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My Take: The Christian case for gay marriage
The author backs same-sex marriage because of his faith, not in spite of it.
May 19th, 2012
02:00 AM ET

My Take: The Christian case for gay marriage

Editor's Note: Mark Osler is a Professor of Law at the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

By Mark Osler, Special to CNN

I am a Christian, and I am in favor of gay marriage. The reason I am for gay marriage is because of my faith.

What I see in the Bible’s accounts of Jesus and his followers is an insistence that we don’t have the moral authority to deny others the blessing of holy institutions like baptism, communion, and marriage. God, through the Holy Spirit, infuses those moments with life, and it is not ours to either give or deny to others.

A clear instruction on this comes from Simon Peter, the “rock” on whom the church is built. Peter is a captivating figure in the Christian story. Jesus plucks him out of a fishing boat to become a disciple, and time and again he represents us all in learning at the feet of Christ.

During their time together, Peter is often naïve and clueless – he is a follower, constantly learning.

After Jesus is crucified, though, a different Peter emerges, one who is forceful and bold. This is the Peter we see in the Acts of the Apostles, during a fevered debate over whether or not Gentiles should be baptized. Peter was harshly criticized for even eating a meal with those who were uncircumcised; that is, those who did not follow the commands of the Old Testament.

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Peter, though, is strong in confronting those who would deny the sacrament of baptism to the Gentiles, and argues for an acceptance of believers who do not follow the circumcision rules of Leviticus (which is also where we find a condemnation of homosexuality).

His challenge is stark and stunning: Before ordering that the Gentiles be baptized Peter asks “Can anyone withhold the water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?”

None of us, Peter says, has the moral authority to deny baptism to those who seek it, even if they do not follow the ancient laws. It is the flooding love of the Holy Spirit, which fell over that entire crowd, sinners and saints alike, that directs otherwise.

My Take: Bible doesn’t condemn homosexuality

It is not our place, it seems, to sort out who should be denied a bond with God and the Holy Spirit of the kind that we find through baptism, communion, and marriage. The water will flow where it will.

Intriguingly, this rule will apply whether we see homosexuality as a sin or not. The water is for all of us. We see the same thing at the Last Supper, as Jesus gives the bread and wine to all who are there—even to Peter, who Jesus said would deny him, and to Judas, who would betray him.

The question before us now is not whether homosexuality is a sin, but whether being gay should be a bar to baptism or communion or marriage.

Your Take: Rethinking the Bible on homosexuality

The answer is in the Bible. Peter and Jesus offer a strikingly inclusive form of love and engagement. They hold out the symbols of Gods’ love to all. How arrogant that we think it is ours to parse out stingily!

I worship at St. Stephens, an Episcopal church in Edina, Minnesota. There is a river that flows around the back and side of that church with a delightful name: Minnehaha Creek. That is where we do baptisms.

The Rector stands in the creek in his robes, the cool water coursing by his feet, and takes an infant into his arms and baptizes her with that same cool water. The congregation sits on the grassy bank and watches, a gentle army.

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At the bottom of the creek, in exactly that spot, is a floor of smooth pebbles. The water rushing by has rubbed off the rough edges, bit by bit, day by day. The pebbles have been transformed by that water into something new.

I suppose that, as Peter put it, someone could try to withhold the waters of baptism there. They could try to stop the river, to keep the water from some of the stones, like a child in the gutter building a barrier against the stream.

It won’t last, though. I would say this to those who would withhold the water of baptism, the joy of worship, or the bonds of marriage: You are less strong than the water, which will flow around you, find its path, and gently erode each wall you try to erect.

The redeeming power of that creek, and of the Holy Spirit, is relentless, making us all into something better and new.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Mark Osler.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Episcopal • Gay marriage • Opinion

soundoff (15,115 Responses)
  1. mandarax

    Ethically this is a very simple issue. Treat people equally.

    Religion poisons everything.

    May 21, 2012 at 1:45 am |
    • rmtaks

      We should start small with evangelical Christians – stop trying to control other people's lives.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:48 am |
    • preacherman

      But, rmtaks, they're not controlling them, they're SAVING them!
      *sarcasm

      May 21, 2012 at 1:50 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      >>>" stop trying to control other people's lives."

      Hey, and then we can get the anti-smoking crowd off the backs of the smokers when they state that they want to raise the taxes on cigarettes so that adult smokers will want to stop smoking. Or when a Al Gore fan declares that he or she wants gas prices to go to 5 dollars a gallon so that people will drive less.

      If we are going after folks trying to control the lives of other adults then let me ride a motorcycle from sea to shining sea choosing if or if not, I want to wear a helmet. Then let me drive home with or without my seat belt and drive in the HOV lanes that my taxes paid for as well.

      Sorry dude... it is not just those of Faith.... as Tears for Fears sang.... "everybody wants to rule the world"

      May 21, 2012 at 1:54 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Mark, your examples are idiotic. . .sorry but they are. If you can't handle civil rights, maybe you should go hide under a rock. .which is where people who attack the civil rights of others belong. Now get along. . .go on.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:57 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      DeeCee, do not worry and no need to feel sorry if you can not see the link between all the various factions and groups in society who do not want to change only the man in the mirror but the man in your mirror... and if you do not want to change they will discomfort you to do it.

