Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Another one bites the dust....

The once noble and proud stalwart of Biblical authority and truth is but a shadow of its former self.  Would the last Calvinist who leaves the Presbyterian Church USA kindly turn out the lights?  For sure, the Presbyterians are not alone -- although I remember my mom asking me if all the other kids jumped off a bridge, would I also?

Formerly the standards for conduct for the clergy said fidelity within the covenant of marriage between a man and a woman or chastity in singleness but now they read in all their vagueness that all candidates joyfully submitting to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.  Apparently, submitting to the Lordship of Jesus Christ has little to do with fidelity in marriage between a man and a woman or chastity in singleness anymore. Of course this opens up the clergy in that denomination to homosexuals either in a "committed relationship" or sleeping around in search of one.  And, to be fair, heterosexuals have the same options of "trying before buying" or even "testing other options after the purchase."

The strangeness with which we word things so as not to offend behaviors which Scripture clearly condemns has become the fine art of denominational leadership among so many.  Now let me say up front -- I am not a hater of gays.  I do not believe that the Church should impose a standard upon gays which the Church is unwilling to impose upon straights.  And therein is the rub.  We have winked at shacking up straights for so long that we feel it is downright unfair to single out GLABTs.  It is true.  It is unfair.  But the original standard of conduct was NOT unfair.  To require fidelity within the covenant of marriage between a man and a woman or chastity in singleness is not unfair to either gays or straights.  It is the expectation of Scripture and the explicit teaching of God's Word.  It does not discriminate.

Marriage is not a right.  There are tons of straight people who want to find a spouse and have not and who grieve their singleness as a people burning with passion for what they have not.  How do we fix that inequity?  No, those seeking a lifelong committed relationship with someone is a common affliction among both gays and straights.  But what am I saying?  You do not have to be married to have sex.  No, we ditched that idea so long ago it is positively antique to think that way today.  Also, somewhere alone the way we decided the sex was such a fundamental right that everyone deserved to have it and that it was such an instinctive behavior that no one (not even pubescent middle schoolers) could or should be expected to reign in their desires.  So what are we left with?  A morality which says, "if you want it, go for it" or "if it feels good, do it."  And best of all -- you can do it without guilt as long as it is done while "joyfully submitting to the Lordship of Jesus Christ."  Do I hear an "Amen!?!"

So hats off to the Presbyterians and ELCAers and every other denomination so inclined to remove the terrible impediment of faithfulness in marriage and chastity outside of marriage.  Lord, now that we have fought this battle for liberation, what is next?  Maybe we enshrine our right to be happy, healthy, and wealthy.  Ahhhh, well, I guess somebody already beat me to that one as well....  I am so narrow minded and old fashioned that my underwear squeaks when I put it on...  Don't fret, though, because at the rate we are going I will be disappear like the dinosaurs of old and my ancient beliefs will be the subject of dull academic papers by anthropologists who work part-time at McDonald's....  What a glorious future we have to look forward to... Maranatha....

1 comment:

Paul said...

"I tremble for my country when I remember that God is just." And that from a deist?! God have mercy on those who claim the name of Christ but casually abandon His commandments of life and love.