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Jul. 26th, 2004 @ 05:54 pm Frustrated About Anger
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Date:August 4th, 2004 09:48 am (UTC)

Changing Sin, and Homosexual Marriage

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I have two thoughts that I am trying to reconcile right now, one about the earlier subject of sin changing with culture, and the other about homosexuality, marriage, and the church.

1. Regarding the previous thread of this conversation. I know that the heart condition behind sin doesn’t change, and that there are certain important kinds of sin that never change—such as lust, covetousness, murder, taking God’s name in vain, etc.—but there are other things that I believe are sin within one cultural context that aren’t within others. After all, even the apostle Paul said that eating meat that had been offered to idols wasn’t a sin, but that if it caused new believers to stumble in their faith, then it became, if not sinful, problematic.

Here’s an example that might help to illuminate my position. When my grandmother was young, the only people who had their ears pierce were what she called “hussies.” At that time, for a woman to wear earrings and to claim to be a follower of Jesus was a contradiction in terms. Within my grandmother’s culture, it would have announced her as rebelling against the “Christian” culture of her day to wear earrings, and thus have been sinful.

My mother, on the other hand, is an A/G minister, and the women’s director for the Ohio district of the same organization. She has her ears pierced. What’s more, no one thinks twice about her ears being pierced. My father, however, remains unpierced, and within the culture of his day would have encountered the same cultural stigma as a pierced woman during my grandmother’s. Has the truth changed?

Now, within the context that we, the emerging church of the twenty-first century, find ourselves, many men have pierced ears (and other things) without any fear of religiosocial ostracization, and fully secure in the sinlessness of their actions.

I believe that sins dealing with heart matters, are often changed in their manifestation, and various actions that have been sinful in the past are no longer so.

2. Regarding the issue at hand. I think we are dealing with two separate issues here. First, should a gay marriage be dissolved subsequent to the salvation experience? I think that anyone who recognizes the 66 books that believers refer to as The Bible as the actual inspired word of God would agree that this is necessary. The question that I find interesting is whether or not the Church body should demand a divorce. On this issue, my response would be a resounding no based on the moral and ethical change that I believe begins to occur in a person entering into relationship with God.

Before I expound upon this reason, allow me to preface this comment by saying that, just as I would not expect a known child molester, person living in an adulterous relationship, person involved in unethical/illegal financial situations, etc, to be in a place of leadership within the Church, I would not propose that we allow anyone involved in any repetitive and blatantly sinful act who has not taken the steps involved getting free from it. However, if we demand instant change that God has not yet prepared those in homosexual marriages to accept, we will inevitably alienate them from the Church that represents the God with whom they are beginning to become reconciled.

As for the necessity of the divorce, those who have actually begun as relationship with God will eventually mature to the point where, if they are being taught the scriptures in their churches, they will take that step on their own without having to be asked by any human agency. After all, God does have other ways of speaking than through the dictates of his earthly institution.

Any thoughts?
Date:August 4th, 2004 12:45 pm (UTC)

Re: Changing Sin, and Homosexual Marriage

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Now we are getting to the heart of it. The fact that Society thought girls with earrings are sinful doesnt mean God does (did). I am not at all talking about what the church as an assembly body deems as sin, but what God says is Sin. Now you are absolutely right, if the government says pancakes are illegal and you eat them, you are in the wrong. I on the other hand, was addressing the type of sin into which righteous anger falls. These are the sins of man that don't change, i.e. Lust, wrath, adultery,fornication, pride, etc......
For some one to say that there is no clear guidelines as to what honors and dishonors God, is just not biblical. Even if it isnt expressly said, you know excessive gambling is wrong, How? Because God has laid out the groundwork, THROUGHT THE SCRIPTURE, to help you apply your experience to his law. The key is to seperate what God hates, and what the "church" hates.
Date:August 4th, 2004 12:50 pm (UTC)

Re: Changing Sin, and Homosexual Marriage

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Also, why would homosexuals need to get a divorce when there marriage never was in the eyes of God?
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Date:August 4th, 2004 01:30 pm (UTC)

Yet Again: Changing Sin, and Homosexual Marriage

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And yet, can you deny that within that cultural context, to for a Christian to wear earrings would dishonor God in a way that it would not for a man to wear them today?

As for the marriage thing, to persist in an ungodly legal covenant would dishonor God, whether the Church recognized the union or not.