      Remember you feel that the term “marriage” is your focus. Do you feel that there are not other groups that feel equally engaged in their own focus issues the same as you? You consider your fight a civil right, trust that you are not alone. Not by a long shot.

      Question this. Why when the LGBTs fought for equal rights protections, under the law, ...why when the Gays and Lesbians were afforded protection from termination from employment, loss of housing … did the Gays and Lesbians stop and leave the transgendered out in the cold? Excellent lecture this past semester by a transgendered student who felt that the Gays and Lesbians seem to want civil rights for themselves but they are not willing to fight for the same civil rights they received, for transgendered.

      Lots of energy that the Lesbians and Gays are putting into Gay Marriage when folks like RuPaul and Eddie Izzard can be legally fired from their jobs just because they are transgendered.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:22 am |
  2. Dora

    Please read Gal 5, 19-23. Very clear the first sin mention is fornication and no matter with who. Just obey the will of God and you will go to heaven.

    May 21, 2012 at 1:44 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      LOL. What makes you think I would want to spend the rest of eternity with a bunch of hateful, spiteful, cold-blooded, bigoted people like Christians? Get real. To begin with, I don't believe in your idiotic book of myths.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:46 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      >>>" Just obey the will of God and you will go to heaven."

      Hi Dora. Who's interpretation of the "will of God" are you using as the Standard? Baptist, Catholic, Mormon,...

      May 21, 2012 at 1:47 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Actually if you read the entire bible, the very second sin must have been a doozy since "Adam and Eve" only gave birth to two boys. I wonder who slept with who to make more people, both sons with mother Eve?. . . . makes you wonder eh?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:53 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      DeeCee, ....ever heard of a Lullaby ?

      Check out the book of Lilith.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:59 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      That's not in the Christian bible, nor is it taught as being Christian.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:02 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      Sorry, you said you "wonder", and I am open to many possibilities and I thought I would just share one. Remember, the Bible had other books that were not included so the belief in Lilith is just another.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:09 am |
    • Ronald

      I am laughing that somebody mentioned about the book of Lillth.

      No mater how ignorant someone could be. At least a person should have some common sense to distinguish between myth and events that originally occured on Earth. I am glad no one has mentioned about hercules.

      Skepctics are put to shame by archaeological evidences that proves the event mentioned in Bible are truly recorded and did occur.

      If you are so called atheist, it is not because of logical reasons but moral reasons. You cant serve the living God "YAHWEH" and the lust of your flesh (sin) at the same time.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:16 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      Good grief ... Ronald are you calling me a Atheist?

      May 21, 2012 at 2:28 am |
    • mandarax

      @Ronald: "archaeological evidences that proves the event mentioned in Bible are truly recorded and did occur."

      That is an absolute lie. How do you fakers live with yourselves?

      May 21, 2012 at 2:29 am |
    • mandarax

      You know, the bible never said "thou shalt not provide false witness...unless you are doing it for me and then it's okay to lie up, down, and sideways."

      May 21, 2012 at 2:31 am |
    • sam stone

      Enjoy eternity on your knees, Dora

      May 21, 2012 at 5:39 am |
  3. Henry

    s-d-m-t-s are not Christian, they will r-t in h-ll

    May 21, 2012 at 1:41 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      As long as people like you are not present. . .it will be heaven.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:47 am |
    • preacherman

      Excuse my French, but you are a stupid redneck.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:47 am |
    • sam stone

      Henry: Enjoy s-ck-ng J-s-s' -ff for eternity

      May 21, 2012 at 5:43 am |
  4. DeeCee1000

    I hope Christian women aren't posting up any comments! The bible clearly states that women are supposed to keep their opinions to themselves and their mouths shut. . .in fact (as we all know) women were created to make babies for their hubbies not so they could have any opinions about matters.

    Hey Christian women, don't blame ME. . .I'm only stating what your bible teaches. . .that your basically chattel.

    -Of course, I don't believe any of that c&^p, but can you believe actual men instructed followers that that is the way women should behave? Seriously. . .so sad.

    May 21, 2012 at 1:40 am |
    • Henry

      deecee1000 another a-s-h-l-

      May 21, 2012 at 1:45 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Henry, are you capable of writing in complete sentences? Or are you just another religious fanatic who can only cut and paste from their book of myths?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:49 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      @henry

      Sorry but I don't read Morse Code

      . – . . . . . . . . . . – – – . – . . .

      (okay I lied I can read Morse Code and that above reads "A­S­S­H­O­L­E")

      If you don't know how to get around the filters, then don't bother trying to half-a­s­s your comments so we have to guess what you are trying to say

      Thanks :)

      May 21, 2012 at 1:56 am |
    • Ronald

      Your comments show that you are completely ignorant of the Biblical teachings. "There is neither Jew nor Greek, not male or female...... in Christ." Men and Women are equally treated. I am fully aware of the scritpures that you are misquoting and using them out of the context from the Holy Bible.

      There was a high significance of women in Jesus' ministry when was on Earth and women have the same importance in Lord's ministry today. Praying that God will open your spiritual eyes and understanding.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:56 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Ronald, you're SUCH a f&^cking liar. How long have women been allowed to vote in this country? Take your book of myths and shove it up your a&^hole.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:00 am |
    • Ronald

      Your language does not surprise me. I can expect that from an atheist. Infact this is the very reason why people associate to atheism. It gives liberty to practice ALL kind of immorality. You just proved it.

