Category: Cultural Commentary Written by Jim Denison
Now consider another question on the same theme: How did supporters of same-sex marriage convince voters in the recent election to legalize gay marriage in Maryland, Maine and Minnesota? By convincing them that "people of faith" support their cause.
Advocates in Washington wore two-inch green buttons proclaiming, "Another Person of Faith Approves R. 74." A Lutheran pastor in Minnesota and his eight-person staff trained 2,500 "conversationalists" to explain how their faith led them to support gay marriage, a cause they call "marriage equality." The campaign offered similar training to more than 500 clergy in the state.
Now their movement is planning to build similar networks in Colorado, Illinois, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Oregon ahead of planned ballot initiatives in those states. One leader of the effort says, "I can't imagine that we will ever have a LGBT [lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgendered] campaign where faith is not a part of the team."
Such efforts are clearly having an effect on our culture. The number of Americans who support gay marriage has nearly doubled since 1996, from 28 percent to 50 percent. The number opposed has plummeted in that time, from 69 percent to 45 percent. Our country is rapidly becoming a post-Christian nation, as the number of Americans with no religious commitment has grown 10-fold in the last 50 years. Are we becoming a post-family nation as well?
In 1960, nearly half of all U.S. households consisted of a married father and mother living with one or more of their children; by 2008, that percentage had fallen to one-in-four households. The number of babies born to unmarried mothers increased eight-fold from 1960 to 2008. Today, 63 percent of Americans say a gay or lesbian couple raising a child is a "family."
Is Jesus grieving for our culture? He clearly defined marriage as a covenant between a man and a woman (Matthew 19:4-6, quoting Genesis 1:27 and 2:24). As he intercedes for us today (Romans 8:34), is he praying for Christians to stand for biblical truth with greater courage and compassion than ever before?
It was revealing to me that one of the partners in the West Point gay wedding vowed to the other, "I promise to be true to you, and to my own path." What will you do today to help America be true to the path of God?