This is an addendum I am writing to this post after thinking about it for a few days and after talking to a trusted friend.. I feel I do not understand all the implications of the June 26m 2013 Supreme Court decision, neither do I feel I should remove this post. Basing my beliefs on Biblical principles, homosexuality is wrong; but please read this, being aware that I do not understand all the implications and am fairly certain I am mistaken. I am leaving this post up because I do not feel I should remove it. Thank you.
First let me say that I stand completely behind the Wesleyan church’s stand on the Supreme Court’s ruling from June 26, 2013.
“’My heart goes out to those whose lives are affected by these decisions, or whose hearts are troubled by them. It is clear that the Supreme Court’s decision on DOMA was deeply divided, and debate will continue in our country, as I don't expect many opinions have changed. Regardless of the shifts within our culture, we in The Wesleyan Church remain committed to the position that the institution of marriage is a sacred bond between a man and a woman.’”
The church is compelled by the love of Christ to care about all (italics mine) people. When we engage, peaceably, in the quest for healthy and just social structures that reflect God's plan, it is not just to protect ourselves. It is out of caring for everyone, including generations not yet born. When our stance becomes less popular in a society that is, in some ways, moving farther from God, love does not let us withdraw. It is out of love toward those who may think us enemies that we stand for what we genuinely believe is best for all, not just for ourselves.”
Yesterday the Supreme Court issued a ruling
“…In the second case, the high court declared that section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional ‘as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment…. ‘
The majority decision on DOMA was read by Justice Anthony Kennedy. He stated that the law was unconstitutional, because it ’singles out a class of persons deemed by a state entitled to recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty.’”
It might come as a surprise to my Christian friends that I believe the Supreme Court was correct in coming to this decision. It may even look as if I’m contradicting myself to both my Christian and Non-Christian friends. But to my mind this issue isn’t just about giving benefits and rights to same sex marriages.
To my mind, this ruling isn’t so much about same sex marriages but about benefits and rights that are given to all people regardless of race, creed or any other thing that makes us who we are. I may not believe that the lifestyle of the homosexual and lesbian is acceptable, but God gave each of us the free will to obey him or to go our own way. People, and not just homosexuals and lesbians, chose to turn away from God all the time, and He allows it. He wants people who want to have a relationship with Him and obey Him, and the only way to have people freely giving themselves to Him is to give them the choice not to.
Our country has always been based on equality for everyone. To me, if the Supreme Court did not rule as they did, then each one of us is in danger of having our rights and benefits taken from us, simply on the basis of what we believe.
Martin Niemöller, a contemporary and compatriot of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who spent seven years in a Concentration Camp during the Nazi era in Germany, made a statement that, I feel, applies here.
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me--and there was no one left to speak for me.
First they took the rights and benefits away from the gays, and I did not speak out, because I don’t believe in being homosexual….
….then they took my rights away.