      Christianity was not formed in America. Voting rights of women and slavery have nothing to do with Christian roots.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:24 am |
  5. Henry

    Author d-g-n-r-t-

    May 21, 2012 at 1:33 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      again A­S­S­ W­I­P­E AKA HENRY
      if you don't know how to get around the filters to spit your F­I­L­T­H then don't bother posting. this isn't a game of h­a­n­g­m­a­n

      May 21, 2012 at 1:59 am |
  6. Buns66

    For one thing, this man has twisted scripture by stating that Peter was what the church was built on. It is not 'Peter,' but what he said to Jesus, the He (Jesus) was the Christ. On 'that' His church is built – on Himself (it says he was the Chief Cornerstone), not on Peter, who was only a 'follower' of Christ!! God is all-owerful, all-knowing, creator, etc. He is certainly able to protect and get His Word out to all people!!

    May 21, 2012 at 1:29 am |
    • Patrick

      I don't pay much attention to the Christian bible since it condones slavery(Lev. 25:44), beating slaves(Exodus 21:20), incest(Genesis 19:33-36), r@pe victims being required to marry the r@pist(Deuteronomy 22:28-29), treating women and children as property(Genesis 19:8, 1 Timothy 2:11-14, 1 Corinthians 14:33-35), requires battered women to remain married to abusive husbands(Matthew 19:9, 1 Corinthians 7:10-12), condones jihad type warfare where all children are ki11ed save the virgins who are a 'reward'(Numbers 31:15), and makes no mention at all of child molestation, the worst possible crime.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:32 am |
    • Be

      Peter (Petros) – the Greek for "rock". On this "rock" I will build my church. There are as many interpretations of scripture as thereafter sects within Christianity. Face it...... This guy is just as likely to be right as any of the rest of you.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:37 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Hell, he could say that the earth is really flat because the bible says so. . .and he'd be right!

      May 21, 2012 at 1:42 am |
  7. nmusk

    Losing issue for the nuts that actually oppose marriage equality. Gay marriage will be self evidently correct within a generation (and the kids will wonder why it was such a big deal for people now). Behind the times folks.

    May 21, 2012 at 1:25 am |
  8. Be

    Let's see – Catholic, Episopalian, Lutheran, Methodist, Seveth Day Adventsit, Baptist, Presbyterian, Evangelical, First Church of Christ...........I guess since al l Christians are 100 percent sure of what God really meant in the Bible, all of these various sects will go away. It is so rediculous for anyone to get on here and presume they know the mind of God through reading the Bible. If it were that clear there would not be all of these sects – each of which are sure that the know the Truth. Gay Christians are just as likely to know the truth as the rest of you.

    May 21, 2012 at 1:25 am |
    • Henry

      religion = man worship

      May 21, 2012 at 1:49 am |
  9. Truth

    You are portraying the lord as a B 1 G G 0 T T!!! Shame on you...

    May 21, 2012 at 1:20 am |
    • rmtaks

      Up until 2000 years ago he completely ignored or genocided anyone who wasn't his chosen people, so yea pretty much.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:28 am |
  10. RobertG

    There are many logical and civil reasons to deny gay marriages. For example, who are you to deny a child the right to have a mother AND a father? Is it males or females who are not important? Why are you se x ist?

    May 21, 2012 at 1:17 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Face it dude. Your side lost. Get over it. You're just making yourself out to be a sore loser. The overwhelming majority of the middle-age to younger generations support gay marriage. You'll have to accept it the way people had to accept Blacks, women and mixed marriages. Maybe you should find a hobby to keep you occupied.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:22 am |
    • Patrick

      Who are you to deny a child even a single parent in a world with 4 plus million orphans?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:22 am |
    • rmtaks

      Children have single parents all the time. They don't have a right to both male and female parents – it is not legally or in any other way a right, it is just you turning the way you think things should be into rights.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:26 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Some Christians are some of the most cold-blooded subhumans you will ever meet. They have one big ice cube where other people have a heart.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:27 am |
    • RobertG

      A "single parent" is not a legal relationship but is the failure of one. You are wanting to CREATE a LEGAL relationship that specifically denies a child from having both a mother AND a father.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:37 am |
    • Patrick

      Wrong, RobertG, single parents can and do adopt in every US state.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:38 am |
    • rmtaks

      People get pregnant without getting married all the time. And I don't know where you're going with this because I never said being single is a relationship, I said having two parents is not a legal right, or any other kind of right. Stop trying to derail this.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:40 am |
    • rmtaks

      As for your comment about "se xist." Saying two males are better than two females or vice versa would be se xist. Saying two males, two females, or a male and female are equally suited isn't. Try understanding logic before attempting to use it to control people's lives.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:43 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      DeeCee, yes some are but since we could say that some of any group in society are cruel and mean, that it just means that the Christians community are humans. Some will be bad and some will not.

      Try this DeeCee:

      Some African Americans are some of the most cold-blooded subhumans you will ever meet.
      Some Whites are some of the most cold-blooded subhumans you will ever meet.
      Some Indians are some of the most cold-blooded subhumans you will ever meet.
      Some Pittsburgh Steelers fans are some of the most cold-blooded subhumans you will ever meet.
      Some Chevy are some of the most cold-blooded subhumans you will ever meet.
      Some Atheist are some of the most cold-blooded subhumans you will ever meet.
      Some New Orleans Saints NFL players are some of the most cold-blooded subhumans you will ever meet.

