homosexuals their wedding is being rejected on the basis of homosexuality. Rather fall back on the subjective basis of incompatibility, or an unbiblical nature. When you get right down to it, all of us are sinners and finding some reason to find a couple of homosexuals to be less than good mating material should not be very difficult as they are probably breaking other commandments too or showing behavior that would not make them suitable marriage partners.
Actually, the Bible condemns sex within the same sex which is different from Homosexuality. Homosexuality is being solely attracted to the same sex.
Fornication and adultery are the real issues. If a church supports marrying people of the same-sex, they essentially endorse adultery.
Good advice. Well thought through.
Our church already has written guidelines for weddings, including the cost for members and non-members, several weeks of marriage counseling with the pastor, and a requirement that the couple may not be living together prior to the wedding.
That requirement may be strengthened in the coming weeks.
I won’t feel the least bit sorry for the first gay couple that gets shot or beheaded for trying to force an Islamic mosque to marry them.
That's the ticket! Deny the Bible to protect your tax exempt status!
Weddings are a union between a man and a woman in holy matrimony. It is a consecrated religious service in our church, we do not do any civil unions.
.... or thrown from a minaret.
I disagree with your advice. You are advocating duplicity and lying (if it is arranged to have a young couple not be ready, it becomes a real issue, morally and legally).
My advice is much simpler - announce today that the church will no longer be performing weddings. Weddings are not a New Testament mission of the church. Far better to stop the periphery benefits offered by the church than to be sucked into a dishonest charade, or violate the moral foundations of Christianity.
Lying by omission is still lying.
Lying is sinful.
Do not sink to their level. Be prepared for any persecution we may encounter due to our beliefs. If you sidestep the issue, you are not providing any kind of positive witness for Christ.
No. The other USSC decision last week means that if you are accused of discrimination, you are guilty.
Simple. Stop doing state marriages.
Provide the sacrament of matrimony. Call it that. Start doing it now.
Wouldn't a first question be whether a person is a member in good standing of the church in question?
Forgive my ignorance, but do people just walk up to a random church and ask to be married there? Do the churches comply?
Similarly, I have heard stories of Rabbis who have refused to perform interfaith weddings. Will this be allowed to continue? Will a Catholic church be forced to perform a gay wedding, while synagogues continue denying interfaith weddings?
Shouldn't it be either weddings for all anywhere, or weddings only at the discretion of the establishment based on its long-standing deeply held convictions?
Wouldn't that be considered bearing false witness?
this is they way to go
However parishioners who meet the church screening standards for adherence to church doctrine can be offered special religious services to bless their marriages that have been registered by the government
similar to Europe where people have civil service to get married legally and optional church services to bless their marriages
Ministers and priests will no longer be licensed by the government to perform marriages. No great loss. Go to a wedding registry in city hall. Church marriage returns to being a sacrament. Church membership in good standing and public statement of faith returns to being a requisite
Our side is not as clever and crafty as we should be. We are by nature sedentary and fixed and unimaginative when it comes to political gamesmanship. The other side is constantly thinking up mischief-making, and we’d do well to borrow some of that personality.
By the way, the church would do well to institute rigorous pre-marital counseling, modeling, testing, and strict review, regardless of whether or not this was intended for same-sex marriage gamesmanship. The church and its pastors SHOULD scrutinize prospective couples and reject some numbers of them based on failures in maturity and preparation and devotion to Christ. People would FLOCK to that church, and any church which makes demands of its sheep.
Marriage has suffered greatly in recent decades, and prior to any of us pondering same-sex marriage. When debating same-sex marriage, we MUST move the discussion to marriage itself, (whether is Godly or civil forms), and demonstrate how important “tradtional” marriage is to humanity, society, and the state, as well as to God.
“Sorry, it appears that you seem to have failed the blood test”.
I like the idea. However, I fear the radical gays will try to infiltrate churches, then go get the civil marriage, and demand the church blessing on the strength of their membership in the church and their legal civil marriage license.
The Catholic Church demands Pre-Cana conferences!!
Thank you for your comment. The issue of duplicity jumped out at me too.
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