Home Pastors Articles for Pastors The Gospel, Marriage and Why Your Gay Neighbors Aren't Supervillains

The Gospel, Marriage and Why Your Gay Neighbors Aren't Supervillains

For a long time in American culture, we’ve acted as though we could assume marriage.

Even people from what were once called “broken homes” could watch stable marriages on television or movies. Boys and girls mostly assumed they had a wedding in their futures.

As marriage is redefined, these assumptions will change. Let’s not wring our hands about that.

This gives Christian churches the opportunity to do what Jesus called us to do with our marriages in the first place: to serve as a light in a dark place.

Permanent, stable marriages with families with both a mother and a father may well make us seem freakish in 21st-century culture. But is there anything more “freakish” than a crucified cosmic ruler? Is there anything more “freakish” than a gospel that can forgive rebels like us and make us sons and daughters?

Let’s embrace the freakishness, and crucify our illusions of a moral majority.

That means that we must repent of our pathetic marriage cultures within the church.

For too long, we’ve refused to discipline a divorce culture that has ravaged our churches.

For too long, we’ve quieted our voices on the biblical witness of the distinctive missions of fathers and mothers in favor of generic messages on “parenting.”

For too long, we’ve acted as though the officers of Christ’s church were Justices of the Peace, marrying people who have no accountability to the church, and in many cases were forbidden by Scripture to marry.

Just because we don’t have two brides or two grooms in front of us, that doesn’t mean we’ve been holding to biblical marriage.

The dangerous winds of religious liberty suppression means that our nominal Bible Belt marrying parson ways are over.

Good riddance.

This means we have the opportunity, by God’s grace, to take marriage as seriously as the gospel does, in a way that prompts the culture around us to ask why.

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Dr. Russell Moore is President of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. He currently serves as Distinguished Professor of Christian Ethics at Southern Seminary, and as a visiting professor of ethics at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. A native Mississippian, Moore and his wife Maria are the parents of five sons.