      .... well after the issue with the placing bountys on other players heads.... the last one might need a "all"
      :) ... kidding.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:44 am |
    • RobertG

      And single parents can still have a relationship with, and marry an opposite partner, giving the child what they need. Gay marriage itself prevents that.

      So, which one is it that you are saying is not important? The man or the woman?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:47 am |
    • RobertG

      @rmtaks – Sorry, but to say that two males, two females, or a male and female are equally suited is ALSO saying that one of the se xes isn't important. If two males are equally suited, then females are not important and vice versa. THAT is se x ist

      May 21, 2012 at 1:51 am |
    • rmtaks

      Robert: I've repeated myself twice on the difference between a right and what you think someone could/should have. I have also explained the part about all 3 combinations of gender being equally suited. You are either willfully ignoring what I have said or you are incapable of understanding it. Either way this is a waste of time.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:51 am |
    • RobertG

      @rmtaks – So you agree then that you are a se x ist idiot. Thanks for your time.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:58 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      tell that to all the fatherless children already in society. Why not round up all those b­a­s­t­a­r­d making j­e­r­k­s who don't want to stay around and raise their own children. How dare they?

      May 21, 2012 at 2:02 am |
    • RobertG

      @DragonSlayer – That's WHY we have laws making it difficult for men to run from their responsibility. It's WHY we have things such as Alimony and Child Support. Just because some slimeballs who don't deserve to be part of the human race do leave behind such a mess doesn't mean that we should legalize even more bad relationships.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:10 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      and thank goodness there are LAWS to weed this h­y­p­o­c­r­i­s­y out. I'm just saying if the poster wants to talk about h­e­t­e­r­o­s­e­x­u­a­l relations are a requirement for healthy kids, start by working on the social problems these h­y­p­o­c­r­i­t­e­s have created and stop using it to prove that G­a­y Marriage is bad.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:21 am |
    • RobertG

      @DragonSlayer – I am working on it, we do work with single parents. But, you don't fix society by legalizing even more bad familial relationships. Let's fix the problems we have before we break ever more.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:32 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Find any law that says a child has a 'right' to a mother and a father, Robert. There's no such right legally. How could there be? Would you demand that a widow with children remarry simply because her children have a right to a father?

      Besides which, children of gay couples DO have both fathers and mothers. Otherwise, they wouldn't exist.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Robert, you seem focused on the needs of children and seem to believe they're not being met in a gay marriage. Where do you get this notion? From all the research I've seen, children of gay couples develop and grow up to be just as normal as those of straights. Prove otherwise, and cite your sources.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
  11. Emmsy

    Our poor college kids! This is the kinds of drivel they get? Wow.

    May 21, 2012 at 1:14 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      They're being taught that bigotry against minorities is wrong. . . omg! You're so right! How evil of these instructors to teach our kids that equality and tolerance is a good thing! Shame on them! Let's stomp our feet and wave our arms in the air in defiance!

      May 21, 2012 at 1:24 am |
    • mandarax

      Yeah, Emmsy, they learn about other countries, and gay people, and even about that evil evolution stuff. If we want them to remain safely ignorant, we may just have to keep them from attending college.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:40 am |
  12. Truth

    The bible was written by man, not God! And as far as I know, there has never been proof God signed off on our copy..

    May 21, 2012 at 1:08 am |
    • allanhowls

      Council of Nicea...only 300 or so years after the fact, did we decide which of God's inerrant and unchanging words would be put into that book. The rest were left out for not being a cohesive enough narrative for the old men in the room. Before that, there was a lot more scripture.

      Why did it take God so long to decide what he REALLY meant?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:13 am |
    • Henry

      truth, you are an as-h-le!

      May 21, 2012 at 1:30 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      NO @ Henry

      YOU ARE THE A­S­S­H­O­L­E

      Tired of having to play h­a­n­g­m­a­n every time you post something s­t­u­p­i­d

      May 21, 2012 at 2:04 am |
  13. rmtaks

    David and Jonathan were gay as Christmas morning

    May 21, 2012 at 1:06 am |
    • Horus

      "I grieve for you, Jonathan my brother; you were very dear to me. Your love for me was wonderful, more wonderful than that of women." 2 Samuel 1:26

      Nothing gay about that.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:08 am |
    • RobertG

      Even IF they were gay (and they weren't), they didn't get MARRIED! Gay MARRIAGE is a TOTALLY separate issue.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:11 am |
    • rmtaks

      RobertG: No, David was too busy getting his friend murdered and taking his wife for his own. You know, I'm sure if it was leaked that Obama sent one of his friends into heavy combat to get him killed so he could cover up a pregnancy you would let that go and still consider him a Godly man.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:15 am |
    • rmtaks

      But to be fair God did punish everyone else besides him for it.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:16 am |
    • Henry

      rmtaks, another i-i-t

      May 21, 2012 at 1:53 am |
  14. Horus

    Anyone who reasons with a holy book doesn't actually reason. Throw off your man-made religions and trust in your own independent thoughts.

