Saturday, January 29, 2005

Marriage Redux

Blog ally Tom Chatt of UpWord provided some great insight into the issue of gay marriage in one of his blog posts and his comments on my post on the topic that I wanted to address out here on the main board.

First, I would like to clarify why, from a religious standpoint, I feel that heterosexual union is the highest form. In Genesis, not once, but twice is mentioned (in Chapter 1 and 5), "Male and female, He created them". This is consistent with the message throughout the Scriptures that the wonder and power of the union of man and woman is in the uniting of their differences into a greater whole -- that two things so disparate in biology and psychology could be made one.

This has two implications. First, it renders procreation a potential, not a required outcome of a union -- obviously a good thing, since not all relationships produce children. However, it also points out the fundamental difference between homosexual and heterosexual unions -- no matter how "femmy" a man or "butch" a woman in a homosexual relationship, the biology and psychology does not make possible the completely-complementary nature of the relationship between heterosexuals.

There are also three things that need to be kept in mind, though. Just because the nature of the relationship is not the same in a homosexual vs. heterosexual comparison, it does not mean that homosexuals cannot love and cherish each other in the same fashion as can heterosexuals. Second, as Scripture makes clear, that loving and cherishing relationship for children can exist in homes without a male figure -- the story of Timothy, in which the apostle Paul compliments Timothy's mother and grandmother for raising him so well, clearly shows that. Finally, for those of us of the Protestant persuasion, marital statuses in and of themselves do not carry "superior" or "inferior" designations because that status is not indicative in itself of the state of the persons involved -- that is, as Luther put it, "Marriage is good, virginity is better, but purity of heart is best".

To summarize, because of the completely-complementary nature of heterosexual union and how this compliments the symmetry of God's creation, I think it should be the most highly-esteemed and cherished in a religious sense -- and also, I think it is the best environment for children. However, I think that homosexual unions should also be recognized, esteemed, and cherished -- just not in the same way. In either case, the legal incidentals should be identical.

Next, to Tom's second point about the "becoming one flesh", again, referring to the argument above, that can refer to procreation, but as an incidental of the complementary nature of the union of heterosexuals. The "one flesh" is expressed in the relationship itself; the "one flesh" of the child is a reflection of that relationship, much as moonlight is a reflection of sunlight.

Visitor Mike made reference to Romans. I am assuming that he is referring to the New Testament's seeming strictures against homosexuality, coming primarily from the Apostle Paul and such as in 1 Corinthians 6.

Whenever you review these, always keep in mind that the primary issue is not the earthly behavior, but God and man's relationship to God. The point Paul makes is that anything that gets in the way of that relationship is a problem. To me, these passages do not ban homosexuality, any more than they ban heterosexuality -- they simply charge you to use your body and time responsibly in a fashion that glorifies God.

Finally, blog ally Lloydletta contributed an excellent insight concerning the black community's division on this issue. Christian Grantham has also blogged about this split, even within the King family.

Referring to Lloydletta's, being a bit of a cynic on this issue, I don't doubt Coretta Scott King's position, but I would question the motivation behind Jesse Jackson, John Lewis, Al Sharpton, and Julian Bond taking theirs, because I personally think they're trying to maintain their slipping power within the Democratic Party. I think Ward Connerly's opposition to antigay laws is more along the libertarian viewpoint than anything else -- and is definitely welcomed., Alan Derschowitz and I AGREE on something. :)

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