Author Archive | Denny Burk

An “evangelical” church in Nashville embraces gay marriage

A couple weeks ago, I noted Elizabeth Diaz’s feature-length article in Time magazine arguing that evangelicals are changing their mind about gay marriage. Today she has a follow-up piece about Nashville, Tennessee’s GracePointe Community Church which has become “one of the first evangelical megachurches in the country to openly stand for full equality and inclusion of the LGBTQ community.” The church’s pastor, Stan Mitchell, made the announcement at the end of a sermon a few weeks ago. You can watch it above beginning at 44:00. Continue Reading →

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No grand bargain with the sexual revolutionaries

Yesterday, Mormon leaders announced a kind of via media on gay rights. In a public statement, leaders agreed to

…support legislation where it is being sought to provide protections in housing, employment and some other areas where LGBT people do not have protections, while ensuring that religious freedom is not compromised.

In other words, the church proposes to give a little in order to get a little. If I understand their statement of principles correctly, they are now willing to acknowledge sexual orientation as a protected class along with religion, race, and sex. They are willing to do this in certain “areas” of public life, so long as religious liberty is not curtailed in any way. Continue Reading →

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Should real-world effects influence Supreme Court decisions?

The New York Times hosts a debate today about the role of the Supreme Court in ruling on cases. The debate has in view two big cases coming before the Court this Spring—one dealing with the constitutionality of Obamacare and the other gay marriage. The paper calls three constitutional scholars to answer the following question: “Should real-world effects influence the thinking of Supreme Court justices in reaching decisions?”

Two scholars say real world consequences should determine the Court’s decisions. One scholar says that the law alone should determine Court’s decision no matter what the consequences are. And herein is one of the great challenges of our age—whether we will be a nation ruled by law or by the opinions of judges. Continue Reading →

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The Gay Marriage Litmus Test

Here’s the conundrum GOP candidates face. Standing for traditional marriage is a winner for the primaries but a loser for the general. That is why many hope that the Supreme Court will bail them out this summer. But no matter what the Supreme Court rules, these guys still have to persuade a conservative base. From Politico:

DES MOINES, Iowa — The U.S. Supreme Court is poised to rule on gay marriage once and for all in June, and there are many Republicans who privately would love nothing more than to have the question settled and off the table in time for the 2016 presidential election.

It’s not going to happen. Social conservatives here are determined to keep the issue alive during the run-up to next February’s Republican caucuses, no matter how the high court rules or how much some establishment figures would like to move on.

Read the rest here.

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Missed Motherhood: A Casualty of the Sexual Revolution

Susan Shapiro’s article at The New York Times is as sad as anything I’ve read in a long time. She is the quintessential modern woman, having pursued a career and a life in the city through her childbearing years. Twice she got pregnant, and twice she aborted her children. She didn’t want to be pregnant before her life and finances were stable. She would “have it all” eventually–so she thought.

After entering her forties in a more secure situation, she decided to try and get pregnant only to find that she couldn’t. She had always said that she didn’t want the life of her mother, who begin having children at a very young age and who defied feminist expectation by becoming a stay-at-home mom. Shapiro now thinks very differently about her mother’s decisions and her own. She concludes: Continue Reading →

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No one can really redefine marriage

Last week I read a report about philosophy professors who believe the debate about marriage is over. For many (perhaps most) of them, the question has been settled. There is no rational basis to privilege the union of one man and one woman in our laws and culture. To do so is the equivalent of bigotry. Or so these professors believe. And that is why many of them are no longer treating it as a matter up for debate. Conversation over.

It struck me that while many people in our culture will evade this discussion in a similar way, that doesn’t close the issue. Why? Because an ostrich with his head in the dirt doesn’t actually make the sun disappear. The sun shines as ever, no matter how much one closes his eyes to it. Likewise, marriage really is the covenanted union of one man and one woman with a unique connection to procreation and child-rearing. That truth about marriage remains the truth, no matter how much people try to pretend that it is not. The evidence of that truth will persist and will explain—perhaps better than anything else—the pain of brokenness of those who deny it. Continue Reading →

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Will Christians be allowed to serve as judges in California?

The religious liberty implications of our culture’s moral transformation on homosexuality continue apace. The big news out of California yesterday is something that we should all take note of. I don’t know how else to view it except as a foreboding sign of things to come.

Yesterday, the California Supreme Court ruled that state judges could no longer hold membership in the Boy Scouts of America. Why? Because the Boy Scouts allow gay scouts but not gay Scout leaders. As far as the California Supreme Court is concerned, the Boy Scouts discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, and that violates their code of ethics. The Los Angeles Times reports,

Continue Reading →

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Intellectual Dishonesty of Pro-Abortion Politicians

There are very few pro-abortion politicians willing to talk openly about the unborn. Most obfuscate with tropes about “choice” and “reproductive health” without ever addressing the fundamental moral question. Are we killing human beings when we abort unborn children? Pro-lifers insist that the humanity of the unborn is the primary consideration. Pro-abortion politicians say… well actually, those politicians generally don’t want to talk about that at all. And if you press the issue, they close their eyes, plug their fingers in their ears, and cry “Nah, nah, nah, I’m not listening to you, nah, nah, nah…” Continue Reading →

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