    May 21, 2012 at 1:03 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      That would be asking too much.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:04 am |
    • Ssimons

      i love you

      May 21, 2012 at 1:31 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      If you don't believe in EVERY teachings in the Bible or if you do not agree with at least ONE thing, then you can't 100% believe in the Bible. You would be a H­y­p­o­c­r­i­t­e to say you do if you 100% don't

      May 21, 2012 at 2:07 am |
  15. Rob

    I don't think any Christian would deny the word, or batism or civial unions for many Christans. So drop the marriage and a mojority would probably agree. I wouldn't agree to one being an elder or pastor, any more than I would agree for that person to be an adulter, acholic, etc.

    May 21, 2012 at 1:00 am |
    • LinCA

      Marriage predates all currently dominant religions. The religious don't own the term.

      If the believers don't want to participate in civil marriages, they can form their own religious unions. Civil marriage should be open to all consenting adults.

      As far as I'm concerned, churches can set up their own rules for who can enter into their form of religious union. They are free to keep calling it "marriage", as long as it is understood that they don't have exclusive use of the term.

      The only involvement that the government has to have is in their role as protector of those that can't protect themselves. Restrictions on the religious union should include minors, animals and mentally handicapped people, as they can't provide informed consent. Close relatives should be excluded because of the high medical risks associated with such relationships. But, as long as the relationship isn't abusive, and all concerned enter into it of their own free will, even polygamy should be allowed.

      The government need not care if these religious unions are restricted to opposite sex couples, or same race couples, or even if they allow people to join their mail box, or other inanimate objects, in holy matrimony.

      If the union meets the requirements under the law, they can be eligible for recognition as a civil marriage. That should be the only way these unions are eligible for the rights and protections provided to civil marriages.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:03 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      Not a Gotcha question, Lin would you require religious insti'tutions to recognize a civil marriage. Such as with Health Care or admissions?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:11 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      We've tried the segregation thing with other minorities. Remember? Yeah, whatever you think, equal rights for gays are coming and here to stay whether your idiotic religion likes it or not. Get over it.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:17 am |
    • Nunya

      But think of the poor mailboxes forced into union without their consent!

      May 21, 2012 at 1:30 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      >>>"equal rights for gays are coming and here to stay whether your idiotic religion likes it or not. Get over it."

      DeeCee, I will remember that this summer if I visit my cousin in NYC and attend service at the LGBT church that she attends. Before you brand me as Rev Terry Jones, it might be best to exchange a few post first. My thoughts are often of tolerance and co-existence of all so there is no "get over it with me" cause I am not fighting either for or against.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:34 am |
    • LinCA

      @Mark From Middle River

      You said, "Not a Gotcha question, Lin would you require religious insti'tutions to recognize a civil marriage. Such as with Health Care or admissions?"
      If they employ people, they will have to abide by employment laws.

      It is my opinion that they should not be allowed to discriminate in any respect. I don't think they should be allowed to discriminate in their hiring, or their benefits. If they elect to provide a benefit to the spouse of an employee, then it would have to be made available to all spouses equally. Any organization that elects to operate in the real world, will have to abide by real world rules.

      If they can't abide by employment laws, they can operate with volunteers.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:34 am |
    • fred

      Yep, make those Christians bow to the godless and bring on the End of Days.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:37 am |
    • fred

      LinCA
      “Marriage predates all currently dominant religions. The religious don't own the term.”
      =>sorry Lin but after eating the apple Adam took Eve as his wife. So, it does not predate the two major religions that are based on the God of Abraham.

      “If the believers don't want to participate in civil marriages, they can form their own religious unions. Civil marriage should be open to all consenting adults.”
      =>It is not about marriage it is all about taking down the Bible and God. If this was not the case no one would object to a traditional marriage and civil marriage. Give out the secular godless “equality” marriage slips they are meaningless tokens of a secular world where marriage rates continue to drop year after year. Hold off on giving 70 year old benefits based on Judeo Christian family model that does not exist in a godless union (i.e. the little women stays home for life and daddy is the head of the family and the bread winner) to both new forms of marriage.

      “They are free to keep calling it "marriage", as long as it is understood that they don't have exclusive use of the term.”
      =>the world of the godless cannot dictate anything to God. God will bless those marriages God chooses to bless not some manmade nonsense.

      “The only involvement that the government has to have is in their role as protector of those that can't protect themselves.”
      =>like young Christians that do not want the government to continue to promote “safe $ex” when that has been a big lie from the beginning. Like senators applauding Clinton for telling children a BJ is not $ex as $ex is what you define it. Yep, thanks for turning our children into easy targets and splashing po-rn on every screen in the America. Yep thank our government for making us the #1 exporter of po-rn in the world.

      “Restrictions on the religious union should include minors, animals and mentally handicapped people, as they can't provide informed consent.”
      =>you mean godless unions as God would never approve such sham marriages.

      “ Close relatives should be excluded because of the high medical risks associated with such relationships. But, as long as the relationship isn't abusive, and all concerned enter into it of their own free will, even polygamy should be allowed.”
      =>picture is clear you want to be God.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:40 am |
    • mandarax

      fred, if you believe that Adam and Eve were actual people who talked to a snake and ate an apple, then you are disqualified from any rational conversation in the first place. You may be excused.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:55 am |
    • LinCA

      @fred

      You said, "sorry Lin but after eating the apple Adam took Eve as his wife. So, it does not predate the two major religions that are based on the God of Abraham."
      Anyone who seriously believes that there was an Adam and Eve should have his head examined.

