Still Thinking About Voting for Obama?
Conservative or liberal…watch this.
Government big enough to supply everything you need is big enough to take everything you have … as a government grows, liberty decreases.
Amazing speech by Eric Metaxas at the 2012 National Prayer Breakfast.
I’ll be honest.
Obama doesn’t stand alone in his belief that the values and aspirations of Christianity demand the acceptance of same-sex marriages and THAT’S “loving thy neighbor.”
It makes sense. Really.
If God exists for the purpose of making us happy, affirm our inclinations, help us achieve our goals and approve of our sovereign right to define our own identity, then opposing same-sex marriages is not only a good idea - it’s a necessary and fair idea.
And anyone who opposes deserves nothing less than to be called an anti-Christan, “intolerant bigot.”
Given the broader worldview that many Americans (including Christians) embrace (or, at least, assume), same-sex marriage is a right to which anyone is legally entitled. After all, traditional marriages in our society are largely treated as contractual means of mutual self-fulfillment - MUCH more than serving a larger purpose ordained by God (which is a covenantal agreement). The state of the traditional family is so precarious that one wonders how same-sex marriage can appreciably deprave it.
Same-sex marriage makes sense if you assume that the individual is the center of the universe. This means that God - if he exists - is only there to make us happy; that our choices are not grounded in a nature created by God, but in an arbitrary self-construction.
Every worldview arises from a narrative: a story about who we are, how we got here, the meaning of history and our own lives, expectations for the future. From this narrative arise certain convictions (doctrines and ethical beliefs) that make that story significant for us. No longer merely assenting to external facts, we begin to indwell that story; it becomes ours as we respond to it and then live out its implications.
However, to the extent that this sort of “moralistic-therapeutic-deism” prevails in our churches, can we expect the world to think any differently?
If we treat God as a product we sell to consumers for their self-improvement programs and peace of mind, then it may come as a BIG, CONTRADICTORY surprise to the world when we tell them that truth trumps feelings and personal choice.
The fact that “moralistic-therapeutic-deism” is the working theology of Americans - whether evangelicals, Catholics, mainline Protestants, or agnostics - demonstrates the pervasiveness of secularization of our churches. The old actors may still be invoked: God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit. Bits of the old narrative may still be mentioned: creation, providence, redemption, salvation, heaven. However, the shift is evident enough. These old words are mapped onto an essentially human-centered rather than God-centered map. The map is the autonomous self’s striving to create a sense of meaning, purpose, and significance. Each individual writes his or her own script or life movie. “God” may still have a meaningful role as a supporting actor in our self-realization and peace of mind, but we’re the playwright, director, and star.
So when we come to debates about same-sex marriage in civic debates, even professions of deeply held Christian commitments can be invoked without the biblical narrative, doctrines and commands, doxology, and discipleship actually providing the authoritative source and structural integrity to our arguments
Conservatives often appeal to self-fulfillment: gays are unhappy. They simply don’t realize their own potential to mate with the right gender and produce pleasant families like the rest of us. To be sure, there are other arguments, like referring to the decline of civilizations that accommodated homosexuality. However, this is just to extend the pragmatic-and-therapeutic-usefulness presupposition of individual autonomy to a social scale.
On this common ground, a third grader knows the right answer: Same-sex marriage is a no-brainer.
How would someone who believes that “sin leads to unhappiness” and “salvation is having your best life now” make a good argument against same-sex marriage? There is simply no way of defending traditional marriage within the narrative logic that (apparently) most Christians presuppose: God is there to make me happy.
It’s not like that.
That wishy-washy “Christianity” is NOT the Gospel of Negation and Sacrifice that Jesus LIVED.
We ALL have urges (also known as “temptation”) and we are all to please God by living in negation and sacrifice - just as Jesus did. After all, I can’t please my husband on my own terms. In order to please Him, I have to do what pleases HIM, not me.
So, where did this self-centered Christianity come from?
I guess that the seats of the churches won’t be filled by saying: “Jesus doesn’t care about your happiness in this World as much as he cares about your joy in the next.”
Thank you for reading.
[adapted from here.]