To Our Church Family and Friends,
Some who were in our worship service yesterday may have wondered why I did not change my sermon to speak about the Supreme Court’s ruling to legalize homosexual marriage. I did not address it for a few reasons: 1. I am not in favor of letting the doings of our culture dictate what I preach; 2. I want to respond after having had time to think it through and offer what I believe is a reasonable, Biblical response that reflects the truth of Christ and the love of Christ; 3. Months ago, I planned to begin a marriage series beginning on July 12th.
However, here are a few thoughts that have been going through my mind. James 1:19,20 says, “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” I have heard and read comments from Christians about this that have proven the wisdom in these verses. We should not expect Christian behavior or beliefs from non-Christians. That is unfair and foolish. With those people we need to reach out to them in love and show them how much God loves them.
Some Christians have spoken some very mean-spirited words that sound more like man’s anger than the wisdom of God. Their responses were the opposite of James’ teaching. They were slow to hear, quick to speak and quick to become angry. I have been embarrassed by some of their comments. I’ve been embarrassed by some of my own comments in the past when I was quick to speak! I’m learning!!!
Other Christians have demonstrated that they have been seduced by our culture. They have violated what Paul said in Romans 12:2 and have shown that they have been “conformed to this world”. They have ignored what God has said in His word about marriage being between a woman and a man. They have ignored what God has said about homosexuality. They cherry-pick other verses and make the Bible say what they want it to say and make it blend right in with our culture.
Let’s be wise as serpents and innocent as doves as Jesus said in Matt. 10:16. He said this to His disciples right after he told them He was sending them out as sheep in the midst of wolves. So don’t be surprised if people of this world attack you. But let’s make sure if they attack us – their attacks are not legitimate. And let’s make sure we are responding as James said – not in man’s anger. Also remember what he said in 3:17 “But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere.” That does not mean weak-kneed and having no backbone. But we should be rational and calm in our demeanor and not hostile.