      As an aside, if Adam and Eve ever really existed, they formed the first transgender marriage. Your god must like the kinky stuff.

      You said, "It is not about marriage it is all about taking down the Bible and God."
      No. It's about separating the delusional from the real. You can have your silly fairy tale, you just can't expect anyone else to take it serious.

      You said, "the world of the godless cannot dictate anything to God. God will bless those marriages God chooses to bless not some manmade nonsense."
      No your god doesn't exist, so he didn't do jack shit.

      You said, "Yep thank our government for making us the #1 exporter of po-rn in the world."
      That's freedom of speech and capitalism for you.

      You said, "you mean godless unions as God would never approve such sham marriages."
      You may want to look a little closer at some of the christian sects over the ages. Multiple young girls seem to be particularly attractive to some of the leaders.

      You said, "picture is clear you want to be God."
      Hell no. There are no gods.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:56 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      As we, non-Christians have been TRYING to educate your kind, Christians DO NOT OWN the word MARRIAGE. So stop trying to s­t­e­a­l it for your own. How about you go find a new word and leave Marriage to who it was really meant for.....to show love and commitment to another human being.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:11 am |
    • Chris

      Just wanted to point out to fred...there are THREE major Abrahamic religions, not just two. Your ignorance to that fact does wonders for the rest of your argument...sure it's not necessarily your point. But it does bring into question whether or not you can trust the opinon of someone about religion, when that someone doesn't have common knowledge about religions.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:14 am |
    • fred

      Chris
      There is Christianity and Islam that account for 52% of the the world religions. Judaism is only .2% of world religions so I do not count that as a major religion. Exactly which is your #3 that I seem to have missed?

      May 21, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
    • fred

      LinCA
      No, Adam and Eve do predate whoever you have made up as the inventor of marriage. If you claim the God of Abraham a myth then any other god which claimed marriage is also myth. This leaves us what secular godless men have made up as the first marriage. So what tribe or who do you claim to be the first godless marriage that set a godless example for all mankind?
      p.s. I will not accept anything you pull out of Harry Potter stories.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • fred

      Mandarax
      You are disqualified for having a closed mind. Unfortunately if there is a God there is no end to the God can do with past, present or future realities and you fail to appreciate any and all possibilities. Believers have the benefit of seeing both the spiritual and the material then proceeding through life with a broad open vision complete. You cannot deny there is more than the simple materialistic side of life and to limit oneself usually has a deep reason that is often lodged in sin as Christians would call it.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
    • LinCA

      @fred

      You said, "No, Adam and Eve do predate whoever you have made up as the inventor of marriage."
      You have to be fucking kidding me. I'm with mandarax here. you can't have a rational discussion with someone who obviously believes in fairy tales.

      Your Adam and Eve myth does serve a purpose though. It shows that your god was pretty open minded about sexuality. Since Eve is said to have been crafted from Adam's rib, she is genetically a man. She (and so nice of christians to be all-inclusive and calling her "she") and Adam formed the first transgender marriage. Maybe what christians call "traditional marriage", isn't so traditional after all.

      You said, "If you claim the God of Abraham a myth then any other god which claimed marriage is also myth."
      I don't claim there to be any gods. Marriage is a human construct. And while gods were typically called upon for some reason or another, that doesn't mean they existed.

      We've long since moved past the era in which the dominant religion gets to set the rules, and have entrusted our government with the definition of marriage. While you are free to ask your imaginary friend to preside over yours, no gods or religion are required.

      You said, "This leaves us what secular godless men have made up as the first marriage. So what tribe or who do you claim to be the first godless marriage that set a godless example for all mankind?"
      You may have misunderstood what I said. I said that "Marriage predates all currently dominant religions". That means that is predates the religion of those that wish to claim it as their own. That doesn't mean that it wasn't also some religious ceremony. But because all religions are just man made, no gods were involved.

      You said, "p.s. I will not accept anything you pull out of Harry Potter stories."
      Why believe one bullshit story and dismiss the next? That isn't very consistent, now is it?

      May 21, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • fred

      LinCA
      We moved past the era where a dominate religion sets the rules? Have you been a plane lately? We have whole new mindset about air travel thanks to religion. Every Presidential campagne since the founding of this nation was about putting a Christian into office and we have done that every year. This year Obama has run up the gay marriage flag on the electon poll and fired a test shot at the Chruch to see if still has any political weight. Oh, please burn a Quran before some TV cameras and let me know how everything turns out for you.

      May 21, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
    • LinCA

      @fred

      You said, "We moved past the era where a dominate religion sets the rules?"
      There isn't a civilized country in the world where laws are based on religion. The two are actually mutually exclusive.

      You said, "Have you been a plane lately? We have whole new mindset about air travel thanks to religion."
      I wouldn't be so proud of that achievement of religion. The christian nut jobs aren't any different from the muslim ones. If they lived in similar conditions, in a similar society, they would do the same.

      You said, "Every Presidential campagne since the founding of this nation was about putting a Christian into office and we have done that every year."
      In a country where 80% of the population is christian it isn't surprising that a christian was elected President, but the aim was to elect a President, not a pastor or a priest.

      You said, "This year Obama has run up the gay marriage flag on the electon poll and fired a test shot at the Chruch to see if still has any political weight."
      And if the country has any sense, they will thank him for it and elect him for a second term. Now, if on the other hand they like to drive the country back off the cliff, they'll pick the other guy.

      You said, "Oh, please burn a Quran before some TV cameras and let me know how everything turns out for you."
      As I've mentioned before, I have no intention of burning your bible or anyone's qur'an. While their only value to me is caloric, I simply dismiss them. If I found myself in a situation where I had to resort to burning books to stay alive, they would be some of the first to go.

      May 21, 2012 at 9:18 pm |
    • fred

      LinCA
      I am sure you understood the point that we are run by religion and you are not free of it just because you write some man made law that says no religion.
      Once again you cannot burn a Quran in public where large numbers could witness it. You are controled no matter what you think or some written man made law says about. Stick with reality not a pipe dream of your new world free of God .

      May 22, 2012 at 1:41 am |
    • LinCA

      @fred

      You said, "I am sure you understood the point that we are run by religion and you are not free of it just because you write some man made law that says no religion."
      I realize that we are not free from religion (yet). That's why it is important to keep up the fight. Not until society is cleansed from this garbage will we be truly free.

      You said, "Once again you cannot burn a Quran in public where large numbers could witness it."
      You are claiming the high ground by claiming that you are not quite as atrocious as the other believers of fairy tales? That isn't much to brag about.

      There are plenty of christian fringe groups within our society that aren't any better than the terrorists that you seem to fear so much. It is a result of a more civilized society that they are kept in check, not because your religion is so much better.

      You said, "You are controled no matter what you think or some written man made law says about. Stick with reality not a pipe dream of your new world free of God ."
      I always stick with reality. You should know that by now. And, like I said, the fight isn't over.

      May 25, 2012 at 1:11 am |
  16. Godisgood

    I agree with RobertG. You can't be a Christian and not follow the bible. Check out Genesis2:23 and 24.

    May 21, 2012 at 12:58 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Everybody here, without even knowing you knows that you don't follow everything in the bible.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:03 am |
    • Patrick

      Leviticus 25:44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves. 45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property. 46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

      Exodus 21:20 “Anyone who beats their male or female slave with a rod must be punished if the slave dies as a direct result, 21 but they are not to be punished if the slave recovers after a day or two, since the slave is their property.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:30 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      I'll agree with you one only ONE thing. I'm not Christian, but if your teachings are to follow some set of rules then you follow the rules HOWEVER, (to the disagree part) YOUR rules are not MY RULES. And YOUR rules are to not to i­n­t­e­r­f­e­r­e with my life. If YOU want to follow YOUR I­n­s­t­i­t­u­t­i­o­n­s rules then do it. BUT DO NOT try and tell me or others who are not like YOU to follow YOUR rules. You want to do it, great. You try to tell me to do the same...get ready for a b­l­a­c­k e­y­e.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:22 am |
  17. Truth

    Shoot responses are being filtered. Shame...

    May 21, 2012 at 12:55 am |
  18. n8263

    Christians should care what the Bible says regarding homosexuality about as much as they care about how it commands parents to stone their disobedient children to death.

    May 21, 2012 at 12:48 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      I think you mean Jews cause Christians are to follow Jesus lead and he was reported to have given us the requirements to carry out such punishments.

      So, your point is moot at best.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:56 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Uh, Mark from Middle River. . .Jesus WAS supposedly a Jew. . .not that I believe it since Jesus is as real to me as any of the countless other "gods".

      May 21, 2012 at 1:15 am |
    • n8263

      @Mark, in Matthew 5 Jesus made it clear that the Abrahamic laws must continue to be followed.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:19 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      John 8 5-7

      5 Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?

      6 This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.

      7 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.

      Can you give me the exact Matthew 5 scripture that you are referring to?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:27 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      Exactly, DeeCee Jesus was a Jew but we, who are Christians.. are not, we are followers of Christ.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:30 am |
    • n8263

      Jesus was talking about stoning an adulter there, not disobedient children.

      Matthew 5:17 is where he makes it clear.

      May 21, 2012 at 4:10 am |
  19. let's be logical

    Marriage is a legal contract, not a religious one. Religion never has to enter into it. It certainly never did for me and my husband. Sign a marriage license, and you are married. You don't need any words of religious mumbo-jumbo said over you! Also, have you never heard of the separation of church and state? Words out of your old book of mythology have no meaning for those of us with any intelligence.

    May 21, 2012 at 12:46 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      Question is which separation of church and state do you mean. The argument from the other side is that the state can not begin business tomorrow, close churches and other houses of worship and declare that we are one religion or another. It can not establish a religion. Now, even though I am not of an opinion on this issue please do not feel that your interpretation of the Separation of Church from the state is universally agreed upon.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:59 am |
    • Emmsy

      That's kind of a tired argument. Your just
      so smart you better than God. Lucifer said the same thing.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:00 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Mark from Middle River, are you saying that civil rights including civil marriage should be decided according to the bible? I hope not, because only an idiot would say yes.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:02 am |
    • Sean

      Except for the FACT that separation of church and state as you mention is NOT as you define it. It was written by the founding fathers to keep the STATE out of religion. You can't turn it around just to make it fit. Sorry... you just can't. Read the whole part not just the words, "separation of Church and State."
      Also, marriage in and of itself began as a religious ceremony as a three way contract between a man a woman and God. Just because moral decay and justification have allowed that third party to be changed from God to a government does NOT make it right or just. It just makes it what it is... Temporary.
      So as it comes to this article, it is one more person trying to do the same thing. Justify reasons they think something should be changed to fit a lifestyle that is so obviously contradictory to God's will. But, if you don't believe in God to begin with I guess that doesn't mean much to you......... For now.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:05 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      DeeCee.

      >>>"Now, even though I am not of an opinion on this issue"

      I know, its the cowards way out but I just do not know because civil unions many folks agree with but folks having issues with using the term "marriage", I can see both sides to a point that I am stumped on an opinion.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:06 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      "Lucifer"? Is he riding a Unicorn? LMAO. Hey what about that talking snake in your bible?. . .or 500 yr old "Noah" who somehow managed to cram two of every animal in his Ark. Did he forget the dinosaurs?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:08 am |
    • allanhowls

      "This is not now, nor has it ever been, a Christian nation."
      Thomas Jefferson, Treaty of Tripoli

      Amazing how selective some folks' memory (and interpretation) is. Your don't get to use the force of law to jam your personal opinion of the teachings of a subset of a subset of a subset of a religion on the rest of society, no matter how much you hate gay people.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:11 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Mark from Middle River, you're not making any sense. CIVIL marriage, the kind where any consenting adult including murderers and rapists behind bars in prison, atheists, non-believers and any religion have the right to use. . .how is there any problem coming to a decision about civil marriage?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:12 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      Yeah, the same Thomas Jefferson was having an affair with his wife's slave/half sister. Not saying that Christians do not cheat but its hard to give that much weight to T.Jefferson.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:14 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      >>>" . .how is there any problem coming to a decision about civil marriage?"

      Because on one hand I understand the view of some of the Faithful in wanting to protect the word "marriage" while at the same time it's just a word and in the grand scheme of Faith I feel it is a waste of reasources and time to fight over a "word".

      I have been around members of the Gay and Lesbian community for a bit now and they have been using the word "married" long enough for them to even use the words "divorced". At the same time, I am open to the opinions of the side that feels that it is taking somehow the inst'itution down a bit.

      Like I said, I have no opinion on it and often I am confronted by both sides with this "either you are with us or against us" view but I just have to admit that I am fully stuck in the middle on this one.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:21 am |
    • RobertG

      @allanhowls – LIES. The ACCURATE reading of the Treaty of Tripoli is as states. "As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion". This is true as the GOVERNMENT is not founded on, but the American PEOPLE were Christian!

      May 21, 2012 at 1:28 am |
    • mandarax

      Further points of fact: The Treaty of Tripoli was written under Washington, signed by Adams, and passed Congress without a single comment. The American people were actually not all Christians. Many of the founding fathers (Jefferson, Franklin, and Paine most famously) were explicitly NOT Christian. Washington himself would attend church but was notorious for walking out instead of taking communion.

      May 21, 2012 at 3:12 am |
  20. Kyle

    This article disturbs me, on a very profound and deep level. Arguments for civil gay marriage are one thing, but someone who claims to walk with the Lord suggesting gay marriage before God the Father? People who do not read scripture who fall for this I can excuse, the author however - This is intellectual dishonesty of the highest degree.

    May 21, 2012 at 12:42 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      That is your opinion. Obviously, the author interprets scripture differently than you do. What makes you imagine that he's being dishonest? Just the fact that you don't like what he thinks?

      May 21, 2012 at 12:46 am |
    • DeeCee1000

      Christianity was a mess from its very start. How many "churches" are there now? Several thousand all interpreting the same book in a different way, all preaching something different. The bible is anything but clear about many many things. Even the things that at one time seemed to be obvious are interpreted differently nowadays thanks to scientific discoveries such as in evolution and cosmology. That book is just one huge mess.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:00 am |
    • Emmsy

      You are right Kyle.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:02 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      ....fighting it ...with all of my strength ... I can't stop myself ... I .. I ...cough hack cough ... I agree with TomTom.....

      .... vomits on TomTom's shoes.

      Sorry about that ma'am..... :)

      May 21, 2012 at 1:02 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      obviously the writer was trying to show Christians not that being Gay was not a sin but rather that even if someone is Gay that as a Christian you are not to judge them for that. That's the whole point about these articles. It's to educate you to look beyond your own bias. It's to go beyond your few scriptures you love to quote and see the big picture by someone who is on your side of the tracks and not someone who is not.

      But that's not good enough for you. Unless someone is writing about how much they hate Gays and wish them to burn in Hell, you will never agree with anything anyone says.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:02 am |
    • Kyle

      Let me restate this. The author is guilty of blatant and severe intelletual dishonesty, to others and possibly himself. Marriage before God the Father is not between people of the same gender, no more than coitus is between people of the same gender. This is not a case of "differing interpretations," this is grevious enough to be a trespass on the part of the author.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:34 am |
    • mandarax

      Oh bullshit, Kyle. He would be more out of line with the Bible if he was arguing against slave ownership or for allowing women inside the church. You guys cherry-pick the anthills you want to hold sacred and ignore the mountains that are inconvenient to you.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:15 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.